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A Roll Call

Numbers 34:18-28
“You shall take one chief from every tribe to divide the land for inheritance. These are the names of the men: … Caleb … Shemuel … Elidad … Bukki … Hanniel … Kemuel … Elizaphan … Paltiel … Ahihud … Pedahel.”

An encouraging message resounds through this list of ten names here in Numbers 34 and it’s this: a remnant is rising.

“Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert,” says our LORD in Isaiah 43:19, a promise that He fulfills every moment of every day. Almighty God is always doing a new thing: in our cities, in our local churches, in our outreach ministries, in our political systems, in our neighborhoods, in our schools, in our homes, and in our hearts. Even where the Kingdom is shrouded from view, like a little mustard seed growing underground, it’s still advancing. And because God, in unrivaled humility, sows and reaps through the weak but willing hands of His children, there has never been a single instant where His faithful servants, few or many, great or small, young or old, notorious or anonymous, are not shining as beacons to lighten the darkness.

No doubt a great light is going out in the world with the ending of Moses’ biography. I’m sure every pilgrim is dreading that impending moment and it’s the unspeakable trouble hovering over their minds as they approach this long-awaited crossroads into Canaan. “How will we go on without him?” The people must be thinking. But then ten men step forward. Ten leaders prepare to shepherd their tribes into the unknown terrain of the future. Some of them may not live up to the weighty expectations on their shoulders. Some may end up selling God out for thirty pieces of silver. Some may deny Him at crucial moments. But others will do what Abraham and Joseph and Moses did before them and lead with righteousness and justice. What matters now, at this juncture, is that there are godly men stepping up at all. They may never be as great as Moses, but as long as they share Isaiah’s passion in saying, “Here am I, LORD, send me!”, hell won’t overcome them.

You and me are part of God’s remnant for the twenty-first century, friend! He’s called us out by name as well! May we rise today to answer the call.