At the beginning of our life we do not have the right to ask for anything because we have not earned anything. But God gives us our lifetime to prove our worth, and in return He promises us a share in rewards far beyond anything that we may imagine.
How is this possible?
When we start out in life, we have only the instincts of survival. Without even thinking we apply every available resource toward this one end: to survive. Many people never venture much beyond this point, mostly because they are easily satisfied and do not demand anything more from life.
But a few have higher desires, and to these God appeals. To any who will render a full obedience to His law He offers a greater, abundant, even eternal life.
Through the work of our benefactor, Brother L. T. Nichols, we have been made acquainted with the greater life God offers in His Word. We have learned also of the faith and obedience God requires from us to merit it. “You must become holy like Me,” says God. “You must be perfect [in character] as I am” (1 Pet. 1:15, Matt. 5:48, paraphrased). Some have said that this is impossible, that it is just too much to ask of mortals, that somehow they should be able to share in the promised blessings without meeting these requirements. But when God is the one dispensing the rewards, how can any think that He should not state the terms?
Those who have agreed to serve God know that it will take all they have to perform their part of the agreement. At the same time, they know it is not beyond them, and that God will lend help and aid.
As we progress, we find that we can overcome some things, and what a joy it is when we see our efforts bearing fruit! Then as we continue, we find that we can overcome more things, and more, and more, until at last we have overcome in all things! And then, like Caleb, we can say, “Give me that mountain.”
Does this sound presumptuous? Not when we have met God’s terms. Caleb is a wonderful example of what we must become. Even his name meant “bold, impetuous.” Designated the son of Jephunneh the Kenezite,” he was distinguished from others bearing the same name (Num. 13:6, 30). One of twelve spies sent out by Moses, he had implicit faith in God, and was courageous and persevering. Even in his old age he was completely devoted to God and vigorous. Six times it is recorded of Caleb, “he hath fully followed the Lord.”
Caleb’s courage was unfaltering. At eighty-five years of age, when Joshua was leading the Israelites in the conquest of Canaan, Caleb asked for this mountain that God had promised him (Josh. 14:10, 12) as his inheritance. Even though it was filled with hostile Anakims, he wanted it—with God on his side he felt well able to overcome the enemies.
Where did Caleb get his motivation? Perhaps part of it came from his close friend Joshua. These two men were relentless and untiring in their effort to please God. Yes, let these men be our examples. And there are others, like Moses, Abraham, Elijah, Joseph, David, Paul. Did they really believe that God could do for them as He has promised? Yes, because they had seen tangible proof of God’s power.
How well are we as individuals applying our life to this cause? Can we honestly pray God, “Give me a part in Your coming kingdom”?
Working for an inheritance in the Promised Land to come. — CM