“’Don’t ever be afraid or discouraged.’ Joshua told his men. ‘Be strong and courageous, for the Lord is going to do this to all of your enemies.’” (Joshua 10:25 NLT)
Have you ever asked yourself or someone else: “Where did courage originate?” On some levels it’s an easy question to answer. Where did any human emotion come from? Where did anything find its origin? “In the beginning God created…” (Genesis 1:1)
Is courage like character? Can anyone have it or is it just for special people?
The story in Joshua 10 that precedes the above quote may be enough to give anyone courage. Five Amorite kings combined forces to battle against the city of Gibeon, an ally of Joshua. So the king of Gibeon sent for Joshua and his army to come and help. As he was leaving his camp the Lord said to Joshua: “Do not be afraid of them, for I have given you victory over them. Not a single one of them will be able to stand up to you.” (vs 8) The Lord threw the enemy army into a panic and the Israelite army slaughtered many.
But the day was passing quickly and there were still many enemy soldiers to pursue, so Joshua prayed this prayer in front of all the people of Israel: “Let the sun stand still over Gibeon, and the moon over the valley of Aijalon.” Then the next verse says: “So the sun stood still and the moon stayed in place until the nation of Israel had defeated its enemies.”
Courage isn’t built on strong prayers. Strong prayers are prayed by people of courage. Why did Joshua have such courage? Because he trusted God to do what only He could do.
What “mighty army” are you facing today? A health issue? A financial problem? A relational challenge? An addiction? A law suit? Divorce? Whatever it is BE COURAGEOUS! You and God are a majority! Albert Mohler said: “Instead of praying for comfort, we should pray that the Lord would get us into the right kind of trouble.”
We don’t grow unless we have a challenge. When everything is going well, we rarely if ever pray as sincerely and as earnestly as when our back is against the wall. The great evangelist, D. L. Moody said: “Some people think God does not like to be troubled with our constant coming and asking. The only way to trouble God is not to come at all.”
God’s not going to equip us with courage to stand on the sidelines and watch others go to battle. He only gives courage to warriors who are willing to risk everything for His honor and fame. God chose Joshua to take Moses’ place at the helm of the Israelite people. He was God’s choice to lead them into their promised land. He was to lead men who were the children of slaves and who had never been in battle, against seasoned warriors who were much bigger and stronger.
We don’t pick our battles, God does, and He knows what He’s doing. Whatever you’re facing, put your trust in God, not in yourself. God’s Word, the Bible, is His battle plan. Read it. Learn it. With the Spirit’s help, apply it to your life.
We’re not courageous because we’re comparing ourselves with the enemy. No wonder we’re afraid. Vance Havner wrote: “When a man (person) makes alliance with the Almighty, giants look like grasshoppers.” Let’s keep our eyes on Jesus and our hearts aligned with His will and leave everything else to Him. The battle is the Lord’s. Therein lies our courage.
Blessings, Ed 😊