Saturday, January 3, 2015

January 3 - Joshua 1

Today's reading in our daily plan is Joshua 1. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)

  • The book of Joshua records the Israelites’ entrance and conquest of the long awaited Promised Land.  Joshua writes this to encourage the Israelites to keep faithful as God rewards those who are obedient. 
  • Verses 1-2 remind the Israelites to be encouraged during the change of leadership from Moses to Joshua.  God is always renewing people and creates new opportunities (see Revelation 21:5 and 2 Corinthians 5:17).
  • In verses 3-9, Joshua reminds the Israelites of God’s faithfulness to His people.  The people of God need to continue trusting in God’s promises.  
  • As Israel’s new leader, Joshua committed himself to encouraging the community.  Because of his consistency in doing so, the encouragement began to reverberate throughout the community.

SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)

  • Change in inevitable.  God often uses change in order to bring about new opportunities to experience the abundant life He has planned for us (see Habakkuk 1:5). 
  • God’s people live on promises and not on explanations. When you trust God’s promises and step out by faith (verse 3), you can be sure that God will give you the directions you need when you need them.
  • Encouragement is contagious.  As Christians, we are to committed to encouraging others both in and out of the church (see 1 Thessalonians 5:11)

NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)

  • How might God be at work in the recent changes in your life?  How can these changes be used for His Kingdom mission?
  • Are you stressed or worried about anything in your life right now?  Read Proverbs 3:5-6 and commit it to memory this week.  Remember that in all things, God works for the good of those who love Him (see Romans 8:28).
  • Who are you actively encouraging on a regular basis?  Who needs to be encouraged this week?