Bible Ballistics: BBs #331 Joshua And Caleb Or The 10???
As we observe all of the media frenzy going on around us, I am reminded that we must remember that it IS NOT the side you’re on, or even if you are in the majority. The question is whose side are YOU on? Now I know that sounds like a bit of double-talk, and it really is a bit of a conundrum to get us to think about life from the right perspective. God won’t ask us if we were a republican, or a democrat, or a libertarian, or even if you were part of the ‘green’ party, or an independent; but God will ask each one if you are His child through the blood of His Son?
One of my favorite Bible accounts is a reminder of this. It relates to Joshua and Caleb. Joshua, of course, had been Moses’ assistant, and Caleb one of the leaders of the people. They were part of the twelve sent to spy out the “Promised Land”, and return with a report. Well, they did that—all twelve went through the land, all saw the beauty and splendor of God’s “Promised Land” of “milk and honey”, yet they didn’t all come back with the same report. Let’s examine portions of the account in Numbers 13 and 14.
“And they returned from searching of the land after forty days. 26 And they went and came to Moses, and to Aaron, and to all the congregation of the children of Israel……and brought back word unto them, and unto all the congregation, and shewed them the fruit of the land. 27 And they told him, and said, We came unto the land whither thou sentest us, and surely it floweth with milk and honey; and this is the fruit of it. 28 Nevertheless the people be strong that dwell in the land, and the cities are walled, and very great: and moreover we saw the children of Anak there. 29 The Amalekites dwell in the land of the south: and the Hittites, and the Jebusites, and the Amorites, dwell in the mountains: and the Canaanites dwell by the sea, and by the coast of Jordan. 30 And Caleb stilled the people before Moses, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it. 31 But the men that went up with him said, We be not able to go up against the people; for they are stronger than we. 32 And they brought up an evil report of the land which they had searched unto the children of Israel……and all the people that we saw in it are men of a great stature….and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight.” Numbers 13:25-32
Twelve men sent on a reconnaissance mission; ten came back defeated already, but two came back confident that the God who had promised Abraham this land, the God who had brought them to this land, the God who had shown them the ‘milk and honey’ was (And still is!) able to bring them victoriously in.
“And all the congregation lifted up their voice, and cried; and the people wept that night. 2 And all the children of Israel murmured against Moses and against Aaron: and the whole congregation said unto them, Would God that we had died in the land of Egypt! or would God we had died in this wilderness! 3 And wherefore hath the Lord brought us unto this land, to fall by the sword, that our wives and our children should be a prey?” Numbers 14:1-3
The ten influenced the whole nation of Israel, and discouraged them to the point that they wept in despair, they murmured against Moses and accused God of misleading them! Whoa! Do you understand how easy it is to get our eyes on the giants and off of GOD! God had delivered them from Egypt; God had led them across the Red Sea; God had provided their food, water and protection; yet now they are ready to abandon God in fear because the “majority” said, “we can’t do it”! Ever hear that? We all have, but the story isn’t over there. There were two who had a different report—same event, same scouting mission, same observances—but they were looking through eyes of faith and trust in the Lord God Almighty!!! What did these two men see that the others didn’t? It wasn’t what they saw that was different, but they saw it differently, because of whom they trusted with what they saw. How about you?
“And Joshua the son of Nun, and Caleb the son of Jephunneh, which were of them that searched the land, rent their clothes: 7 And they spake unto all the company of the children of Israel, saying,
The land, which we passed through
to search it,
is an exceeding good land.
8 If the Lord delight in us,
then he will bring us into this land,
and give it us;
a land which floweth
with milk and honey.
9 Only rebel not ye against the Lord,
neither fear ye the people of the land;
for they are bread for us:
their defence is departed from them,
and the Lord is with us:
fear them not.” Numbers 14:6-9
Joshua and Caleb called the people to stand fast on the promises of God, but they wouldn’t listen, and because of their rebellion God set them to wander in the wilderness until all of those who rejected God died, and the children for whom they feared, were brought in. But what happened to Joshua and Caleb? They were both rewarded for their faithfulness to God. Joshua became the successor to Moses when they came to the Jordan River, and Caleb was spared and blessed to conquer the land God promised him. Why? God Himself gives us that answer.
“But my servant Caleb, because he had another spirit with him, and hath followed me fully, him will I bring into the land whereinto he went; and his seed shall possess it.” Numbers 14:24
And bring him in He did. So you and I must decide day by day, even today, will we believe God or men? We will be fearful or confident in our Lord Jesus Christ? We must “stand fast in the evil day”—and friends that is where we are! And God gives us the power to succeed by faith.
“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. 8 Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord….” 2 Timothy 1:7-8a
“I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” 1 Thessalonians 4:13
“But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus. 20 Now unto God and our Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Thessalonians 4:19-20
The choice is yours! Will you choose to respond like Joshua and Caleb, or will you be swayed by men—whether they are the majority or the minority? Will your stand fast on the promises of God and His Word, or will you believe the lies of the enemy? These are choices we make every day, and we must be grounded in God’s Word, and have confidence in the faithfulness of God, to make the right ones. May we choose wisely today! May we take heart from the testimony of Caleb, and though it’s a bit long, I think it worth the time and have recorded it for you here:
“Forty years old was I when Moses the servant of the Lord sent me from Kadeshbarnea to espy out the land; and I brought him word again as it was in mine heart. 8 Nevertheless my brethren that went up with me made the heart of the people melt: but I wholly followed the Lord my God. 9 And Moses sware on that day, saying, Surely the land whereon thy feet have trodden shall be thine inheritance, and thy children’s for ever, because thou hast wholly followed the Lord my God. 10 And now, behold, the Lord hath kept me alive, as he said, these forty and five years, even since the Lord spake this word unto Moses, while the children of Israel wandered in the wilderness: and now, lo, I am this day fourscore and five years old. 11 As yet I am as strong this day as I was in the day that Moses sent me: as my strength was then, even so is my strength now, for war, both to go out, and to come in. 12 Now therefore give me this mountain, whereof the Lord spake in that day; for thou heardest in that day how the Anakims were there, and that the cities were great and fenced: if so be the Lord will be with me, then I shall be able to drive them out, as the Lord said. 13 And Joshua blessed him, and gave unto Caleb the son of Jephunneh Hebron for an inheritance.” Joshua 14:7-13
Oh, what a precious testimony, “I am as strong this day as I was in the day that Moses sent me”! What stand will you be called upon to take for God today? I pray that we may have the boldness and confidence of these two godly men, today. God’s blessing on you dear ones as you face your “giants” today and each day! We serve the same faithful God—and remember—we win because God wins!!! Remember God brought David’s “giant” down with a rock and a slingshot! Pick up your ‘rock’!!! The Rock of Ages, that is!