Ep. 058: Joshua’s Farewell

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Ep. 058: Joshua’s Farewell

After Joshua cleared many of the nations out of Canaan, the land was divided among the various tribes. Caleb went to Joshua and said, “I was forty years old when you and I spied out this land. We brought back an honest report, but our brothers put fear in the hearts of the people. You remember, Moses promised that we would inherit the land we saw that day.
“I am now eighty-five years old, but I’m as strong today as I was forty-five years ago. I still go into battle and do my daily chores. Now give me these hills. The Canaanites still live there, but I’ll drive them out.”
So Joshua gave him the region around Hebron. Caleb organized his people and drove the Canaanites out of each city. When he came to one city, he said, “Whoever conquers this city may marry my daughter.”
A man took the challenge and conquered it. So Caleb sent for his daughter. As soon as she arrived, she said to her future husband, “Ask my father for that field. It has a natural spring of water.”
She got off her donkey and faced her father. He said, “What do you want?”
“You gave us this city, now give us the spring of water as well.” So he gave her what she wanted.
Years later, Joshua knew he was about to die, so he called the people of Israel to come to him. When they were gathered he said, “You have seen all that the Lord has done for you. You have land where your families can live because he fought for you.
“Be strong and continue to obey the Law of Moses. Don’t turn away from it. Don’t start worshipping the gods of the people who still live in this land. Instead, remain true to the Lord your God. If you don’t, he will take you off this land.”
Joshua then reviewed the entire history of Israel. He finished by saying, “God sent hornets ahead of you and drove out the people who lived on this land. He gave you fields you didn’t buy, houses you didn’t build, and vineyards you didn’t plant.
“Choose today who you’re going to worship. You can serve the idols your fathers bowed down to. You can worship the gods of the people who live in this land. Or you can worship and serve the Lord who brought you here with his mighty hand. As for me and my family, we’ll serve the Lord.”
The people said, “We won’t worship the gods of this land. We’ll remain true to the Lord our God. We’ve seen his mighty works, so we too will serve the Lord.”
Joshua said, “I don’t believe you. You’ll turn your back on the Lord, so he’ll have to destroy you. How could you do that after he’s been so good to you?”
The people shouted, “No! We’ll worship and serve the Lord.”
Joshua said, “You’re witnesses to what you’ve said. These stones are also witnesses to what you’ve said. Get rid of all the stupid idols and fully trust in the Lord your God.”
Soon afterwards, Joshua died at 110 years old. The people worshipped the Lord throughout the time he led them in the land. They also served the Lord throughout the lifetime of the elders who served with Joshua.
But then another generation grew up that didn’t know the Lord. They hadn’t seen what he had done.

 

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