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Of all the wonderful ways Moses expressed his leadership, the most strategic had to be his training of Joshua, who was destined to become the key element of Moses’ legacy.
Joshua became the leader who would complete the task of leading the people into the Promised Land. This successful handoff resulted from Moses’ example and equipping and from Joshua’s hunger and giftedness. Moses passed along his authority, abilities, and anointing to Joshua. He gave Joshua his time, his insight, a learning environment, an opportunity to prove himself, and a strong belief in his future. Because Moses spent the time necessary to equip Joshua, his dream of Israel entering the Promised Land came to pass even though he did not personally see it happen.
Notice the ways in which Moses passed along his legacy:
1. Moses empowered Joshua and gave him authority (Num. 27:20). When the time came, Moses laid his hands on Joshua and publicly commissioned him. He gave Joshua part of his authority (Num. 27:15–23). Joshua received positive recognition, a leader’s approval and acceptance, and Moses’ expression of faith in him. After Moses died, no one questioned Joshua’s leadership.
2. Moses gave Joshua experience and opportunities for application (Num. 27:21–22). Joshua’s apprenticeship went beyond the merely cerebral or passive. Moses and Joshua did more than talk over coffee; the apprenticeship involved hands-on experience. Moses shared his life and his responsibilities with Joshua by allowing him to prove his leadership as a spy, as a military commander, and as his personal assistant.
3. Moses gave Joshua encouragement and affirmation (Num. 27:23). Moses repeatedly affirmed his young protégé by taking him along on excursions exclusive of anyone else. They shared a unique intimacy, almost startling considering the difference in their ages. Moses encouraged his apprentice both through his words and his time.
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