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Caleb in the Bible

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December 13, 2023

Caleb in the Bible was 85 years old when he inquired of Joshua to go and inherit the land the the Lord had promised him through Moses when Caleb was just 40 years old. Caleb held on to God’s promises and walked wholly devoted to Him. Even though his age was old, he was confident in God’s ability to strengthen him and help him acquire Hebron.

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.
Joshua 14:11

Caleb’s faith is inspirational for us. The whole bible is written for our edification and growing in godliness, which means that when we read of stories like Caleb and Joshua in the Old Testament, we can come out of it with treasures of wisdom for us to live our lives in a way that is fully pleasing to God. In his old age, Caleb asks the following from Joshua:

So now give me this hill country of which the LORD spoke on that day, for you heard on that day how the Anakim were there, with great fortified cities. 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 the son of Jephunneh for an inheritance. Therefore Hebron became the inheritance of Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite to this day, because he wholly followed the LORD, the God of Israel. Now the name of Hebron formerly was Kiriath-arba. (Arba was the greatest man among the Anakim.) And the land had rest from war. — Joshua 14:12-15

Who is Caleb in the Bible?

Caleb in the Bible

Caleb was one of the men sent out to spy out the promised land. He, along with Joshua, came back with a good report, while the other men caused Israel to sin against God, prolonging their entrance into the land flowing with milk and honey by a total of 40 years, along with that generation not allowed entry into the promised land. We read in Numbers 13 verses 30-33:

‘Then Caleb quieted the people before Moses, and said, “Let us go up at once and take possession, for we are well able to overcome it.” But the men who had gone up with him said, “We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we.” And they gave the children of Israel a bad report of the land which they had spied out, saying, “The land through which we have gone as spies is a land that devours its inhabitants, and all the people whom we saw in it are men of great stature. There we saw the giants ( the descendants of Anak came from the giants); and we were like grasshoppers in our own sight, and so we were in their sight.”’ Numbers 13:30-33 

As you continue reading, you’ll see that the Lord praises Caleb because he had another spirit with him and has followed God fully, therefore, though the others will not see the promised land, Caleb (along with Joshua and at the time Moses too prior to Moses’ sin) along with his seed will possess it.

40 years pass, and the Israelites are on a conquest in the promised land, the Lord being with them in battle. After much land is conquered, we find Caleb, now 85 years old, asking for that very land that God promised him.

Can you believe that? Caleb, with the faith to trust in God’s promises, that he did not count his age as a hinderance to acquiring the land promised him by God Himself 40 years earlier. He not only acquires the land, but now his generations get to possess it.

How Can You Apply This In Your Life?

This begs the question, what are some of God’s promises both in the word of God and promises that He has spoken to you? Are you holding on to those promises no matter your circumstance, believing that God is faithful?

But it’s not enough to just believe that God is faithful to His promises. How is your walk with God? Are you walking faithfully before Him? It was said of Caleb, “Surely the land where your foot has trodden shall be your inheritance and your children’s forever, because you have wholly followed the LORD my God.” To wholly follow is to walk in complete obedience to God’s will.

Caleb believed God, and he said that his strength was the same now at his eighties than it was in his forties.

I don’t know about you, but I want to be like that when I’m in my eighties.

No matter your circumstances, let us be like Caleb who trusted God, and in so doing received what was promised.

And remember, Jesus Himself says in Mark 9:23, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.” Though Jesus is saying this to the father with the deaf and mute son, this does not only apply to that context. Jesus is saying that if we would but have faith (wholly trusting in God’s word), then all things truly are possible.

I encourage you to lay hold of the promises of God for your life and live your life in a manner that is pleasing to God, obeying His commands and not looking away from it.

Here’s the art piece I worked on inspired by Caleb’s life. I hope you like it. Like and Subscribe to my YouTube channel so you can stay up to date on the latest content and receive encouragement in your walk with Christ today.


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