The Lord said to Moses, “Send men to explore Canaan, which I’m giving to the Israelites. Send one leader from each of their ancestors’ tribes.” Num 13:1-2. It happened 40 years before Joshua set foot in the Promised Land. Joshua and Caleb had been the two spies who trusted God’s providence. They couldn’t sway the people. Was that because the people couldn’t trust, because there was too much WIIFM? So, that generation died off in the wilderness because God refused to let them enter the land; except for the two warriors, Joshua and Caleb.
Before Moses dies, and before Joshua assumes his mantle as leader, Moses addressed the people just before they crossed the Jordan. “Today, I call heaven and earth to witness against you: I am offering you, life or death, blessing or curse. Choose life, then, so that you and your descendants may live, in the love of Yahweh your God, obeying his voice, holding fast to him; for in this your life consists, and on this depends the length of time that you stay in the country which Yahweh swore to your ancestors Abraham, Isaac and Jacob that he would give them’”(Deuteronomy 30:19-20). Is there just too much in the human experience which compels us all to color outside the lines and somehow always put our adventures at the top of the “to do” list?
Thankfully, we have a glimpse of the Saints; warriors who have that something extra, that resolve of spirit that pushes them into the category of heroes.
Caleb comes to Joshua who is dividing the land to the 12 tribes after they have spent 5 years at war and says: “I was forty years old when Moses, the servant of the LORD, sent me from Kadesh-barnea to reconnoiter the land; and I brought back to him a frank report. On that occasion Moses swore this oath, ‘The land where you have set foot shall become your heritage and that of your descendants forever, because you have been completely loyal to the LORD, my God.’ Now, as he promised, the LORD has preserved me these forty-five years since the LORD spoke thus to Moses while Israel journeyed in the wilderness; and now I am eighty-five years old, but I am still as strong today as I was the day Moses sent me forth, with no less vigor whether it be for war or for any other tasks. Now give me this mountain region which the LORD promised me that day, as you yourself heard”. Joshua 14. Caleb attained the Promise (Hebrews 11:33).
It is said the world is not worthy of men like these; thankfully we have a glimpse. Ain’t it so!