TOPIC:"It Pays To Be Faithful"
by Rev. Dr. Reg Dunlap
"Hebron, therefore, became the inheritance of Caleb...because he wholly followed the Lord" (14:14)
We are living in a day when faithfulness has become a lost virtue among many people. Many marriage partners are no longer faithful to each other. Others are unfaithful in their commitments to Christ and His church. Now, I believe, if there is one quality that modern man desperately needs more than any other, it is this virtue of faithfulness. We urgently need a resurgence of this magnificent trait not only back into the institution of marriage, but also back into the lives of those Christians who make up our churches.
Now high among the representatives of loyalty stands this fascinating figure known as Caleb. We speak of him as the faithful follower of Moses. He did not have the background of Moses, nor the name of Joshua, as he was overshadowed by both. But he did have a faithfulness which was magnificent and a loyalty which was majestic. It can be truthfully stated: "Few are finer than that of Caleb."
No less than six times do we read these words of Caleb: "he wholly followed the Lord." The New International Version renders these words: "he followed the Lord wholeheartedly." Never once, although Caleb had much to distract and discredit him, did he permit his faithfulness to God to waver. His loyalty to God continued to remain undimmed and his courage undiminished right up until his death. And now at the age of eighty-five Caleb is found stepping out of the ranks to receive the reward that God had promised him some forty-five years earlier.
I say to you, my friend, it pays to be faithful for faithfulness does have its reward. Not only in this life, but surely in the life to come. Let us now find in Caleb's life those rewards he received for being faithful to his God.
To begin with, because Caleb was faithful to God, his LIFE was PROLONGED. Now this reward of living longer for being faithful does not always happen to us, but it did happen to Caleb. We read in verse 10 these words: "And now, behold, the Lord hath kept me alive, as he said these forty and five years...and now, lo, I am this day fourscore and five years old."
Now eight-five years of age, it has been some forty-five years since he was chosen by Moses to go with Joshua and ten other men, twelve in all, one from each tribe, to spy out the promised land. Their loyalty to God is seen in these words from Numbers 13 verse 21: "So they went up, and searched the land." The twelve spies traveled from Kadesh-Barnea . . .