Now it came about after the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, that the Lord spoke to Joshua the son of Nun, Moses’ servant, saying, “Moses My servant is dead; now therefore arise, cross this Jordan, you and all this people, to the land which I am giving to them, to the sons of Israel. Every place on which the sole of your foot treads, I have given it to you, just as I spoke to Moses. From the wilderness and this Lebanon, even as far as the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and as far as the Great Sea toward the setting of the sun will be your territory. No man will be able to stand before you all the days of your life. Just as I have been with Moses, I will be with you; I will not fail you or forsake you. Be strong and courageous, for you shall give this people possession of the land which I swore to their fathers to give them. Only be strong and very courageous; be careful to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may have success wherever you go. This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:1-9
The children of Israel had been camped, sitting for forty years in the wilderness because a generation of Israelites did not believe the good report of Joshua and Caleb and listened to the other ten spies who brought back a report of unbelief when they went in and spied out the land for Moses. God’s anger with those who refused to believe they could conquer the land was that they would die in the wilderness and not enter the land of Canaan.
Now arrives the day when God was going to lead His people and allow them to move into the promises made to Abraham. God is faithful to keep His promises regardless if others do not believe or obey. God had a generation He was going to use to take possession of the land. The Lord spoke to Joshua and instructed him to arise and advance into the land. For forty years Joshua and Caleb had patiently waited for this day to arrive.
Some of the strong farewell words of Moses to Israel were: “Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid or tremble at them, for the Lord your God is the one who goes with you. He will not fail you or forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6
The Lord now comes to Joshua to encourage him. He told him to arise, to take a position of active faith in preparation to do what God instructs one to do. Then the Lord told Joshua three times to be courageous because He was going to be with Joshua and the children of Israel as they stood up in obedience to go in to take the land. Your call is to arise and be courageous.
For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline. II Timothy 1:7