Joshua 1-4

The first word of this book is a transition word, so you know it is a continuation of Deuteronomy.  Please be reminded that God uses His Words more than anything else to speak to use. When I became a Christian a few years ago, I would hear people talking about God speaking.  This freaked me out.  Not only did I not believe them,  but I never heard anything from Him (so I thought) either.  If you want to hear from God,  open your Bible, have a pen in hand, pray, and then see what God prompts you to underline.

I am going to stay “historical” not “applicable”.  I want God to speak to you directly.  But please share in the comments.

Chapter 1:  The book begins with a Command and  a Promise:

  • Command: set out from their camp at Moab, cross the Jordan (during the flood season) and enter Jordan.
  • Promise: God will give them the Land promised.  So be strong and courageous.

As they prepare to go into the land, Joshua addresses the Reubenites, the Gadites, and 1/2 the tribe of Manasseh.  Back in Numbers 32, leaders from the tribes fell in love with the land on the east side of the Jordan.  They asked Moses if they can have it.  Moses assumed they meant instead of going into the territory to fight with the other tribes.  But,  they told Moses they still planned on fighting with the family for the land, so Moses said they could have it.  So Joshua is just making sure that these Transjordan tribes still plan on keeping their word and joining the army.

Chapter 2-Rehab.   We could do a whole Bible study on the faith of Rehab!  Rehab is a prostitute that hides the 2 spies.  Even though she hid them, word gets out that the spies are in Jericho and she makes a deal with the Israelites. She asks that when they take the land (and she knows the Lord will give them this land) that the Israelites show her and her family kindness.  She professes her faith in God and God alone.  They agree.

Now technically they are to follow God’s command in Deut. 7 and 20 to destroy the population without mercy when they take possession of it.  However, that commandment was so that the people would not turn them away from their God.  But Rehab only strengthens their Faith and her and her family will be spared if she ties a scarlet cord to her window.

Image result for rahab jericho

In Genesis, we talked about the scarlet cord several times.  When twins were born they would tie a scarlet cord around the wrist of the baby that would inherit the Covenant birth line.  The scarlet cord has also been mentioned in the building of the tabernacle.  The Covenant will follow with the scarlet cord to the birth of the Messiah.  So why does Rehab tie a scarlet cord to her window?  Through faith we are saved.  Rehab’s faith in the covenant saves her.  If you flip to the genealogies of the Gospel, you will see that Rehab is now in the Covenant line, she is the Great-great-grandmother of King David!  What? You don’t believe me that God could use a prostitute?  He already used Moses the murderer-fugitive! Flip to Matthew 1:5-6.

Chapter 3 and 4-Crossing the Jordan.  We think of the sea parting as the Red Sea. Well, look at this:

Image result for Crossing the JOrdan

(GOD GOES FIRST and makes the path!)

During flood season, God stops up the water and the Israelites keep God in the middle of the open river until everyone gets on the other side.

Image result for bible jordan river stones        Image result for where is Gilgal

They carry 12 stones, representing the 12 tribes of Israel that have crossed, to Gilgal to set up a memorial to God.

“When your children ask their fathers in time to come, saying, ‘What are these stones?’ then you shall inform your children, saying, ‘Israel crossed this Jordan on dry ground.’  For the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan before you until you had crossed, just as the Lord your God had done to the Red Sea, which He dried up before us until we had crossed;  that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mighty, so that you may fear the Lord your God forever.”

You have the time to read these 4 chapters twice.  I encourage you to be still and let God take over to encourage you on anything you bring before him today.   It might be about Covid 19 or something bigger in your life.  Pray about your circumstances and let God speak to you today.

9 thoughts on “Joshua 1-4

  1. So I can’t help but underline every time we read “be strong and courageous” in these chapter! It seems to be perfect timing in our lives today to be reminded how we are supposed to live in these crazy uncertain times -strong and courageous and trusting the Lord.

    I also love that he tells us specifically how to do that in 1:6-9. I need those reminders daily.

    Last I saw a cool thing in chapter 4. I love that they took the 12 stones to the opposite side of the Jordan as a memorial but look in verse 9 and see that Joshua also set up 12 stones “in the middle” of the Jordan where the priests with the ark stood. God just used that to remind me that we can worship and celebrate even in the middle- if the virus crisis, the uncertainty, the scary situation (like a wall of water waiting to sweep you away ). We don’t have to wait till we are on the other side but we can stop and be thankful and celebrate Gods presence in the middle because it’s the place where we see His Presence guide and protect us just as He did the Israelites.

    Ok. Sorry that got long but it was powerful to me today. Happy Monday-He is with you

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am hoping we get comments flooded just like this. We could literally read these chapters all day. We haven’t even fought the battle yet and we are already praising him. Strong and courageos…not only is God telling Joshua to be strong and courageous but the Transjordan tribes are saying to him too (1:18). I stopped on that. Joshua is going to have to make some hard decisions when people around him rebel against the Lord, but his friends are telling him to stay strong and courageous during those times. I have 3 teenagers, one going to college next year, one is in high school (land of the lost!), and the boy is hitting puberty! These are going to be my words for them. Be strong and courageous, but prior to that they need to verse 8: Keep the book of the law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. I need to do this…being quarantined with my husband this past week he said yesterday: “you should write about…in your blog”. In my head, I said, “Maybe I should punch you”. Ok, someone tell me to be strong and courageous before this happens!!

      Liked by 1 person

    2. This is SOOO good and I needed to hear this. I told Trish this morning, sometimes I have a hard time reading in between the lines and understanding it all BUT your response was so helpful in seeing things I did not. Thank you for sharing!!


  2. Also, I wanted to share. I told Trish I was going to have to read again because my kids kept interrupting my quiet time lol, but she gave me the great idea to include them in it. I found all the chapters 1-4 on Saddleback Kids, it also was great for me to see! 🙂 Then I printed off a coloring sheet to go with it. They LOVED it. They are able to understand Joshua and now its hanging on the fridge as a reminder 🙂 We thought this could be helpful for everyone with young kids at home!


    1. (I am not throwing a stone at anyone…skip to the bottom if you don’t believe me)
      God can use this “stuck at home time” in such a mighty way not just for you but for your family! I am constantly punched in the stomach by how little my own children know about the Bible. It is not the church’s job to raise up our children in the Word. The 5th Commandment says “Honor your father and your mother, so that your days may be prolonged in the land which the Lord your God gives you.” The parents were instructed to teach their children. Consider the 5th commandment a “Parent first commandment”. Deuteronomy 6: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.

      Danielle, God has used you to convict me on this. I have a great Children’s Bible. Well, not like a preschool one, but an awesome one! I have “asked” them several times to join in on this read. But God did not tell the Israelites to “ask” their children to talk about God’s Word. Danielle, you have been such a blessing to me this morning. I am standing up right now and doing it. (Yes, I should have done this a long time ago, but it is never too late to ‘jump in’ right?)


    1. Also, I am struck by Joshua’s servant leadership, after seeing all that he must have witnessed with Moses challenges, strong and courageous for sure.


  3. I love that God chose to describe his faithfulness to Moses as the proof that he will also continue to be faithful to Joshua. That feels so reliable to me. He is faithful because he has been faithful. Never circumstantial.

    Liked by 1 person

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