By Allen Domelle, Old Paths Journal
“Save Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenezite, and Joshua the son of Nun: for they have wholly followed the LORD.”
I am not sure that I can quite understand not giving everything you have when choosing to do something for yourself or for the LORD. When I played sports in high school, whether it was practice or the game, I always gave it everything I had. When I went into the ministry, I didn’t change how I do things; I have given and continue to give everything I have for the sake of Christ.
One of the greatest needs of every generation are a people who wholly follow the LORD. The verse above says that Caleb and Joshua “wholly followed the LORD.” These men were not casual in their choice to follow the LORD, but they believed if they were going to follow the LORD, they must do it wholly. Caleb and Joshua made an impact on history and for their nation because they wholly followed the LORD. If we are going to change our city or nation, we must have people who will choose to follow the LORD wholly. However, what does it mean to wholly follow the LORD?
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First, it means to follow Him completely. To wholly follow the LORD means that you don’t pick and choose what you want to do for the LORD, but you do everything that He tells you to do. To wholly follow the LORD means that you don’t leave anything undone. If you are going to wholly follow the LORD, you must complete and finish everything that the LORD gives you to do. Too many people start serving the LORD, but to wholly follow Him means you will finish everything you started for Him.
Second, it means to follow Him unreservedly. You will never succeed in pleasing the LORD if you don’t serve Him without reservation. In other words, you must put your whole spirit into what you are doing. A half-hearted spirit in serving the LORD produces a half-hearted effort for the LORD. You can never do anything great for the LORD when you are doing it half-heartedly.
Third, it means to follow the LORD unconditionally. In other words, you put no limits on what you will not do for the LORD. Faith is the prerequisite to following the LORD unconditionally. You will never experience the rewards of faith-living if you put conditions on how far you will go or how much you will give or do for the LORD. To follow the LORD unconditionally means that you totally trust where He will take you even though you have no idea what will happen.
Fourth, it means to radically follow the LORD. In other words, you give your whole energy when following the LORD. I am for people wholly following the LORD with their action, but it would be good to put all of your energy into what you are doing as well. The Christians in the Book of Acts were called mad people because of the energy they gave to following the LORD. These same Christians addicted themselves to the ministry because they chose to radically follow Him. My friend, I would rather be called a radical for wholly following the LORD than to be the hero of the worldly-driven believer who would rather be popular with the world than to be in total harmony with God’s Word.
Fifth, it means to exclusively follow the LORD. To follow the LORD exclusively means that you have nobody else you would rather serve than the LORD. You will never find God’s blessings and favor until He is the ONLY one you choose to follow.
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