And Caleb stilled the people before Moses, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it. But the men that went up with him said, We be not able to go up against the people; for they are stronger than we.
All of the men saw the same things when they went to spy out the land. They all saw the fruitfulness of the land, as well as who was dwelling there. So what was the difference between Caleb and the other men? Why were they so doubtful while he was ready to go forward? Caleb’s faith was in God, but the others were trusting in themselves and their own strength. Caleb factored God into the equation when calculating their chances, but the others left Him out.
But God had brought them to this place that magnified their weakness on purpose. Their whole journey out of Egypt was a test to see if they would trust Him, and they had already failed along the way, doubting His provision for their basic needs, complaining, and longing to return to Egypt. But here they are at their destination. The prize is in sight. After all they had experienced so far, God brings them to a place where they had no choice but to trust Him completely or flee, and all those little doubts along the way added up to a huge failure to follow God into the promised land.
We can’t let what we see cause us to doubt God. He is able in those things that we are not. He is strong where we would be weak. He is bigger than the giants of this world that cause us to fear and keep us from victory. The promise was already made, and God’s faithfulness had already been on display. There was no reason to doubt. But sometimes God challenges our faith by bringing us into situations that are impossible without Him. If we trust Him, victory is guaranteed. But if we doubt, we miss out, and the cost is steep.
Let us be like Caleb and not the other men depending on their own strength. Caleb saw the whole picture from God’s perspective. He believed the promise that God had made and so was willing to act accordingly. Caleb knew they were well able to overcome because they were marching with Jehovah as their Captain. But the others, under their own banner, could only run away in fear. How are we seeing the challenges that await us or the obstacles in front of is? Is it with the knowledge that God is on our side, or are we trying to conquer them in our own strength? Our view of God determines whether we are well able or unable to go forward.