Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Some thoughts about Bible dogs. Pt 2 Part of the family

I made a point of explaining that 'dogs' never became part of the 'family'. There is an exception to this.

There is a Bible character who begins outside the family but becomes an integral part of the family. It seems that he was a Kennizite and that implies that he was not one of the descendants of Israel. He rose to prominence in the family of Judah and was commissioned to reconnoitre the land of Israel before the Conquest.

He seems to have been a foreigner who was integrated into the family of Judah and left a lasting legacy of courage and naked faith. Perhaps it was because his origins were remembered that he was always known by the name that showed he was not originally part of the family. They called him by the name that indicated a foreigner from outside the family; in English 'dog' or 'whelp', in Hebrew... Caleb. Joshua 14:6.

Here was a man with little spiritual legacy and, so far as we can tell, no right to be part of the Bible's story but we know him as a man of extraordinary faithfulness to the revealed will of God. It is an encouraging reminder that it is not our past which determines our destiny and usefulness in the kingdom of God, but our current obedience.

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