By Russ Ramsey
Have you ever been given an inheritance? What were you given?
When we think of inheritances, we often think of inheriting things like houses, money, cars, heirlooms, books, and jewelry. Beyond the things inherited, what is the significance of an inheritance? It is the recognition of a legal bond between two parties, usually between a parent and child. The government looks at the possessions of people who pass from this earth as being the legal property of their descendants, unless specified otherwise.
In Joshua 15, God’s people are given an inheritance from the Lord. Specifically, He gives them land. If you’ve ever visited Israel, chances are your guide pointed out some of these certain key boundaries. The Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea were included in the boundaries the Lord established for the promised land.
When we think of inheritance, often we think of the thing being passed from one party to another. But in Scripture, the thing being passed down is far less important than the connection between the parties. Think about it: Who gives the different clans of Israel land? The Lord, the Maker of the land. These clans were not just heirs of their fathers. They were heirs of God, and being an heir of God is an eternal connection.
When the Lord gives the tribes of Israel land, they are at the beginning of their existence as a nation in many ways. But the inheritance the Lord gives the clans of Israel is a foreshadowing of an eternal inheritance that will last forever. For those whose faith in Christ, we are called heirs with Christ (Romans 8:17). Heirs to what? To the kingdom of God. Nothing less.
The people of Judah were given a parcel of land that included the place that would become Jerusalem. To Israel, Jerusalem was more than just a city. It was a symbol of something eternal—the seat of God’s kingdom on earth. For Judah, it was a city yet to be built. But for Christians today, it is a reminder that the kingdom the Lord promised to Abraham is an eternal kingdom, and that one day this world will yield to the eternal kingdom of God, with a New Jerusalem at the center where Christ reigns as King.
When the Lord gave Judah the land that would contain Jerusalem, they couldn’t have known all that would transpire there—especially the ministry, death, and resurrection of Jesus who would atone for the sins of the people. But that’s what happened.
There may be things in your life that are on the early end of coming to fruition, blessings and gifts from the Lord. You may not be able to see the value of what He’s given. You may not be able to see what it might or will become. But the Lord does, and He always does exceedingly more than all we ask or imagine (Ephesians 3:20). That’s what He did with Judah, and that’s what He does to this day.