By Kathi Pelton
We are all familiar with the story in the Book of Numbers of how Moses sent the twelve spies into the Promise Land (the Land of Canaan) to assess all aspects of it. Out of the twelve spies, only two— Joshua and Caleb— came back with a good report of the bounty in the land and a declaration of faith in God’s promise to give them the land. But the people believed the bad report of what was seen by the eyes of the other ten spies, who embraced and imparted fear rather than faith. They focused on giving a report that brought fear by saying that within the land there are “men the size of giants”, fortified cities (strongholds) and vast people groups that had great strength and could not be overcome. In contrast, Joshua and Caleb believed that God would help them succeed and overcome impossible odds, because He had promised to give them the land. Still, the counsel of Israel chose to believe the bad report which caused them never to enter the land of promise, but to die in the desert. Their children would inherit the land along with Joshua and Caleb— who were the only men from their generation permitted to go into the Promised Land after the time of wandering for forty years.
We are in similar time. Every report regarding the days ahead and the promises of God are met by ten bad reports. Though the “enemies” are no longer called the Hittites, Jebusite, Amorites, Perizzites and Canaanite— the message of fear and defeat remains the same. Yet, the promises of God have never changed for his people. He remains true to his covenant promises even when men do not.
We need to remember that God did not change the landscape or strongholds of what the ten fearful spies reported. The fortified cites remained with great armies who understood the land even when the time came for Joshua and Caleb to cross into the Promise Land. But God’s promise to give the children of Israel the Land of Canaan remained true as well. Under the leadership of Joshua and Caleb, who had more faith in God’s covenant promise than fear of the opposition, they would lead the people forth in the confidence and trust.
If we look at the current landscaped four world today, we once again see giants, fortified nations (strongholds) and opposition. We, too, can become overcome by fear and hopelessness if we do not look upon the promise of a “land of milk and honey.” We must believe the promise and not believe the reports that grip us with fear. It is time to remind our hearts and our brothers and sisters of the covenant promises that remain true even today— then we will be like Joshua and Caleb. We will lead a great procession of God’s children into the inheritance and victory.
Trust and obey is key in 2022 and beyond. We must trust in the promises of God and put asunder every vain imagination that slanders God’s covenant promises. We must trade fear for faith and hopelessness for confident hope in God alone.
“If God is for us then who can be against us?” Romans 8:31
Yes, there are giants— but young David proved that when you put your trust in the name of God that a small stone of faith can take down even the greatest giant. Yes, there are strongholds, but Gideon and his small army of 300 (in the face of a vast army) were victorious as they obeyed the steps the Lord gave them. Trust and obey— it is the only way forward.
We do not want to wander for forty years, only to die a desert land, never obtaining our promise. We want to be see a vast procession of Joshua’s and Caleb’s, who along with their sons and daughters, will go forth together in his name and in his might. Their trust is in his strength— not their own!
It is time to declare the good report! Of course there are battles and strongholds ahead that we will face but we can face them with faith and confident hope in God’s promises. Declare the good report to your family, your friends, to your neighbors and over your nation. It is time for the great procession of a Caleb company to arise and take the land of promise back from the giants and to set it free from fortified and demonic strongholds.
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