Formonthills Woods with the Firth of Forth in the background.
Photo by Alan Kearns.

This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success.
Joshua 1:8 (NASB)

I remember my dad was an avid reader of non-fiction educational books. The pursuit of knowledge was common amongst working class miners of that era, keen to prove that they had brains as well as muscle. One of dad’s collections was a series of small red hardback books on how to achieve success in various aspects of business and personal life. In the 21st Century success is still a recurring search term in bookshops (High Street and online stores too), people are forever seeking the elusive secrets to success. The increasing sales of biographies of the rich and famous are testament to this. Sadly Christians are not immune to the hunt for success, falling victim not just to worldly sources but also unscrupulous ministries touting their latest discoveries and programs. The reality is that none of these books, programs or DVDs are any good. Lasting success can only be found in one book – The Good Book, the Holy Bible.

The root of the word ‘success‘ in the text is the Hebrew word “sakal” which relates to being wise, understanding,  skillful, prudent, intelligent, and prosperous. Sakal is used 63 times in the Bible; 25 times in the psalms and proverbs. It is only once attributed to the broad word success in Joshua 1:8.

A careful reading of the verse makes it clear that success for Joshua was conditional, he would only succeed by obeying and applying the Word of God to his life. In our chosen verse Joshua is not just receiving instruction from God but also the formula for future Godly success. There is no money or riches involved in Godly success; it deals in Eternal riches which hold their value. The foundation stone of success for the child of God is the same today as it was for Joshua – the Word of God. It is only through regular meditation and deep study of our Bible that we will find the rewards of true success.

Dear reader, are you seeking success in life? Save yourself a trip to the book store, and open your Bible. Read it, meditate on it, ask your Father God to guide you in it each time you open it. It is only in it’s living pages that you will find the true key to success, for your whole life.

22 thoughts on “THE KEY TO SUCCESS

  1. Well stated, brother! The worldly view of success, and even that of some Christians is backwards. Contrary to what some health and wealth preachers say, Jesus was not a wealthy man. Yet he succeeded in His mission for God. The scriptures, and fellowship with His Father, were also His foundation. Blessings!

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  2. Thank you for sharing that the Hebrew root word relates to being wise. The post I wrote this week relates to choosing wisdom found numerous times in Psalms and Proverbs. Your post dovetails with the message in my heart.

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    1. How marvellous is the works of our Father, we serve Him in our writing not knowing who He will touch or what other writing brethren our words will touch. It surely must be the greatest blessing when He allows us to see such things! God bless you richly sister.

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  3. Great post, Alan! I love books! One of my favorite undergraduate classes was an autobiography class. Self help books of all kinds are leading people into hell. So thankful that Jesus is the standard for success. He’s perfect I am not but I/we strive to be more like Him. So thankful for your humble heart!

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    1. I too love books, I have to restrain myself often in my desire to read worldly books. Let us strive together to keep our eyes fixed on our Lord and Saviour, and the end prize of being in His Eternal presence.

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  4. Thank you again for your beautiful and inspirational post. Success without God is like a puff of vapour, just like a life without Christ’s Presence …..a drifting soul without purpose or reason. Ancient Words indeed! Beautiful Michael J. Smith song. I first heard it in a service a funeral honoring the life of a faithful follower of Jesus Christ and a lover of THE WORD. It was in a Catholic Church. My husband has in more recent times played it in a small group fellowship. Truth inspires.

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    1. Thank you for your faithfulness to Him and His Word Faye, and thank you sister for your encouragement. May our Father God guide and bless you and your husband on this Lord’s Day.


    1. Thankyou for your encouragement Aimee. His Word certainly is the key to our life in Him. You can watch too much tv, eat too much chocolate, but you can never read too much of your Bible! God bless you sister.

      Liked by 1 person

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