Google+ 02/04/13 Trust and Obey!

Joshua 1:7-9

 

Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the instructions Moses gave you.

Do not deviate from them, turning either to the right or to the left.

Then you will be successful in everything you do. Study this Book of Instruction continually.

Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it.

Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do. This is my command—be strong and courageous!

Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” 

 

We all need to hear these words from Joshua and take them personally.  Joshua had a huge job ahead of him.  Moses had died and God had ordained that Joshua should be his successor.  Joshua had been trained by Moses for years, but had never been on his own.  Joshua had never needed to make the hard choices that would affect God's people.  I am sure that Joshua, like all of us, wondered if he was up to the task that God had bestowed upon him.  Joshua was having the revelation that he would be the person that would deliver God's people to the land that God had promised.  God speaks to Joshua and gives him specific instructions.  God wants Joshua to be strong, courageous, and obedient.  God tells Joshua to follow all the instructions that Moses gave him.  Joshua must stay on the straight path designed by God, and not even look to the right or left.   We could stop here and just follow directions.  To sum it all up, God says follow my instructions to the letter and you will be successful.  That's good enough for me!   But God knows His children,  and that "free will" thing He gave us.  God knows that, left to our own devices, we will probably make the wrong choices.  God tells Joshua and us to study the law.  We are supposed to meditate on it day and night so that we can properly digest ALL of it.  God doesn't want us to miss anything.  Once again, if we do all this, we will prosper.  Then, God throws in the most important part of His instructions to Joshua.  God tells Joshua, and us,  to not operate out of fear or discouragement.  When we are discouraged or fearful, Satan has great power over us.  Satan puts thoughts in our heads of inadequacy.  We will be paralyzed with fear, like the "deer in the headlights," and not be able to work for God's Kingdom.  If Joshua had been afraid, he would have missed great opportunities to serve God and His people.  Today, the same goes for all of us.  So, study the Scripture and listen.  Be courageous in God and realize that if you are, you will prosper.  Then, and only then, will "God's Will" be done in our lives.  How do we defeat the devil and operate out of God's strength and courage?  As the hymn writer said, much better than I ever could, "Trust and Obey.  There is no other way!"