6 Minute Read

Today’s Bible Reading:

Deuteronomy 34:1 – Joshua 2:24
Luke 13:22-14:6
Psalm 79:1-13
Proverbs 12:26

Today’s Bible Verse(s):

Joshua 1:6-9 (NLT): “Be strong and courageous, for you are the one who will lead these people to possess all the land I swore to their ancestors I would give them. Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the instructions Moses gave you. Do not deviate from them, turning either to the right or to the left. Then you will be successful in everything you do. Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do. This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Reflections on Today’s Bible Verse(s):

The verses for today are familiar to many Christians. They are the words that God gave to Joshua as he took the reigns of leadership. Moses had recently died, so God was encouraging Joshua to be “strong and courageous.” (In fact, variations of that phrase are used 3 times in these 4 verses.)

Throughout life, we will feel the need to be “strong and courageous.” We desperately need what Joshua was encouraged to have.

When we look at these verses, we realize that this wasn’t simply a superficial pep talk that God gave Joshua. He gave Joshua three substantive reasons that would develop strength and courage in his spirit.

In verse 6, strength and courage would come as he was resting in God’s promise. God had made a promise to the Israelites that they would inherit the Promised Land, and God wasn’t going to break that promise. Resting in God’s promise, Joshua could be strong and courageous.

In verses 7-8, strength and courage would come in obeying God’s precepts. God’s Word contained commands for living – things to do and things to avoid. As Joshua obeyed God’s instructions, he would experience God’s favor in doing what God had told him to do – claim the Promise Land. So, as Joshua obeyed God’s precepts and experienced God’s favor, he could be strong and courageous.

In verse 9, strength and courage would come as Joshua comforted himself in God’s presence. God wasn’t sending Joshua out to do the task all by himself. God was going with them. So, as Joshua rested in the assurance of God’s presence, he could be strong and courageous.

Friend, each of these three substantive reasons for Joshua’s strength and courage are transferable. You and I can experience strength and courage in our life as we rest in them.

God’s promise – What passage of Scripture can you rest your faith upon as you go through a difficult time?

God’s precepts – What areas of your life need repentance and adjustments to come into conformity to God’s commands? Are you committed to instantly and completely obeying God’s commands?

God’s presence – What reminders can you provide for yourself that God is with you?

Friend, God doesn’t want His children living a defeated life. He wants us to be strong and courageous. He has provided the means by which we can be strong and courageous. Will you make the adjustments necessary to be filled with the strength and courage you need for each day?

Matt Ellis is the pastor of First Baptist Church in Polk City, Florida (fbcpolkcity.com). His latest book is God’s Grace in the Real World. Connect with him on FacebookTwitter, or LinkedIn.