Text: “No man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life; as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you nor forsake you.” (Joshua 1:5, NKJV)
Moses was an amazing servant of God. He had performed great miracles in the land of Egypt after a stellar 40 years of service. Now, it was time for Joshua to take the reins of command. What a great pressure he must have felt, to fill in the shoes of Moses! Yet God quickly dissipated all his possible concerns by declaring to Joshua an amazing statement, “as I was with Moses, so I will be with you.”
What a relief for such a high-pressure situation. When Joshua commands the people for the first time in chapter 1, the people told him they would obey him on one condition. In verses 16 and 17, they promise to obey him as they obeyed Moses but “Only the Lord your God be with you, as He was with Moses.” God must have heard this request from the people, since in 3:7 God again promises Joshua the same. Then in verses 8:18 and 26, as well as the rest of the book, we see Joshua doing acts just like Moses, and God delivering Israel just like He had done under Moses.
But there was an interesting twist! This is what I would like to leave with you. When Moses was leading, he would follow the movements of God’s Shekinah Glory from place to place. When God’s presence would lift from the tabernacle, Moses would follow. When God’s presence would settle in a place, Moses would also settle. Yet we do not see this in the book of Joshua, primarily because they were no longer nomads walking through the desert but they had arrived at their final dwelling place. Now God tells Joshua, “for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go!” Here is the twist: God tells Joshua, “now you move, for I will go with you.” This is a change in paradigm, all they needed to do now was move; wherever they would go, God would be there!
What if today we would “move” with such conviction? What if the church today would learn that wherever we go, God will be there? What a principle to remember! When we go to a hospital, God will be there. When we minister in prison, God will be there. When we pray for the ill, God will be there. No matter where we choose to go, God is there! In fact, one of God’s names is Jehovah Shammah, which means “The Lord is there!” Where exactly? Everywhere!
I encourage you today to walk with this conviction! As God was with Moses, He will also be with you! So, just go! If you have given your life to Christ, He already dwells inside of you (see Ephesians 1:13-14). No matter where God leads you, or where you decide to go for Him, He is there! Be not afraid in any way. God is with you wherever you go!
Questions for reflection:
1. Do I have an overwhelming conviction that God is with me?
2. Do I have a strong conviction that no matter where I minister, God will be present?
3. Can God truly be with me as He was with Moses and Joshua?
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This is optional. For anyone who would like more, at your pleasure and discretion, take action as described below:
Action assignment 1: Read the last verse in the book of Ezekiel. Make every effort to read a couple of commentaries on this verse. Make this expression your own!
Action Assignment 2: Go to www.youtube.com and write Jehovah Shammah on the search line. Enjoy the songs and the messages.