Joshua 11-12

jos11.jpgGreetings!

Nothern Kings Defeated

11     When Jabin king of Hazor heard of this, he sent word to Jobab king of Madon, to the kings of Shimron and Acshaph, 2 and to the northern kings who were in the mountains, in the Arabah south of Kinnereth, in the western foothills and in Naphoth Dor on the west; 3 to the Canaanites in the east and west; to the Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites and Jebusites in the hill country; and to the Hivites below Hermon in the region of Mizpah. 4 They came out with all their troops and a large number of horses and chariots—a huge army, as numerous as the sand on the seashore. 5 All these kings joined forces and made camp together at the Waters of Merom, to fight against Israel.

6 The Lord said to Joshua, “Do not be afraid of them, because by this time tomorrow I will hand all of them over to Israel, slain. You are to hamstring their horses and burn their chariots.”

7 So Joshua and his whole army came against them suddenly at the Waters of Merom and attacked them, 8 and the Lordgave them into the hand of Israel. They defeated them and pursued them all the way to Greater Sidon, to Misrephoth Maim, and to the Valley of Mizpah on the east, until no survivors were left. 9 Joshua did to them as the Lord had directed: He hamstrung their horses and burned their chariots.

10 At that time Joshua turned back and captured Hazor and put its king to the sword. (Hazor had been the head of all these kingdoms.) 11 Everyone in it they put to the sword. They totally destroyed them, not sparing anything that breathed, and he burned up Hazor itself.

12 Joshua took all these royal cities and their kings and put them to the sword. He totally destroyed them, as Moses the servant of the Lord had commanded. 13 Yet Israel did not burn any of the cities built on their mounds—except Hazor, which Joshua burned. 14 The Israelites carried off for themselves all the plunder and livestock of these cities, but all the people they put to the sword until they completely destroyed them, not sparing anyone that breathed. 15 As the Lord commanded his servant Moses, so Moses commanded Joshua, and Joshua did it; he left nothing undone of all that the Lord commanded Moses.

16 So Joshua took this entire land: the hill country, all the Negev, the whole region of Goshen, the western foothills, the Arabah and the mountains of Israel with their foothills, 17 from Mount Halak, which rises toward Seir, to Baal Gad in the Valley of Lebanon below Mount Hermon. He captured all their kings and struck them down, putting them to death. 18 Joshua waged war against all these kings for a long time. 19 Except for the Hivites living in Gibeon, not one city made a treaty of peace with the Israelites, who took them all in battle. 20 For it was the Lord himself who hardened their hearts to wage war against Israel, so that he might destroy them totally, exterminating them without mercy, as the Lord had commanded Moses.

21 At that time Joshua went and destroyed the Anakites from the hill country: from Hebron, Debir and Anab, from all the hill country of Judah, and from all the hill country of Israel. Joshua totally destroyed them and their towns. 22 No Anakites were left in Israelite territory; only in Gaza, Gath and Ashdod did any survive. 23 So Joshua took the entire land, just as the Lord had directed Moses, and he gave it as an inheritance to Israel according to their tribal divisions.

Then the land had rest from war.

This is usually the time that people start to ask, “Did God really command that?”  I facilitated a Bible study with a committed Christian who, sad to say, told the group that he thought that the Israelites just did what they wanted and put the words in the mouth of God.  But this does not mesh with the Bible at all.  God is quoted directly roughly 3,000 times.  We don’t get to pick and choose which parts are “real,” as that would be forming God in our own image. 

God had given these nations hundreds of years to repent and they didn’t.  They needed to be eliminated, just like we are to try and eliminate sin in our lives.  God is sovereign over all life and death so when atheists criticize God for being “immoral” in clearing out the Promised Land they have no standing to make such a claim.

List of Defeated Kings

12     These are the kings of the land whom the Israelites had defeated and whose territory they took over east of the Jordan, from the Arnon Gorge to Mount Hermon, including all the eastern side of the Arabah:

2 Sihon king of the Amorites, who reigned in Heshbon. He ruled from Aroer on the rim of the Arnon Gorge—from the middle of the gorge—to the Jabbok River, which is the border of the Ammonites. This included half of Gilead. 3 He also ruled over the eastern Arabah from the Sea of Kinnereth to the Sea of the Arabah (the Salt Sea), to Beth Jeshimoth, and then southward below the slopes of Pisgah.

4 And the territory of Og king of Bashan, one of the last of the Rephaites, who reigned in Ashtaroth and Edrei. 5 He ruled over Mount Hermon, Salecah, all of Bashan to the border of the people of Geshur and Maacah, and half of Gilead to the border of Sihon king of Heshbon.

6 Moses, the servant of the Lord, and the Israelites conquered them. And Moses the servant of the Lordgave their land to the Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh to be their possession.

7 These are the kings of the land that Joshua and the Israelites conquered on the west side of the Jordan, from Baal Gad in the Valley of Lebanon to Mount Halak, which rises toward Seir (their lands Joshua gave as an inheritance to the tribes of Israel according to their tribal divisions— 8 the hill country, the western foothills, the Arabah, the mountain slopes, the desert and the Negev—the lands of the Hittites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites):

9 the king of Jericho      one

the king of Ai (near Bethel)      one

10 the king of Jerusalem      one

the king of Hebron      one

11 the king of Jarmuth      one

the king of Lachish      one

12 the king of Eglon      one

the king of Gezer      one

13 the king of Debir      one

the king of Geder      one

14 the king of Hormah      one

the king of Arad      one

15 the king of Libnah      one

the king of Adullam      one

16 the king of Makkedah      one

the king of Bethel      one

17 the king of Tappuah      one

the king of Hepher      one

18 the king of Aphek      one

the king of Lasharon      one

19 the king of Madon      one

the king of Hazor      one

20 the king of Shimron Meron      one

the king of Acshaph      one

21 the king of Taanach      one

the king of Megiddo      one

22 the king of Kedesh      one

the king of Jokneam in Carmel      one

23 the king of Dor (in Naphoth Dor)      one

the king of Goyim in Gilgal      one

24 the king of Tirzah      one

thirty-one kings in all.

The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

These were real events at particular times and places.  God authorized this one-time cleansing of the promised land and the elimination of spectacularly evil and unrepentent people.

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