Truth of the Week 9: Command of Strength

by Catherine King and Jenny Cioto

Joshua 1:9 “ Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” NIV

I love how God encourages us. Sometimes it is pure comfort and other times like this one – it is more of a – get your stuff together, I’m actually commanding you that’s how sure I am of My promises to you.

Joshua is the audience of this verse and he was Moses’ assistant out there in the wilderness when the children of Israel were wandering because of their disobedience. Right before Moses died he knew he wouldn’t be entering into the promised land but God here is commanding the new leader Joshua as he will be taking foothold of the promised land.

Verses 7-9 has the phrase “be strong and courageous” 3 times in those 3 verses. Observe the law Moses had given them from God and Joshua is told not to turn to the right or to the left of it and THEN he would prosper where he goes. He was also to meditate on it and not let his conversations be void of what was written in the Law so he could observe it well.

Leaders sure do have a lot riding on their shoulders. You could be leading a team at work, shoot whole departments of major companies – you could be leading your young children, a Bible study, a ministry of some kind or possibly a book club. Chances are many of you are leaders in one way or another.

The promise after the commands are really great. Verse 8; “For then you will make your way prosperous and you will have good success.”

Success for Joshua and the children of Israel is laying hold of this land that will give them so much abundance and security. No more manna? Sounds like a plan. But to do this they must face opposition with courage.

Courage isn’t always easy to have. As people, we would rather typically hide out until the all clear but life isn’t that easy. We have to face all kinds of different obstacles, not one of our lives looks the same. We are to be courageous because look Who we have! We don’t let the world see our difference if we are so weak we can’t fight. Phillipians 4:13 “For I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” So if He calls us to do it, we can fall back on these promises, even though spoken to Joshua.

That land was a promise God had given His people. He always fulfills His promise. It’s usually never on our time table but it’s always in just the right time. When He says He is or will do something in response to our seeking and asking – you’d better believe He is going to come through for you.

Usually there is something we have to be obedient about. Are we following a lifestyle He commands us? Are we stuck in a sin habit that is preventing our blessing? Ask Him if you are in a waiting season and He will show you. He wants to bless all of us abundantly but we must do our part as well. God is not a genie in a bottle and we are just so inherently good that we don’t need to work on looking more and more like Jesus. Shoot, it takes us our whole lives to come close.

Are you pressing into any of God’s promises? Has He whispered any to you? Maybe through worship music, time spent in face down kind of prayers, a Bible study, maybe a brother or sister in Christ?

If it’s one you think you received from God but aren’t sure, ask the wise council God has around you and back it up to His character.

Once you are secure in your promise, see where you need to obey. Obedience is almost always part of unlocking a blessing. Obedience shows that you believe without seeing – faith in action.

Do you see your sister struggling in being strong somewhere? Encourage her with this. Are you struggling to be strong somewhere? Apply these principles. Seek God, ask where you need to be obedient, study His ways and be strong in His presence and good will towards you. Then watch Him fulfill His promises to you. They’re coming.


Catherine King