“And Joshua the son of Nun and Caleb the son of Jephunneh, who were among those who had spied out the land, tore their clothes and said to all the congregation of the people of Israel, ‘The land, which we passed through to spy it out, is an exceedingly good land. If the Lord delights in us, He will bring us into this land and give it to us…’” (Numbers 14:6-8)
When the Israelites neared the border of Canaan, Moses sent twelve men to spy out the land. Joshua was one of them. When they came back, all twelve agreed that the land was exceedingly good. However, most spies were afraid of its inhabitants. They declared: “We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we are” (Numbers 13:31). Upon hearing this, the people lost hope and complained that they would rather have died in the wilderness.
Only two of the spies, Joshua and Caleb, trusted God. They urged the people, “The Lord is with us; do not fear them”. These two had seen the same hostile people that the others were so afraid of, but they trusted that God was stronger. He would help the Israelites conquer the land, because He had promised to do so.
It was by no means easy to hold on to this truth. What they had seen of the hostile tribes, was terrifying. But these men remained steadfast. They did not doubt God’s promises and did not give in to the pressure by their peers.
Do you find some of God’s promises difficult to believe, given what you see happening around you? What makes it so difficult?