You are not able to go out against this Philistine and fight him; you are only a boy. (1 Sam. 17:33)
IN ANCIENT GREECE, courage was a core virtue. Plato said that “courage is a kind of salvation.” A soldier strong in battle was the model of courage. Perhaps that is why Jesus did not exonerate courage explicitly. The New Testament does not speak nearly as much about being brave as it talks about love, kindness, patience, and peace. God doesn’t intend for us to overcome our fears by ourselves—to march forward into battle with just our own grit and resolve. Trust in God is the source of true courage. But too often Christians mistake gentleness, meekness, and love as a kind of soft cowardice that always yields and defers. This is a mistake. Courage still holds a dominant place in the life of a Christian.
David stepped out to fight Goliath. He was armed with nothing but a sling, five stones, and courage. He trusted that God would fight for him. His brothers, his countrymen, and even his king were filled with fear. Their fear paralyzed them. David’s unshakable confidence in God was enough to cause him to fight the enemy.
Jesus was also a man of courage. He stepped into the darkness with the light of God. He resisted the Devil’s nagging lures. He confronted powerful leaders. He even had the strength to lay down his own power to fulfill God’s plan on the cross. Discipleship requires courage.
Trust God in the area you fear the most, then take courageous action.
© 2018 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission.