Caleb is one of the true heroes of the faith. His story is recorded mostly in Numbers 13-14, the moment in Israel’s history where God promised to give them the Promised Land and Moses sent 12 spies into the land to survey it and 10 came back with a bad report, a fear-filled report that made the ‘heart of the people melt’ in faith eroding fear. On that day two of the spies had a different spirit, they believed God at His word and were willing to follow God fully (Numbers 14:24 & 32:12). Their names were Joshua & Caleb.
Because of their faith, God promised that they would be the only two of that whole generation who would actually enter the Promised Land and that they would receive the inheritance God had always planned to bless them with. Here now in Joshua 14, Caleb approaches Joshua and asks that he be given his inheritance that God promised to him.
Caleb has waited patiently for 45yrs for this moment! Caleb, held on to to his faith, remained steadfast in his belief in God even when circumstances must have caused him to wonder and doubt. His whole generation passed away in the Wilderness – they never entered into all that God has planned to give them. But Caleb remained full of faith and he says to Joshua in this moment as an 85yr old man;
“And now, behold, I am this day eighty-five years old. 11 I am still as strong today as I was in the day that Moses sent me; my strength now is as my strength was then, for war and for going and coming. 12 So now give me this hill country of which the Lord spoke on that day, for you heard on that day how the Anakim were there, with great fortified cities. It may be that the Lord will be with me, and I shall drive them out just as the Lord said.” (Joshua 14:10-12)
What an inspiring burst of faith and confidence in God. The book of Hebrews urges us to imitate people like Caleb;
“And we desire each one of you to show the same earnestness to have the full assurance of hope until the end, 12 so that you may not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.” (Hebrews 6:11)
Is there something God has promised to you which is seemingly not happening, seems delayed, you know God said it, but you don’t see any evidence of it on the horizon?
Friend, I assure you, if God truly said it to you, promised it in His word, you might have to wait half your life, but God is faithful, never doubt that. Psalm 22:4-5 in the NIV translation says this of David’s ancestors;
In you our fathers put their trust; they trusted and you delivered them. 5 They cried to you and were saved; in you they trusted and were not disappointed.
God will not change, God cannot be unfaithful (2 Timothy 2:13), let’s be like Caleb, let’s patiently wait trusting in God because we believe that He is faithful to His promises.
Looking back, Hebrews 6:12 says that we are to imitate those who through faith and patience inherited the promises. God often promises things to us, God has good things to do through us and in us, God wants to bless us in our marriages, families, businesses, friendships, church…
However, often there are battles to fiight between our present reality and that which God intends for us. Israel had been give this Promised Land by God and yet reading chapters like Joshua 10&11, you realise they really had to overcome numerous and very real enemies first.
Overcoming wasn’t easy, it didn’t happen overnight, it required faith in who God is and what He had promised to do, it required a continual reliance on God who was faithful to keep speaking and guiding, and it also required patience at times.
Then Joshua 11:23 says;
“So Joshua took the whole land, according to all that the Lord had spoken to Moses. And Joshua gave it for an inheritance to Israel according to their tribal allotments. And the land had rest from war.”
Joshua successfully lead God’s people into the promises God had made to them. They took possession of the whole land God gave them and then God gave them rest from war.
But it didn’t come easily; rather it came on the back of God speaking and Israel in most of these moments, responding to God’s word with obedience.
What battles are before you to fight now?
Don’t lack courage, but respond to challenge with faith & obedience.