Dare to be Different! Dare to Focus on the Promises of God. Numbers 14:24

Numbers 14:24 Amplified Bible

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

Numbers 14:24The Message

24 “But my servant Caleb—this is a different story. He has a different spirit; he follows me passionately. I’ll bring him into the land that he scouted, and his children will inherit it.

Numbers 14:24New Living Translation

24 But my servant Caleb has a different attitude than the others have. He has remained loyal to me, so I will bring him into the land he explored. His descendants will possess their full share of that land.

The Word of God for the Children of God. Gloria! In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Amen.

Dare to be Different! God has told us if we truly want to follow Him, His plans, His purposes, His will, then we must be different, different in the way we speak, the way we think and the way we act from the many people in the world today.

Today, we will be considering what it means to have a different focus, a different attitude, a different perspective.

Today I want to encourage you to:

Dare to be Different!

Dare to focus on the promises of God!

Perhaps this morning there is something on your mind that is bothering you.

Maybe there is something you have been praying about or something you are going through or worried about going through.

Do you need God to show that He is still God and still faithful to His promises?

Will you dare to focus on the promises of God?

Will you dare to be confident in whatever circumstance or issue or problem you face because God has promised He will never ever leave you or forsake you?

Whatever it is that is bothering you, the message which God has laid upon my heart for you today is about a way of approaching life that can potentially help you focus solely on the promises of God in every circumstance, you can place your full measure of devotion and trust Him to be God and bring you through it.

I pray that each of us might be able to see what it is we can do, what God can do, how we can strive to position ourselves solely before Him, and how to take hold of every promise in God’s Living Word which is ours.

I want to start with a verse from Numbers chapter 14 to focus our thoughts and then go back to Numbers 13 and work forward.

Here is the verse from Numbers 14:24 and I’m taking from The New Living Translation:

“But my servant Caleb has a different attitude than the others have. He has remained loyal to me, so I will bring him into the land he explored.”

A different kind of attitude, the attitude of a person, the motivation of a person, the priority, the focus of a person, its positioning that God is speaking of here.

What kind of attitude would God say you have?

Attitude… I don’t have an attitude!!!

Truth is all of us have an attitude, some good, some bad, some indifferent, and some hostile but they are attitudes we can potentially possess none the less.

We can develop an attitude in a split second to something, or an attitude can be something we allow to develop over a period of time.

I’m not talking about our actions because sometimes we are very good at being good and other times, we are very good at being bad. Attitude is more to do with the position you actually take which prompts or causes certain behaviors.

An attitude is not being aloof or snooty, an attitude could be a position you take on something, it could be the way you review something, it could be the stance you have taken in life that actually has nothing to do with you

Your attitude could be a product of your background or upbringing that has caused you to think and act in a certain way and shaped your attitude in life.

When God speaks about attitude in Numbers 14:24, the context is about His servant Caleb having a different attitude, a different spirit. His attitude was central to the way in which he lived – the way he saw, experienced things.

Our attitudes really have everything to do with the way we see things and the way we see life.

Our biggest challenge in life can often be to make sure we see life in the right way, to see it through the right glasses, take the right position, to have the right perspective, to focus on it in the right way, to have the correct view.

Our attitudes can have a lot to do with our world view, our world view could be a very small one or our world view could be an educated one, an informed one, an opinionated one, a large one – it is our world view, our perspective, our focus, the position that we take.

But the challenge for each of us is to directly align our focus with God’s focus, to decisively align our attitudes, opinions, our actions with God’s will and Word.

Caleb has this different attitude, and God says Caleb has remained loyal to Him.This attitude that Caleb had, the spirit he had, actually lined him up in a place where God looked at Him and says, He has remained loyal to me.

What does it mean to remain loyal to someone?

Being loyal means despite the circumstances, despite what we cannot see, despite even what we know, despite the way we feel, despite what we think, despite what we want to run from, despite everything, we remain in a place where our position has not changed.

Where our loyalty, our support is steadfast and not moved.

That is where Caleb is, he’s in a place where his position did not change with God, his focus on God did not change, he remained loyal.

He remained loyal despite the circumstances.

Perhaps despite what others were saying, despite even what may be his own physical eyes could see he remained truly loyal to what he knew about God.

God described Caleb as someone who had a different attitude, a different spirit, a different focus to the others around him.

Because of that difference, because of that loyalty, because of that trust, Caleb was able to enter into the land of promise.

He was able to step into the promise of God because he had this loyalty to God.

Loyalty to God as in:

God,

I’m not going to question who you are,

I’m not going to question what you can do,

I’m not going to question what you say,

I’m not going to question any of that,

I am going to focus on you and remain loyal to the fact you are who you are, you do what you do, you can do what you say, and you do what you say you will do!!!

For Caleb, this focus, this attitude, this loyalty came from a sense of knowing, “I know who God is”.

I ponder, I meditate upon;

“Do you, do I, do we, (the church) have even .01% attitude and focus as Caleb?

“My servant Caleb has a different attitude… He has remained loyal to me.”

Let’s take a quick look at some of the events which led up to this amazing statement from God.

At the start of Numbers chapter 13 it’s just before the people were about to cross over the Jordan into the promised land, into the promise of God.

The people had been led out of Egypt by Moses; they had made a difficult journey through the desert.

Some of the people at the end of the journey had spent their entire lives as nomads, they were born in the wilderness, grew up there, fell in love and got married there, raised generations of their families there, others died there.

A journey, that in terms of distance, could have only taken days or weeks, took many years to complete.

Now just that thought in itself – growing as a Christian does not have to take a lifetime, learning how to trust God should not take the whole of your life.

Brothers and Sisters in Christ, there is a point where God wants to bring you to, where there is fruitfulness in your life, a place where there is a sense purpose, a place where you are so focused on God, that He can freely move in and through every aspect of your life and mine.

God wants to lead you to a place of comfort, a place of peace, a place where you experience the fullness of His love, mercy, grace and provision for you.

That’s where God wants you to be.

That’s where God wants me to be.

That’s where God wants His Church to be.

We are people of the promise.

We are people of the promise of our Savior, the Resurrected Jesus in our lives, His grace and His favour working in us and through us, touching others and enabling us to make a maximum difference in the World in which we live today.

Our focus is to be on Him, not on our circumstances, not on the wilderness,

BUT SOLELY upon Him.

What was supposed to take days took a generation.

In our own lives, let us not let what is supposed to take days take a generation.

We can be the people that actually rises up and trusts God for who He is.

And maybe then, He, She, they, YOU, are the ones that will be known as having a different attitude, a different spirit. Let’s focus on being the people who remain loyal to who God is, whenever, wherever, in whatever we face along our way.

Ok, so here are the Israelite people, they are there at the start and Moses says I am going to gather together a group

– I’m not going to give all the numbers I want to put this in context so we can relate this to ourselves – as individuals and collectively as God’s people today.

Moses gathers this group of people, a handful of people, and he says what I want you to do is go into this land that God has promised, I want you to go and explore it.

I want you to go and find out what the people in the land are like, find out how strong their fortified walls are, find out how many of them are there, find out if the land is like God said it would be

– does the land flow with milk and honey, is it the place of God’s providence for us?

Then these men are to go into the land and bring back some evidence that this is a good place.

If you read the passage for yourself later, you will see that they cut down a branch with a single cluster of grapes so large it took two men to carry it on a pole between them.

They also brought back samples of pomegranate and figs, that place was the valley of Eschol and it keeps going on and talks about all of the stuff they brought back and said ‘here is the evidence the land is like God said it is’ then they go through and give a report after they have explored the land for 90 days.

Then let us read on from Numbers 13:27-29: This was their report to Moses:

“We entered the land you sent us to explore, and it is indeed a bountiful country—a land flowing with milk and honey. Here is the kind of fruit it produces. But the people living there are powerful, and their towns are large and fortified. We even saw giants there, the descendants of Anak! The Amalekites live in the Negev, and the Hittites, Jebusites, and Amorites live in the hill country. The Canaanites live along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea and along the Jordan Valley.”

Numbers 13:30-33: 30 But Caleb tried to quiet the people as they stood before Moses. “Let’s go at once to take the land,” he said. “We can certainly conquer it!” But the other men who had explored the land with him disagreed. “We can’t go up against them! They are stronger than we are!” So, they spread this bad report about the land among the Israelites: “The land we travelled through and explored will devour anyone who goes to live there. All the people we saw were huge. We even saw giants there, the descendants of Anak. Next to them we felt like grasshoppers, and that’s what they thought, too!”

Then, Numbers 14:1-3 

Then the whole community began weeping aloud, and they cried all night.

Their voices rose in a great chorus of protest against Moses and Aaron.

“If only we had died in Egypt, or even here in the wilderness!” they complained. “Why is the Lord taking us to this country only to have us die in battle?

At this point, THEY HAD NOT EVEN GOT THERE! Here is this group of people, this entire group of people who start freaking out because a handful of people come back with a report that says there are “giants” out there, there are circumstances out there, there is no way known that we could handle it,

those circumstances are so big that it made us feel so insignificant, small and those giants viewed us as small people.

So, they bring this report, the funny thing about this report is the effect that it had on everybody else.

Everybody else starts freaking out, then what did they say? (Sound Familiar?)

OH! WHY DID THE LORD BRING US TO THIS PLACE TO DIE.

They had not crossed into the land yet, they were still in safety, but they were convinced that everything was going to fall apart, then they say – we should have just died in the wilderness. (Sound Familiar?)

The whole community

– the whole nation of people freaked out because there was one small handful of people that brought a bad report, maybe we can put it this way, the people reacted because they heard how someone else perceived the circumstances they were going to have to face, and convinced them to think a certain way so they started to see the circumstances another way they started to see themselves differently because they saw the circumstances differently and then the weight of the circumstances started dragging them down. (Sound Familiar?)

Then what happens is it goes further. In Numbers 14:5-6, Then Moses and Aaron fell face down on the ground before the whole community of Israel. two of the men who had explored the land, Joshua and Caleb, tore their clothing.

So here are Joshua and Caleb

– they tore their clothing, and I can imagine them thinking: ‘What do we do about the people? How do we sort this out? The people have got it wrong! (Okay, Church …. I know this has to sound all too familiar too!)

There is a sense of indignation about them, very similar to the response of the other spies who came back and said, ‘No we can’t go into the land’.

Yes, the promise of God is there, yes, we know what God’s word says, we know God’s word says this and this and this, but you have just got to take a fresh look at the circumstances – just because there are big grapes there just like God said – it does not mean he is always and forever going to protect us as He said.

Essentially what they were doing was posing all of these questions about God’s ability to work with what He said He will do.

So, Joshua and Caleb ripped their clothes, and this is what they said Numbers 14:7-9,

They said to all the people of Israel,

“The land we travelled through and explored is a wonderful land! And if the Lord is pleased with us, He will bring us safely into that land and give it to us. It is a rich land flowing with milk and honey. Do not rebel against the Lord, and don’t be afraid of the people of the land. They are only helpless prey to us! They have no protection, but the Lord is with us! Don’t be afraid of them!”

BUT THE LORD IS WITH US, DO NOT BE AFRAID! Both of them had a BUT.

One of them was: You know what – yes, it’s true, it’s true the land is how God said it was – but at the same time there is a but, but the giants, yeah, I know what the bible says but you do not know my circumstances, do you?

Yeah, I know what the bible says I can believe about God when it comes to healing, but… I know what the bible says about God and His provision.

But… I know what the bible says, but.

But… But you don’t know my circumstances, you’ve got no idea what that’s like, if you were me, it would be 100% entirely different, you wouldn’t be saying that.

That’s not what these people said but it’s essentially what they meant – their BUT was all about their circumstances.

Caleb’s But was all about his God – But God is there – But God can protect me.

These two saw exactly the same thing – they saw the promise of God and they saw the circumstance – let me put it this way, they focused on the promise of God in the circumstance.

The difference was they did not allow the circumstance to take their focus off of the promise of God.

They did not dismiss the promise of God, they saw themselves as incapable, they saw themselves as, I can’t do that on my own, there is no way known I can take on those giants.

But Caleb focused solely on the promise of God in the circumstances he saw the answer in his God.

Caleb says:

‘Yes. Yes, there is a promise and there is a circumstance and there is a God, and because God is there, we can do this, because God is with me, I can do this.

I think of all the verses I could start talking about, the bible says, the bible actually makes statements about you.

It says that you are an overcomer, the Bible says about you, that you are victorious, the Bible says about you that you are a conqueror – that’s just some of the things the bible says about you.

Why would it say that? because in life you need to focus on the promises of God and see Him work in the circumstances.

Listen, what we have got to do is focus on God in the circumstance, focus on God as your source of strength.

The only reason the Bible calls you a victorious person is because with God’s Strength in your life you can get victory over things.

That is just one of the promises of God.

With God’s strength in your life, you can conquer things which is part of the promise of God.

With God’s strength in your life, He calls you an overcomer because with Him you can overcome “giant-sized” circumstances.

The Bible would not call you an overcomer if there were not things to overcome, Bible would not call you victorious if there were not “giant sized” things to get victory over, it would not call you a conqueror if there were not things to defeat.

Which means that the circumstances are real

– they were real to Caleb they were real to the other spies – the other spies negative report freaked out everybody.

We live in a world today where if you sit down and read too many newspapers or listen to the news you can easily feel distressed.

There are all sorts of anxiety and fear in peoples’ lives, but you and I

– have got something we can fully live our lives with – we can look at all the circumstances in life today, from the intricacies of our own personal situation to the economies of the world to the troubles of the nations of the world, and we can focus on the promises of God, of God’s goodness, of God working in every circumstance. BUT GOD IS THERE! BUT GOD CAN GIVE YOU THE STRENGTH!

For Joshua and Caleb and here is the last thought, it’s actually got nothing to do with what you see.

Now that does not mean, close your eyes and pretend it does not exist, because if it’s a bus it will run over you and circumstances have the habit of doing that.

So it is not what you see that matters its all got to do with How you focus on it.

The question is what are we focused on?

How are we interpreting, perceiving, seeing, understanding the circumstance?

Whatever it is that is causing fear or anxiety in your life, if you feel like you are out of control, focus on God because God is on your side.

God is with you.

Every one of the promises of God is Yes and Amen in Jesus Christ.

If you are in Jesus Christ, by in Him I mean that you have put your faith in Him, in who He is in what He has done on your behalf, then you have full access to the presence of God.

You and I have full access to God and are able to stand as Caleb stood and say I do know exactly what God says about my circumstances, and I know what my circumstances are saying, and I know what the economies and systems and the challenges of the world that I live in are saying (or at least, trying to say to me).

I know what they say, but you know what, I’m focussed on God and I can see Him working.

BUT God is for us and together we can overcome.

But God is for you and can get victory.

But God is for you and you can conquer whatever it is that you are facing in your life today.

It does not have to take a lifetime to take God at His word.

Caleb a man with a different attitude to life

– what was his attitude – “But God is for us, so who can truly be against us?”

He viewed every single situation of life, and his position was:

But God is for me, God is for me. I take on the giant

– God is for me, I walk through that valley – God is for me, everything is falling down around me – God is for me – He is for me. He is everything I need.

It’s not what you see but how you see it.

Focus on the promises of God. Its God with you in the circumstances.

Let me encourage you to say:

I’m going to take my life journey from this day forward and say it is not what I’m seeing it’s all to do with how I focus on God. God is for me.

Every giant you overcome is going to teach you something about life, it is going to put strength inside of you,

it is going to put tenacity inside of you, it is going to put something inside of you.

As we go through life and we take on everything that comes our way know that God is for us,

know that the promises of God are Yes and Amen in Christ Jesus for you and me.

Let me ask the question again that I started with

– is there something you really need God to come through on?

Maybe, you said God get me out of this circumstance

– now you might have changed that to God give me the strength to get through this circumstance. God is for you not against you

How are you seeing the world you live in today?

God is for you! Do you believe that?

Let me pray for you if your facing situations or circumstances, maybe you are just upset by what’s going on in the world right now, just reach out to God right in this exact, exacting moment.

Pray believe that God is the God of miracles.

Reach out to God right now, focus on Him, focus on His promises and let Him give you strength.

Dare to be different!

Dare to focus solely on the Promises of God!

In the name of God, the Father and God the Son and God the Holy Spirit,

Let us Pray,

God of all understanding, you have promised to give wisdom to anyone who asks. As I daily walk-through life, give me wisdom and understanding in every decision I make. Guide my thoughts and direct my steps. When I experience the whirlwinds of uncertainty and confusion, may I lean on your limitless wisdom.

May the promise of your divine Holy Spirit be at work in me like a lamp to my feet and a shield to my mind. Help me to think clearly and calmly. Help me to act in your promises, with confidence and wisdom. Help me to glorify only you in every single thing which I do. Through Savior Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

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Author: Thomas E Meyer Jr

Formerly Homeless Sinner Now, Child of God, Saved by Grace.

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