Saturday, April 4, 2009

Leaving Egypt: Step by Step

This week I said to Jesus, "Lord, I just can't seem to get out of this problem. You are going to have to show me what to do. I feel like the Children of Israel when they were in captivity in Egypt." Deep in my heart I heard His answer, " I will lead you out, but you have to follow; step by step."

I love the story of Caleb. In Numbers 13 and 14, Caleb and Joshua were sent out with 10 other spys to survey the promised land of Canaan. When they returned, the spys all reported about how fabulous the land was. They brought back one cluster of grapes so heavy that two men had to carry it between poles. It was a beautiful place...BUT...there were giants. (The proverbial fly in the ointment.) Ten spys advised Moses and the children of Israel to forget it. They're too strong for big. Not Caleb. Caleb stilled the people and said, "Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it." (Numbers 13:30) Well, you know the rest of the story. The people whined, Moses got mad, God was angry, and nobody went in for 40 years. Well, almost nobody. Caleb and Joshua outlived their peers and were the only 2 men who lived to go into Canaan. Numbers 14:24 says "But my servant Caleb, because he had another spirit with him, and hath followed me fully, him will I bring into the land whereinto he went; and his seed shall possess it."

"So Debora," you say..."What does this have to do with step by step?" Stay with me.

God told Joshua, "Every place that the sole of your foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you, as I said unto Moses." (Joshua 1:3)
Would it be fair then, to say that if you don't tread upon a place, it won't be given you? I think so.
Now listen to Caleb at 85 years of age...

"Forty years old was I when Moses the servant of the Lord sent me from Kadesh-barnea to espy out the land; and I brought him word again as it was in mine heart. Nevertheless my brethren that went up with me made the heart of the people melt; but I wholly followed the Lord my God. And Moses sware on that day saying, Surely the land whereon thy feet have trodden shall be thine inheritance, and thy children's forever, because thou hast wholly followed the Lord my God. And now, behold, the Lord hath kept me alive, as he said, these forty and five years, even since the Lord spake this word unto Moses, while the children of Israel wandered in the wilderness; and now, lo I am this day fourscore and five years old. As yet I am as strong this day as I was in the day that Moses sent me; as my strength was then, even so is my strength now, for war, both to go out and to come in. Now therefore give me this mountain, whereof the Lord spake in that day; for thou heardest in that day how the Anakims were there and that the cities were great and fenced; if so be the Lord will be with me, then I shall be able to drive them out, as the Lord said." (Joshua 14: 7-12)

If you keep reading you'll see that Caleb was given that land (Hebron), and it continues to be his inheritance because HE WHOLLY FOLLOWED THE LORD GOD OF ISRAEL.

Here's the point...Jesus has promised me an inheritance. I know it's wonderful. I've seen the fruit of it, like the cluster of grapes from Eschol. But just as the spys discovered; there will be opposition to my obtaining it. Spiritual giants. Paul calls them principalities, powers, rulers of the darkness of this world. (Eph. 6:12) Like Caleb, the soles of my spiritual feet have to walk on the land of my inheritance in order for me to receive it. I will have to face the enemy and drive him out in Jesus name. And like Caleb, I will have to listen to my heart rather than the voices of those who would discourage me.

I don't want to wander in the wilderness for 40 years. I don't want to die in the wilderness. So there really is no choice.

Yes Jesus, I will follow you... step by step.


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