Joshua’s story is coming to an end. As he gathers Israel’s leaders, he shares the same words with them that God gave him at the beginning of his leadership: Be strong and courageous, and continue to obey God (Joshua 1:6-9 and 23:6). When they do those things, God will continue to bless them – even after Joshua is gone.
It’s a message to the next generation of leaders, a warning but also encouragement- God keeps His promises.If they stay faithful and strong to keep His commands, God will drive the rest away the rest of their enemies. If they become distracted and drawn toward false golds, God will take those blessings away.
It takes strength to have faith and stay true to God’s Word when the world shouts that our lives should look a certain way if we want to fit in, get that promotion, or achieve our goals. We hear culture shouting that we can do it on our own, that we’re more than enough, and that we can fight and work our way to the top if we only try hard enough.
As Christians, we’re meant to live counter-culturally. We’re not meant to fit in – this isn’t our home! And God doesn’t want us to do any of this on our own. He desires a relationship with us, where we trust Him and His plans and know that He will fight for us. Sometimes the strongest thing we can do is lay the fight at the foot of the cross.
Joshua knew the Israelites were going to need the reminder that God had kept His promises before and He would do it again. They needed to remember that it was God who drove nations out of the Promised Land. It was His victory and they were invited to celebrate in it because of their faithfulness.
“Israel’s greatest danger was not military; it was spiritual. The key to the success of Israel was not in their strength but in how dedicated they were to the will and glory of God.” – Dr. Tremper Longman (Layman’s Old Testament Bible Commentary)
Are there areas of your life that need to be turned back over to God, things that you have been fighting for in your own strength? Be strong and courageous, and trusting that God still keeps His promises – and that they are “yes and amen.” (2 Corinthians 1:20)
Bio: Crystal Stine’s passion is equipping women to embrace a work hard, rest well lifestyle that honors God and quiets the shouts of the world. Her first book, “Holy Hustle: Embracing a Work Hard, Rest Well Lifestyle” released June 5, 2018 (Harvest House). You can connect with Crystal online at crystalstine.me, learn more about her book at holyhustlebook.com, get a sneak peek of the book through the free 10 Day “Holy Hustle” devotional on YouVersion, or find her on Instagram @crystalstine. Crystal serves as the Communications Director at her church and also has the honor of working as an editor for Love God Greatly.
We are excited to announce our new study will be on the power of our words! You won’t want to miss this powerful 4-week study looking at the words we speak, think and listen to!
Invite your friends, small group or neighbors and join us starting on August 5th!