Thursday, September 29
As we wrap up the book of Joshua, we find our strong and courageous leader in the last days of his life. Joshua calls the twelve tribes together to review all God had done for His people. Joshua states that the LORD fought for Israel and drove out the other nations. He urges the Israelites to remain faithful to God. He warns them not to worship foreign gods or marry outside the Israelite nation. He cautions them not to disobey – not to turn to the right or the left. The theme of courage is echoed again. He reminds them that what God gave, He can take away. The land has always been His. Joshua’s words of wisdom lead to a choice when he says, “Choose this day whom you will serve… but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD” (Josh 14:15). The Israelite people responded with the commitment, “We will serve the LORD, for He is our God” (Josh 24:18).
After the remarkable history lesson and reflection on the mighty deeds of God, we read that Joshua died at age 110. He was buried in the land of his inheritance – the Promised Land. Israel served the LORD throughout the lifetime of Joshua, which speaks volumes about his leadership and authority. The book of Joshua ends with the completion of a generation of heroes. We are reminded of Moses and Aaron, the dynamic duo, who began this great land repossession quest. Joshua and Eleazar, the priest, jump in and prove to be the next generation of heroes. Joshua was mentored by Moses. Eleazar was the son of Aaron, Moses’ brother, and received outstanding mentorship from these men as well. The book ends with the death of these “super men” and symbolically completes the story of conquest and conquer as “The LORD Saves” (Big thanks to Moses for Joshua’s new name & the answer to what we all need)!