Summary: A practical sermon based on simple Biblical principles to move on to God’s promises in our lives based on the courageous life of Caleb.
Check our complete series on Jacob: http://www.cityharvestagchurch.org/category/sermons-and-sermon-series/jacob-sermon-series/
We all are working towards various goals in life. Many times people start of well, work very hard to towards a goal, but get discouraged midway. Some come all the way to the brink of victory, yet when the moment comes for their dream to come to pass, they miss it. Are you stuck up in life at some point? Are you finding roadblocks to your promises? Have you lost the courage to move on?
Caleb was born in Egypt, given into slavery for Pharaoh. It was a tough life and a hard job. When he was 40 years old he left Egypt with the Israelites. Then, he had spent 40 years in the wilderness, which was even difficult. By the time we come to the book of Joshua, Caleb and the Israelites are in the Promised Land. They have taken possession of most of the Promised Land, yet there are some territories with the enemy. Listen to what Caleb says now:
Joshua 14:10-12 10“Now then, just as the Lord promised, he has kept me alive for forty-five years since the time he said this to Moses, while Israel moved about in the wilderness. So here I am today, eighty-five years old! 11I am still as strong today as the day Moses sent me out; I’m just as vigorous to go out to battle now as I was then. 12Now give me this hill country that the Lord promised me that day. You yourself heard then that the Anakites were there and their cities were large and fortified, but, the Lord helping me, I will drive them out just as he said.
Caleb was a courageous man. He had the courage to move on at every stage of life. How did the find the courage to move on even at an old age?
Illustration: World War II US tank commander General George S. Patton said, “Courage is fear holding on a minute longer.” If you give into your fears, you are on the path to defeat. Instead if you stand strong in spite of your fears, you are on the path to victory. Well we are not alone. We have God standing with us to give us the courage to move on.
Well I want to give you three things concerning Caleb that can help us have the courage to move on.
1. Faith to Forget the Past
When Caleb moved on in his life on the promises of God, he had the courage to forget whatever was behind him. Let’s turn to the book of Numbers where we first hear about Caleb. In Numbers we are told that Caleb was one of the 12 spies who was chosen to go into the land, look over it, and bring back a report. So they secretly spied the land, and all of the spies reported their findings. They all gave the same facts. They said that it was land that was flowing with milk and honey, the land was delightful place, the land was having good fruit and grain, and it was everything that God said it was.
You see, they did not need to spy out the land. They could have taken God’s word for it because when they got back the had no new information. They were even told by the Lord about the giants.
However, when they saw the interpretation of the facts, that is when the reports differed, there was a majority report and a minority report. The majority report said, “Let’s not go in, we can’t take the land.” True, humanly speaking they could not take the land.
Now, listen to what Caleb said. Caleb was outstanding because it was he who stepped forward at the beginning with a positive report. Numbers 13:30, 31 30Then Caleb silenced the people before Moses and said, “We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it.” 31But the men who had gone up with him said, “We can’t attack those people; they are stronger than we are.”
Caleb was a man of faith. However, the people of Israel turned their thoughts back to Egypt. Numbers 14:4 And they said to each other, “We should choose a leader and go back to Egypt.”
The Israelites were not concerned about the slavery and brick making in Egypt. They thought the taskmaster’s lash on their back was not bad as they thought it was. As were all thinking about the past, Caleb had the faith to forget the past. He had the faith to turn back upon which was in the past.
See what Caleb said: Numbers 14:6-9 6Joshua son of Nun and Caleb son of Jephunneh, who were among those who had explored the land, tore their clothes 7 and said to the entire Israelite assembly, “The land we passed through and explored is exceedingly good. 8If the Lord is pleased with us, he will lead us into that land, a land flowing with milk and honey, and will give it to us.9Only do not rebel against the Lord. And do not be afraid of the people of the land, because we will devour them. Their protection is gone, but the Lord is with us. Do not be afraid of them.”