I was reading Deuteronomy 31 today as a part of my devotions. The first part of this chapter is where Moses hands over power to Joshua. As a part of this he tells him God will go with them.
In verse 6 it says, “So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.”
This is a private ecouragement to Joshua. It is Moses giving Joshua some final words to let him know that God is with him and God will go before him.
Moses then calls the people together and says a similar thing in front of everyone. He makes his private encouragement to Joshua public. He also fomalises the handover.
In verse 7-8 he says, “7 Then Moses called for Joshua, and as all Israel watched, he said to him, “Be strong and courageous! For you will lead these people into the land that the Lord swore to their ancestors he would give them. You are the one who will divide it among them as their grants of land. 8 Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you.”
There are three important things in this passage that can help us today.
- It is important for leaders to know when it is time to handover to those who are younger to continue God’s work.
It is important for leaders to encourage those under them in private.
It is important for leaders speak publicly to encourage and proclaim the new leader and what God has called them to do.
History tells us that Joshua led the people of Israel into the promised land and God went before them. We can learn a lot about trusting God to go before us, and we can also learn a lot about godly leadership and the handover of power too.