About Jesus    Steve Sweetman

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Chapter 13

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ch. 13:1-25   13:26-33

Exploring Canaan (ch. 13:1 - 25)


The Lord God had promisedIsrael the land of Canaan since the days of Abraham.  Hundreds have years have now passed and God wants Moses to send one man from each of the twelve tribes to go and spy on the land of Canaan to see what is there.  One thing we notice is that God will do as He says He will do, but He does not always do it in a fast way, or at least fast in human terms.  A very long time has now passed and Israel is just now beginning to actually receive what God had promised, and even at that, there is still some time to wait.


Verses 2 through 16 list the names of the men who were chosen to go out and spy the land of Canaan. 


In verse 16 we note that Moses changed the name of Hoshea to Joshua.  "Hoshea" means "salvation".  "Joshua" means "the Lord is salvation".  This suggests a clarification of what salvation means.  Salvation is specifically provided by the Lord, that is, Yahweh 


From verses 17 to 21 Moses tells these twelve men what to look for.  He wanted to know all about the people, the type of land, the cities, and everything that would be important for them to move in and take over this land.  There is obviously much intelligent thought given to taking this land, as there should be.  Intelligent thought is also important in taking the spiritual land in New Testament times.  There is a spiritual kingdom to be taken, and in the same way that Israel was to take Canaan , we are to take this spiritual kingdom, and intelligent thought is part of the process, something that is lacking in many parts of the church  today 


From verses 22 to  25 these men did just that.  They actually brought back some of the fruit of the land.   


Report On The Exploration (ch. 13:26 - 33)


In verses 26 to 29 the men gave their report.  The land was good.  The cites were large and well protected.  One group of people to note here is the descendents of Anak.  These people were giants.  The name "Anak" actually means "long neck", or possibly "strong neck".  Genesis 6:4 speaks of the Nephilim.  Some Bible teachers believe these Nephilim were a product of angels coming down and mating with women, producing giants.  You can read my commentary on Genesis 6 to learn more.  These men here are giants of the same type as the Nephilim.  The same Bible teachers suggest that sometime after the flood of Noah's day, angels came down from heaven again and mated with women to produce these giants.  Verse 33 unites the Nephilim with the descendents of Anak. 


In verses 30 to 33 Caleb said that he believed Israel could go in, attack the residents of Canaan and win the battle. We will learn later that Joshua agreed, but the other ten men disagreed.  They were too afraid.


Concerning intelligent thought that goes into taking the land as I have mentioned, once we've process intelligent thought, we then have to unite it with our faith or trust in God, something only two out of the twelve men did.    


God had promised this land to Israel.  If He had promised this land, you would think that they could go in and take the land.  Thus, Caleb had faith in God while the other ten men didn't.  They were thinking in  human terms only, and in human terms they would lose.  But since God had clearly promised this land, they should have not thought in human terms. 


We can go out and do God's will if He has clearly told us what to do.  If He has promised something, it will come true.  If He has not promised something, and we merely presume on God, then there is no guarantee that what we presumed will actually happen.  We need to be sure that God has really said what we think He said.  I think much of what we do as the church is based on presumption, not God's will.  


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