Some chapters in the Scriptures contain valuable lessons for each of us in our leadership capacity, and Joshua 14 is one of those chapters. I see two high-minded leadership in this chapter – Caleb’s request for his inheritance and Joshua’s response to Caleb’s request.
When God makes a promise to us, we have the right to ask for that promise – and when people in authority fail to fulfill the promise, we have the right to go before God. Here, God told Caleb and Joshua that God would take them, just the two of them, to the promised land while everyone else from their generation would perish. Now, they are in the promised land – and no one has talked to 85-year old Caleb about honoring the guarantee God gave to Caleb. So Caleb goes to get justice.
Joshua is the leader who witnessed God’s promise to Caleb. Joshua also the man to whom God has given the power and authority to fulfill the contract. But notice Caleb’s words to Joshua; it is full of “me,” “my,” and “I.” It almost seems like Caleb erased Joshua from the narrative. But Joshua does not let his ego get the better of him. Instead, Joshua blesses Caleb. Here, the blessing is Joshua asking God to empower Caleb to conquer Hebron.
This interaction between Caleb and Joshua is leadership at its best. When a follower comes and asks, or demands as Caleb demanded, for what is fair and just, a good leader will render justice – he or she will not let their ego come in the way.