WHOLE HOG or NO HOG…


Joshua 14:6-8 – “Then the children of Judah approached Joshua in Gilgal, and Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite said to him: “You know the word that Adonai had spoken to Moses the man of God at Kadesh-Barnea concerning me and you. I was 40 years old when Moses the servant of Adonai sent me from Kadesh-Barnea to spy out the land, and I brought him back word as it was in my heart. Nevertheless, my fellows that went up with me made the heart of the people melt with fear, but I fully followed Adonai my God.”  TLV

There have been many people throughout human history who have made claims about themselves and others that they could not verify with factual evidence.  In our text, we have a man who could. 

Caleb had an experience, and he was relating it.  His experience was worth hearing.  He said, “yesterday was great, today is even greater, and tomorrow holds untold promise and possibility.”  He gave a full account of all he had been, all he now is, and all he hopes to be.  The past did not bother him, the present caused any alarm, and the future caused no trepidation.  He was confident in who he was and whose he was.

He could declare all this because “he wholly or fully followed the LORD.”  That was his past, present, and future.  It was not ego or conceit, nor was it a boast.  It was fact!  That was his testimony.

To those who knew him, this declaration came as no surprise.  His life had been a living epistle, known and read among men.  He did not say, “I followed, but I wholly or fully followed.”  There was no fence-straddling, no lukewarmness, and no half-heartedness.  He had wholly or fully committed himself to God and the purposes of God.

None of that meant that he was mistake-free.  None of that meant he was perfect.  None of that meant he was faultless.  But God came first in everything!  That is a powerful testimony and led him to incredible victory and peace. 

His whole-hearted service produced some identifiable fruit in his life.  We can observe the fruit in the demonstration of his faith.  Remember in Kadesh-Barnea the majority rejected his outlook.  Now, 45 years later he still manifests the same faith that led Israel to possess the promised land.  He was a walking example of Psalm 16:8 – “I have set Adonai always before me.  Since He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.”

When the ten spies came back to Moses, Caleb and Joshua declared, “let’s go up and possess the land.”  The naysayers turned the crowd into a mob wanting to kill him.  He never faltered and now he declares “I am not afraid of the giants, give me this mountain.”

There was the fruit of patience, Christlike patience.  In Isaiah 40:31 we read, but they who wait for Adonai will renew their strength.  They will soar up with wings like eagles.  They will run, and not grow weary.  They will walk, and not be faint.”  He was willing to wait for God’s timing!  In his patience, he possessed his soul.  He was confident in God and his God-given ability therefore he was patient.

There was the fruit of his life.  In many ways, he seemed to have perpetual youth.  See his words in Joshua 14:11 – “I am still as strong today as I was in the day Moses sent me…”  That was 45 years earlier and now he is 85 and raring to go.  No retirement home for him!  He manifested daily consistency and that kept him strong. 

As a result of his faith, his patience, and his life, Victory Came!  Therefore, I suggest that if we will wholly or fully follow the LORD it will bring resistance and persecution.  However, it will also produce incredible rewards and victory.  God helps us to have faith, courage, patience, and live the Spirit-filled and Spirit-led life. 

Victory is Now and Victory is Eternal!  Can you say with Caleb, “Now, therefore, give me this mountain, and through God, I will possess the promise?”

Have a fantastic day as you walk in God’s victory on this day!

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