Joshua Part One: Dive
5 THINGS TO HELP YOU ENTER YOUR PROMISED LAND
Welcome to the first week of Joshua, this incredible book is the turning point of the Old Testament. A turning point is that point in a movie when everything comes to a climax and you lean in. The characters are ready, the scene is set, you know the plan, you know the enemy and now for the big fight scene. From this point, we can either go backward down the hill or we can push through, win this victory and enter the new day.
In Joshua 1:1-18 we find the calling of Joshua. In the Snapshot, we discovered the background of this servant-hearted man and now God is calling him to step forward and lead the people. Let me show you five things you need to know as you step out of your comfort zone into the promised land.
1. SERVING IS THE KEY
1:1 “After the death of Moses the servant of the LORD, the LORD said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ aide:”
The first part of this prophecy sees God identifying where Joshua has been. It wasn’t a shock to God that he was promoting Moses’ aide, he had targeted this servant-hearted man from the beginning and he had been in that role as training to be the next leader. Now, this was not going to be easy, as Joshua had to stop seeing himself as the aide and start seeing himself as the leader. As God calls you into your promised land, don’t let your past or your comfort zone stop you from being all God has called you to be.
Joshua’ time as Moses aide equipped him to be the leader that we see in this book. In Joshua 11:15 we find the key to why he needed to be Moses' aide: “As the Lord commanded his servant Moses, so Moses commanded Joshua, and Joshua did it; he left nothing undone of all that the Lord commanded Moses.” Joshua’s call was to do all that Moses commanded him, and God commanded Moses. It was this servant heart that led Joshua to follow his mentor's instructions not re-invent them.
2. LET GO OF THE PAST
1:2 “Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you…”
This statement is quite harsh considering the circumstances, I mean this is Joshua’s mentor, he had served this man for 40+ years. But God doesn’t want Joshua to stay in the comfort zone of a man, but to trust in him. So he ‘rips off the Band-Aid’ quickly. Moses is dead – now let’s talk about you…
Don’t forget, to Joshua this meant that the person who believed in him, encouraged him, the person he served and has watched was gone, and he had to step into this leadership position knowing that God had appointed him to do it. Don’t look back, walk forward, have faith! Moses is dead – now then, you!!!
3. GOD WILL NEVER LEAVE YOU
1:5 “As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
God was with him, and he clarifies it from the beginning. This is God saying to Joshua “do you remember how much I was with Moses when you were watching us talk face to face, when Moses was chatting to me on the mountain, when I gave Moses the instructions to lead the people, when I did all the miracles, I will do all those things through you now.” God had fashioned in Joshua over the last 40 years a strong and resilient trust in him, he was a man that wholeheartedly followed God. And in following God, he served the man of God. I love at this moment, God disconnects the connection with Moses as Joshua’s source of strength and reconfirms with Joshua his covenant, "I will never leave you, I will be with you, I am your source of strength".
No matter what we face in life we have to remember that God is our source of strength, he will walk with you and protect you. He will never leave you nor forsake you.
4. "I THINK HE WANTS ME TO BE STRONG AND COURAGEOUS!"
Read 1:1-18 and highlight how many times you find the words “Strong and courageous!” I think God is trying to tell Joshua something? In v9 being strong and courageous was not a suggestion but a command. God knows that this is going to be the thing that could either make or break this leader.
At times you have to do things scared. At times you are not going to feel fully equipped for the task that God is giving you. At times you want to run and hide back under the robe of Moses. But Moses is gone, God is with you, now is your time and you must be strong and courageous. I think if God keeps telling Joshua over and over again to be strong and courageous then he probably isn’t naturally strong nor courageous. Even though he was a warrior, a servant-hearted man that adored being in the presence of God, God knew that Joshua was going to have to go to a new level of faith, and courage and he is calling Joshua to step up. So today take that first step into faith, be strong and courageous!
In the midst of the fighting you will read in 10:25 Joshua turns to his army and says the same words of his commissioning and calling “Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Be strong and courageous.” When you do is scared you will lead and inspire others to be strong and courageous in their lives!
5. HAVE A SOLID FOUNDATION IN THE WORD
1:7 “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 where 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."
God is giving Joshua his anchor in the midst of the things he is going to face, and the key is to know the God who gives you courage, remind yourself of his great wonders, know his ways and path, and walk in it. And how do we know all these things, the Bible. God tells Joshua to meditate on it day and night: in other words, fill your mind with my Word so that your faith is strengthened day and night. So you go to bed dreaming of the goodness of God and you wake filling your mind with his instructions to start your day.
We find in Joshua 8:30, Joshua is building the altar as per the instructions that were written in the Book of the Law of Moses, how did he know how to build this altar? Because he did what God said and studied it. It says in 8:35 "There was not a word of all that Moses had commanded that Joshua did not read to the whole assembly of Israel.” The instructions and wisdom he found in the Book of the Law was the path and foundation that he was to lead the people in to the Promised Land.
That is why we are so passionate about the Word of God here at TYB, we know that it is your source of strength in times of weakness, it is your solid foundation when your emotions take over, it tells of God's greatness and his love and mercy when you feel discouraged, it speaks grace when you need it and truth when you need it. It is the solid foundation that you stand on when you walk into your Promised land.
So if God is calling you into a new level of faith today take these five steps to help you step out of the comfort zone and be all God has called you to be.
Have a great time as you journey through this amazing book!