Just recently in my quiet time I was reading over the script for KidSpring for this Sunday… The need to know for the week was: God Will Keep His Promises. The Bible story is from Joshua 14: 6-15. (Read below)
Hebron Given to Caleb
6 Now the men of Judah approached Joshua at Gilgal, and Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite said to him, “You know what the LORD said to Moses the man of God at Kadesh Barnea about you and me. 7 I was forty years old when Moses the servant of the LORD sent me from Kadesh Barnea to explore the land. And I brought him back a report according to my convictions, 8 but my brothers who went up with me made the hearts of the people melt with fear. I, however, followed the LORD my God wholeheartedly. 9 So on that day Moses swore to me, ‘The land on which your feet have walked will be your inheritance and that of your children forever, because you have followed the LORD my God wholeheartedly.’
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 desert. So here I am today, eighty-five years old! 11 I 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. 12 Now 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.”
13 Then Joshua blessed Caleb son of Jephunneh and gave him Hebron as his inheritance. 14 So Hebron has belonged to Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite ever since, because he followed the LORD, the God of Israel, wholeheartedly. 15 (Hebron used to be called Kiriath Arba after Arba, who was the greatest man among the Anakites.) Then the land had rest from war.
Joshua and the Israelites were in possession of most of the Promised Land. They had gotten to this point because God had been with them as they fought battle after battle to win the land. In these battles the Israelites had defeated Jericho, Ai, and the five Amorite kings of the south along with their territories. They also defeated the kings and lands of the east and west. In all, Joshua and the Israelites had defeated thirty-one kings! Now, it was time to divide up the land between all of the tribes of Israel. Finally, the Israelite people would have a chance to separate into smaller groups, build homes and even form villages and towns. After many, many years of wandering and fighting they finally had a place to call home. As Joshua was dividing up the land for the tribes, he was approached by a man he had known for many years whose name was Caleb. Caleb had been one of the people to help Moses!
Here’s what happened… forty-five years earlier Moses had reached the edge of the Promised Land with the Israelites. When they got there he sent twelve spies out to scout the land and bring back a report. Two of the twelve spies were Joshua and Caleb. They all set out and explored the land and then returned to the Israelites with their report. They all agreed that the land was beautiful and full of good crops. But ten of the spies said that it would be impossible to conquer the Promised Land because the people living there were large, strong and fierce warriors. Well, when the Israelites heard this they started to panic, and they began wishing they had never followed Moses to this land in the first place. But Caleb stood up and tried to calm the people down. He and Joshua reminded the people that God would help them take the land. Unfortunately, the people wouldn’t listen. They talked about finding a new leader and they even talked about killing Joshua and Caleb. That’s when God became angry at the Israelites and punished them. He told them they could not enter the Promised Land and would have to wander in the wilderness for forty years! God, however, took notice of what Caleb and Joshua did. God was proud of Caleb for standing up to the people and being faithful. So God promised that Caleb would live to take control of his share of the Promised Land.
Now, let’s fast forward forty-five years later and we’re back to when Caleb met with Joshua as the land was being divided up. Caleb reminded Joshua about the time when they were spies and had seen the land. He talked about giving their report and the people not being faithful. He also reminded Joshua of the promise that had been made to him about the land.
God then gave Caleb a large portion of the land, just as He had promised…
Verse 14 states why Caleb got the land God promised him, “because he followed the Lord wholeheartedly.” God does keep His promises but we must follow Him wholeheartedly. This rocked me! I took a step back to see if I was truly following God wholeheartedly and realized there were areas of my life I was not completely giving to him- in turn not being able to follow Him wholeheartedly. We rely on God to do all types of things and ask Him for so much but we need to analyze our lives first to see if there are areas we need to give to Him and follow Him wholeheartedly and then He will grant us His many promises.
(Definition of wholehearted: marked by unconditional commitment, unstinting devotion, or unreserved enthusiasm)
Take a step back. Analyze your life. Ask God to point things out that you need to give to Him. Trust Him. Follow Him WHOLEHEARTEDLY.