The stones of Bolshoi Zayatsky Island are intriguing things. While most people are not overly concerned as to their intent, it is interesting to consider their labyrinths shapes, weaving and spiraling on the ground. The clusters have perplexed tourists for many years. I suppose that they once served some purpose, though no one knows what that might have been.
Some surmise that the stones were used in spiritual rituals while others say they were templates for fishing nets. The stories, however, have all turned into fables. Whatever their purpose, it has long since past. Today they are now just tourist attractions on a lonely island on the outer banks of Arkhangelsk Oblast, Russia.
When Joshua crossed the Jordan River, he commanded the leaders to gather stones from the dry bedrock of the parted water. They gathered those stones on the shore and built them up as a memorial of their crossing. Joshua said, “When your children ask you ‘what meaneth these stones’ you will be able to tell them of this day and of the Lord’s power.
Joshua saw the stones as a reminder of God’s promise. He wanted the people to have something to mark their entrance into the land of promise. A short two generations later, they forgot Joshua and the works that God had done for Israel. Those stones lost their meaning. They were shaped and formed, but no one understood their intent. Gratefully, God sent prophets, judges, and kings to resurrect His truth and keep His voice in their lives.
The knowledge of God may be assisted by the physical realm. I do concede that buildings and land; stones and monuments all serve a purpose. However, Israel kept the Law via oral tradition. In their darkest times, when the scrolls were burned and the nation was bound, God’s people taught their children in their homes. Fathers and mothers spoke of God. They invested conversation in their families so that regardless of the condition of the monument, the Law was planted. David said, Psalms 119:11 “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.”
I hope you will remember the physical blessings of your life. I hope that you will always acknowledge the Lord’s provisions. I pray that you will never forget this Holy Ghost experience. I hope that you will be thankful for things, which you see and hold, but I pray that you will remember the reason why they exist. God did this. God gave this. He brought us out and ordered our steps. These stones speak of His mercy and His grace. They talk of His love and His power. His Truth; the Gospel and His name are the treasures of this life. As for the stones, they must be remembered because they reveal a time when God did the impossible.
Pastor Jeffrey Harpole