Saturday, November 17, 2012

2 generations later...

You must have heard about Caleb, Hur and Bezalel - did you know that they were related?* Well, they were:

  • Caleb was one of the 12 leaders who went to spy out Cannan and one of the 2 who came back with a good report** - Joshua was the other one. 45 years later after they had gotten into the Promised Land, he still claimed on the Lord's specific promise to him.*** Lesson: It's never too late to "cash" God's promises to you and your family.
  • Hur, Caleb's son, was one of the 2 men that held up Moses' arms when Joshua was fighting the Amalekites.**** He was one of the 2 men who were Moses' backup***** when he went up to the mountain. Faithfulness at one level promotes you to the next.
  • Bezalel was one of the 2 men God specially anointed and set apart to make the furnishings for the tabernacle.****** Availability trumps ability - ability helps too.
It is so interesting to see how God is willing to use generations of a family - who are yielded to him. Each of these men, were one of the 2 - and there are 2 lessons here. The first lesson here is you don't need to be "prominent" to be used by God - you just need to be committed. These days too many people are seeking recognition but don't want any form or fashion of responsibility - it doesn't work that way. You need to sow to reap - period. The 2nd lesson is that God doesn't need a whole collection or community of people to do what He wants to do - just like He told Gideon in Judges 7:2.******* Once again, He's looking for the committed.

I daresay that Caleb's committment rubbed off not just on his son but on his grandson too...can the same be said about you? We even have a  "2 generations later" example in the New Testament. In 2 Timothy 1: 5, when talking to Timothy, Paul said:
"I’m reminded of your authentic faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice. I’m sure that this faith is also inside you."  (Common English Bible)
There is something about 2 generations. 2 Timothy 2:2 (notice the number of 2s) says:
And the [instructions] which you have heard from me along with many witnesses, transmit and entrust [as a deposit] to reliable and faithful men who will be competent and qualified to teach others also. (Amplified) 
God expects us to teach one generation properly so that they, in turn, can competently and confidently pass the torch of salvation or baton to the next generation...so the cycle continues - in 2Gs at a time.

At the risk of stating the obvious, in order to ensure continuity from generation to generation, in the beginning, God created Woman to be with Man so they could procreate and "extend" their generation. Similarly, God commanded Noah to take the animals by twos (male and female) for the same reason... to ensure continuity. So with how fervent you are (or seem to be) for God, what will the story &/or legacy be 2 generations later?  If we just focus on 2 generations and the next generation focuses on 2 generations and each is well-grounded, 10s of generations later will still be linked to your legacy. The legacy from Abraham and his next 2 generations - Isaac & Jacob - extends to us...and beyond.

I cannot help but agree that: "Life affords no greater responsibility, no greater privilege, than the raising of the next generation." (C Everret Koop) Without a doubt, there are great rewards linked to this responsibility and privilege - please take it seriously because it is serious. It is my prayer that none of us will disappoint God 2 (& more) generations later....
 
References:
*1 Chron 2: 19b - 20 -  Caleb married Ephrath, who bore him Hur. Hur was the father of Uri, and Uri of Bezalel [the skillful craftsman who made the furnishings of the tabernacle]. (Amp)
** Numbers 13: 30 - Now Caleb calmed the people before Moses and said, “We must go up and take possession of it, because we are more than able to do it.” (Common English Bible)
*** Joshua 14: 6 - 15 - Then the sons of Judah came to Joshua in Gilgal. Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite said to him, “You know what the Lord said to Moses the man of God about you and me in Kadesh-barnea. I was forty years old when the Lord’s servant Moses sent me from Kadesh-barnea to spy out the land. I returned with news for him as it was in my heart. My brothers who went up with me made the heart of the people weak with fear. But I followed the Lord my God with all my heart. So Moses promised on that day, ‘For sure the land where your foot has stepped will be a gift to you and your children forever. Because you have followed the Lord my God with all your heart.’ Now see, the Lord has let me live, as He said, these forty-five years since the Lord spoke this word to Moses while Israel walked in the desert. Today I am eighty-five years old. I am as strong today as I was the day Moses sent me. I am as strong now as I was then, for war, or for anything. So now give me this hill country the Lord spoke about on that day. For you heard then that big powerful men were there, with strong cities with high walls. If the Lord will be with me, I will drive them out just as the Lord said.” So Joshua prayed that God would favor him. And he gave Hebron to Caleb the son of Jephunneh for his share. Hebron became the land of Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite to this day. Because he followed the Lord God of Israel with all his heart. The name of Hebron had been Kiriath-arba. For Arba was the most powerful among the big powerful men. Then the land had rest from war. (New Life Version)
****Exodus 17:10 - 13 - Joshua led the attack as Moses had commanded, while Moses, Aaron, and Hur stood on the hilltop. The Israelites out-fought the Amalekites as long as Moses held up his arms, but they started losing whenever he had to lower them. Finally, Moses was so tired that Aaron and Hur got a rock for him to sit on. Then they stood beside him and supported his arms in the same position until sunset. That’s how Joshua defeated the Amalekites. (Contemporary English Version)
*****Exodus 24:14 - Moses said to the elders, “Wait here for us until we come back to you. While I am gone, Aaron and Hur will rule over you. Go to them if anyone has a problem.” (Contemporary English Version)
****** Exodus 31: 1-5 - The Lord spoke to Moses: Look, I have chosen Bezalel, Uri’s son and Hur’s grandson from the tribe of Judah. I have filled him with the divine spirit, with skill, ability, and knowledge for every kind of work. He will be able to create designs; do metalwork in gold, silver, and copper; cut stones for setting; carve wood; and do every kind of work. I have also appointed with him Oholiab, Ahisamach’s son from the tribe of Dan. To all who are skillful, I have given the skill to make everything that I have commanded you. (Common English Bible)
*******Judges 7: 2 - The Lord said, “Gideon, your army is too big. I can’t let you win with this many soldiers. The Israelites would think that they had won the battle all by themselves and that I didn’t have anything to do with it. (Contemporary English Version)

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