Joshua 1:6 … and there was courage!
Joshua 1:6 Be strong and of a good courage: for unto this people shalt thou divide for an inheritance the land, which I sware unto their fathers to give them.
Joshua 1:7 Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it [to] the right hand or [to] the left, that thou mayest prosper whithersoever thou goest.
Joshua 1:9 Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God [is] with thee whithersoever thou goest.
Within the space of three verses (or four if you include verse 8) God used the words strength and courage three times each. For those who can relate to some codes that some scholars have identified in the bible, in which three is the number of God, it would mean that God was saying to Joshua that He would be the source of Joshua’s strength and courage. Whether or not you can relate with the cryptic messages believed to be hidden in the text of the bible or not, it is clear that God was making a point that it takes strength and courage to be God’s man and do the will of God.
Many times we forget that this world, although it belongs to God, is actually anti-God and by extension anti-everything-that-takes-sides-with-God and we get shocked and upset that the world around us doesn’t rise in roaring applause when we take a stand with God especially when it is against popular beliefs.
John 15:18-21 If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before [it hated] you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. But all these things will they do unto you for my name’s sake, because they know not him that sent me.
Mar 10:29-30 And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s, but he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.
But then he also said,
John 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
When God speaks, He does more than announce or inform, He creates whatever He speaks. It is why having an encounter with God cannot leave a man remaining the same as before the encounter. God doesn’t merely issue instructions; He, with the instructions, supplies what is needed to carry out the instructions because His word cannot return void; it must be fulfilled and the only way God can guarantee the fulfillment of His word is to fulfill it Himself. I learnt from practical experience a few years back while serving under one of my pastors that with every instruction given, the grace to carry it out is given also; receiving the instruction is receiving the grace as well and dodging the instruction is dodging the grace attached to it. For example, when God says “Be holy”, He is not merely instructing us to be holy but he is also empowering us to be holy. His word is power! So, in speaking those words to Joshua, God was infusing into him strength and courage. By telling Joshua to be strong and courageous, He was giving the man the strength and the courage he needed to deliver on God’s task for him. He said “be strong and of good courage” just like He said “let there be light.”
1Corinthians 16:13 Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.
So, let there be courage!