Read: Deuteronomy 31:7-8
Courage is central in one of the core episodes of the Old Testament: the conquest of the Promised Land.
As Israel comes out of Egypt and the desert and are prepare to conquer their own land, Moses tells them to be ‘strong and courageous’ (Deuteronomy 31:6).
These same words are then repeated to his successor Joshua: ‘Be strong and courageous, for you must go with this people into the land that the Lord swore to their ancestors to give them, and you must divide it among them as their inheritance. The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged (Deuteronomy 31:7-8).
Notice several things in this text:
These words find fertile ground in the character of Joshua. In Numbers 13,14 we find a story that happened years before these words. It is the story of the Israelite spies that were sent to explore the promised land, among whom there was also Joshua. Whereas the other spies were rightly terrified of the walled cities in the promised land, Joshua and Caleb demonstrated courage that was rooted in the presence and protection of God (14:9).
A prayer: Lord, in the face of my fears and challenges, help me to act and do the right things with the strength of Joshua. Make your promises clear to me and allow me to feel your presence by faith. Remove from me fear and discouragement that I may do your will.