Read chapter in full:


Brief Introduction of the Book of Joshua


The books of Joshua and Judges tell the story of the early years of Israel as a nation. They describe how the Israelites conquer and occupy the land of Canaan, and then struggle to live up to their covenant with God. The Bible’s drama here moves to an important new stage—God’s people are in God’s land. Yet it becomes clear that the road to reconciliation between God and humanity will not be easy.

The story describes the preparations and battles of Israel’s invasion, as well as how the land was divided among the tribes. Since pockets of resistance remained, Joshua in his final speech urges each tribe to take full possession of its territory. Next he leads the people to renew their commitment to the covenant relationship with God.

Judges then relates the troubling cycle of Israel’s repeated covenant breaking, falling under the rule of other nations, and then crying out to God for help. God responds by raising up “judges” to fight for them and save them. But the relief is temporary as Israel falls back into wrongdoing once again. (“Judges” are both military leaders and legal authorities.)

Just as Israel was made up of twelve tribes, so the book tells of twelve judges. But as the people persist in going their own way, we see that they have rejected their true Judge and Ruler. As the anarchy and atrocities increase, Israel’s need for a king becomes more evident. By the end the questions are urgent: Can Israel fulfill its destiny and calling to be God’s light to the nations? Who can rule Israel to help it find its proper role in the drama?

Joshua Chapter 1 (ESV)


God Commissions Joshua

After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, the Lord said to Joshua the son of Nun, Moses’ assistant, “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. Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given to you, just as I promised to Moses. From 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. No man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life. Just as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you or forsake you. Be 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 very courageous, being careful to do according to all the law that Moses my servant commanded you. Do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may have good success wherever you go. This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you 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? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”



Israel grieved the loss of its trusted leader, Moses. But with every ending comes a new beginning. In the midst of the mourning, God approached Joshua and assured him that he was the man to lead the people into the Promised Land.

He promised to be with Joshua and the land will be given to the nation of Israel. God further commanded Joshua to be courageous and commanded him to remain committed to the study of his Word.



May I be strong and courageous, being careful to obey Your Word. May I turn to the right or to the left for the Lord my God will be with me wherever I go. (Josh 1:7,9)