Emmanuel: Do Not Be Afraid Nor Dismayed

Bethlehem was God with us. Calvary was God for us. Pentecost is God in us. 

Robert Baer

God appointed him to lead the Israelites after the leadership of Moses. This means Joshua has a lot of work cut out for him. Moreover, his work was more focused on guiding them to conquer the land of Canaan. The phrase, be strong and of good courage was mentioned three times in Deuteronomy 31. First, was spoken by Moses to the Israelites (Deuteronomy 31:6). The second was when he said to Joshua (Deuteronomy 31:7), coupled with a reminder that God is with him (Emmanuel). And the last was when God spoke it to Joshua in front of the Israelites, to show them that He chose him to be their next leader (Deuteronomy 31:23).

Bible Reading

Today’s devotional reading is from the Book of Deuteronomy 31:8. Please, read our recent devotional from the Book of Ruth 1:16-17: How Is Your Relationship With Your Mother-in-law?

God Is With Us – Emmanuel

In the hard struggles of life, people often ask if God cares for us or if He hears our prayers. Additionally, we sometimes get overwhelmed by problems that we think we are alone in dealing with it. Furthermore, we fail or even do not to look into God’s words for guidance and comfort. We forget that God is with us, He is Emmanuel. Moreover, God is unchanging (Hebrews 13:8). And like what He promised to Moses and Joshua, I will be with you and will not forsake you. In the like manner, He is also saying this to us, to those who will cling and depend on Him.

We can see in the entirety of the Bible that God did not forsake us. Often it is the people who left the presence of God. Yet, He continued to be with us, even until eternity. When Jesus was born of a virgin (Matthew 1:23), God is with us – Emmanuel. Similarly, when Jesus resurrected and ascended to heaven, He did not abandon us. Moreover, He sent the Holy Spirit so that we will know God is with us (Acts 2:1-4). 

We should not fear nor be dismayed because no matter how big the problem, we have a bigger God. Therefore, let us remind each other of that, to strengthen each one in their faith and hope in God.

Reflection

This is the time for your journaling. Reflect on these questions. Ask the Holy Spirit to test your faith and your walk with Christ.

Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates? — 2 Corinthians 13:5 KJV.
  1. Do you believe God is with you?
  2. How do you see God’s presence in your life?
  3. Have you surrendered your life in accordance with His will? Accept Jesus Now.
  4. What are the things you do to others to let them know that God is with us? Share this with others.
  5. Why do you think it is important to remind ourselves and others that God is with us?

Prayer

O God, our heavenly Father. We praise and glorify your name. Thank you for always being with us. O Lord, Jesus Christ, thank you for dying for our transgressions. We repent from our sins (mention your sins) and turn towards the mercy of God through you. Grant us, Holy Spirit, the knowledge and assurance that God is with us in all circumstances of life. May these strengthen our faith and hope that one day we will be with Him in heaven.

We ask all of these in the mighty name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

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