Bless the Lord, O my soul,   
And all that is within me,   
bless His holy name.   
Bless the Lord, O my soul,   
And forget none of His benefits.   
- Psalms 103:1-2   
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One thing I find so encouraging about the Bible is reading about the different characters.  We read of various characters with many different attributes that we can learn from, good and bad.  One character that I find so encouraging is Joshua. Especially in this day and time when it feels that Christians are outnumbered and pressured to be "accepting" of sinful behavior, we can learn a lot of the bravery that Joshua had.

Of course, we all know of the destruction of Jericho that we read about in Joshua chapter 6. In that chapter we read that Jericho was securely shut up because of the children of Israel and that none went out and none came in. And in verses 2 and 3 of chapter 6 we read, "And the Lord said to Joshua: See! I have given Jericho into your hand, it's king, and the mighty men of valor. You shall march around the city, all you men of war; you shall go all around the city once. This you shall do six days." And after having received the instructions from the Lord concerning the trumpets in verse 4, we read in verse 5 what will happen. "It shall come to pass, when they make a long blast with the ram's horn, and when you hear the sound of the trumpet, that all the people shall shout with a great shout; then the wall of the city will fall down flat. And the people shall go up every man straight before him."  This would have taken great bravery on Joshua's behalf as well as all the other people, to walk up to Jericho and overthrow it with trumpets.

We also see Joshua's bravery in another text.  In Joshua 24:1 we read about Joshua speaking to all the tribes of Israel. In verse 2 he speaks to them concerning their fathers serving other gods in the old times.  But his true bravery would show later in the chapter. In verse 15 of chapter 24 Joshua tells the tribes, "And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell.  But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord."

We should learn from Joshua and his bravery.  When confronted with being different from the world and told that we should be more accepting of others behavior and sin, we should be able to stand for truth like Joshua and say, "for me and my house, we will serve the Lord."

-Jordan Hopkins