Caleb is one of my favorite unsung heroes in the Bible. He doesn’t get much attention in the Bible and his name isn’t even popular today. How many boys do you know with the name Caleb? Yet he is a remarkable special man. Today starts a series of blogs in which Caleb will tell his own story.
My name is first mentioned in Numbers 13. Moses was our leader, and had been for several years. Moses was a strong, outstanding leader but he wasn’t able to enter the land because of sin so he was preparing the next generation to go in without him. He wrote Numbers to be an instruction manual for the new generation, showing them the importance of trusting and obeying God. While the first generation and especially 10 of the spies were bad examples, he used Joshua and me as good examples of trusting God.
We had been delivered out of Egypt after the 10 plagues, through the Red Sea, and went to Mt. Sinai were we stayed for a year while God gave us the law and tabernacle. Then we went to Kadesh Barnea to get ready to enter our land as God had promised. That’s where I’m first mentioned. Numbers 13:1”The LORD said to Moses, 2 “Send some men to explore the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the Israelites. From each ancestral tribe send one of its leaders.” 3 So at the LORD’s command Moses sent them out from the Desert of Paran. All of them were leaders of the Israelites. 4 These are their names: 6 from the tribe of Judah, Caleb son of Jephunneh;”
As you know, granddaughter, my name, Caleb, means ‘dog,’ some say it means ‘mad dog.’ I had spent years in Egypt as a slave with the other Jews. My father, your great-grandfather, was named Jephunneh. Our ancestors were Edomites, Gentiles, descendants of Esau. However our clan, the Kenezites, left the tribe of Edom and joined with the tribe of Judah. We believed in Yahweh and were taken in as one of them.
I was the leader of our clan in Judah and had the privilege of representing Judah when Palestine was investigated. It was a great honor to be chosen.I had heard that God promised this land to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Joseph. Now, when we make a promise it expresses our best intention, but we can’t totally guarantee anything. What God promises, though, is guaranteed.
Actually, though, the Bible never says God promises anything. There is no Hebrew word for promise used. The words used are the normal words used for saying and speaking. You see, when God says something it is a promise. Everything He says is a promise. Every single statement. ALL God says is 100% true. So nothing has to be singled out as a promise, because everything He says is. The same is true in your New Testament. God’s very character stands behind every statement He makes.So when God said the descendants of Abraham would be brought back to the land everyone had a choice to believe what He said or not. I chose to believe and trust what He said He would do.
God said He would give this land to Abraham’s descendants forever. (Genesis 12:7) The LORD appeared to Abram and said, “To your offspring I will give this land.’” (Genesis 13:14-17) “The LORD said to Abram after Lot had parted from him, “Lift up your eyes from where you are and look north and south, east and west. 15 All the land that you see I will give to you and your offspring forever. … 17 Go, walk through the length and breadth of the land, for I am giving it to you.” (Gen 15:13-15) Then the LORD said to him, “Know for certain that your descendants will be strangers in a country not their own, and they will be enslaved and mistreated four hundred years. 14 But I will punish the nation they serve as slaves, and afterward they will come out with great possessions. … 16 In the fourth generation your descendants will come back here.” God repeated the same promises to Jacob and Joseph.
Some promises to stand on…•Provision for our needs (Matt. 6:25-34). •Answer to prayer (Matt. 7:7-11; 1 John 5:14,15). •All we need to live for Him (2 Pet. 1:3,4). •Rewards for service (2 Cor. 5:10). •Help in our praying (Rom. 8:26). •Eternal life (John 3:16; 5:24). •A home in heaven (John 14:1-4). •Assurance of salvation (John 10:29). •The Holy Spirit within (Eph. 1:13,14). •Spiritual gifts (Rom. 12:3-8; 1 Cor. 12). •Forgiveness for daily sins (1 John 1:9). •Peace of mind (Phil. 4:7). •A way to defeat temptation (1 Cor. 10:13). •Wisdom in times of testing (James 1:5). •Power for living (Eph. 1:19; 3:20). •Access to God through prayer (Eph. 3:12). •Mercy and grace in times of need (Heb. 4:16). •The illumination of the Spirit (1 Cor. 2:6-16). •Freedom from sin’s grip (Rom. 6:22). •Loving discipline (Heb. 12:3-11). •Ability to make Satan flee (James 4:7). •Resurrection to glory (1 Thess. 4:16,17). •Strength to do God’s will (Phil. 4:13).
(If I can answer questions or offer personal counsel, or if you would like a free copy of my Spiritual Warfare Handbook, email me at Jerry@ChristianTrainingOrganization.org or download it from http://sw.christiantrainingonline.org/. My next book, Spiritual Warfare in the Bible, which is a more advanced treatment of spiritual warfare, is also available there for free.)