Monday, July 8, 2013

What’s In A Name?

Last night at 10:53 p.m. our fourth grandchild was born—a son to our son, Ben, and his wife, Abby. They named this precious little boy Caleb Benjamin, and this is what I thought of when I reflected on little Caleb and his parents.

Caleb: what a wonderful name. I don't know yet what led Ben and Abby to select this name for our first grandson, but I have my own ideas. Caleb was one of the twelve spies selected to go into the land that God had promised His people, Israel, and report back what they had seen. All of the spies, except two (Joshua and Caleb), came back and gave a fearful report. But Caleb spoke up in defense of God and His promise in an effort to quiet the people and encourage them to go and take what God had promised. And God and Moses, honoring their report, declared that of those who had seen the land only Caleb and Joshua would finally be permitted to enter it. But this was not to happen right away, because the people did not listen to the quieting voice of Caleb. But in their fearful rejection God relented from their destruction through the pleading of Moses, leaving them to wander for forty years until that generation died. But God, near the end of Moses’ life handed the leadership of His people to Joshua, and Joshua and Caleb led the people into their long awaited promised land, a land which they would now have to forcibly capture. And again, in the face of a great challenge Caleb speaks up in trust of God. Scripture records that at the age of eighty-five Caleb showed that he was still willing to go and take that which God had granted them.

Numbers 14:24 “But My servant Caleb, because he has had a different spirit and has followed Me fully, I will bring into the land which he entered, and his descendants shall take possession of it.”

Joshua 14:7-14 “I was forty years old when Moses the servant of the LORD sent me from Kadesh-barnea to spy out the land, and I brought word back to him as it was in my heart. Nevertheless my brethren who went up with me made the heart of the people melt with fear; but I followed the LORD my God fully. So Moses swore on that day, saying, ‘Surely the land on which your foot has trodden will be an inheritance to you and to your children forever, because you have followed the LORD my God fully.’ Now behold, the LORD has let me live, just as He spoke, these forty-five years, from the time that the LORD spoke this word to Moses, when Israel walked in the wilderness; and now behold, I am eighty-five years old today. I am still as strong today as I was in the day Moses sent me; as my strength was then, so my strength is now, for war and for going out and coming in. Now then, give me this hill country about which the LORD spoke on that day, for you heard on that day that Anakim were there, with great fortified cities; perhaps the LORD will be with me, and I will drive them out as the LORD has spoken.” So Joshua blessed him and gave Hebron to Caleb the son of Jephunneh for an inheritance. Therefore, Hebron became the inheritance of Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite until this day, because he followed the LORD God of Israel fully.

And as for Benjamin: We had a special reason for selecting this name for our Ben, the full brother of Joseph - another man of great character. And we cannot be more pleased with the character of our Benjamin Joseph and his beautiful wife Abigail Rose.

Today Sarah writes about putting aside everything else when we seek the face of our Lord. We are able to do this not because of a strong ability to tune things out, but because of a strong trust in our Lord and His faithfulness to His promises. Over the past couple of weeks we have continued to see this in our own lives and in the lives of a number of people around us. It is in Christ, the Son of God, that we find our strength, and in spending time with Him that we find our refuge.

Isaiah 9:6-7 For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; and the government will rest on His shoulders; and His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness from then on and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will accomplish this.

Acts 4:11-12 “He [Jesus] is the stone which was rejected by you, the builders, but which became the chief corner stone. “And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.”

Today in “Jesus Calling” by Sarah Young (7/8)

When you seek My face, put aside thoughts of everything else. I am above all, as well as in all; your communion with Me transcends both time and circumstances. Be prepared to be blessed bountifully by My Presence, for I am a God of unlimited abundance. Open wide your heart and mind to receive more and more of Me. When your Joy in Me meets My Joy in you, there are fireworks of heavenly ecstasy. This is eternal life here and now: a tiny foretaste of what awaits you in the life to come. Now you see only a poor reflection as in a mirror, but then you will see face to Face.

“I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” John 15:11

Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. 1 Corinthians 13:12

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