Men of the Bible Series: Caleb (Joshua 14:6-15)
When Henry M. Stanley found Livingstone, the great missionary who spent thirty years in darkest Africa, and who had been lost to the world for over two years, he wanted him to come back home to England with him, but Livingstone refused to go. Two days later he wrote in his diary, "March 19, my birthday; my Jesus; King; my Life; my All. I again dedicate my whole self to Thee. Accept me, and grant, O gracious Father, that ere the year is gone I may finish my work. In Jesus' Name I ask it. Amen." A year later his servants found him on his knees dead. It was said of him:
"He needs no epitaph to guard a name
Which men shall prize while worthy work is known;
He lived and died for good—be that his fame;
Let marble crumble: this is Living-Stone."
Canaan represents the victorious Christian life. A land of victory and rest. It meant release for they were once slaves in Egypt. Caleb represents the Christian about to conquer his Canaan, possess his possessions, and receive God’s inheritance for himself. He took the whole mountain meaning fullness. He wanted all that God had for him. Hebron was fruitful. Caleb wanted fellowship, fullness, and fruitfulness. Here in the Word, we find a man that faithfully served the Lord, was a spiritual fire-cracker for God; and received God’s inheritance. I believe from the Scriptures and the life of Caleb were given a plan to serve the Lord all the days of our lives.
1. Faithful Follower of the Lord (Joshua 14:8, 9, 14)
The Scriptures mention six times where Caleb wholly followed God (Numbers 14:24; 32:12; Deuteronomy 1:36; Joshua 14:8-9, 14). Caleb gave God all he had. God deserves our best. Caleb was not complainer-he was a conqueror. This very day, so many Christians are living defeated lives because they have not surrendered their lives to the will of God. God never meant for His children to live in the valley of depression but on the mountain top of victory.
2. Fervent Fire for the Lord (Joshua 14:10-12)
Caleb was a conqueror because his confidence came from the Word of God. Caleb was as strong at 85 as he was at 40. Some people do not even live to be 85. Caleb refused to consider himself stricken in years. Here, we see Caleb was 85 and still very much alive. Caleb was not ready to retire or give up on God. Caleb’s mind was on conquering a mountain top for God. I see more and more Christians today who are living wasted, depressed, and defeated lives. For the most part, because they are not willing to surrender to the will of God.
3. Fruitful Finisher for the Lord (Joshua 14:13-15)
The majority focused on the obstacles; the minority focused on the possibilities. The majority focused on the foes; the minority focused on the fruit. The majority focused on the problems; the minority focused on the promises. The majority focused on the giants; the minority focused on God. Pessimists see difficulties in every opportunity, while optimist see opportunities in every difficulty. Stop looking at how big your problems are and start telling your problems how big your God is! Caleb set his sights on the Promised Land. The reason Caleb remained strong spiritually was his mind was in Canaan. Caleb wanted that Mountain. Give me this mountain! Have you ever wanted something so bad that you asked God over and over again for it? We are not to grow weary in well doing. Caleb received his promise and inheritance. Hebron was the highest inheritance for Caleb. There are rewards for serving the Lord. The rewards are stored up in glory, but there are also some rewards the Lord has for us here. Be faithful to the work in the Lord’s service. God will remember, recognize, and reward you for your labor, if you faint not. Galatians 6:9, “And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” I Corinthians 15:58, “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the LORD, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the LORD.”
Questions to Consider:
Can you imagine what God could do through the life of one person completely committed to Him?
Can you imagine if our churches had one Caleb?
Do you still have the same zeal you had when you were first saved?
Points to Ponder:
Would you like to see what God could do in and through you if you were completely sold-out to God.
Don’t live like you got until next year to serve God. Each day, serve Him like there’s no tomorrow.
Lord, give me the spirit of Caleb. There is still more work to do and mountains to conquer!
PRAYER: Father, I know I have an eternal inheritance in Jesus. Help me to remain faithful in Your service. May others see You in my labor for You and may they become desirous of the work that they come to know You. In Jesus name, AMEN!
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship with Christ.