Summary: Often we have a crazy notion that somewhere along the Christian journey things should become really easy and we equate that with our lives being blessed. When we adopt this thinking we add societal truths to biblical truths, which leads to disappointment
Often we have a crazy notion that somewhere along the Christian journey things should become really easy and we equate that with our lives being blessed. When we adopt this thinking we add societal wants to biblical truths, which leads to disappointment and disenchantment. Nowhere in all of the scriptures does God promise us an easy life of being rich. Blessings yes, success yes, peace yes, purpose yes, but never easy and wealthy, those are western world concepts. Part of God’s great plan for your life is epic battling as you take hold of the promises of God. Do you see why it’s important to be forged in the wilderness? You have got to be ready to fight for what God has promised us.
The Israelites turned away from this point 40 years before and now they had returned to the banks of the Jordan. Moses, a man like no other who knew God face to face, had died and now the nation of Israel was under new leadership. They were about to enter the land of the giants and they knew that this Promised Land wasn’t going to be any picnic, but it had been promised to them as an inheritance and so they were going to take it. What are you willing to fight in order to grab hold of your promises? If the wilderness is where God builds us, the Promised Land is where He expects us to win.
1. You will need to be strong
Moses has passed on and right from the beginning of Joshua’s leadership God speaks over his life and speaks future and hope into him. God repeats Himself 3 times to Joshua in these few verses because He is making a very important point. Before you even go into the land I need you to remember these things and if you do then you will know success and victory in the land I have promised you. You must trust me and believe that I am with you and that victory will come no matter what the opposition or army. Image you were just put in charge of a group of people who had just walked through the wilderness for 40 years, do you think they were ready to cross the Jordan now? They were ready no matter what was there and God was reconfirming His promise and plan to them, as they were about to take this exciting step of faith. If this was going to happen then they were going to have to be strong even before Jericho type situations.
The word strong in Hebrew gives the idea of prevailing. Someone who wins in sport is the person who outlasts or gives that little bit more. Gold medals are won based on a person’s ability to be stronger, to prevail. The same is true in your life as a believer. Times will come that seem like thick walled cities like Jericho. Impossible odds, but God says we must prevail because in the right moment He will show Himself to be stronger, bigger, and more powerful. We all want to see victory in our lives, but it does require us to be in the battle, be obedient, and be strong enough to last. God never promised to clear the land for them, and He won’t do it for us either.
2. You will need to be courageous
The army of Israel was going to come up against some cities and armies that were formidable foes. God knows His people and He understands that we have emotions. When they would come up against these seemingly impossible obstacles they needed to remember, Joshua especially, to be resolute in their mission. They had a goal, which was to take a very particular stretch of land: (Num. 34:2-12). Each time they would actively move forward in seeing this promise come to pass they would grow firm in God’s ability to give them victory and make a way where there seemed to be no way.
The word courageous in Hebrew gives the picture of being resolute and growing firm. When you come up against something that you know is powerful or challenging you must have resolved in your heart before hand that you are going to move forward at all costs. To have decided to be firm and not take one-step back, to not give one centimetre. This is something God expects from us, He doesn’t do it for us. We must have the resolve to battle and believe for that the victory is coming; an answer is just around the corner. *Just a side note, don’t expect God to do things the way you think He should, it never happens that way. You will only become discouraged and let down if you believe God should move the on your wisdom. He always knows the best outcome and how to bring it about.