Saturday, August 22, 2009


Joshua 1:1-9

Moses was dead. Joshua had known this day would come. It had finally arrived. He had seen so much since Moses returned to Egypt. He saw the plagues and the miracle of Passover. He had passed through the Red Sea. He had climbed Mount Sinai with Moses. He had spent countless hours in the tent of meeting where Moses met face to face with God. He had spied out the land of Canaan and stood firm against the other spies who were afraid to take the land. He had traveled every step of the way with Moses. He saw God meet with Moses and he knew God gave directions to him.

But now Moses was dead. He was God’s appointed leader of Israel. He was the one who was to lead them across the Jordan to take the land. He was the one who would have to deal with all the issues of the people. Was he up to the task? Would he be able to follow in the huge footprints of Moses? Would God meet with him face to face? Would God give him directions like he gave to Moses?

God said, Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan River into the land I am about to give them—to the Israelites. I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses…No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life.

So God would speak to him! This was the promise God had given to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Moses! The promise was his too! But he needed more. God knew he needed more and said, As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. That is what Joshua needed! God continued, Be strong and courageous…Be careful to obey all the law…Do not turn from it…that you may be successful wherever you go…Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night…Then you will be prosperous and successful.

God told Joshua to be strong and courageous. Why would he have to be strong and courageous? If God was going to be with him what could go wrong? Even if he obeyed everything God said there would be difficult and trying and fearful times. God told Joshua to be strong and courageous because he would need to be strong and courageous in order to face all the things that lay ahead! It would not be easy! God said, Do not be terrified. There would be terrifying times! God said, Do not be discouraged. There would be discouraging times. But Joshua’s hope was in this, For the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go. God himself would be with him and he had God’s word to be with him wherever he would go.

These are difficult and trying and fearful times. These are terrifying times. These are discouraging times. But our hope is this: God is with us. His Spirit indwells us. He is with us wherever we go and no matter what we face. We have his word in the Bible and that is our guide. He will lead us through whatever these times bring our way if we are careful to do everything written in it.


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