Making A Prosperous Way

“Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go. This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.  Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”(Joshua 1:7-9KJV)

Obedience will not be easy. We can feel the stress of this message for the words, “be strong and courageous” are repeated, in this short segment. It is, also, warning us that the path of obedience will be fraught with danger and tasks that we know are well beyond our strength. We are exhorted to use strength and courage to try to obey because in the trying we may prosper.

Obedience requires intentional and focused effort. The idea that obedience to the Law of the Lord would be natural and happen without much study and striving is absolutely dispelled. According to many verses in the Torah, the way of obedience needed to be learn and practiced. (Deuteronomy 6:7 KJV)”And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.” Distraction is likely, so intentional effort must be applied. Obedience is influenced by the things we put into our minds. “Do not turn to the right hand or the left”. How often in our relationships do we get deceived and doubt causes an upset? Our relationship with God is susceptible to such attacks, as well. We must know His Word in our heart to remain steadfast and true to Him.

Obedience is followed by success and prosper. The call to “be strong and courageous” comes again as we move forward and is stressed before another mention of success and prosper. It is a sure indication that many years of obedience may seemingly produce little success. In fact, much treachery may befall those practicing obedience. The reward comes in the striving to be obedient. It is not easy and many times the obedient feel like they are standing alone. It feels like we are going against the grain and life would be much easier and enjoyable, if we, just, did not think about God or care about His Words. Yet, as we obey, our surrender draws us nearer and we feel certainty in our Lord’s faithfulness. Regardless of our circumstances, on earth, our effort to obey build the cords of faith that bind us to Him. The practice of obedience reveals that GOD is our strength and courage. If faith is not exercised in obedience, it will atrophy and die. Compare it to the seeds that fall in the weeds. (Matthew 13:21-22 KJV)

“Yet hath he not root in himself, but endureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended. He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.” In my garden, we have planted vegetables which typically will not grow around a stone. However, many weeds will stretch around objects to grow and many even make a chemical preventing other plants from growing close to them. 

The first steps of obedience, “be strong and courageous”. I would say it takes both to admit we cannot save ourself. Once we, truly, surrender our life to Jesus and focus on loving our LORD, peace and joy begin. Success and prosper may come, on earth, but if not, it will come through eternity. 

For now, we can practice obedience and know that GOD will multiply our strength and courage.

Mickey Kyler