We know the story. A dozen spies were sent into the Promised Land to check out what God had promised to give the Israelites. Five-sixths (almost 85%) of the spies choked…they couldn’t believe the promise. We are called to be different!
The majority chose fear over faith and brought a negative report back to the people. Anything not of faith is fear–and fear kills. Humanity is created for faith…designed for belief in the Creator who conquers all.
Fear is irrational. Listen to the spies: “The land devours its inhabitants….the inhabitants are giants.” What?! If the land devours, how would the inhabitants be giant? The people couldn’t hear the inconsistencies because fear deafens.
Today, the majority choose fear as well. We need more leaders of courage, more heroes who choose faith. Let’s look at what God had to say about one of the heroes from the ‘spy story.’
But My servant Caleb, because he has had a different spirit and has followed Me fully, I will bring into the land which he entered, and his descendants shall take possession of it. Numbers 14:24
Faith is the vehicle that delivers the promises of God.
Caleb had a ‘different spirit’ — a faithful, fervent spirit that brought results. As Christians, we need to be different. We need the courage that refuses to fear. We need the courage that embraces challenges as opportunities for God to produce miracles. We need the courage to go after the promises God makes, the blessings He offers.
Caleb was 40 when he went into the Promised Land. The fearful spirit that the other spies allowed to overtake them infected the rest of the nation. That led to forty years of desert wandering–and never entering the Promised Land for all but Caleb and Joshua. But listen to Caleb 45 years later:
I am still as strong today as I was in the day Moses sent me; as my strength was then, so my strength is now, for war and for going out and coming in. Now then, give me this hill country about which the Lord spoke on that day, for you heard on that day that Anakim were there, with great fortified cities; perhaps the Lord will be with me, and I will drive them out as the Lord has spoken. Joshua 14:11,12
Caleb experienced the faithfulness of God and knew the battles belonged to Him. Even at 85, he was ready to take the land with the ‘giants.’ He knew the goodness of God and trusted that the results would be what was best.
A WORD ABOUT FACING GIANTS
There are two words I found for giant in these passages. There are scholarly depths beyond my ability to plumb, but there is an exciting glimpse I feel I can share. One of the words for the giants who dwelled in Caleb’s chosen land were called rapha. That intrigued me because Jehovah Rapha is The LORD our Healer. As I searched, I found the words are related–and the giant has an attribute of ‘invigorating.’ And the word, when used as healing speaks of restoration to the intended purpose.
So for my readers who are facing a giant in their life: Be like Caleb. Choose faith and watch God take that giant down. Trust in His purposes of restoration and life-giving, and claim the promises of God. Let that giant invigorate the faith of yourself and others. Giants slain with faith are a source of freedom and life!