Summary: This is the third and final sermon in the series and the most powerful. It was lengthy and had to be broken into two parts to get it properly preached, especially as it motivated me to follow several "rabit trails" and really impacted people's lives.
The Spirit of Expectancy - Part 3 - Caleb's Expectation
The Spirit of Expectancy
Part 3 of a Series
(Note: parts of this sermon were adopted from Sermon Central Contributor David Dykes from his sermon "Caleb: How to Thrive at Age 85!")
TEXT: Joshua 14:6-12 New Living Translation, “A delegation from the tribe of Judah, led by Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite, came to Joshua at Gilgal. Caleb said to Joshua, "Remember what the Lord said to Moses, the man of God, about you and me when we were at Kadesh-barnea. 7 I was forty years old when Moses, the servant of the Lord, sent me from Kadesh-barnea to explore the land of Canaan. I returned and gave an honest report, 8 but my brothers who went with me frightened the people from entering the Promised Land. For my part, I wholeheartedly followed the Lord my God. 9 So that day Moses solemnly promised me, 'The land of Canaan on which you were just walking will be your grant of land and that of your descendants forever, because you wholeheartedly followed the Lord my God.'
10 "Now, as you can see, the Lord has kept me alive and well as he promised for all these forty-five years since Moses made this promise—even while Israel wandered in the wilderness. Today I am eighty-five years old. 11 I am as strong now as I was when Moses sent me on that journey, and I can still travel and fight as well as I could then. 12 So give me the hill country that the Lord promised me. You will remember that as scouts we found the descendants of Anak living there in great, walled towns. But if the Lord is with me, I will drive them out of the land, just as the Lord said."
Think about everything Caleb had to go through during his life:
Born a slave – Overcome a slave mentality and all he had every known or identified within himself in Egypt.
Recruited as a spy – Be part of a team that was tasked to go where no one had ever been and see what no one had ever seen before.
Overcome a Grasshopper Complex – Everyone but Caleb and Joshua had a bad report and an inferiority complex.
Promised a Grant of Land in Canaan – Moses rewarded him for his faithfulness and bravery
Promise deferred for 40 years – Caleb had to sit on the promise for 40 years and not lose sight of the promise even though everyone around him was dying in their unbelief in the wilderness.
Wage a good warfare over your prophecies = 1 Tim 1:18-19 "This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightest war a good warfare; 19 Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck:"
After the initial invasion, 5 more years of war – After the invasion of Jericho and some other cities, a 5 year war ensued. Caleb was one of the military leaders; acknowledging God’s sustaining ways over his whole life.
Finally claimed his promise – It took 45 years but Caleb finally had the title deed to his Land Grant. The promise of God, which was birth in expectancy in his heart half a lifetime ago had finally happened. It was alive in his heart long before it was manifested three dimensionally.
Caleb understood the continued warfare after getting his land grant – Caleb understood the difference between receiving the promise and what it takes to keep and maintain it.
1. CALEB’S EXAMPLE OF PERSISTENCE
Caleb had been promised a piece of property forty five years earlier. Since that promise, he spent forty years wandering in the wilderness with a bunch of dissatisfied, unfaithful, whining people. Then under Joshua’s leadership, Caleb, at 85 years old, spent the past five years fighting as a soldier against the Canaanite kingdoms. Even after 45 years, he still held onto God’s promise. He said, “I remember God’s promise to me, now give me this hill country!” He never let go of that promise – that’s what the Bible calls persistence; the spirit of expectancy.
When God gives you a promise—you should never release it!
Has God given you a promise? Not just a promise, he has given you hundreds and thousands of promises right here in His Word. According to the author, Herbert Lockyer, there are 7,457 of God’s promises in the Bible. (All the Promises in the Bible)
And, based on the Word of God, he has also personalized a lot of promises that deal with your personal life. Perhaps they are through a personal inner witness, a prophetic word, or some other message by which He has gotten your attention.