Welcome to “Sunday SchoolSunday School”.  Each week we will highlight our Adult Class Sunday School Lesson for the upcoming week.  This site is designed to prepare you for the upcoming lesson, and give you greater insight into the Word of God.  Get ready to bestretched.  Get ready for an exciting  journey.  Get ready for a stir in your Soul.

 

Daily Scripture reading for the week is at the end of the page.           

 

                                                                                                                                                                                Dr. June Normil

 


 

 

                                            Unit 1 Study 3

                                        September 21, 2014

 

Study Scriptures for this week's Lesson: Numbers 13:17 through 14:24; Joshua 14:1-15

 

Key Verse: Joshua 14:8 My brethren that went up with me made the heart of the people melt: but I [Caleb] wholly followed the Lord my God (KJV).

 

Central Truth: Faith in God produces extraordinary courage.

 

Our Focus: To boldly believe and bravely act on the promises of God.

 

 

                                            Caleb the Brave

 

 

                                                                                         

Introducing the study

 

Courage is often expressed not in crisis moments but in everyday situations: speaking truth to someone who may not receive it well, forgiving someone who has hurt you, acting honestly despite the personal cost, doing the right thing when others are not, or living according to God's commands in a secular culture. It takes courage to act righteously when others are not. The  story of Caleb paints a powerful picture of this principle in action. This study challenges us to act with the same courage today. While our trust in God may be mocked by others, even those who profess to follow Christ, courageous faith does not go unrecognized or unrewarded by the Lord. At the end of this study, you will be able to: (1). Profess and demonstrate confidence in God's promises. (2). Trust God no matter the immensity or difficulty of the task He places before you. (3). Praise God for specific ways He has demonstrated His faithfulness in  the past.

 

Conflicting Reports

 

As the Israelites approached the Promised Land, Moses sent twelve leaders, one from each tribe of Israel, to do a  preliminary exploration (Numbers 13:17). This was not a mission to see whether the land could be conquered. God had already made that promise. Instead, it would prepare them for what God had planned. The twelve were given specific instructions. They would observe the people in the land, as well as their cities and agriculture. Moses specifically asked them to return with a sample of fruit, which would be especially telling because it was the time of the grape harvest (verses 18-20). The twelve proceeded to explore the features of the land for forty days, observing a number of cities and regions. As instructed, they brought back a sample of the land's produce (verses 21-25). Upon their return, the spies gave a report of their findings. Their explanation began on a positive note, affirming that  it was a land of great prosperity (verses 26-27). The tone quickly changed, though, as they began describing the people. The cities had strong fortifications that seemed impossible to conquer (verse 28-29). Caleb, however, was willing to speak in favor of God's promise that they could take the land. This would turn out to be a brave stand by Caleb, as this confident declaration was quickly dismissed. Yet Caleb was willing to stand against the crowd and affirm  God promises. There will often be people around us who belittle our trust in God promises. It takes courage to voice confidence in God in spite of negative circumstances. Faith sometimes paces us in the minority when others doubt God's promises.

 

[For Personal Reflection] In what area of life is God stretching your faith and asking you to trust Him?  

 

Speaking Boldly for God

 

The Israelites became alarmed by the report. fear gripped them, leading to anger toward their leaders. In reality, however, their complaints were directed at God himself, indicating a denial of His goodness and wisdom. Fear, once it has taken hold, can wreak destruction on us. It grows and consumes us until we reach irrational conclusions. This is why we must have our minds grounded in God's promises and instructions for us. Caleb, along with Moses, Aaron, and Joshua, was grieved any faithless response of the people. Through Moses' intercession, God forgave the Israelites. However, they would still reap the consequences of their unbelief. None of those from twenty years old and upward who rebelled would ever see the land God promised to them. There is a steep price to pay when humanity chooses to treat God with contempt. The Lord rewards those who practice brave faith and obedience in difficult times. Numbers 14:24 states that Caleb had what Scripture describes as "a different spirit" or "another spirit." Because of his courageous devotion and obedience, he would enter the Promise Land.

 

[For Personal Reflection] How can you build up and exercise your own faith ?

 

Receiving the Inheritance

 

Caleb had to wait forty years before he received the fruits of God's promise. At that time, Joshua was leading Israel. Caleb approached him with a reminder of the promise (Joshua 14:6-9), recalling the story of how he explored the land and brought back a courageous report. Caleb's actions remind us that it is helpful to recount our own history of walking with the Lord. At the age of eighty-five, Caleb claimed his reward. The Lord had preserved his strength and vitality, enabling him to do in his old age what he longed to do forty years before. The land he laid claim to was in the hill country of the Anakites. It held great warriors with very fortified cities. However, Caleb remained confident in the Lord. Joshua granted Caleb's request. The area around He Caleb's land, an inheritance for countless future generations. When we are confident of the Lord's help and His promises, we, too, can be courageous and brave. Our minds and hearts must not be shaken by fear or doubt. Instead, God calls us to wholly trust Him. Such trust often requires a level of courage that challenges our human sensibilities. Yet we can stand strong in the assurance that God will honor His promises for them that believe in Him.

 

[For Personal reflection] Think on the blessings of God you received after an extended time of waiting?

 

 Discipleship in Action

 

Before our faith is tested in a major battle, it is often tested in the small decisions we must make every day. Such moments prepare us for bigger challenges in the future. This week, identify the small tests of faith that challenge your in the Lord's promises. How can these tests prepare you, building courage and strength to endure those critical times when, like Caleb, you maybe called upon to exhibit a level of spiritual boldness and bravery that endures any challenge to you faith. Ask the Lord to help you become more fully prepared for those moments in which extraordinary courage may be demanded. Cultivate your relationship with Him and study His promises. Resolve to trust Him to matter what the future may hold.
  

                                                          "BE COURAGEOUS IN THE LORD!"                                                   

                          
 
 

 

 

 Monday               Courage During Transition.                Deuteronomy 31:1-8

 

 

 

Tuesday               Courage to Confront Evil.                   2 Chronicles 15: 1-9

 

 

 

Wednesday         Courage to wait.                                  Psalm 37:1-7                                     

 

 

Thursday           Courageous Request.                              Mark 15:42-47                         

 

 

 

Friday                Courageous Testimony.                        Acts 4:5-13                    

 

 

 

Saturday           Praying for Greater Courage.               Acts 4:23-31                          

 

   

 See You In Sunday School Next Week!!!! 

 

   

Copyright Reference:  Radiant Life, Volume 96 Number 1 Sep. Oct. Nov 2014 by Gospel Publishing House, 1445 N. Boonville Ave, Springfield, Mo  65802.

 

 

 

                                                                                                                                Dr. June Normil