“And if the Lord is pleased with us, He will bring us safely into that land and give it to us.….don’t be afraid of the people of the land. They are only helpless prey to us! They have no protection, but the Lord is with us! Don’t be afraid of them!”
In today’s devotional we head back to the Old Testament, into the book of numbers, where we will explore the story of the courageous Caleb and Joshua.
After arriving in the wilderness of Paran, God commanded Moses to send out 12 spies (one from each of the tribes of Israel) to the land of Canaan, the land God had promised the Israelites when He led them the out of slavery from Egypt. After 40 days, the 12 spies returned and brought back a report of the land that they had just scouted out. What they all agreed about was that the land was beautiful, fertile and flowing with milk and honey! However, the agreement stopped there. The rest of the spies, excluding Caleb and Joshua, then chose to focus on the size of the enemy they found there, rather that on the promise that God had given, that the land would be theirs. Caleb was confident that they could overcome their enemies, but their negative report was so great, that it caused the whole nation to mourn all night and decide to elect a new leader and head back to Egypt.
Moses, Aaron, Joshua and Caleb were incensed. They fell down and tore their clothes as a sign of their deep sorrow. Nevertheless, Joshua and Caleb arose from their sorrow, and tried to encourage the despondent Israelites. “The land we travelled through and explored is a wonderful land!. . . It is a rich land flowing with milk and honey……Do not rebel against the Lord…The Lord is with us!” (v7-9).
Caleb and Joshua were so confident in the promise God had given to them, that the size of the enemy almost seemed insignificant to them. They knew God had promised this land to them and they knew that God was with them, which would have led to their victory. We too, when faced with problems the size of mountains, can take courage in knowing that God is with us and that we are not alone.