CALEB FOLLOWED THE LORD FULLY

CALEB FOLLOWED THE LORD FULLY
Numbers 14:24

INTRODUCTION
A. A familiar story of the Bible is that of the twelve spies of Israel
1. Sent to spy out the land of Canaan – Numbers 13:1-2
2. They Spent 40 days traversing the land (Num. 13:21-25)
3. The spies brought back both good news and bad news:
a. A land of milk and honey, as evidenced by the fruit – Numbers 13:27
b. A land occupied by strong people and giants – Numbers 13:28, 33
4. One of the spies, Caleb, sought to reassure the people – Numbers 13:30
5. Yet ten of the spies overwhelmed the people with their bad report – Numbers 14:1-4
6. Only Joshua and Caleb had confidence in the Lord – Numbers 14:6-9
7. But the people heeded the bad report, resulting in God’s condemnation
a. Israel was to spend 40 years of wandering in the wilderness (Num. 14:29-34)
b. The ten spies died by a plague before the Lord (Num. 14:36-37)
c. Only Joshua and Caleb were spared (Num. 14:38)
B. The Lord spared Caleb because “he…has followed me fully” (Num. 14:24)
1. A similar statement about Caleb made time and again (Num. 32:11-12; Deut. 1:36; Jos. 14:8-9, 14)
2. What a wonderful epitaph: “He wholly followed the LORD, the God of Israel.”
C. What does it mean to follow the Lord fully as Caleb did? How might we follow Christ fully today…?
DISCUSSION
A. WHAT IT IS TO FOLLOW THE LORD FULLY
1. To Follow the Lord Fully is to Follow Jesus All Our Days…
a. Such was the case with Caleb
1) He followed the Lord in the wilderness
2) He followed the Lord in land of Canaan, 45 years later – Joshua 14:8-10
b. Yet many do not
1) Like Lot’s wife, they turn back (Gen. 19:26)
2) Like the Galatians, they are easily bewitched – led away by false teachers (Gal 3:1)
c. What of us who follow Jesus today?
1) Shouldn’t we follow Him in our youth? – 1 Timothy 4:12
2) Shouldn’t we follow Him in our old age? – Psalm 92:12-15
d. Shouldn’t we follow Jesus like Caleb followed the Lord, all the days of our life?
2. To Follow the Lord Fully is to Follow Jesus With All Our Heart…
a. Caleb followed the Lord “fully”, “wholly”
1) That is, with his whole heart
2) Caleb was the perfect role model for keeping “the greatest commandment” – Matthew 22:36-38
b. Sadly, many try to serve the Lord with divided hearts
1) Like Solomon, who was influenced by his foreign wives – 1 Kings 11:4
2) Like those in James’ epistle, seeking to be friends with the world – James 4:4
c. What of us who follow Jesus today?
1) Shouldn’t we follow Him with all our heart? – John 14:15
2) Shouldn’t we follow Him with undivided affection? – 1 John 2:15-17
d. Shouldn’t we follow Jesus like Caleb followed the Lord, with all our hearts?
3. To Follow Jesus Fully is to Follow Jesus Despite The Hazards…
a. Caleb followed the Lord despite the dangers
1) He was willing to face the giants in the land (Num. 13:33)
2) He was willing to face the wrath of his brethren, they wanted to stone Caleb – (Num. 14:10)
3) He was willing to take a mountain from the giants in his old age – (Jos. 14:10-12)
b. Many will serve the Lord only when it is convenient
1) When it is popular, like the crowds who followed Jesus
2) When it is safe, like Peter before confronted by the maiden (Mat. 26:69-70)
c. What of us who follow Jesus today?
1) Shall we follow Him only when convenient?
2) Shall we follow Him despite ridicule, persecution, dangers? – Matthew 5:10-12
d. Shouldn’t we follow Jesus like Caleb followed the Lord, despite the hazards?
4. Certainly the commitment of Caleb to his Lord is commendable.
a. How was he able to be so committed?
b. How might we be so enabled?
B. HOW WE ARE ENABLED TO FOLLOW THE LORD FULLY
1. We are Enabled to Follow Jesus Fully By Keeping Our Eye On Him…
a. Caleb’s faith was in the Lord, not himself
1) He was confident they could take the land – “we are well able” (Num. 13:30)
2) But that was because he knew the Lord would be with them – “the Lord is with us” (Num. 14:6-9)
3) Thus his eye was on the Lord!
b. So we need to keep our eye on Jesus – Hebrews 12:1-4
1) Looking unto Him as the founder (author) and finisher (perfecter) of our faith
2) Considering the hostility He endured, knowing the Father will help us as He helped Him to endure
c. Shouldn’t we look to the Lord for our inspiration and confidence, like Caleb did?
2. We are Enabled to Follow Jesus Fully By Having A Different Spirit…
a. Caleb was noted for a having a different spirit (Num. 14:24)
1) Different than the spirit in the other ten spies, who were defeatists (Num. 13:31)
2) Different than the spirit in the rest of Israel, who complained (Num. 14:1-2)
b. We can be strengthened by a different spirit
1) Certainly the spirit of a positive attitude will help – Philippians 4:13
2) How much more so, with the Spirit of God helping us!
a) Romans 8:12-13
b) Ephesians 3:16 … How does this take place? Through the word of God – the Spirit’s sword
c. Shouldn’t we have a “can do” attitude, knowing we are clothed in the strength of God’s might? – Ephesians 6:10-13
3. Finally, let us seek to discern to glean from the example of Caleb…
C. MOTIVATION TO FOLLOW THE LORD FULLY
1. We Should Be Motivated To Follow The Lord Wholly Because It Leads To A Useful Life…
a. Consider how God was able to use Caleb:
1) As a leader in Israel (Num. 13:2, 6; 34:18-19)
2) As a servant of God, first to spy out the land, then to divide it (Num. 14:24a)
3) As an example of faith and courage (Num. 13:30; 14:8-9)
4) As a reminder of God’s justice (Num. 14:29-30)
5) As an inspiration of service, even in old age (Jos. 14:6-12)
b. How useful will we be, if we follow Jesus fully?
1) We can be an example in youth – 1 Timothy 4:12
2) We can be useful to the Master – 2 Timothy 2:20-21
c. Don’t we want to be useful to Jesus?
2. We Should Be Motivated To Follow The Lord Wholly Because It Leads To A Fulfilled Life…
a. Consider how Caleb was fulfilled in life:
1) Only he and Joshua were blessed to enter Canaan (Deut. 1:35-36)
2) He received the land around Hebron as an inheritance (Jos. 14:6-14; 21:12)
3) His land had rest from war (Jos. 14:15)
b. What kind of fulfilled life does Jesus offer those who follow Him fully today?
1) One that experiences love which passes knowledge – Ephesians 3:19
2) One that experiences peace which surpasses understanding – Philippians 4:7
3) One that experiences joy inexpressible – 1 Peter 1:8
4) One in which our daily needs are provided – Matthew 6:33
c. Don’t we want to have a fulfilled life?
CONCLUSION
A. Let the example of Caleb inspire you to follow the Lord fully in your life…
1. To follow Jesus all the days of your life
2. To follow Jesus with all your heart
3. To follow Jesus despite the hazards
B. Shouldn’t we, like Caleb, follow the Lord fully so we too may…
1. Have a useful life in service to the Lord?
2. Have a fulfilled life that is blessed by the Lord?
C. Don’t forget – Caleb and Joshua were the only two (out of 603,550 men) who survived the forty years of wilderness wanderings and entered the promised land (Num. 32:10-13).
1. Their brethren did not enter Canaan, for as the Lord said of them “they have not fully followed me”
2. How are we following the Lord? Like Caleb? Or like those who died in the wilderness…?

Tom Moore
P. O. Box 107
Hamilton, Texas 76531
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

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GOD IN THE ORDINARY

Once upon a time, there was a far-away land that was ruled by a vicious king. His iron hand reached into every corner of his subjects’ lives, every corner – except one. Try as he might, he couldn’t destroy their belief in God.

In his frustration, he finally summoned his advisors and asked them: “Where can I hide God so the people will end up forgetting about him?”

One suggested hiding God on the dark side of the moon. This idea was debated, but was voted down because the advisors feared that their scientists would one day discover a way to travel into space travel and God would be discovered again.

Another suggested burying God in the deepest part of the ocean. But there was the same problem with this idea, so it was voted down.

One idea after another was suggested and debated and rejected – until finally, the oldest and wisest advisor had a flash of insight. “I know,” he said, “why don’t we hide God where no one will ever even think to look?” And he explained, “If we hide God in the ordinary events of people’s everyday lives, they’ll never find him!”

And so it was done. And they say people in that land are still looking for God – even today.

“For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse” (Rom. 1:20).

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore
P. O. Box 107
Hamilton, Texas 76531
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

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THE LOVE OF MONEY

We sometimes say that money talks. And, indeed, it does. Get to know two things about a man – how he earns his money and how he spends it – and you have the clue to his character, for you have a searchlight that shows up in the deepest recesses of his soul. You know all you need to know about his standards, his motives, his driving desires, and his true religious self.

I guess this is why Paul gives us the following warning, “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil: which some reaching after have been led astray from the faith, and have pierced themselves through with many sorrows” (1 Tim. 6:10). Where are your priorities?

Think About It?

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore
P. O. Box 107
Hamilton, Texas 76531
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

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THE PRIESTLY BLESSING

THE PRIESTLY BLESSING
Numbers 6:22-27

INTRODUCTION
A. In a book filled with “numbers,” we find a beautiful gem of scripture, which has been called “the Lord’s Prayer of the Old Testament”:
“The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace” (Num. 6:24-26)
B. As noted in Numbers 6:22-27, it is the blessing of the Lord with which Aaron and his sons were to bless the children of Israel…
1. Aaron and his sons made up the priesthood for the nation of Israel
2. Therefore this passage as often been called “The Priestly Blessing” (also the Aaronic Benediction)
C. In this passage, I believe we learn things about the Lord which are just as true today…
1. Even though we do not live under the Old Covenant, with its Aaronic priesthood
2. We do have a “High Priest,” who desires to bless us just as richly (if not more so)!
D. To understand what I mean, let’s first look more closely at…
DISCUSSION
A. THE PRIESTLY BLESSING DEFINED
1. “The Lord bless you and keep you…”
a. The word “bless” means to confer well-being or prosperity
1) The promise of such blessings was conditional… Deuteronomy 28:1-6
a) Notice “IF”
b) Then “blessing” come
2) Failure to meet God’s conditions brought curses, not blessings… Deuteronomy 28:15-19
3) A curse instead of a blessing await the disobedient
b. The word “keep” means to provide and care, to guard and protect
1) A beautiful psalm which speaks of God’s care is Psalm 121:1-8
2) Like a shepherd guarding and providing his sheep, the benediction calls upon God to keep watch over Israel
2. “The Lord make his face shine upon you, and be gracious to you…”
a. To “make His face shine” may be an idiom (an expression of the times)…
1) The phrase probably indicates God’s smile of favor on His people, evidenced by His being “gracious”
2) Note how it is used elsewhere
a) Psalm 31:16
b) Psalm 80:3
c) Daniel 9:17
b. To “be gracious” means to bestow favor, especially that which is unmerited
1) The parallelism of this benediction suggests this favor refers to the blessing and keeping by the Lord mentioned previously
2) Perhaps emphasizing that such blessings are unmerited, even though conditional – God smiles with favor on obedient
3. “The Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace…”
a. To “lift up His countenance” may be similar to a smile
1) It suggests pleasure and affection
2) Also approval and recognition
3) God has happy approval with the obedient
b. The word “peace” is not just the absence of war, but a positive state of rightness and fullness of well-being
1) For the nation of Israel, God had promised peace if they were faithful… Lev. 26:3-6
2) There was also peace for the individual who trusted in God… Isaiah 26:3
4. That God would have Aaron and his sons bless the children of Israel with this benediction indicates that God really wanted to bless and provide for them.
a. How about today?
b. Does God desire to bless us, and if so, how?
B. THE PRIESTLY BLESSING TODAY
1. “The Lord bless you and keep you…”
a. Indeed the Lord does desire to bless us!
1) Today, those blessings come through Jesus Christ… Ephesians 1:3
2) They come especially to those described in… Matthew 5:3-12
b. And the Lord desires to provide and care for us!
1) As described by Jesus in Matthew 6:25-32
2) But this care is conditional, the condition described in Matthew 6:33
c. Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and the priestly blessing will be upon you too!
2. “The Lord make his face shine upon you, and be gracious to you…”
a. Just as all spiritual blessings come through Jesus, so God’s grace is now manifested through His Son… John 1:17
b. Yes, God desires to show His smile of favor upon us, but it is imperative that we not receive it in vain… 2 Corinthians 6:1-2
c. How sad that God’s grace is so freely extended, yet so few accept His grace!
d. Titus 2:11-12 … God’s grace is available for all
3. “The Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace…”
a. Through Christ, peace with God is now possible… Romans 5:1
b. And as we continue to pray, God bestows peace through His Son… Philippians 4:6-7
c. The Father is willing to give us peace, but do we accept it?
d. This peace is only accepted through obedience
CONCLUSION
A. We have been talking about “The Priestly Blessing”
1. How God wanted to bless Israel under the Old Covenant
2. Through His priests in the Aaronic priesthood
B. We have noted that the same sort of blessings are available today…
1. But the blessings of God are bestowed through His Son, Jesus Christ
2. Jesus is our “High Priest” – Hebrews 4:14-16
C. The point of this lesson is simple, yet profound…
1. If you desire “The Priestly Blessing” today, you must be in Christ
2. He must be your High Priest; for that is how God is blessing His people today! … Ephesians 1:3
D. Are you in Jesus Christ?
1. How does one get “into” Christ, where they can receive the blessings He offers as our High Priest?
2. Consider what is said in Galatians 3:26-27

Tom Moore
P. O. Box 107
Hamilton, Texas 76531
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

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Brotherly Love

In the Stanford Hospital, there was a little girl named Liz who was suffering from a rare and serious disease. Her only chance of recovery appeared to be a blood transfusion from her 5-year old brother, who had miraculously survived the same disease and had developed the antibodies needed to combat the illness.

The doctor explained the situation to her little brother, and asked the boy if he would be willing to give his blood to his sister. He hesitated for only a moment before taking a deep breath and saying, “Yes, I’ll do it if it will save Liz.”

As the transfusion progressed, he lay in bed next to his sister and smiled, as we all did, seeing the color returning to her cheeks. Then his face grew pale and his smile faded. He looked up at the doctor and asked with a trembling voice, “Will I start to die right away?” Being young, the boy had misunderstood the doctor; he thought he was going to have to give his sister all of his blood. Attitude, after all, is everything.

I pray that we all could have this kind of sacrificial attitude one toward another. Jesus said, “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (Jn. 15:13). This, Jesus did on the cross (Rom. 5:6-9). Thus, John says, “Hereby know we love, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren” (1 Jn. 3:16). What would you be willing to do for your brethren? Are you willing to sacrifice?

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore
P. O. Box 107
Hamilton, Texas 76531
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

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THE TROUBLE WITH YOU

The late cartoonist Charles Schultz was known for making important points in his Peanuts comic strip. Here’s one of his more powerful points:

Lucy says, “You know what the whole trouble with you is, Charlie Brown?”

Charlie replies, “No, and I don’t want to know! Leave me alone!” And then he walks off disgustedly and frowning.

But Lucy, as usual, has the last word. She yells at him: “The whole trouble with you is you won’t listen to what the whole trouble with you is!”

Lucy suggests here that it benefits us to listen to what the trouble with us is. Even though the truth about the trouble with us might hurt.

We have an obligation to inform others of their sins, for James says, “Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted.” (Gal. 6:1).

But one also has the obligation to listen honestly to constructive criticism. “So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God” (Jam. 1:19-20).

Think About It!

Have A Great Day!

Tom Moore
P. O. Box 107
Hamilton, Texas 76531
http://www.harrisandmoore.org
http://www.fromthepreacherspc.org
http://www.parkheightscoc.com

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THE HARRIS AND MOORE EXPEDITION THROUGH THE BIBLE

Tonight on the Harris and Moore Expedition Through the Bible we will be discussing “Strange Fire” (Lev. 10).

Tune in each Monday at 7:00 pm CST at http://www.harrisandmoore.org or http://www.thegospelradionetwork.org. We are also airing on KATX 97.7 FM and KNNK 100.5 FM.

You have heard what men have said – now listen to what the Bible says.

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