Caleb's Reward
Joshua 14:6-15
Then the children of Judah came to Joshua in Gilgal: and Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenezite said to him…

Caleb's reward illustrates the immense difference between a full and a partial following of God. It is the difference between the river and the sea. Both are water, and the river is all well in its way and is useful to man and beast in small services. The sea is something more than mere water, for it is infinite; and as we gaze upon it a sense of its immeasurableness comes over us as never is the case when we behold the largest lake or the Mississippi river. You cannot measure a wholly following servant of the living God, and you can too easily take the dimensions of a half-and-half Christian. You come to form an idea of about how much money he will give to a needy enterprise, about how much time to a pressing work, how long he will stay to push a fresh project in the kingdom, and what pleasures and business engagements he will surrender to help revival efforts. We get tired of these easy measurements. But take a Caleb, and you cannot tell what Divine energies are locked up within him to come forth when needed..

I. ONE WITH CALEB'S SPIRIT SEES CLEARLY THE GOOD THINGS WHICH GOD HAS PROMISED. He has sight and insight. Twelve good men go over the same country, but on the whole they see differently, and so report what they see. Ten, with a common-sense vision of the greatness of the foes, and making no allowance for hidden and supernatural factors, did not see things as they were. On the other hand, Caleb saw all that they did, but he had a power of seeing Him who is invisible, and so of seeing truly. The man who followed fully had a clear eye, a single eye, and his whole body was full of light. In this way he perceived the essential weakness and rottenness of confederated evil. All achieving men have the same vision, and so they persist and wait and return to the same attack until they win the day, and the people that once bade stone them bring out garlands for their graves.

II. MEN OF CALEB'S SPIRIT, WHOLLY FOLLOWING THE LORD, HAVE THE POWER OF STANDING ALONE. The mass move with the stream. The few stand like a rock. No one knows who has not tried it what it costs the soul of self-searching, fear, doubt, sorrowful parting with loved friends, and the crushing weight of popular disapproval. In one of his noblest odes Horace speaks in admiration of him who can resist the heated demands of citizens who call for evil things,

III. THOSE WHO ARE LIKE CALEB HAVE THE PATIENCE OF FAITH. It was a long and wearisome time before the word of God to His trusty servant was fulfilled — more than a whole generation. No doubt sometimes, for he was human, he wondered when God would arise and His enemies be scattered. Have you seen some new possession in the things of the Spirit? Repeat the promise. Though it tarry, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not tarry. We get tired and run away from our own prayers, so that when the answer comes some one else lives where we did when we prayed. Oh, let us seek the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ!

IV. MEN OF CALEB'S SPIRIT HAVE TO FIGHT THE GOOD FIGHT OF FAITH. Hebron was beautifully situated upon the hills to the south of Jerusalem, where even to-day there is a luxuriant vegetation and the grapes as of Eschol are gathered. From it one looks over a wide expanse of country, eastward, westward, northward, southward, towards Edom. There David was crowned and reigned seven years. It was a splendid reward after forty-three years' delay. Perhaps on the great expedition with the spies Caleb marked the place and made a vow that, if the people entered in, he would have that abode, and the picture may have dwelt in his memory to cheer him in long years, just as the heavenly hills glow before the eye of Christian faith. But even at last the prize did not drop into his hands like a ripe apple. No; he must draw his sword and expel the sons of Anak who were in possession, for they also loved the high places. It costs to get the best, but it is wise economy to be satisfied with nothing less. Faith, the patience of faith, the fight of faith, the reward of faith — these come before us in this ancient story with the freshness of the Word of God. And now it remains to be said that there is a peculiar need of Calebs to-day, when great things are offered us in the providences of God and we have not far to go to enter into them. Make it personal. Sometimes the Spirit shows you while you are praying or reading or listening to others an attainment beyond all you have ever reached. It is your Hebron. No matter what the precise form of the blessing, if you have had it clearly set before you, it is a call to possess it by faith, just as Caleb went up to his reward among the hills of Palestine. All that your feet press is yours. Saints are more to blame for not walking upon the high places as children of the heavenly King than sinners are for not turning to God in penitence. Saints have great promises made to them and great helps offered them. Make it more general. Before the whole Church to-day there is a promised world to be won for Christ by prayer and toil. Our charter gives it to us for a possession, and the doors are wide for our entrance therein. Another field for faith is the deeper Christianising of the already Christian nations of the earth. Dr. Herren says in his little book, "The Larger Christ": "The realisation of heaven upon earth is more than a mystic ideal. It is the crowning fact of history. It is the solid reality with which God is displacing the insubstantial materialism underlying the rude social structures of human selfishness. It is the Divine errand upon which white-souled prophets have walked serene through a world ablaze with scorn. The pledge of God is behind it, and the victorious forces of the universe are allied in its behalf. The Bible is its written warrant and the Cross its seal which none can break. It may take us with violence, but it advances to conquer. And the saints shall judge the world!"

(Edward N. Packard.).

Parallel Verses
KJV: Then the children of Judah came unto Joshua in Gilgal: and Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenezite said unto him, Thou knowest the thing that the LORD said unto Moses the man of God concerning me and thee in Kadeshbarnea.

WEB: Then the children of Judah drew near to Joshua in Gilgal. Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite said to him, "You know the thing that Yahweh spoke to Moses the man of God concerning me and concerning you in Kadesh Barnea.

Caleb's Reflection on the Goodness and Faithfulness of God to Him
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