Welcome to the Covenant and the Cross Podcast. This is episode #107. I am your host, Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International. This podcast is designed to help you better understand the Word of God — both the Old and New Testaments. The Old Testament is the story of the Covenant which God made with His chosen people Israel. And the New Testament is the story of the Cross which signifies the fulfillment of the Old Covenant with Israel and the formation of a New Covenant with redeemed people from many nations.
We always like to start out with the Word of God, and today’s passage of Scripture is from Joshua 5:8 which reads: “And it came to pass, when they had done circumcising all the people, that they abode in their places in the camp, till they were whole.”
Regarding this passage, Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown wrote in their commentary: “As the number of those born in the wilderness and uncircumcised must have been immense, a difficulty is apt to be felt how the rite could have been performed on such a multitude in so short a time. But it has been calculated that the proportion between those already circumcised (under twenty when the doom was pronounced) and those to be circumcised, was one to four, and consequently the whole ceremony could easily have been performed in a day. Circumcision being the sign and seal of the covenant, its performance was virtually an investment in the promised land, and its being delayed till their actual entrance into the country was a wise and gracious act on the part of God, who postponed this trying duty till the hearts of the people, animated by the recent astonishing miracle, were prepared to obey the divine will. It is calculated that, of those who did not need to be circumcised, more than fifty thousand were left to defend the camp if an attack had been then made upon it.”
Today’s quote about the Bible is from A.W. Tozer. He said: “The Word of God well understood and religiously obeyed is the shortest route to spiritual perfection. And we must not select a few favorite passages to the exclusion of others. Nothing less than a whole Bible can make a whole Christian.”
Our topic for today is titled “Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho — and Hazor Too (Part 12)” from the book, “The Promise and the Blessing” by Dr. Michael A. Harbin.
Sometime after this, Joshua called together the people to give a final farewell. Chapters 23 and 24 contain two speeches—one to the leaders and one to the people. In them, Joshua reminded the people of several things. First, he pointed out that God was the one who had brought them to the land and had given it to them. As part of the process, Joshua reminded them, they were living in houses they had not built and enjoying the produce from vineyards and olive trees they had not planted. Second, he made clear that they were not finished with the conquest, that there were many peoples yet to be driven out. Moreover, God would assist them in this process. Third, he reminded them that they had the law of God in the book of Moses to serve as a guide. The key guideline was that they were not to serve the gods of the people who had occupied the land before them. He noted that some of the Israelites were already serving those gods or were still clinging to the gods they had brought from Egypt. Joshua challenged the people to put away those foreign gods and to serve YHWH, the true God. However, as we will see, the people failed to do so. This behavior was to become a pattern that would plague the nation for the next thousand years.
After this final challenge, Joshua died at the age of 110. We are not given Joshua’s age throughout his career, so we are unable to determine the date of his death. He was likely at least as old as Caleb, who at the end of the conquest was 85. If so, that means Joshua died no later than 1375 BCE. However, based on the picture we see in the book of the Judges, which suggests that he was older than Caleb, it is likely that he died a few years earlier than that.
A significant point is that Joshua did not appoint a successor as mediator for the covenant. This set the stage for a period where the nation kept floundering—the subject of the next chapter.
Lord willing, we will continue this topic in our next broadcast.
Let’s Pray —
Before we close, dear friend, I want to remind you that the most important thing you should know about the Bible is that it is the story of God working to save humanity from sin and the consequences of sin. He did this by sending His Son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross for our sins and take the punishment that we deserve on Himself. Romans 5:8 says, “God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”
If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, and you want to get to know Him today, here’s how.
All you have to do is believe “that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the Scriptures” and you will be saved. The Bible states in the book of Romans 10:9, 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Pray and ask Him to come into your heart and He will.
Until next time, remember the word of God is the foundation to a successful life. God bless.