Success, do you know anyone who doesn’t want it in one way or another? How can we become successful? According to what God told Joshua, it starts by being strong and courageous.
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. Joshua 1:6
The last chapter of Deuteronomy reported the death of Moses. It says before he died, he anointed Joshua as Israel’s next leader.
Now Joshua son of Nun was full of the spirit of wisdom, for Moses had laid his hands on him. So the people of Israel obeyed him, doing just as the Lord had commanded Moses. Deuteronomy 34:9
In the first chapter of Joshua, God also spoke directly to him. He confirmed Joshua’s calling to lead the children of Israel into the promised land.
He said, “Moses my servant is dead. Therefore, the time has come for you to lead these people, the Israelites, across the Jordan River into the land I am giving them. Joshua 1:2
Then God encouraged Joshua by promising him the same thing He promised Moses. Thus He made the following statement about after they cross the Jordan River.
Wherever you set foot, you will be on land I have given you. Joshua 1:3
God also promised Joshua that He would not fail him nor abandon him. But for him to be successful the Lord told him that he must be strong and courageous.
God Charged Joshua to be Strong and Courageous
The Lord God charged Joshua two more times about being strong and courageous. The first of the two dealt with obeying the Word of God.
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. Joshua 1:7
What did the Lord mean when He said not to deviate or turn to the right or to the left? It means if God says “this,” we are not to change it and say no, He really meant “that.”
The Lord told Joshua, if he carefully obeyed His word then he would be successful in everything he did. He also told him a surefire way to keep from deviating from His Word.
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. Joshua 1:8
The Lord wanted Joshua to meditate on His Word day and night. Why? Because we can easily become distracted from His Word. We must allow it to sink deep into our hearts and minds.
So up until this point, the Lord told Joshua twice to be strong and courageous. The third time God said it, He wanted him to know that it was more than just a suggestion.
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.” Joshua 1:9
Why would God command Joshua to be strong and courageous? Because He wanted him to be successful. Just like the Lord wants us, His children, to be successful in all we do as well.
Do You Want to Be Successful?
How do you think you will experience success in your life? Some people believe the more they have, the more successful they are. But is that really success? Jesus asked . . .
What do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul? Matthew 16:26
Other people often think the source of their success comes because of their personality and/or charisma.
God, however, reminded Joshua that his success didn’t lie within his own strength. Instead, his success rested solely on his obedience to God.
The Lord didn’t expect the Israelites to cross the Jordan and conquer the new land within their own abilities. Their successes would only come by walking by faith and obedience to God.
The Lord supplies us with His strength for living each day of our lives. The Apostle Paul, while mentioning some of the difficult circumstances he experienced said the following.
For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength. Phillippians 4:13
Also after addressing some serious issues in 1 Corinthians, Paul included this exhortation in his closing remarks.
Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous and be strong. And do everything with love. 1 Corinthians 16:13-14
One Last Thought
Moses led the people of Israel out of Egypt and through the wilderness for 40 years. He died after he saw the promised land from a nearby mountain and the Lord buried him.
God spoke to Joshua to lead these cantankerous people on a venture unlike any other. They certainly needed to trust God because their first obstacle was to cross a flooded Jordan River.
Have you ever heard from or thought you had heard from the Lord? If you’re like me, when I believe I’ve heard from God, I love receiving some sort of confirmation.
That’s exactly what happened to Joshua at the end of this chapter. He gathered some of the tribes together and laid out God’s plan. They agreed to obey him just as they obeyed Moses.
They continued by telling him that they would deal with anyone who didn’t follow his instructions. Then they ended by encouraging Joshua with the same words God used.
Anyone who rebels against your orders and does not obey your words and everything you command will be put to death. So be strong and courageous!” Joshua 1:18
Lord, help us to trust You to give us strength and courage. Encourage us to get into your Word so we too can be successful. Thank you that you are with us wherever we go.
Check out these related posts from the book of Joshua.
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