Taking on the mantle of leadership from Moses was a Herculean responsibility. It was going to take strength of will and spirit to tackle the Israelites and form them into a fighting force capable of conquering Canaan. It wasn’t going to be easy. But it was also Joshua’s mission. I cannot stress enough why context is so important. For example, if you positioned yourself on the east bank of the Jordan today and recited to yourself this passage, there is no guarantee God is going to empower you to conquer Canaan again. Seriously. Don’t try it.
Verses have meaning in the time and place they were given, and it is important for us to know what they meant in order for us to know what they mean 3000 years later. I mean, this text was a great encouragement to Joshua. But can we apply this same text to tying my shoes, or going for that job interview, or dealing with difficult people at work? Context is important.
So how do we determine if our circumstances match up? For Joshua, his mission was clear. Clear out Canaan so that Israel would have a place to live. What is our clear mandate from the Lord where He promised to empower us to accomplish it. Has God given us such a commission? He has not called us to go forth and conquer land. But He did call us to go forth and conquer souls. Do you want to experience the power of this text? Go read Matthew 28:18-20. There you will find exactly the same kind of commission that Joshua received on the banks of the Jordan. It possesses the same kind of spiritual empowerment. And every Christian is called to it.
Are you ready to answer the call?