Joshua is an excellent example of someone who stood for God. He met many seemingly insurmountable obstacles with prevailing victory. Not discouraged by the size of the obstacles that challenged him, nor by the number of enemies he faced, Joshua accomplished remarkable feats. This was not by his own strength or ability but by the power of God Almighty. Trusting in God, Joshua took action on His promises. He demonstrated clearly that standing for God requires trusting in God.
Joshua was not a strong military and spiritual leader from birth; rather, he grew and developed his trust in God over a period of time. He spent forty years serving with Moses; and during that time Moses assigned him to various responsibilities, which helped Joshua gain strength and build his trust in God. Finally, when Moses’ death drew near, God instructed Moses to take Joshua to the tabernacle so that Joshua could be given the charge to lead the children of Israel.
And Moses called unto Joshua, and said unto him in the sight of all Israel, Be strong and of a good courage: for thou must go with this people unto the land which the Lord hath sworn unto their fathers to give them; and thou shalt cause them to inherit it.
And the Lord, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed.
God told Moses to ordain Joshua and to make clear to the people that Joshua would be their leader in Moses’ stead. When Moses died, the reins of leadership passed to Joshua. In addition to the words Moses spoke as recorded in Deuteronomy, God Himself encouraged Joshua to be strong and of a good courage.
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.
Why could Joshua be strong and of a good courage? Because “the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.” Joshua would not lead the children of Israel with his own strength or ability, but with God’s power and might. This required his trust in God. Standing for God requires trusting in God. Joshua grew and developed so that he could maintain his trust in God in very challenging situations.
Joshua stood for God by trusting in God to help him lead the children of Israel across the Jordan River into the Promised Land. God gave Joshua specific instructions to carry out in order to be victorious in this very challenging situation. The priests were to take up the ark of the covenant and walk into the Jordan River, which was overflowing its banks at this time. Only when the feet of the priests “were dipped in the brim of the water” were the waters cut off (Joshua 3:15).
And the priests that bare the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood firm on dry ground in the midst of Jordan, and all the Israelites passed over on dry ground, until all the people were passed clean over Jordan.
This certainly required focused believing and trust in the promises of God. The result was that God not only stopped the waters at flood stage but He also made the river bed to be dry ground for the children of Israel to cross over. Standing for God is often not the easiest route to take, but it is the route to prevailing victory. Joshua stood firm on the promise of God, trusting in Him wholeheartedly. And God did His part: He parted the river and made the ground dry for the children of Israel to cross over.
There were many situations in which Joshua stood for God by trusting in Him. He led the children of Israel when the walls of Jericho fell down flat so he and his army could capture the city (Joshua 6:20). He led them in battle against the Amorites when great hailstones fell to defeat their enemy. More died with hailstones that day than the children of Israel slew with the sword (Joshua 10:11). Joshua even spoke to the Lord and the sun stood still until the children of Israel had avenged themselves upon their enemies (Joshua 10:12,13). What a mighty man he was for God! Standing boldly, Joshua took action as he trusted fully in God and His Word.
At times we too are confronted with obstacles that challenge us. The odds may be against us so that it seems impossible for us to move forward. Joshua set a magnificent example for us to follow. He demonstrated clearly that standing for God requires trusting in God. As we approach challenges or obstacles, let’s determine in our hearts that we will stand for God like Joshua. As we trust in God with all our hearts, we too will prevail with victory!