The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Send men to spy out the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the people of Israel. Moses sent them to spy out the land of Canaan and said to them, “Go up into the Negev and go up into the hill country, and see what the land is, and whether the people who dwell in it are strong or weak, whether they are few or many, and whether the land that they dwell in is good or bad, and whether the cities that they dwell in are camps or strongholds, and whether the land is rich or poor, and whether there are trees in it or not. Be of good courage and bring some of the fruit of the land.”
So they went up and spied out the land from the wilderness of Zin to Rehob, near Lebo-hamath. They went up into the Negev and came to Hebron.
They returned from spying out the land and they brought back word to them and to all the congregation, and showed them the fruit of the land. And they told him, “We came to the land to which you sent us. It flows with milk and honey, and this is its fruit. However, the people who dwell in the land are strong, and the cities are fortified and very large.
But Caleb quieted the people before Moses and said, “Let us go up at once and occupy it, for we are well able to overcome it.”
When I read these words that Caleb spoke it inspires me. The first thing that comes to mind is that Caleb didn’t deny what the other 10 spies spoke. He didn’t deny that there were giants in the land, nor did he deny that there were large fortified cities. But he did acknowledge how big his God was, and that made all the difference. His words, “Let us go up at once and occupy it for we are well able to overcome,” show his heart. His passionate plea to the people is: “Don’t look at the circumstance in front of you, look at the miracles behind you. If God can bring us out of Egypt these giants and fortified cities don’t stand a chance!”
So whatever situation you are facing today, know that your God is bigger than any giant you are facing, any mountain standing in front of you. I have often heard it said: “Don’t talk to God about how big your mountain is; talk to your mountain about how big your God is.” So I have to ask myself, what made Caleb different? Why didn’t he go with the majority? Why did he see the situation differently than the others?
The answer is found in a missing word… in the original Hebrew, verse 22 reads as follows: They went up into the Negev and (he) came to Hebron. How do we know that “he” came to Hebron is Caleb? The Bible tells us!
Then the people of Judah came to Joshua at Gilgal. And Caleb said to him, “You know what the Lord said to Moses concerning you and me. I was forty years old when Moses sent me to spy out the land, and I brought him word again as it was in my heart. But my brothers who went up with me made the heart of the people melt; yet I wholly followed the Lord my God. And Moses swore on that day, saying, ‘Surely the land on which your foot has trodden shall be an inheritance for you and your children forever, because you have wholly followed the Lord my God.’ And now, behold, the Lord has kept me alive, just as he said, these forty-five years since the time that the Lord spoke this word to Moses. And now, behold, I am this day eighty-five years old. I am still as strong today as I was in the day that Moses sent me; my strength now is as my strength was then, for war and for going and coming. So now give me this hill country of which the Lord spoke on that day. It may be that the Lord will be with me, and I shall drive them out just as the Lord said.” Then Joshua blessed him, and he gave Hebron to Caleb for an inheritance. Therefore Hebron became the inheritance of Caleb, because he wholly followed the Lord, the God of Israel.
Caleb says to Joshua “Give me my MOUNTAIN!” When Caleb recalls his report to Moses, he uses the words “as it was in my heart.” I love That! Caleb’s vision, came from his heart and enabled him to see something far bigger than the giants he saw in the natural. Why? Because he wholly followed the Lord.
I ask myself, why did Caleb go to Hebron in the first place? An ancient Jewish tradition explains that he went to Hebron to visit the grave of Abraham and Sarah. He went there to pray and to seek God’s heart for children of Israel regarding this Promised Land. And that makes so much sense! So how did God answer Caleb? I believe that God reminded Caleb of the promises He made to Abraham. So when Caleb looked up and saw the giants and the fortified cities he remembered God’s original promises to Abraham that this land would be the everlasting inheritance of the Jewish people. That is why Caleb was able to say to the people, we are well able to overcome, let us go up at once and occupy this land. Don’t hesitate, don’t stop, and don’t walk in fear. Go for it! God has promised it and He is a covenant God. He always keeps His promises. Caleb remembered God’s word and it gave him courage and confidence.
So, if you are facing a giant today I would encourage you to go back and find the promise that God gave you. Fill your heart with what He says about your situation or circumstance, and then when you look at your giant or your mountain, suddenly it won’t look so big. You will know that you are well able to overcome and to occupy the place God has promised you.
And when you talk to people and they say that Jews shouldn’t be living in the Heart of Biblical Israel, in Hebron, Shiloh, or the Oak of Moreh, just show them Genesis 13:15 where God first promised this very land as an everlasting inheritance to the descendants of Abraham.
He remembers His covenant forever, the word that He commanded, for a thousand generations, the covenant that He made with Abraham, His sworn promise to Isaac, which He confirmed to Jacob as a statute, to Israel as an everlasting covenant, saying, “To you I will give the land of Canaan as your portion for an inheritance.”