Canaan as the Church Figure

The Lord is the dayspring that has visited us from on high and is now guiding our feet into the way of peace (Luke 1:78-79). He wants for us quiet places of rest, dwellings of peace, and a land that flows with milk and honey.

Nevertheless, paradoxically, it is only possible to enter this place of rest with a fight, striving to enter (Heb. 4:11). In order to enter into His rest, work, effort, and intense battles with the inhabitants of the land are necessary. Canaan, like the church, was not a place in heaven  -even if it is heavenly - but on earth and full of enemies, giants, and people that seem invincible.

In Egypt, a figure of the world, we were separated from the life of God. The desert is a place to get to know God and to separate the believers from the unbelievers; the faithful from the unfaithful. Canaan is the place of the children of God, a place of rest. It is a place of God’s rest and his works. It is where the Lord also finds his rest to enjoy with his children and make them grow in fellowship and holiness. It is a people separated from all people on earth; a holy priesthood.

Everything in Canaan foreshadows the church, even the city of Jerusalem (Heb. 12:22). In Canaan, in spite of the struggles, there are only promises of victory. The doors of hell shall not prevail against her, and it is she who fights God’s battles on earth taking on His armor (Eph. 6). It is she who battles and wins.

In the church, like in Canaan, every defeat occurs due to pride or disobedience; however, there will always be victory in obedience and faith but none of it without a fight.

Canaan had already been the site of pilgrimage of our father Abraham, and this foreshadows the church in its beginning. Now it is a land of Jebusites and giants that must be taken with force, in the power of the Lord (Ef. 6:10). A weak people, without resources, that keeps his word and does not deny his name.

The unfaithful and incredulous will remain in the desert. They will not enter into his rest, but those who believe will possess the land of pilgrimage, the promised land, the first love, and the place God chose to place his name. The name that is above all names; Jesus the Lord, our salvation.

In Hebrews 4:1-3, the Lord encourages us to fear because the promise that has been given to us was also given to them. The promise was not to be theirs because it was not accompanied by faith by those who heard it. Only those that believe enter into his rest.

Canaan is a holy land, like the church. The Church is not a place of agreements or human adjustments. She is being conquered to be a place sanctified to the Lord. The church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth cannot be less than this (1st Tim. 3:15). The church is a place that expresses him, and the place of his dwelling and rest. It is a place where the word of God is alive and effective where the secrets of the hearts are manifest, and thus, falling down, people will say: Truly God is in the midst of you (1 Cor. 14:25).

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