Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage;
be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is
with thee whithersoever thou goest.
Today is Pearl Harbor Day. Today we honor and remember those who lost their lives during Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor. The events of that day ultimately led to the United States entering WWII. When I think of Pearl Harbor and our WWII veterans, the word “courage” immediately comes to mind. Spiritually, we must also be courageous. God calls us to be courageous and gives us a powerful promise to go with that calling.
Beginning in verse two, the Lord is speaking to Joshua concerning his new role as the leader of God’s people. Three times He tells Joshua to be strong and courageous. Joshua is probably feeling anything but courage at this point. Moses, his mentor, is dead. The children of Israel are about to possess a large area of land and Joshua is suddenly their leader. Grief mixes with anxiety and he is beginning to feel overwhelmed. The Lord reminds him of the protection of His presence and the power of His promises. Consider these things.
- The Commander – Have not I commanded thee?God will never ask us to do anything that He will not empower and enable us to do. We have a trustworthy, proven Commander.
- The Confidence – Be strong and of a good courage;
When our eyes are on Him and our trust is in Him, we will have the strength and courage to do what He asks of us.
- The Calm – Be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed:
As mentioned before, these emotions are what Joshua is fighting against. The death of Moses and the responsibility of leadership would overwhelm anyone. Fear hinders obedience but we do not have to fear because God gives us peace.
- The Companion – For the Lord thy God is with thee
What a companion! What a champion! If God be for us, who can be against us?
- The Constant – Whithersoever thou goest.
He will never leave us. He will never forsake us. God’s plan will not lead us where His power can’t keep us and His presence will not be with us.
Faith builds our strength and courage. Faith comes from hearing, and hearing comes from the Word of God. Read Joshua 1:7-8 and see the emphasis placed on God’s Word. By faith, we can be courageous. God’s Word will build our faith. Be strong and of a good courage!