Now the men of Judah approached Joshua at Gilgal, and Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite said to him, “You know what the LORD said to Moses the man of God at Kadesh Barnea about you and me. I was forty years old when Moses the servant of the LORD sent me from Kadesh Barnea to explore the land. And I brought him back a report according to my convictions, but my brothers who went up with me made the hearts of the people melt with fear. I, however, followed the LORD my God wholeheartedly. So on that day Moses swore to me, ‘The land on which your feet have walked will be your inheritance and that of your children forever, because you have followed the LORD my God wholeheartedly.’
“Now then, just as the LORD promised, he has kept me alive for forty-five years since the time he said this to Moses, while Israel moved about in the desert. So here I am today, eighty-five years old! I am still as strong today as the day Moses sent me out; I’m just as vigorous to go out to battle now as I was then. Now give me this hill country that the LORD promised me that day. You yourself heard then that the Anakites were there and their cities were large and fortified, but, the LORD helping me, I will drive them out just as he said.”
Then Joshua blessed Caleb son of Jephunneh and gave him Hebron as his inheritance. Joshua 14:6-13 NIV 1984
As Caleb recalls the report of the 12 spies that Moses had sent to view the land 45 years previously, he says that he acted based upon his convictions. Convictions are much more closely held than opinions. Convictions are something that we are willing to die for. It has been said, as we get older, we have fewer and fewer convictions, and more and more opinions.
Here’s my observations on Caleb and his convictions:
- He stood against peer pressure – Bringing a minority report was not easy for him, but his convictions that God was with them and would help them emboldened him (and Joshua) to stand against the prevailing ‘wisdom’ of the group.
- He acted wholeheartedly – Caleb was ‘all in’ regarding his conviction that God was with him and would do as He had promised. No holding back.
- He acted upon his convictions – Not only did Caleb bring a minority report, but, some 45 years later, he boldly goes to Joshua and requests the land promised to him by Moses.
- He acted consistently over a long time – Caleb’s convictions stood the test of time. This was not a passing fad or trend that he had aligned himself to.
- He trusted God, not people – He still had to work for his inheritance that had been promised. He had to defeat his enemies in the promised land. But his confidence was in the Lord and His promises, not people, to obtain it.
What convictions do you have that are demonstrated in your actions?