Be Strong and Courageous

Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Joshua 1.7-9

Yesterday we noted the call to Joshua in particular, and to ourselves by extension, to be strong and courageous in our daily lives as we fight the spiritual battles that are all around us.

From where though, does this strength and courage come? From the Law of God!

Joshua was challenged, as he assumed the huge responsibility of leading God’s people to ‘Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips’. it was to be his constant companion. It was to be constantly on his lips. It was to be obeyed and would bring blessing and success. It was from this Book of the Law that strength and courage for the task ahead, and indeed all of life would come. What a promise!

Years later, secure in the Promised Land King David wrote these words Psalm 19.7-14

The law of the Lord is perfect,
    refreshing the soul.
The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy,
    making wise the simple.
The precepts of the Lord are right,
    giving joy to the heart.
The commands of the Lord are radiant,
    giving light to the eyes.
The fear of the Lord is pure,
    enduring forever.
The decrees of the Lord are firm,
    and all of them are righteous.

They are more precious than gold,
    than much pure gold;
they are sweeter than honey,
    than honey from the honeycomb.
 By them your servant is warned;
    in keeping them there is great reward.
But who can discern their own errors?
    Forgive my hidden faults.
Keep your servant also from willful sins;
    may they not rule over me.
Then I will be blameless,
    innocent of great transgression.

May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart
    be pleasing in your sight,
    Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.

We are hugely blessed to have the original Book of the Law (in the first five books of the Old Testament) that was to be Joshua’s source of strength and courage as he walked in the ways God had set out for his people. But we are more greatly blessed still today as we live in the light of Jesus’ death, resurrection and ascension.

Knowing these truths we have no reason to fear and every reason to be strong and courageous for in Christ we have the victory. The battle may be hard, we may often echo those words of the psalmists ‘How long O LORD?’ but that same LORD is our Rock and our Redeemer.

We therefore have every reason to persevere and having God’s Word as our constant companion and the Holy Spirit ‘to guide us into all truth’ to be strong and courageous as we look to the glorious future promised to those who are ‘in Christ.’

May we each experience his presence with us in a very real way today.

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