Read Last Nights Blog (below this first). It might help with the Reading. 🙂
Transjordan Tribes Build an alter
- Joshua’s Farewell to the Leaders
- The covenant renewed.
I thought that was a great read. I loved the thoughts, the recap, the lesson, the application. I loved it all. Joshua is a book about choice. The choice to have faith, to trust, to obey, to follow. The book of Joshua ends with him reading from the Book, and telling the leaders to make a choice to follow it. Our Joshua is Jesus. The only way to our promise land is through choice, Faith. We also have a Book to read, to follow, to obey.
“Be very strong; be careful to obey all that is written in the Book of the Law of Moses, without turning aside to the right or to the left. Do not associate with these nations that remain among you; do not invoke the names of their gods or swear by them. You must not serve them or bow down to them. But you are to hold fast to the LORD your God, as you have until now.
Hold Fast– to cling to, hold on to , glue yourself to, cleave.
This ending is about If’s and When’s, All’s and Every’s. Lots of key words to consider. I read it twice and the Lord was very loud and obvious and clear with me.
But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve… But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.” Joshua 24:15
The Book of Joshua ends.
I had a Dr. Appt today so I had an opportunity to read ahead. I wasnt to give you some bullets BEFORE tomorrows read…
- Glance at Numbers 32. Two and a half tribes (Ruebenites, Gadites and half of Manasseh) wanted the land on the East side of the Jordan. (refer to your map). Moses thought they were trying to get out of fighting for the Promise Land. That was not the case…they just wanted that land. Moses said YES under one condition…You come in and conquer the land with us and THEN you can go back and have that choice of land. They said…Yes, we intended to fight. (This will help with tomorrows read)
- Also, one of the WORST things you could do was to make an altar to sacrifice on OUTSIDE the Tabernacle. It was called a “High Place”. It was the way that the pagan nations would worship their false gods. SO if the Israelites did it, it would be awful. Well the 2 1/2 tribes are going to make an altar and Joshua is going to assume it is a Hight Place (he is going to freak out a little) …spoiler alert….It’s not a High Place, but it takes a while for them to say “No silly! We want something to show our kids to show them how Great Our God is for fulfilling His Covenants”.
- Finally, as we wind down the rest of Joshua I want you to PICTURE that He has The Law in his hand. Everything the Lord gave Moses to write down is in JOSHUA’s Hand….just like you and I have today. Blessings.
(Yes, Jacque, Brice, and Todd I promise to put the “CLick Here for Scripture tomorrow” I know I forgot it today! Sorry.
Now in Chapter 19 the Simeonites get land from Judah? Why? See when we were reading about all the wrongs these families were doing, God always has to require a consequence. Do you remember Dinah? Dinah was the sister to the 12 sons of Jacob. The only girl in the family (bless her heart…did I use that phrase right?) Anyway, one of the Hivite boys raped her (click here for the story in Genesis 34) and 2 of the brothers took vengeance on the situation, Levi and Simeon. Therefore, neither would be given land according to Jacob’s blessing in 49:5-7. However, God can still take our circumstances of discipline and use them for good in the end, because the Levites and the Simeonites are still provided for from God through the other families.
So they continue through the land distribution and we get to Dan. Dan receives the land that will actually neighbor them with the Philistines. And if you have ever watched any of the Veggie Tales movies you know that this is the tribe Samson comes from, you can see how this is important then. By the way, I am just going to let you know that for the longest time I thought Samson and Delilah was a band from the 60’s.
Cities of Refuge. We have read about this several times, but if you need help with this let me know. The cities are Kadesh, Shechem, Kiriath Arba (Hebron), Bezer, Ramoth and Golan. So again, as I read these chapters I was smiling because I understood them. I also do a tremendous amount of recollection. I like to circle names I have heard before and write next to them how I know them. I recalled Eleazor (Aaron’s sons), the Kohanites (Moses family), Anak (the really big people)……
So the LORD gave Israel all the land he had sworn to give their forefathers, and they took possession of it and settled there. The LORD gave them rest on every side, just as he had sworn to their forefathers. Not one of their enemies withstood them; the LORD handed all their enemies over to them. Not one of all the LORD’s good promises to the house of Israel failed; every one was fulfilled.
I am in Awe! I just am. I am reading this very close, and as boring as I may find some of it, I find it fascinating that I understand it. I mean, if 4 years I had randomly opened to these chapter I would have been completely completely lost. Who are these long names, why are these tribes separate from those tribes, people being killed, priests not getting land. I get it all now. Let me tell you why I think this is marvelous. Because over and over and over we are told to teach this to the next generation. To not forget. It is part of our purpose in life to retell this story, the whole story. The New Testament only makes sense if you put it on the foundation of the Old testament.
Anyway, Manassah and Ephraim get huge lots of land if you looked at that map yesterday. Why? Because when they were blessed back in Genesis 48, Jacob blessed them with a double portion. Also, there was a paragraph about daughters getting land. If this part confused you go back to Numbers 26:33 and Numbers 27.
The tribe of Benjamin receives the lot for the city of Jerusalem, yet they also unfortunately get the valley of Ben Hinnom, which becomes the valley of horrible pagan rituals.
By the way Shiloh is the hub city. It is where the decisions are made, lots are cast and the tabernacle is located at this point, and will stay there for about 300 years. Also, if you notice they are leaving sporadic groups fo Cannanites in the land. Canaanies are nomadic people so they will continue to wander and spread out.
If you jumped in the reading late…PLEASE ask your questions…there are many of you, you are all thinking the same questions!!!
I know, not a fascinating read, but there were a few parts that caught my eye.
Thirty One Kings are defeated. Almost the whole land was conquered. Almost. Ummm, this might be a problem from what we learned of yesterday’s read. But the Israelites did not drive out the people of Geshur and Maacah, so they continue to live among the Israelites to this day. (13:13)
So if you actually go all the way back to Genesis 49, the land is being distributed exactly as said during Jacob’s blessings. In Genesis, it talked about the Levites being scattered (they get 48 scattered cities), and 6 cities of refuge. Reuben’s tribe gets land that is Desert, because he slept with his father’s concubine (see we always have to deal with sin eventually). Ephraim and Manessah’s tribes, from the line of Joseph get excellent land, for their loyalty. And Judah, who offered his life in exchange for Benjamin’s when Joseph was in Egypt, they receive the largest portion of land.
Caleb, the only other man who had Faith besides Joshua, when the 12 spies when in to survey the land was remembered by the men. Back in Kadesh Barnea 45 years ago it was said:
But because my servant Caleb has a different spirit and follows me wholeheartedly, I will bring him into the land he went to, and his descendants will inherit it. (Nu 14,24)
Here is a map to help. Locate the Dead sea and the Sea of Galilee. The Jordan River connects the 2. The right side is the Transjordan Tribes we have talked about. Also note right above the Dead sea is familiar names, Shittim, Jericho, Gilgal, Mitzpah. If you keep notes or a file, let me know I can e-mail you the map.
Why all the fighting? Why all the battles? Why can’t we all just live together?
Because SIN is real and the Lord Hates it. Because God’s judgement is very real and very necessary and He is reclaiming the World from Satan, tha’s why. In Deuteronomy 20, the entire Chapter is about rules for the Israelites for going to war. 20:16-17 God made it very clear:
However, in the cities of the nations the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance, do not leave alive anything that breathes. Completely destroy them—the Hittites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites—as the LORD your God has commanded you. Otherwise, they will teach you to follow all the detestable things they do in worshiping their gods, and you will sin against the LORD your God.
All these nations were worshippers of Baal, god of weather and fertility and Ashtoreth, his goddess of love and war, as well as other minor gods. They practiced rituals that were detestable to the Lord, such as sacrificing their own babies.
The only human error the Israelites made here was the treaty. Then Joshua made a treaty of peace with them to let them live, and the leaders of the assembly ratified it by oath. (9:15). Which as soon as I read I knew something must be wrong with this. Click here for 5 past passages on this topic.
Be careful not to make a treaty with those who live in the land where you are going, or they will be a snare among you. (Ex 34:12)
Even in today’s read in the summary at the end of Chapter 11 verse 19 it is noted “Excpet”….But other than that, Joshua and the Israelites fought as God instructed. This is what is called a Holy War (meaning the Lord is fighting). Israel fought hard, but it was because of God’s 3 miracles that they succeeded; the crossing of the Jordan, the fall of Jericho, and the sun standing still. So the Lord handed them the land.
Then the land had rest from war. 🙂
- Circumcision at Gilgal
- The Fall of Jericho
- Achan’s sin
- Ai destroyed
That was long! I loved it I was just surprised, that’s all. SO after reading all that I know the last thing you want to read is a blog. So I will keep this really simple.
Chapter 5: Circumcision at Gilgal. This goes back to the original covenant God gave with all the Israelites In Genesis 17 God commands that the people He sets apart MUST be circumcised to be set apart from all the others. The seriousness of this covenant showed itself in Exodus 4:24
At a lodging place on the way, the LORD met Moses and was about to kill him. But Zipporah took a flint knife, cut off her son’s foreskin and touched Moses feet with it. ( Moses was not circumcised BECAUSE he grew up in the Palace. It is a sign of WHOSE we are not WHO we are.)
Joshua is to circumcise the Israelites to keep covenant with the Lord. God parted the Sea, SAVED them, they are ON THE OTHER SIDE…now it is time to commit and let people know whose we are.
Chapter 6. My Bible title for this chapter says “Joshua attacks the center of the land” , cross off Joshua and write God. This battle was fought and won only because God led them. The walls of Jericho were estimated to be about 25 feet tall and 20 feet wide. (Remember that when you pray with Faith, makes the impossible brick walls in front of us no obstacle for Him) So you have the scene of the whole city destroyed. I know tough to swallow, right? Woman and children too. This is not the first time this is happening thought. When God wants us to rid Sin, he means to RID sin! The Egyptians suffered the consequence as a whole with their plagues, the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah
Destroy completely all the places on the high mountains and on the hills and under every spreading tree where the nations you are dispossessing worship their gods. (Deut 12:2)
However, in the cities of the nations the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance, do not leave alive anything that breathes. Completely destroy them—the Hittites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites—as the LORD your God has commanded you. Otherwise, they will teach you to follow all the detestable things they do in worshiping their gods, and you will sin against the LORD your God. (Deut 20:16-18)
I am going to repeat this for those just joining…God is Redeeming the World Back from Satan who has been ruling since Adam bit the fruit. The Battle is Gods, and He knows what must be rid and what must not. Trust it with your heart.
If the “why destroy the plunder part” is confusing look back to Deuteronomy 13:-12-18 or click here. Also, God used people to work his task of Judgement both on the other people as well as on the Israelites. We will see it occur both ways.
By the way,(6:26-27) that curse that the Lord puts on anyone who undertakes the rebuilding of the city Jericho….uhhh yeah, someone is stupid enough to try it. We will read about that in June. Something to look forward to 🙂
Chapter 7: Achan’s Sin. Did he think God wouldn’t know, did he think a sin was not a big deal?? Dang, we should have left our mirrors out or just crazy glued it to the corner of our monitor screen. I think the moral on that one was obvious, killing the sin in our lives completely….but the one that stood out to me was something maybe not so obvious (Beginning of Chapter 7…when they JUST sent a few men to fight. The people needed God for the Big battle. But the little Ai (By the way pronounce both the letters Aye Eye), we can handle that one (so they thought). Did you notice their over-confidence, no directions from the Lord, unresolved sin…and what happened? They lost. SO we ask God to help us make our BIG Decisions, when we need to remember to help us will ALL of them, even the small one.
Chapter 8: First, did anyone notice this time they were allowed to take the plunder. After all that? Some cities were under a ban (listed above) and others were not. So in this instance they knew from God’s law that they would gain from this war.
When the LORD your God delivers it into your hand, put to the sword all the men in it. As for the women, the children, the livestock and everything else in the city, you may take these as plunder for yourselves.And you may use the plunder the LORD your God gives you from your enemies. This is how you are to treat all the cities that are at a distance from you and do not belong to the nations nearby. (Deut 20:13-15)
Last, the battle of Ai destroyed. I love when I read stuff and I actually remember past versus on it. I don’t always remember where, but at least I sort of remember.
The holding up of the javelin to win the battle. Remember the first battle for the Israelites back in Exodus 17 against the Amalekites. Joshua was actually the leader at war, and Moses Aaron and Hur held the staff up, and it was that act that had them win the battle.
The King hanging from the tree. Nice touch.
“If a man guilty of a capital offense is put to death and his body is hung on a tree, you must not leave his body on the tree overnight. Be sure to bury him that same day, because anyone who is hung on a tree is under God’s curse. You must not desecrate the land the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance”.
Well, see you tomorrow. (I tried to make it short….I really did….ugggg sorry)
Joshua is 24 chapters that we are going to read in 7 days. Joshua can be divided into 2 parts. The first 12 chapters are the conquering of the Promise Land. The rest is about the dividing of the Land. All of this will be led by Joshua, well actually God.
It was a great read, and I completely recommend you recall as much as possible from our readings so far. If something sounds familiar, but not sure why , look it up. Like the place Shittim, that is where Phinehas stabbed the man and woman at the same time (you know….playing the Barry White Music…).
Chapter 1 1:12 I read this out loud to a class the other day (a bible class, not my school students) . BEAUTIFUL read
Chapter 1:12-18: you may need to recall is Numbers 32. The Transjordan tribes. When you read in this book “Reubenites, the Gadites and half the tribe of Manasseh”, it is a reference to the TJ tribes. These 2 1/2 tribes requested land on the East side of the Jordan River. God allowed the allotment but told them that the men couldn’t settle there until they conquered the Promise Land. Then they can go back to it with their wives and children.
This chapter is a recipe for Success. Success is defined as “To achieve a favorable outcome”. The world has a whole other definition for Success, but if our commitment is to the Lord, then we need to look at His Definition. Remember the Bible is called a Canon, or it was canonized, assembled under God, Canon means a Measuring stick, or Measuring Rod.
Recipe for Success:
- DO: Be Strong and courageous, Be careful to obey all the words God gave us, mediate on the words of God.
- DON”T turn from the law at all, or let it depart from your mouth, or be terrified and discouraged.
SO if you mix all this up and put it in the oven, what comes out?
- You will be prosperous and successful. (according to God’s plan for us)
Chapter 2 (I am sorry this is too long already) Rahab the Prostitute. (One of the 4 woman noted in Jesus’ Genealogy Line) Just a great portrait that God can use or give Grace to anyone! The red cord on the door. I immediately thought of the Passover Lamb blood on the doorpost. Rehab was a pagan, a Canaanite, and a prostitute. But, her Faith in the Lord is unrecognizable. That is why the Lord had the spies go to her. Also probably knowing that the soldier wouldn’t enter a place like that to look for them , someone might see them coming out! Ya know. (There was a day they would not have looked in my house either)
By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies, was not killed with those who were disobedient. (Hebrews 11:31)
Chapter 3. Crossing the Jordan. (Isn’t that a show on TV…any parallell?) So how do they know which way to go?
“When you see the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God, and the priests, who are Levites, carrying it, you are to move out from your positions and follow it. Then you will know which way to go, since you have never been this way before. (Jos 3:3)
WHY is the Lord parting the Jordan Sea? I know many of you are thinking back to the parting of the Red sea…and you SHOULD be. THIS entire generation did not see the Passover, the Red Sea Parting, the Trumpets at Mount Sinai…a way to the way to let the people know they were following the LORD not Moses. Well we are about to go into the Promise Land the GOD needs to affirm with them…YOU ARE NOT FOLLOWING A MAN…I THE LORD AM TAKING YOU TO THE PROMISE LAND. What is beautiful is that he sets it up AND also allows a way for the Generation to come to know this very occurence happened with the Stones, so it is ALWAYS looked back on as the LORD led us into the Promise Land (not Josha).
Everyday is a new day, someplace we have never been. With that said, they didn’t cross the Jordan without doing something first. God had them take the first step of Faith. We need to take a step forward with faith if we want God to part a sea in our lives. If we learned nothing in Deuteronomy, get this. It was lack of Faith and obedience that kept Moses from the Promise Land, nothing else. We can’t get in on our good deeds. Their Faith is incredible! Not only do they trust God will do what he says by putting their feet into the water, but the water is a rapid. The Bible refers to the time of the year so we know that it is the first month of the Hebrew calendar, Nisan (not the car), which if I am not mistaken is right about now March/April. Snow from the mountain tops flood down causing 40 foot swells in the River. Ever gone White water rafting? Putting your feet in was a big deal, Killer.) Picture yourself, what would you have done when it parted? Walked briskly? Maybe a slow jog? Uhhh Probably. They don’t! As long as God was with them the water remained separated. The stayed in the middle of the river to collect Rocks. Am I staying with God or running to safety??
Sorry, that was way too much! It will be shorter tomorrow. I promise.
OK, so here we are. We are sitting here with anticipation. Now what? We already attempted to go into the Promise Land. God, closed that door. So now we are going to read a book, not of Law but of History, called Joshua. There are 12 books in the category History. Let’s think back to what got us here. About 500 years ago God made a Covenant with His people:
On that day the LORD made a covenant with Abram and said, “To your descendants I give this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the Euphrates-the land of the Kenites, Kenizzites, Kadmonites, Hittites, Perizzites, Rephaites, Amorites, Canaanites, Girgashites and Jebusites.” (Genesis 15:18-20)
“I give this land”. We are not taking it, it is not ours to take. It is His to give. That all still holds true today. Let’s gather ourselves and our thoughts before jumping into this book on that.
So who is Joshua? Joshua was born in Egypt, he was born into slavery. We mentioned him back in Numbers 13:8 as Hoshea, from the tribe of Ephraim. (Let me give you something to think about for the day… Joshua is from the Line of Ephraim, Ephraim is the son of Joseph, Joseph married Asenath the daughter of Potiphera. (Gen 41 if your interested in going back) Who is she?? She was a Gentile.) Joseph is a portrait of Christ, and Christ marries the Church. Gentiles were always part of the Plan of Salvation, and foreshadowed to be. OK, enough thinking for the day. (go back and read that slower later)
Joshua, in Hebrew, means “salvation” Johua translated to Greek is the name Jesus, Jesus, in Greek, means “Lord is Salvation”.
Coming from the root word, Joshua. The reason one is in Hebrew and the other is in Greek is because most of the Old Testament was written in Hebrew and the New Testament in Greek.
Sorry, big bunny trail there. So Joshua was born in Egypt, in the tribe of Ephraim. He was the personal assistant to Moses throughout the 40 years of wandering and was then appointed one of the 12 spies to “check out” the land promised to them. The Promise Land, Canaan, or sometimes called the land of the Kenites, Kenizzites, Kadmonites, Hittites, Perizzites, Rephaites, Amorites, Canaanites, Girgashites and Jebusites, or a version of that. Out of 2.5 million people (yes God knows the heart of EVERY MAN) only 2 had Faith in the Lord to take the land the Lord would give them. (Caleb was the other one).
So here we are. Joshua is about 85 years old, he is a great warrior, very disciplined, and has distinguished himself as a man of faith. Joshua was Chosen. Without giving anything away, Joshua is a successful warrior and a brilliant leader; ONLY because of his submission to the Lord. Joshua is a foreshadow of Christ to be. The only one Chosen for us to follow. The only one who can bring us from our slavery and wandering into the promise land.
Moses was the father of the Law. And the Law is very important, but the Law is intended for the Promise Land, not as an admission ticket. All the sacrifices on the world would not have brought them into the promise land. It is by Faith through Grace that we are allowed to cross over.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. (Ephesians 2:8)