Deuteronomy 31:6: “Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the LORD your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.”

March 18th, 2023 by Pastor Ed in devotional

This is a command for believers to be strong and full of courage in “the LORD your God.” It’s a powerful verse, worthy of time spent committing it to memory. If it sounds familiar it’s because it is also quoted in Hebrews 13:5: “Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.’” It means we must rely on God’s strength and ingenuity and not turn to our own resources. We are reminded to trust and rely on Him “who goes with” us. Another translation says, “take heart and be courageous.”

Fear and intimidation are two weapons hell most often uses against us. But God wants us to have a courage that moves us beyond our limitations, a courage that is rooted in Him. I love this illustration from Guideposts Magazine:

No one could doubt that George Smith had great courage. [He was the first] North American Aviation test pilot to survive an ejection at supersonic speed. Smith had thought he could face anything, until he had to bail out of his F-100 jet going more than 700 miles per hour on February 26, 1955, off Laguna Beach, California. At more than six times the force of gravity, it knocked him unconscious. Although he survived, he was afraid of ever flying again. However God intervened. Smith wrote later that a nurse gave him this scripture [from Deuteronomy] and a few other words of encouragement. He remembered her words, “Courage is knowing the worst and discovering that, in God’s world, the very worst can’t really hurt you.” He flew again.

There was a woman who was very fearful of having her face in water, but she wanted to be baptized. This may sound strange to someone who doesn’t have this particular fear, but for her it was a real struggle. After much prayer, she decided to face her fears and be obedient to the command to be baptized. It was encouraging to everyone who witnessed the event as she simple walked into the water and did it. Victory! What is it that you are afraid of doing in the LORD? God has a word for you here in this verse. Pray, go, and do it. God promises that He will be there with you.

“LORD, we want to serve You well today. Please go before us and make a way.”