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The Long-Awaited Inheritance

Have you ever received an inheritance? Maybe you were left a special memento or a sum of cash from a parent, grandparent, or friend? While the gift itself is important, the most significant part of the inheritance is whom it came from. In chapters 13–19, the author records the various allotments of land given to each of the Israelite tribes. These portions of the land were their inheritance from the Lord. An extraordinary snapshot of God’s promise coming into fruition is in our text today when Caleb finally received his inheritance from God.

You may not have noticed that Joshua’s former spy companion, Caleb, has been missing for a number of chapters. We last saw him when he and Joshua were reporting back to Moses (Numbers 13–14). The two spies insisted that even though the enemies were large, with God, they were confident that they could overtake them and seize the Promised Land. We don’t read any other mention of Caleb—until now. Caleb reminded Joshua of that day when they spied out the land. More importantly, Caleb noted that he had followed the Lord wholeheartedly for 45 years (vv. 8–10). The word “wholeheartedly” is used three times to describe Caleb’s faith. The word literally means “to be full.” Caleb was passionate about fully and completely following the Lord.

Now that he was 85 years old, he requested his long-awaited inheritance. His zeal for the Lord had not faded. He insisted he was still as strong and vigorous as when Moses sent him out 45 years earlier (v. 11). Joshua was probably not surprised by Caleb’s appeal and passion. He granted Caleb his request and gave him the land promised to him.

>> Even if you have never received an inheritance, one is waiting for you in heaven! The apostle Peter reminds us that because of Jesus’ work on the cross and His resurrection power over the grave, all those who believe will one day share in an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading (1 Peter 1:4).

BY Chris Rappazini

Chris Rappazini is the associate professor and program head of the BA and MA in Pastoral Studies at Moody Bible Institute and Moody Theological Seminary. He is the vice president of the Evangelical Homiletics Society and previously served as the associate minister of preaching and teaching at Southside Christian Church in Spokane, Washington. Chris and his wife, Ashley, and their three children reside in Northwest Indiana.

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