Matters of Faith: The Encourager and the Encouragement

Rev. J. Loren Russell

By Rev. J. Loren Russell

“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.”

Deuteronomy 31:6 NKJV

If you’re faced with the greatest challenge of your life, what words would someone have to say to give you the courage to keep moving forward?

Moses is now 120 years old and standing before the whole nation of Israel. They are set to enter the land promised to them after they left Egypt and began their 40 years of wondering through the wilderness. It was challenging, but nothing to what they are about to engage as the greatest challenge they’ve ever faced. It will be more challenging than losing their parents and grandparents while in the wilderness. It’s at this critical period in their odyssey that Moses tells them that they were going to have to go and wage war in order to take the land. Then he adds that he was not going to be with them when they go into that land.

This had to be unnerving to these wanderers. He had led them out to of Egypt and through the wilderness for 40 years, now he tells them that they are about to experience the most and the biggest challenge of their lifetime but without the leader who guided them all their lives. Moses was not going to be with them. However, Moses is ever the encourager and knows these people. He anticipates their anxiety and quickly gives them a word of encouragement. His inspiration is direct and reassuring; be strong and of good courage; fear not nor be afraid; the Lord your God is with you; He will go with you; He will never forsake you.

I hope you didn’t miss that! It wasn’t Moses who had led them through the wilderness. Moses was their encourager, but the Lord was the encouragement. It was the Lord who led them, and it was the Lord who bought them to this point in their lives.

His encouragement was given to the Israelites, but it’s for us as well. When you’re challenged by the things in your life, let Moses be your encourager. Let him point you to the Lord Jesus Christ who is the encouragement.

Be blessed and be encouraged!

Rev. J. Loren Russell is President/CEO of The JLR Company for Church Financial Strategy & Consulting; an associate minister at both Goodwill and The Greater Universal Baptist Churches in the Bronx; creator/host of “Matters of Faith – The Radio Show” on Soul 1 Radio, Monday’s 8:00 – 10:00 PM (626-226-1448) and author of Matters of Faith: The Book, an eBook available at

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