Be Strong and Courageous!

Growing with God: A daily devotional with Tonia Slimm.

Deuteronomy 31:6 (NIV)
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Deuteronomy 31:6 (MSG)
“Be strong. Take courage. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t give them a second thought because God, your God, is striding ahead of you. He’s right there with you. He won’t let you down; he won’t leave you.”
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“Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid or tremble in dread before them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not fail you or abandon you.” -AMPLIFIED

This passage of Scripture pertains to the appointment of Joshua as Moses successor. Joshua had been Moses’ right hand man for quite a while. He had been one of Moses’ inner circle, giving advice, encouragement and gathering information for Moses. Joshua had been the one who had climbed up with Moses to commune with God on Mount Sinai; though he stopped before reaching the presence of the Most High. Joshua had been one of the twelve spies that had gone into the Promise Land to spy it out. He was also one of only two who came back with a good report.

We find here in Deuteronomy 31 Moses personally appointing his successor, Joshua. Moses has served as the leader of Israel for 40 long years; taking on this job at the ripe old age of 80. He is now 120 years old and because of His sin at the Waters of Meribah; instead of speaking to the rock He struck it. “Moses went on and addressed these words to all Israel. He said, “I’m 120 years old today. I can’t get about as I used to. And God told me, ‘You’re not going to cross this Jordan River.’” -Deuteronomy 31:1-2 (MSG)

Moses tells the people who will truly be leading them, the Lord their God. “It is the Lord your God who will cross ahead of you; He will destroy these nations before you, and you shall dispossess them. Joshua is the one who will go across before you [to lead you], just as the Lord has said. The Lord will do to them just as He did to Sihon and Og, the kings of the Amorites, and to their land, when He destroyed them. The Lord will hand them over to you, and you shall do to them in accordance with all the commandments which I have commanded you.” -Deuteronomy 31:3-5 (AMP)

Moses then speaks the words in our text for today to the people of Israel. “Be strong, be bold, don’t be afraid or frightened of them, for Adonai your God is going with you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.” -Complete Jewish Bible

He then calls Joshua forward, front and center, and commissions him right before the people. There was to be no doubt over who would be Moses successor. “Then Moses summoned Joshua. He said to him with all Israel watching, “Be strong. Take courage. You will enter the land with this people, this land that God promised their ancestors that he’d give them. You will make them the proud possessors of it. God is striding ahead of you. He’s right there with you. He won’t let you down; he won’t leave you. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t worry.” -Deuteronomy 31:7-8 (MSG)

Some of what Moses now tells Joshua echoes what he had already told the people of Israel, “Be strong and courageous. God goes before you. He will never leave you or let you down.” We can never be reminded of the promises of God too much or too often.

* David said- “In God have I put my trust and confident reliance; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?” -Psalm 56:11 (AMP)

* Psalm 118 says- “When trouble surrounded me, I cried out to the Eternal; He answered me and brought me to a wide, open space. The Eternal is with me, so I will not be afraid of anything. If God is on my side, how can anyone hurt me? The Eternal is on my side, a champion for my cause; so when I look at those who hate me, victory will be in sight. It is better to put your faith in the Eternal for your security than to trust in people. It is better to put your faith in Him for your security than to trust in princes.” -Psalm 118:5-9 (VOICE)

Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be afraid God goes before you. He will never leave you or forsake you. Trust Him!

My Prayer:
Lord, help me to keep my focus on you; not on the things that are happening around me. I know that when I focus on my problems and troubles I begin to fear and lose hope. That is not what you desire from me. You want me to trust and have faith in you. I have read and heard that nothing is impossible with you; prove this in my life, Lord. Help me to trust and have confidence in you at all times.

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