When the tribes on the east of the Jordan built a replica altar, the other tribes thought it was for the purpose of revolting from the LORD, but it was for the purpose of reminding future generations who their God was. This is a good reminder to us not to assume why people do the things they do. Sometimes it may look obvious to us why people do the things they do, but we shouldn’t be wise in our own eyes and always give people the benefit of the doubt. Unless we fully understand, we shouldn’t judge heart motives of others.
“So the LORD gave to Israel all the land of which He had sworn to give to their fathers, and they took possession of it and dwelt in it. 44) The LORD gave them rest all around, according to all that He had sworn to their fathers. And not a man of all their enemies stood against them; the LORD delivered all their enemies into their hand. 45) Not a word failed of any good thing which the LORD had spoken to the house of Israel. All came to pass.”
We must make God’s Word first place in our lives and first in our heart because the LORD will fulfill His Word; not one Word of God will ever fail.
Joshua 15:63 says, “As for the Jebusites, the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the children of Judah could not drive them out; but the Jebusites dwell with the children of Judah at Jerusalem to this day.”
Israel could not drive out all the Jebusites out of Jerusalem at this time, but David would destroy them and make it his capital. It appears that David had his sights on the city for a long time. After he killed Goliath, the bible says he brought his head to Jerusalem. I guess he wanted to notify them of their future. It says in 1 Samuel 17:54, “David took the head of the Philistine and brought it to Jerusalem…”
Read Joshua 17:14-18 one more time,
“Then the children of Joseph spoke to Joshua, saying, "Why have you given us only one lot and one share to inherit, since we are a great people, inasmuch as the LORD has blessed us until now?" 15) So Joshua answered them, "If you are a great people, then go up to the forest country and clear a place for yourself there in the land of the Perizzites and the giants, since the mountains of Ephraim are too confined for you." 16) But the children of Joseph said, "The mountain country is not enough for us; and all the Canaanites who dwell in the land of the valley have chariots of iron, both those who are of Beth Shean and its towns and those who are of the Valley of Jezreel." 17) And Joshua spoke to the house of Joseph—to Ephraim and Manasseh—saying, "You are a great people and have great power; you shall not have only one lot, 18) but the mountain country shall be yours. Although it is wooded, you shall cut it down, and its farthest extent shall be yours; for you shall drive out the Canaanites, though they have iron chariots and are strong."”
The Bible speaks of “little faith,” “faith,” and “great faith.” Here the children of Joseph are showing little faith. They had faith to begin to take the land God had for them, but when circumstances looked a little bleaker they fell into doubt. “Little faith” is what Jesus said Peter had when he walked on the water, but began to sink after looking at the wind and waves. How often to Christians begin in faith but slip into doubt after circumstances began to look a little worse. Let your faith in God’s provision and grace for you rise to the occasion. Don’t be small in your thinking. Is the greatest problem or circumstance anyone has ever had too great for God to solve?
Joshua 18:1 says "Now the whole congregation of the children of Israel assembled together at Shiloh, and set up the tabernacle of meeting there. And the land was subdued before them."
Note: They set the Tabernacle up in Shiloh until David took Jerusalem.
In Chapter 9, the Gibeonites trick Israel into thinking they are from very far away so they will make a covenant with them. Once again the problem is seen in verse 14; “but they did not ask counsel of the LORD.” It’s so important not to be wise in our own eyes, but to always seek the LORD’s will.
After the covenant was made, Israel would not break it even though they were tricked. This shows the power of covenant; once it was made, it could not be broken.
Joshua 5:13: “When Joshua was by Jericho, he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, a man was standing before him with his drawn sword in his hand…” Joshua confronted the pre-incarnate Christ as a man of war before going up to Jericho. As Joshua lay on his face worshiping with sandals off, the Lord gives Joshua direction for taking this first city in chapter 6:1-5.
Jericho was the first city the LORD was giving to Israel, therefore Jericho would be a “first fruits” offering to the LORD. They were to burn the city and bring the precious metals into the treasury of the LORD, not taking any of it for them self. They were able to take the plunder of future cities for themselves.
Joshua 6:25, in the King James Version says, “And Joshua (Yeshua) saved Rahab the harlot alive.” As God’s people join together in faith today, we will see cites taken for God and the “Rahab’s” will be saved by Yeshua.
I’ve heard it said that some of the greatest defeats happened after great victories. It is important we don’t lose humility after victory and loose the grace needed to win again. Israel took Jericho after the LORD gave them His instruction for taking it, but they first tried to take the city of Ai with their own plan. Yes, they were defeated because someone had taken of the “devoted things” in Jericho, but if they would have sought the LORD, He would have told them this.
Fear, dread, worry, panic, disbelief, fret, anxiety; these are the reactions of normal people to things that look daunting. The LORD has given us a “license” to be “strong and very courageous” no matter the situation because He is with us. He told Joshua in Joshua 1:5, “I will be with you… I will not leave you nor forsake you.” The words the Lord spoke to Joshua in Joshua chapter one, He echoes to His disciples in Matthew 28. He tells them in verses 19 and 20, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations,” then He says, “lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Taking new ground means there will be opposition that looks bigger, greater and stronger than we are; we must remember He will fight for us and bring us to victory.
Hebrews 11:31 says, “By faith the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe, when she had received the spies with peace.” Rahab had the power to blow the whistle on the two spies and be a hero to her people, but she didn’t dare. Rahab knew her people had zero chance against the God of the Israelites, so she made the decision in her heart to become an Israelite. Her faith saved her family and herself.
Joshua is a type and foreshadow of Jesus Christ; Joshua chapter 3 is full of these foreshadows. The true Hebrew rendition of their names is the same: Yeshua. In verse one it sets the course for how they took the Promised Land; it says, “Joshua (Yeshua) rose early in the morning.” This is a picture of how Jesus rose early on the third day after His death, so we could come into the promised righteousness of God. In verse 16 it says the waters of the Jordan were held back all the way to the city of “Adam.” How powerful is that? When Jesus Christ rose from the dead, sin was taken care of all the way back to Adam!
Read through the Bible with us in 2012! The reading plan can be downloaded below; we are reading in chronological order. Check back often to read the blog posts on the Bible readings and discuss things in the "comments" section.
2012 Bible Plan