“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9)
FOUR times in one chapter, Joshua is told to “be strong and of good courage.” In 18 verses, we as well as Joshua are reminded to be strong and courageous. What’s going on here? The context is, Moses has just died and God was calling a successor, a faithful man and the next leader to take the children of Israel into their Promised Land. He was to divide the land, drive out the inhabitants and lead each tribe to possess their inheritance. Simple right?
Be Strong and of Good Courage
The first “be strong and courageous” is when God called Joshua to leadership; God had an assignment for Joshua, he is now to step up and be a courageous leader, to divide, conquer and possess the land. God reminds Joshua that He will not leave him nor forsake him. This promise is enough to give Joshua the courage for the task at hand. (Joshua 1:6)
The second “be strong and courageous to observe and do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded”. These were the commandments of God given to the people of God that they may live His way. These commandments were attached with blessings. If they lived and followed God’s ways, they would find favor, riches, and life. (Proverbs 22:4; Joshua 1:7)
The third “be strong and courageous” quickly follows the second as a continuation of obey my commands, meditate on them day and night and your ways will be prosperous and you will have good success. (Joshua 1:8-9)
The fourth “be strong and of good courage” comes from the leaders of three of the tribes. They agreed to follow Joshua’s leadership, just as they followed Moses and they will now follow their brethren and help them take the land before they returned to theirs. (Joshua 1:12-15) They assure Joshua of their faithful submission to his command and remind him to be strong and courageous. (1:18)
God is definitely stressing that we are to be courageous. Be courageous in the work I have for you to do, in obedience to my ways of doing life, and in your dedication to Me, meditating on My Word day and night. Be courageous and don’t be afraid because, I, the LORD your God am with you and will give you success for the task at hand.
What is your task at hand? Are you stepping out, remembering He will not leave or forsake you? Are you obeying Him, courageously meditating on His Word day and night?
It takes courage to obey God and to live according to His ways and not the ways of our flesh nor the ways of the world. Are you listening to other brothers and sisters as they encourage you in the LORD? Let’s show our courage by our actions and show that we believe God when He promises to be with us. Let’s not allow fear to stop us. Rather, let’s step out and do what He has called us to do and be what He has called us to be. How can you be brave today?
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