What a story!
Joshua has transitioned from General of a conquering army, to President and Administrator of an incipient country. The people are settling into to their new "digs", and seem busy and preoccupied with establishing themselves in the land.
In the middle of a rather boring passage, talking about who gets what land, comes this story.
If you remember back to when Moses sent 12 CIA agents into this land, you will recall that 10 of them were afraid, and two of them were bold. One of those faith filled warriors was Joshua. He has now been the leader of the pack.
The other guy was Caleb. I believe he was the only person born in Egypt who made it to the promised land. He now comes to Joshua. Listen:
"Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite spoke: "You'll remember what God said to Moses the man of God concerning you and me back at Kadesh Barnea. I was forty years old when Moses the servant of God sent me from Kadesh Barnea to spy out the land. And I brought back an honest and accurate report. My companions who went with me discouraged the people, but I stuck to my guns, totally with God, my God. That was the day that Moses solemnly promised, 'The land on which your feet have walked will be your inheritance, you and your children's, forever. Yes, you have lived totally for God.' " (Joshua 13: 6-9) He sort of reviews his story with Joshua. Joshua was now a big shot, and apparently Caleb had not been in touch very much. He goes on...
"Now look at me: God has kept me alive, as he promised. It is now forty-five years since God spoke this word to Moses, years in which Israel wandered in the wilderness. And here I am today, eighty-five years old! I'm as strong as I was the day Moses sent me out. I'm as strong as ever in battle, whether coming or going. So give me this hill country that God promised me. You yourself heard the report, that the Anakim were there with their great fortress cities. If God goes with me, I will drive them out, just as God said." (Joshua 13:9-12)
Old guy, but full of gumption! Still strong! Still energetic! Is he asking for favors? Kinda, but not really. He wants permission to conquer some unconquered territory. Of course, Joshua says yes.
13 -14 "Joshua blessed him. He gave Hebron to Caleb son of Jephunneh as an inheritance. Hebron belongs to Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite still today, because he gave himself totally to God, the God of Israel."
There were giants in that area, but apparently it was no problem to Caleb. 14 -15 "Caleb drove out three Anakim from Hebron: Sheshai, Ahiman, and Talmai, all descendants of Anak. He marched up from there against the people of Debir. Debir used to be called Kiriath Sepher. "
That was a great story, but it doesn't end there. Apparently this one battle was difficult, so Caleb offers his daughter as wife to whomever defeats the city. Caleb's brother does it (I guess bravery runs in the family) and gets the daughter as his wife. OK, so that part is a little weird by our standards, but stay with me.
This girl's got game too!
18 -19 "When she arrived she got him
to ask for farmland from her father.
As she dismounted from her donkey
Caleb asked her, "What would you like?"
She said, "Give me a marriage gift.
You've given me desert land;
Now give me pools of water!"
And he gave her the upper and the lower pools. "
She goes, "Hey papa, you just got all this land and what you give us is desert? I don't think so! How about some nice farmland with fresh water running through it?"
Caleb acceeds and she gets some great property.
End of story. Caleb and his daughter. Courageous. Bold. Adventursome. Fit. Energetic. Faith filled.