0 The invasion begins (Joshua 1-4)

Episode 78: The invasion begins

(Joshua 1-4)

God gives Joshua the land he steps on

1 1 After Moses died, God said to Joshua,

2 Moses is dead. Lead the people across the Jordan River to the land I will give to them.

3-4 I am giving you every place you put your foot. Your land will stretch from the Euphrates River to the westward sea. 5 No one will ever defeat you. I'll be with you, like I was with Moses.

10 Joshua said to the officers,

11 Get ready. Three days from now we will cross the Jordan to possess the land God has given us.

16 The officers answered Joshua, saying,

Whatever you tell us to do, we'll do. Wherever you tell us to go, we'll go.

17 We'll obey you like we did Moses.

18 And we'll kill whoever disobeys you.

Joshua's spies visit Rahab

2 1 Joshua sent two men to spy on the city of Jericho, and told them, "Go take a look at Jericho."

So the men went to Jericho and stayed at the house of a harlot named Rahab.

3 When the king of Jericho found out, he sent Rahab a message, saying,

Bring out the men who are staying with you.

4 Rahab told the king's men,

The men came to me, but I don't know where they were from.

5 They left when it was still dark. Hurry and you can catch them.

6 But she had hidden them on the roof of the house.

9 Rahab said to the Hebrew spies,

I know that God has given you our land and everyone is terrorized by you.

10 We heard how God dried up the Red Sea, and what you did to Og and Sihon.

12 So swear to God that you'll be kind to me since I have been kind to you.

13 Don't kill me and my family.

14 Joshua's men said to her,

Okay, when God gives us the land, we won't kill you or your family.

15 Rahab lowered them with a rope through the window since her house was on the town wall.

18 The men said to her,

Put a scarlet thread in your window.

19 When we come to Jericho, we'll see the thread, and we'll know not to kill anyone in your house.

Rahab in James Tissot's The Harlot of Jericho and the Two Spies.

23 Then the men went down the mountain, returned to Joshua, and said to him,

24 God has delivered them into our hands. They're all afraid of us.

Crossing the Jordan River (without getting any feet wet)

3 1 Joshua and the Israelites rose up early in the morning and came to the Jordan River.

7 God said to Joshua,

Today I'm going to make you look good among the Israelites, so that everyone will know that I'm with you, like I was with Moses.

9 Joshua called the people and said to them,

13 When the priests who are carrying the ark of the covenant get to the middle of the river, the water will stop flowing and they will cross on dry land.

14 And that's what happened.

15 God stopped the Jordan River so the priests could cross without getting their feet wet.

17 Then all the people crossed, and they didn't get their feet wet either.

"Israelites led by Joshua Crossing the Jordan River". Robert Hecquet, c. 1720-1775.

Twelve stones from the Jordan River

4 1 After the people had crossed the Jordan, God said to Joshua,

2 Take twelve men, one out of every tribe, and say to them,

3 Remove twelve stones from the bottom of the Jordan, where the priests' feet stood.

Carry them to the other side where you will sleep tonight.

8 And the Israelites did as Joshua commanded.

9 Joshua set up the twelve stones in the place where the priests' feet stood. They’re still there today.

21 Joshua said to the Israelites,

Many years from now when children ask their fathers, saying, "Why are these stones here?"

22 You'll say,

The Israelites came over the Jordan on dry land.

23 Because God dried up the Jordan until they passed over, just as he did the Red Sea until they had gone over.

24 So that all the people on earth will know God's hand and fear him forever.

A few more words about this episode

Many years from now when children ask their fathers, saying, "Why are these stones here?"
This reminded Carole of the same question the children would ask about the Passover. And she was right about that. God told the Israelites to kill a lamb and smear its blook on the top and sides of the door. And they were supposed to do this every year at Passover forever.

When your children ask you, "Why are you doing this?", God said to say to them, "Because God passed over our houses when he was killing Egyptians and didn't kill any of us." (Exodus 12:21-27, Episode 29)

Apparently, however, Jews stopped wiping the blood on their door posts during the Passover once the tabernacle was established, and sacrifices were only made by priests in the temple.
Wikipedia: Passover

No comments yet

Copyright © 1999-2024
The Skeptic's Annotated Bible

Send comments to Steve Wells
at swwells(at)gmail.com