Joshua 3

Joshua Illustration

Joshua

God Commissions Joshua

After the death of Moses the aservant of the Lord, the Lord said to Joshua the son of Nun, Moses' bassistant, Moses my servant is dead. Now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, you and all this people, into the land that I am giving to them, to the people of Israel. cEvery place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given to you, just as I promised to Moses. dFrom the wilderness and this Lebanon as far as the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites to the Great Sea toward the going down of the sun shall be your territory. eNo man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life. Just fas I was with Moses, so gI will be with you. hI will not leave you or forsake you. iBe strong and courageous, for you shall cause this people to inherit the land that I swore to their fathers to give them. Only be strong and jvery courageous, being careful to do according to all the law kthat Moses my servant commanded you. lDo not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may have good success1 wherever you go. This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but myou shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. Have I not commanded you? nBe strong and courageous. oDo not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.

Joshua Assumes Command

10 And Joshua commanded the pofficers of the people, 11 Pass through the midst of the camp and command the people, Prepare your provisions, for qwithin three days ryou are to pass over this Jordan to go in to take possession of the land that the Lord your God is giving you to possess.

12 And to the Reubenites, the Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh Joshua said, 13 Remember the word that sMoses the servant of the Lord commanded you, saying, The Lord your God is providing you a place of rest and will give you this land. 14 Your wives, your little ones, and your livestock shall remain in the land that Moses gave you beyond the Jordan, but all the men of valor among you shall pass over armed before your brothers and shall help them, 15 tuntil the Lord gives rest to your brothers as he has to you, and they also take possession of the land that the Lord your God is giving them. uThen you shall return to the land of your possession and shall possess it, the land that Moses the servant of the Lord gave you beyond the Jordan toward the sunrise.

16 And they answered Joshua, All that you have commanded us we will do, and wherever you send us we will go. 17 Just as we obeyed Moses in all things, so we will obey you. Only may the Lord your God vbe with you, as he was with Moses! 18 Whoever rebels against your commandment and disobeys your words, whatever you command him, shall be put to death. wOnly be strong and courageous.

Rahab Hides the Spies

And Joshua the son of Nun xsent1 two men secretly from Shittim as spies, saying, Go, view the land, especially Jericho. And they went and came into the house of ya prostitute whose name was zRahab and lodged there. And it was told to the king of Jericho, Behold, men of Israel have come here tonight to search out the land. Then the king of Jericho sent to Rahab, saying, Bring out the men who have come to you, who entered your house, for they have come to search out all the land. But the woman had taken the two men and hidden them. And she said, True, the men came to me, but I did not know where they were from. And when the gate was about to be closed at dark, the men went out. I do not know where the men went. Pursue them quickly, for you will overtake them. But she had brought them up to the roof and hid them with the stalks of flax that she had laid in order on the roof. So the men pursued after them on the way to the Jordan aas far as the fords. And the gate was shut as soon as the pursuers had gone out.

Before the men2 lay down, she came up to them on the roof and said to the men, I know that the Lord has given you the land, band that the fear of you has fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land cmelt away before you. 10 For we have heard how the Lord ddried up the water of the Red Sea before you when you came out of Egypt, and ewhat you did to the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan, to fSihon and Og, whom you devoted to destruction.3 11 And gas soon as we heard it, hour hearts melted, and there was no spirit left in any man because of you, for ithe Lord your God, he is God in the heavens above and on the earth beneath. 12 Now then, please swear to me by the Lord that, as I have dealt kindly with you, you also will deal kindly with my father's house, and jgive me a sure sign 13 that you will save alive my father and mother, my brothers and sisters, and all who belong to them, and deliver our lives from death. 14 And the men said to her, Our life for yours even to death! If you do not tell this business of ours, then when the Lord gives us the land kwe will deal kindly and faithfully with you.

15 Then she llet them down by a rope through the window, for her house was built into the city wall, so that she lived in the wall. 16 And she said4 to them, Go into the hills, or the pursuers will encounter you, and hide there three days until the pursuers have returned. Then afterward you may go your way. 17 The men said to her, We will be guiltless with respect to this oath of yours that you have made us swear. 18 mBehold, when we come into the land, you shall tie this scarlet cord in the window through which you let us down, nand you shall gather into your house your father and mother, your brothers, and all your father's household. 19 Then if anyone goes out of the doors of your house into the street, ohis blood shall be on his own head, and we shall be guiltless. But if a hand is laid on anyone who is with you in the house, his blood shall be on our head. 20 But if you ptell this business of ours, then we shall be guiltless with respect to your oath that you have made us swear. 21 And she said, According to your words, so be it. Then she sent them away, and they departed. And she tied the scarlet cord in the window.

22 They departed and went into the hills and remained there three days until the pursuers returned, and the pursuers searched all along the way and found nothing. 23 Then the two men returned. They came down from the hills and qpassed over and came to Joshua the son of Nun, and they told him all that had happened to them. 24 And they said to Joshua, Truly rthe Lord has given all the land into our hands. And also, all the inhabitants of the land smelt away because of us.

Israel Crosses the Jordan

Then Joshua rose early in the morning and they set out tfrom Shittim. And they came to the Jordan, he and all the people of Israel, and lodged there before they passed over. uAt the end of three days the officers went through the camp and commanded the people, As soon as you see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God being carried by vthe Levitical priests, then you shall set out from your place and follow it. wYet there shall be a distance between you and it, about 2,000 cubits1 in length. Do not come near it, in order that you may know the way you shall go, for you have not passed this way before. Then Joshua said to the people, xConsecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you. And Joshua said to the priests, yTake up the ark of the covenant and pass on before the people. So they took up the ark of the covenant and went before the people.

The Lord said to Joshua, Today I will begin to zexalt you in the sight of all Israel, that they may know that, aas I was with Moses, so I will be with you. And as for you, command bthe priests who bear the ark of the covenant, When you come to the brink of the waters of the Jordan, cyou shall stand still in the Jordan. And Joshua said to the people of Israel, Come here and listen to the words of the Lord your God. 10 And Joshua said, Here is how you shall know that dthe living God is among you and that he will without fail edrive out from before you the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Hivites, the Perizzites, the Girgashites, the Amorites, and the Jebusites. 11 Behold, the ark of the covenant of fthe Lord of all the earth2 gis passing over before you into the Jordan. 12 Now therefore htake twelve men from the tribes of Israel, ifrom each tribe a man. 13 And jwhen the soles of the feet of the priests bearing the ark of the Lord, fthe Lord of all the earth, shall rest in the waters of the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan shall be cut off from flowing, and the waters coming down from above shall kstand in one heap.

14 So when the people set out from their tents to pass over the Jordan with the priests bearing lthe ark of the covenant before the people, 15 and as soon as those bearing the ark had come as far as the Jordan, and mthe feet of the priests bearing the ark were dipped in the brink of the water (now nthe Jordan overflows all its banks othroughout the time of harvest), 16 the waters coming down from above stood and rose up in a heap very far away, at Adam, the city that is beside pZarethan, and those flowing down toward the Sea of qthe Arabah, rthe Salt Sea, were completely cut off. And the people passed over opposite Jericho. 17 Now the priests bearing the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood firmly on dry ground in the midst of the Jordan, sand all Israel was passing over on dry ground until all the nation finished passing over the Jordan.

Twelve Memorial Stones from the Jordan

When all the nation had finished passing tover the Jordan, the Lord said to Joshua, uTake twelve men from the people, from each tribe a man, and command them, saying, Take vtwelve stones from here out of the midst of the Jordan, from the very place wwhere the priests' feet stood firmly, and bring them over with you and lay them down in xthe place where you lodge tonight. Then Joshua called the twelve men from the people of Israel, whom he had appointed, a man from each tribe. And Joshua said to them, Pass on before the ark of the Lord your God into the midst of the Jordan, and take up each of you a stone upon his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel, that this may be a sign among you. yWhen your children ask in time to come, What do those stones mean to you? then you shall tell them that zthe waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it passed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall be to the people of Israel aa memorial forever.

And the people of Israel did just as Joshua commanded and took up twelve stones out of the midst of the Jordan, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel, just as the Lord told Joshua. And they carried them over with them to the place where they lodged and laid them down1 there. And Joshua set up2 twelve stones in the midst of the Jordan, bin the place where the feet of the priests bearing the ark of the covenant had stood; and they are there to this day. 10 For the priests bearing the ark stood in the midst of the Jordan until everything was finished that the Lord commanded Joshua to tell the people, according to all that Moses had commanded Joshua.

The people passed over in haste. 11 And when all the people had finished passing over, the ark of the Lord and the priests passed over before the people. 12 The sons of Reuben and the sons of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh cpassed over armed before the people of Israel, as Moses had told them. 13 About 40,000 ready for war passed over before the Lord for battle, to the plains of Jericho. 14 On that day the Lord dexalted Joshua in the sight of all Israel, and they stood in awe of him just as they had stood in awe of Moses, all the days of his life.

15 And the Lord said to Joshua, 16 Command the priests bearing ethe ark of the testimony to come up out of the Jordan. 17 So Joshua commanded the priests, Come up out of the Jordan. 18 And when the priests bearing the ark of the covenant of the Lord came up from the midst of the Jordan, and the soles of the priests' feet were lifted up on dry ground, the waters of the Jordan returned to their place and overflowed all its banks, fas before.

19 The people came up out of the Jordan on the tenth day of the first month, and they encamped at gGilgal on the east border of Jericho. 20 And hthose twelve stones, which they took out of the Jordan, Joshua set up at Gilgal. 21 And he said to the people of Israel, iWhen your children ask their fathers in times to come, What do these stones mean? 22 then you shall let your children know, jIsrael passed over this Jordan on dry ground. 23 For the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan for you until you passed over, as the Lord your God did to the Red Sea, kwhich he dried up for us until we passed over, 24 lso that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mmighty, that you may nfear the Lord your God forever.3

The New Generation Circumcised

As soon as all the kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan to the west, and all the kings of the Canaanites owho were by the sea, pheard that the Lord had dried up the waters of the Jordan for the people of Israel until they had crossed over, their hearts qmelted and rthere was no longer any spirit in them because of the people of Israel.

At that time the Lord said to Joshua, Make sflint knives and circumcise the sons of Israel a second time. So Joshua made flint knives and circumcised the sons of Israel at Gibeath-haaraloth.1 And this is the reason why Joshua circumcised them: tall the males of the people who came out of Egypt, all the men of war, had died in the wilderness on the way after they had come out of Egypt. Though all the people who came out had been circumcised, yet all the people who were born on the way in the wilderness after they had come out of Egypt had not been circumcised. For the people of Israel walked uforty years in the wilderness, until all the nation, the men of war who came out of Egypt, perished, because they did not obey the voice of the Lord; the Lord vswore to them that he would not let them see the land that the Lord had sworn to their fathers to give to us, wa land flowing with milk and honey. So it was xtheir children, whom he raised up in their place, that Joshua circumcised. For they were uncircumcised, because they had not been circumcised on the way.

When the circumcising of the whole nation was finished, they remained in their places in the camp until they were healed. And the Lord said to Joshua, Today I have rolled away the yreproach of Egypt from you. And so the name of that place is called zGilgal2 to this day.

First Passover in Canaan

10 While the people of Israel were encamped at Gilgal, they kept the Passover aon the fourteenth day of the month in the evening on the plains of Jericho. 11 And the day after the Passover, on that very day, they ate of the produce of the land, unleavened cakes and parched grain. 12 And bthe manna ceased the day after they ate of the produce of the land. And there was no longer manna for the people of Israel, but they ate of the fruit of the land of Canaan that year.

The Commander of the Lord's Army

13 When Joshua was by Jericho, he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, ca man was standing before him dwith his drawn sword in his hand. And Joshua went to him and said to him, Are you for us, or for our adversaries? 14 And he said, No; but I am the commander of the army of the Lord. Now I have come. And Joshua efell on his face to the earth and worshiped3 and said to him, What does my lord say to his servant? 15 And the commander of the Lord's army said to Joshua, fTake off your sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy. And Joshua did so.