BOOK BY BOOK BIBLE STUDY
BIBLE STUDY LESSON
For the week beginning Sunday September 2, 2012
THE LOYALTY DARE
(Promising loyalty to GOD in an uncertain future)
Joshua 14:6-15 & 15:13-17
Forty-five years after Caleb was called to scout out the land of Canaan by Moses, he leads a delegation from the tribe of Judah to a meeting with Israel’s present leader and friend, Joshua. Joshua was one of the eleven other scouts who went on that reconnoiter mission with Caleb at that time, and if you remember, only he and Joshua believed that GOD would lead them to victory over the Nephilim beings (giants) that dwelled in the great walled cities west of the Jordan River.
Caleb, as if he had to, reminded Joshua of Moses’ promise to them, that was relayed to him from GOD, all those years ago (Numbers 14:24 & 30 and Deuteronomy 1:34-36). Moses promised them that they would survive the “wandering in the wilderness” and ultimately receive their inheritance in the “Promised Land” of Canaan, simply because, “they followed the LORD completely”.
Here in Joshua 14, taking up at verse 10, we find a now, 85-year old Caleb, declaring to his friend Joshua, that he was as strong now as he was when they went on that faith-filled mission 45 years earlier, and, that he could still travel and fight just as well as he could in those days.
He goes on to tell Joshua that, “If the LORD is with me, I will drive out the Anakites (giants) who are still living there in their great walled cities, just as the LORD said”. And so Joshua blessed Caleb and gave him Hebron, a place that was named after the great Anakite hero, Arba, as his inheritance. In fact, in Joshua 15, beginning at verse 13, we see where the LORD actually instructed Joshua to give the city of Arba, which was a part of the tribe of Judah’s inheritance, to Caleb.
And so Caleb, at the ripe old age of 85, went out and drove out the three remaining Anakite giants, Sheshai, Ahiman, and Talmai (v. 14), and then, he went and fought against the people living in the town of Debir, which was formerly called Kiriath-sepher. It is here in this passage (Vs. 13-17), that we see Caleb beginning to set aside something for the next generation (however, they had to work for it). Here in verse 16 he announces to his young people that he will give his daughter, Acsah, in marriage to the man who was brave enough to attack and capture Kiraiath-sepher.
Othniel, the son of Caleb’s brother Kenaz, and who later became a judge of Israel, by faith, and by action, rose to the challenge, and captured the Canaanite town, and, at the same time, he secured his own family’s future, through deeds. Later, his new wife, by faith, suggested that he ask her father for an additional field in the Negev, and she also asked, by faith, that Caleb bless her with springs and wells to water the land, and Caleb gave her both the upper and lower springs in the Hill country of the Negev.
And so, now the next generation, Othniel and Acsah, were already learning to fend for their family, using the same kind of “faith” and “actions” that had been exhibited to them by their parents. And it all starts with them being loyal to GOD, and, to their parents, and always “following GOD completely”.
And now we see that Caleb’s legacy of faith proved much more valuable to his family than the property he claimed for them. The older generation is responsible to provide for the next generation, both “materially”, and “spiritually”. It is also incumbent upon us to provide them with, most importantly, “courage” and “trust in GOD”, through our own behavior, or actions. If we don’t show that we have the courage and faith to trust in, and follow GOD completely, then, don’t be surprised, if our children don’t either.
A Sunday school lesson by,
Larry D. Alexander
LARRY D. ALEXANDER- Official Website