“And thou shalt put some of thine honour upon him, that all the congregation of the children of Israel may be obedient.”
God knew that once Moses was gone that Israel would end up in chaos if someone wasn’t appointed before he died. Their actions throughout the wilderness indicated that they needed a leader. God knows that leaderless people are wandering people, and wandering people end up becoming a sinful people. Everybody always needs someone to guide them in the ways of the LORD, and Israel was no different.
God told Moses to take Joshua and lay hands on him. Joshua was different from anyone else in the country because God’s spirit rested in him. However, God was very careful about Moses giving him the same honor that Moses had. God told Moses, “And thou shalt put some of thine honour upon him…” God knew that the people needed to honor Joshua because of the position he held, and because of his previous actions towards the LORD that earned him the leadership role, but God also knew that Joshua needed to earn the honor of their trust that Moses earned.
Nobody deserves the honor of someone’s trust just because they acquired a leadership position. Honor is never given, it is earned. Yes, a person should have the honor a leadership position gives when they take a leadership role, but the giving someone complete honor of your trust should be earned. In the following verse, God showed how Joshua could gain the hearts of the people and earn their trust. The same thing Joshua had to do to gain honor is the same thing you can do to gain the honor of a follower’s trust.
First, to gain the honor of a follower’s trust, choose the right associations. God told Joshua to “stand before Eleazar.” The quickest way to lose honor is to have the wrong associations; whereas, the way to gain honor is to have the right associations. The right associations will take time for you to earn the trust of your followers, but the wrong associations will cause you to quickly lose their trust. If you want to have the honor of gaining the trust of followers, be sure to have the right associations.
Second, to gain the honor of a follower’s trust, be sure to get the right counsel. From whom you get counsel will determine what actions you do. My friend, just because someone has a title doesn’t mean you should get counsel from them. Get counsel from those who walk with the LORD, and you will find their advice will help you to walk the right paths which will earn the honor of your follower’s trust.
Third, to gain the honor of a follower’s trust, stay in the presence of the LORD. Walking with God keeps you from sin, and it will cause you to become a voice for God to those who follow you. One reason people follow someone is because they want to learn from them something about God that they don’t know. My friend, walking with God in His Word and prayer will help you to help those you lead and will earn the honor of their trust.
Fourth, to gain the honor of a follower’s trust, obey the LORD. Obedience to the LORD always leads to an honorable life. Gaining the honor of someone’s trust is easier obtained if you always do right. Always remember that the purpose of gaining someone’s trust is not so they will follow you, but it is so that you can point them to Christ so they will follow Him. Stop demanding honor and earn it.