by David Sanford

Day 1

Read Joshua 1:1-9

If the book of Joshua were a movie, the Lord God would be the executive producer, director, screenwriter, and lead actor. Without the Lord God, nothing happens.

We sometimes see the Bible as a book of the Lord God's commands. But let's not forget that it's a book of God's rich promises, too.

This movie would probably be dedicated to the late Moses, who is named no less than 51 times. Joshua often describes Moses as ″servant of the Lord″ (for example, Joshua 1:13-15; 22:4-5). He also quotes from Moses repeatedly, directly or indirectly (for example, 1:12-15; 8:30-35; 13:8-33; 14:1-13; 22:1-5). This is not surprising, since Moses has left behind a number of sacred, inspired scrolls known as ″the Book of the Law of Moses″ (8:31; 23:6), or simply, ″the law of Moses″ (8:32; 22:5).

The best supporting actor? That would be Joshua (meaning ″the Lord saves″ in Hebrew), who is named 149 times. Assuming he was about the same age as Caleb when they were sent out to explore Canaan (Numbers 13:1-16), Joshua would be about 80 years old by the time we come to Joshua 1.

In these opening verses, the Lord God, Creator of heaven and earth, gives Joshua six specific orders (Joshua 1:7-9). This experience must have been awe-inspiring, for Joshua would remember them so well that near his death, he would reiterate some of them in his final exhortation to the Israelites (23:6-10).

The Lord God's six commands apply equally to us today. We know this because they reverberate through the rest of the Old Testament–and, more importantly, are echoed and exemplified by Jesus (which also means ″the Lord saves″ in Greek) and by His apostles. For example:

  • Be strong: 1 Corinthians 16:13; Ephesians 6:10
  • Be courageous: Mark 6:50; Acts 4:13; 1 Corinthians 16:13
  • Know God's Word: Matthew 22:29; Romans 15:4; 2 Timothy 3:15-17
  • Obey God's commands: John 15:10-17; James 1:22-25; 1 John 2:3-4
  • Do not be afraid: Luke 5:10; Hebrews 13:6; 1 Peter 3:14
  • Do not be discouraged, God will be with you: Matthew 28:20; John 14:16-17; Hebrews 13:5

Some of the commands that Joshua receives come with promises. We sometimes see the Bible as a book of the Lord God's commands. But let's not forget that it's a book of God's rich promises, too. Not surprisingly, the word ″promise″ will show up a dozen more times in the rest of the book of Joshua. In today's reading, God gives Joshua several specific promises. As we'll see in the coming days and weeks, each comes true!

Think through:

Do you focus more on God's commands, or on His promises? How can you meditate on both, without neglecting either one?

What is one specific command from God that you need to keep today? What is one specific promise that will encourage and strengthen you?




About Author

David Sanford loves God's Word and has served as the author, co-author, editor, managing editor, or executive editor for more than a dozen Bible and Bible-related projects. He and his wife, Renée Sanford, a noted author and editor in her own right, live in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States of America.

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Our Daily Bread Journey Through® Series is a publication of Our Daily Bread Ministries.

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