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In Joshua, He is Salvation's Choice

Updated on November 5, 2014

Joshua 4:3

"and tell them to take up twelve stones from the middle of the Jordan from right where the priests stood and to carry them over with you and put them down at the place where you stay tonight."
"and tell them to take up twelve stones from the middle of the Jordan from right where the priests stood and to carry them over with you and put them down at the place where you stay tonight."

A Brief Summary

The book of Joshua tells of the entry of the Hebrew children into the land of Canaan to take possession of it. This book also tells of the many conquests involved for the Israelites in subduing the Promised Land, as well as the tribal divisions.

You should take note that there were three tribes that were given land East of the Jordan River. The tribes of Reuben and Gad, along with the half-tribe of Manasseh wished to settle in the land East of the Jordan River where their flocks and herds would have great and abundant grazing land. Their one stipulation from Moses was that their fighting men had to cross the Jordan with the rest of the nation and help to conquer the new land. Joshua then made these three tribes live up to their promise, and they helped to subdue Canaan; after which, they returned to their given land on the East side of the Jordan River.

Joshua 24:15b

"But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord."
"But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord."

The Life of Joshua, the Man

Joshua was the son of Nun, of the tribe of Ephraim (the younger of Joseph's two sons), and was born in Egypt, prior to the exodus of the Hebrew children out of Egypt.

Joshua was commanded by Moses to select and lead the army against the Amalekites shortly after the Red Sea crossing (Exodus 17:8-16).

Joshua then accompanied Moses on Mt. Sinai when Moses received the first set of the Ten Commandments. When Moses found the Hebrew children reveling at the base of a golden calf he became angry and broke the tablets. When Moses again ascended Mt. Sanai, Joshua was not with him.

Joshua was one of the 12 spies (one man from each of the 12 tribes of Israel) that Moses sent into Canaan to explore the land and to give a report on it. Only Joshua and Caleb came back saying that the land was good, and that they should go forth to inhabit it.

Joshua became the leader of the Israelite nation after Moses' death.

After the crossing of the Jordan River, Joshua led the people in their defeat and destruction of the city of Jericho.

At the time of his death, Joshua was 110 years old. Joshua 24:29--"After these things, Joshua son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died at the age of a hundred and ten."

Joshua 24:22

"Then Joshua said, 'You are witnesses against yourselves that you have chosen to serve the Lord.'  'Yes, we are witnesses,' they replied."
"Then Joshua said, 'You are witnesses against yourselves that you have chosen to serve the Lord.' 'Yes, we are witnesses,' they replied."

More about Joshua, the Book

The book of Joshua can be divided into three parts: The Israelites entering into the Promised Land, The division of the land between all the tribes of Israel and the conclusion which includes Joshua's farewell address.

THE ISRAELITES ENTERING INTO THE PROMISED LAND.

The leadership of the whole of the Israelite community is given to Joshua (Joshua 1:2--"Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you [Joshua] and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan River into the land I am about to give to them-to the Israelites.").

The Israelites had very specific instructions given as to how they were to cross the Jordan River. Joshua, chapters 3 and 4, detail out how the congregation made their crossing. The Ark of the Covenant went first, and as soon as the priests, who carried the Ark of the Covenant, stepped into the Jordan, the waters were cut off and stood up in a heap (Joshua 3:13). Then all of Israel passed through on dry ground (Joshua 3:17). Once everyone has crossed over, the twelve men that Joshua chose (Joshua 3:12) picked up twelve stones where the priests carrying the Ark of the Covenant stood. These stones were placed as an everlasting memorial to the generations to come that they crossed the Jordan to claim the land that God had promised them.

Next came the fall of Jericho (Joshua 5:13-27). Then there was the victory at Ai, after a secret sin was found out in the encampment. Achan had taken some of the plunder and hid it in his tent; but, what man thinks he can hide he truly can't, because there is no secret sin in the eyes of God. Achan, his sons and daughters and his animals were taken out of the camp and stoned and burned (Joshua 7-8). Several more victories over the kings and territories was given to the Israelites (Joshua 9-12), at which time the allotment of the land was given unto each tribe.

THE DIVISION OF THE LAND AMONG THE TWELVE TRIBES OF ISRAEL.

Joshua 13 through 19 list out the boundaries for the division of land for each tribe of Israel. Joshua, chapter 20, lists the cities of refuge , and Joshua 21 describes lands and towns solely for the Levites. Chapter 22 talks about how the tribes that were given the land East of the Jordan River (Reuben, Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh) were granted their leave to return home.

JOSHUA'S FAREWELL ADDRESS AND THE COVENANT AT SHECHEM.

In Joshua 23, Joshua gives his farewell address to the nation of Israel. He reminds the people of all the miracles they've seen and how much the Lord has done for them. He tells them to give God the glory for their many victories. He admonishes them to remain steadfast in their obedience and faith in God. He also reiterates some of the consequences they will receive if they disobey and go against God's commands In chapter 24, Joshua leads the people in re-committing their lives and their land to God, and all the people were wholly in agreement. When Joshua dies, at 110 years old, he is buried in the land of his inheritance, at Timnath Serah in the hill country of Ephraim (Joshua 24:29-30). Joseph's bones, also, are buried; in Shechem. Eleazar, son of Aaron, also dies, and is buried at Gibeah, also in the hill country of Ephraim.

Joshua 1:6

" 'Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I sore to their forefathers to give them.' "
" 'Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I sore to their forefathers to give them.' "

To Finish Up

There are many parallels between Moses and Joshua. This is of no surprise as Joshua relied heavily on Moses and Moses relied heavily on Joshua. Usually when one has a mentor, they become what the mentor was. This should also be in our own lives as we strive to emulate Jesus, the Christ in our talk and in our walk.

  1. Moses sent twelve spies into Canaan to explore the land and bring back a report on it (Numbers 13; Deuteronomy 1:19-25). In much the same way, Joshua sent two men into Jericho to spy out the city and the land (Joshua 2:1).
  2. Moses led the Israelite nation our of Egypt and across the Red Sea, on dry ground (Exodus 14:22). In much the same way, Joshua led the Israelite children out of the desert and across the Jordan River, on dry ground (Joshua 3:16).
  3. Moses had the whole of the Israelite congregation celebrate the Passover after crossing the Red Sea (Exodus 12). In much the same way, Joshua had the whole of the Israelite congregation celebrate the Passover after crossing the Jordan River (Joshua 5:10-12).
  4. Moses defeated the Amalekites by raising the staff that God consecrated at the burning bush (Exodus 17:18-13). In much the same way, Joshua defeated Ai by raising his sword as God commanded him to do (Joshua 8:18).
  5. Moses mediated for the people at Mt. Sinai. In much the same way, Joshua mediated for the people at Shechem (Joshua 8:36-5; 24).
  6. Moses delivered a farewell address to the Hebrew children, reiterating all of God's laws and commands and the blessings and the curses for obedience and disobedience (Deuteronomy 32-33). In much the same way, Joshua delivered a farewell address to the Hebrew children, reiterating God's laws and the blessings and the curses for obedience and disobedience (Joshua 23-24).

Stay Tuned...

In Judges, he's the Law Giver...

Judges 2:16--"Then the Lord raised up judges [leaders] who saved them out of the hands of these raiders."

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