“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.
Joshua 1:6-9 (NKJ)
6 “Be strong and of good courage, for to this people you shall divide as an inheritance the land which I swore to their fathers to give them.
7 “Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go.
8 “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.
9 “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”
God has made us many great and precious promises, but we will never see them manifested in our lives unless we gather the courage to act on God’s Word and do those things He commands us to do. Joshua was commanded by God to take the Israelites into the land that God had promised to Abraham. This was not just a case of packing bags and moving to another location. The land was occupied by some other people who had no intention of moving away to make space for Joshua’s people.
Joshua was not the first one called to do this task. Moses was supposed to take the people into the land, but they had been so influenced by their captivity in Egypt that they had no vision and no confidence in their God. While they were in captivity God had heard their whining and begging. Because of the promises He had made and because of Moses’ faith and obedience, He was willing and able to bring them out of Egypt. All they had to do was kill the lamb, put the blood on the doorposts, eat and pack to go. God brought them right to the entrance to the Promised Land, but they missed their opportunity to have the manifestation of God’s promises in their lives, because of their fear and their doubt and unbelief.
In Numbers 13:1-33, Moses sent twelve spies, one from every tribe of Israel, into the land to report on it. They came back with a good report on the condition of the land – “it flows with milk and honey” – but ten of the spies also reported negatively on the people who dwelt there. They said that they were huge and strong and that their cities were walled and great. They spoke their fear into the people. Joshua and Caleb tried to get the people focused back onto God and His promises – that they were well able to overcome their enemies and to take the land – but they would hear none of it.
Because they were too afraid to trust God, they had to endure 40 years in the desert, living from one miracle to another, until they died. Their children, who had been raised on miracles and on the Word of God, as free men without the influence of Egypt, went on to take the land for their possession. Again, Joshua had to remind them to be courageous, as God had reminded him, and to have faith in God, so that they could do what God had promised. It doesn’t matter how courageous you are in an area God has not promised – you will not be successful. However, when God speaks, you might as well put your brave clothes on, because you are going to have to obey God.
The Israelites were successful in taking possession of the land that God had promised to them and their fathers, as they gathered their courage and their confidence in God’s Word and followed Joshua’s brave leadership. God will be on your side as you obey His command. It is not always easy, but you will always prevail, as you swallow down your fear and allow your courage to lead you.
2 Corinthians 2:14 (KJV)
14 Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.
The Word of God is the source of your courage and the antidote to your fear and it is God who always causes you to triumph in Christ Jesus.
Don’t speak your fears – speak your courage and your faith.