“No man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life; as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you nor forsake you. 6 Be strong and of good courage, for to this people you shall divide as an inheritance the land which I swore to their fathers to give them”. – Joshua 1:5-6
Imagine the following scenario: Moses is dead; he led the people from forty years in the Sinai desert and wilderness to the Promised Land, he overcame many obstacles and won numerous battles; he saw the fruitful Jordan Valley and the land promised by God, but could not enter, and died on Mt. Nebo. God chose Joshua to be the new leader of the Israelites. He assigned him to lead the people through the Jordan River, conquer its cities, and divide the land between the twelve tribes. Joshua followed and walked in the footsteps of Moses; but now that Moses was dead, the mantle and responsibility of leadership were bestowed on him.
I can imagine what Joshua must have felt as he stood before a tremendous challenge. Maybe he thought to himself:
• How will I get all the people across the mighty Jordan?
• How will we invade the mighty cities and conquer the nations?
• Am I qualified for the task?
• I am not sure if I am the right person for the job. I am not even sure if I want this job.
• Will God be with me as He was with Moses?
Joshua was aware of his weaknesses. So, he was scared. His future, and what it might bring, was unknown and uncertain. God, however, spoke to him three times and encouraged him with the words, “Be strong and be of good courage.” He also gave him a clear instruction and some practical guidelines as to how he must arrange his life. God assured him that if he was faithful in following His guidance that he would prosper in everything he did. He was in a position where he could not turn his focus away from the guidelines God had given him. Joshua had to face the mighty Jordan River, the fortified cities, mighty nations, even the seemingly impossible command, and continue with the task that the Lord entrusted to him. He could not dare to let any doubt, uncertainty, or even the enemy, disturb his peace.
We can find the following guidelines in Joshua 1:1-9.
• God promises that He will be with you (Joshua 1: 5, 9).
• God gives you His Victory (Joshua 1: 3, 5, 6).
• God gives you His Word, which will guide and strengthen you (Joshua 1: 7-8).
• God gives you His Presence, which will accompany you everywhere you go (Joshua 1: 5, 9).
The Christian life is not always easy; but, no matter what challenges, obstacles, or temptations you face, God wants you to be strong and of good courage. God desires that we live for Him, grow closer in our walk with Him, and make a difference where He has placed us (John 17:18). Instead of looking at all the things that cause uncertainty, a troubled heart, and mind, we must trust in His guidance through the indwelling Holy Spirit as we accept His commission and commands. We have already gained victory through the death of the Lord Jesus on the cross. We have His promises, His Word, and He is with us through His Spirit. So, why don’t you take heart, be strong, and trust Him to work it out?
Prayer: Lord, thank you for the promise that you will be with me, and that your presence will go before me when I face a new challenge. Amen