Apr. 30 – (Josh. 10:29-43) These verses recount the conquests of the southern Canaan. Joshua was victorious because he and all the people battled God’s way (take no prisoners live). It repeats "Joshua devoted each city to destruction". Question: Am I devoting my sins to destruction…. or letting some live? Selah
May 1 - (Josh. 11:1-15) Joshua met the challenge of conquering and destroying 5 kings and their kingdoms. Now he is facing a much bigger challenge. Lots of times, God gives us “little” challenges to help us trust Him in the bigger challenges. Where are you today? Smaller challenge or bigger one? God is there ready to give you “instructions” to win this battle. Selah
May 2 – (Josh. 11:16-23) Verse 23 is very interesting. Joshua took the whole land God had promised Moses (The Gibeonites were the only people with whom Joshua made peace). Though the verses prior to this make it seem like a brief time, it probably took about 7 years. Next it says Joshua gave it for an inheritance to Israel. The land was conquered but they had not occupied it yet. That would involve more fighting…. later. Christ has won the victory in our lives, but we still have to occupy the land that is ours. Can you see a resemblance?
May 3 – (Josh. 12:1-6) This chapter is a summarization of Joshua’s and Moses’ conquest. This may help us understand what has been done so far. Grab a map and look at who conquered what. Before the land is divided and assigned to the tribes, the conquest is summarized. Verses 1-6 describe the land beyond the Jordan (that is, east of the Jordan) that Israel had conquered under Moses (Num. 21:21-35). Joshua 12:7 -24 lists the kings whom Joshua and the people of Israel defeated on the west side of the Jordan.
May 4 – (Josh 12:7-24) As we continue to read what the conquest includes, I’d like to look a little closer to the expression “Joshua took all that land” (11:16, 23). I won’t include all the Hebrew translations but here’s the idea: Yahweh gives victory so that his people are enabled to take cities and kings is repeatedly affirmed (6:2; 8:1; 10:8; 11:6). In the case of the land, it is Yahweh who gives (1:2,6) and Joshua as representative of the people who receive the gift. Enemies may be conquered and their cities captured. The land is not to be seized but rather received. It belongs to Yahweh. As Joshua receives the land in trust, he gives it to the tribes as a grant or inheritance over which those who receive it have dominion or tenancy rights. Now pause and think what conquests God has given you! Receive it and walk in it!
May 5 – (Josh. 13: 1-7) Let’s look at verse one. We see that God is speaking to Joshua. We see that God is showing Joshua that He knows Joshua is getting old. We see that God is saying even though he is old there is still much work to be done. We see that God now changes Joshua’s job to a less strenuous job…a new job that fits him for this time. As us older folks begin to be weaker physically, we have much to be encouraged by this verse. As you read this verse again, know that God wants to say the same things to you! Be of good courage…God is not finished with us yet!
May 6 – (Josh. 13:8-23) As we begin to see who received what land, let’s get a little overview. First of all, chapters 13-23 begin Part III of Joshua’s story. Part I (entering the land) and II (dethroning the powers) are preparation for Part III (assigning regions to each tribe for them to inhabit). This type of land management was so different from Canaan’s type. Basically 2% (the pharaoh and city kings) had control of over 50% of the land. Slaves or sharecropping peasants worked the land and paid 50% of their produce to the 2%. The rest of the land was tilled by villagers who paid heavy taxes to support the urban elite. In Israel’s pattern, God grants the whole land not to a king but to all the people. Because of the great contrast, many oppressed Canaanites broke away from their landlords and joined the Israelites as the “Canaanite generation”.
We will now see 3 phases involving the distribution of the land. Phase One: The Transjordan tribes (Josh. 13:8-33), recapitulating Num. 32:33-42. Phase Two: A. Judah (Josh. 15:1-63) B. Joseph, (16:1-17:18). Phase Three: A. Benjamin (18:11-28). B. Simeon (19:1-9). C. The four northern tribes, and migratory tribe of Dan (19:10-48).