Summary: God still desire to see people who can be history-makers like Caleb. Caleb’s dedication and faith gained him an inheritance and overcame the enemy.
THEME: “THE SLAVE WHO BECAME A CONQUEROR.”
TEXT: Joshua 14:6-15
Do we remember the Israelite slaves who became history-makers? Twelve spies were sent by Moses to spy out the land of Canaan. Out of twelve, only two spies rendered a positive report. They were Joshua and Caleb. Alongside with Joshua, Caleb stands out in the Bible as a great hero of faith. We will focus our study in the life of Caleb. Six times we are told that he “wholly follow the Lord” (Joshua 14:8-9, 14).
We may trace his spiritual history in 4 stages:
I. CALEB THE SUFFERER (SLAVE).
Since Caleb was 40 years old at Kadesh-Barnea (v.7), he had to be born in Egypt while the Jews were enduring great suffering.
The name Caleb means “dog.” Yes, he was born a slave, yet he died a hero.
He would have no inheritance under Joshua had he not first experienced redemption (pass-over) under Moses.
II. CALEB THE DEFENDER.
Instead of believing God’s word and immediately claiming their inheritance, the Israelites asked for a report from the 12 spies. (Numbers 13:32-33) When the report was given, only Caleb and Joshua defended Moses and encouraged the nation to enter Canaan.
The 10 spies despised the land, while Caleb and Joshua delighted in the land.
The rebellious nation was walking by sight; the minority was walking by faith. It took courage for Caleb to stand against the whole nation, but God honored him for it. He displayed his faith when he challenged the whole nation to go up at once and possess the land for they are able to overcome it. Numbers 13:30
III. CALEB THE WANDERER.
Caleb did not die in the wilderness, but still had to suffer with the unbelieving nation during their almost 40 years of wandering. Everyday he saw people die and miss out on their inheritance. He had to listen to the murmuring and complaining.
How was Caleb able to maintain his spiritual life when surrounded by so much carnality and unbelief? --- His heart was in Canaan.
Caleb was able to endure the trials of the wilderness because he knew that he did not have to fear death, that he had an inheritance, and that God would not fail him.
How much more we have in Christ?
IV. CALEB THE OVERCOMER.
Caleb is now 85 years old, yet he is anxious to claim his inheritance to the glory of God. It is sad when believers allow “old age” to make complainers out of them when they ought to be conquerors.
“Give me this mountain!” (v.12). Caleb had faith that what God had promised He was able to perform. (Rom.4: 2-21)
Unbelief looks at the giants; faith looks to God.
Caleb saw (v.7), and said (v.7), and have seized it.
Caleb’s faithfulness in following the Lord wholly makes the difference in his life.
CONCLUSION: Caleb’s dedication and faith saved his life; gained him an inheritance and overcame the enemy. We too, can save our lives through our complete dedication and unwavering faith that will ultimately lead us to gain our inheritance and overcome our enemies.