Joshua 12-13 & Psalm 145

Joshua 12-13

    Now these are the kings of the land whom the people of Israel defeated and took possession of their land beyond the Jordan toward the sunrise, from the Valley of the Arnon to Mount Hermon, with all the Arabah eastward: Sihon king of the Amorites who lived at Heshbon and ruled from Aroer, which is on the edge of the Valley of the Arnon, and from the middle of the valley as far as the river Jabbok, the boundary of the Ammonites, that is, half of Gilead, and the Arabah to the Sea of Chinneroth eastward, and in the direction of Beth-jeshimoth, to the Sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, southward to the foot of the slopes of Pisgah; and Og king of Bashan, one of the remnant of the Rephaim, who lived at Ashtaroth and at Edrei and ruled over Mount Hermon and Salecah and all Bashan to the boundary of the Geshurites and the Maacathites, and over half of Gilead to the boundary of Sihon king of Heshbon. Moses, the servant of the LORD, and the people of Israel defeated them. And Moses the servant of the LORD gave their land for a possession to the Reubenites and the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh.

    And these are the kings of the land whom Joshua and the people of Israel defeated on the west side of the Jordan, from Baal-gad in the Valley of Lebanon to Mount Halak, that rises toward Seir (and Joshua gave their land to the tribes of Israel as a possession according to their allotments, in the hill country, in the lowland, in the Arabah, in the slopes, in the wilderness, and in the Negeb, the land of the Hittites, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites): the king of Jericho, one; the king of Ai, which is beside Bethel, one; the king of Jerusalem, one; the king of Hebron, one; the king of Jarmuth, one; the king of Lachish, one; the king of Eglon, one; the king of Gezer, one; the king of Debir, one; the king of Geder, one; the king of Hormah, one; the king of Arad, one; the king of Libnah, one; the king of Adullam, one; the king of Makkedah, one; the king of Bethel, one; the king of Tappuah, one; the king of Hepher, one; the king of Aphek, one; the king of Lasharon, one; the king of Madon, one; the king of Hazor, one; the king of Shimron-meron, one; the king of Achshaph, one; the king of Taanach, one; the king of Megiddo, one; the king of Kedesh, one; the king of Jokneam in Carmel, one; the king of Dor in Naphath-dor, one; the king of Goiim in Galilee, one; the king of Tirzah, one: in all, thirty-one kings.

    Now Joshua was old and advanced in years, and the LORD said to him, “You are old and advanced in years, and there remains yet very much land to possess. This is the land that yet remains: all the regions of the Philistines, and all those of the Geshurites (from the Shihor, which is east of Egypt, northward to the boundary of Ekron, it is counted as Canaanite; there are five rulers of the Philistines, those of Gaza, Ashdod, Ashkelon, Gath, and Ekron), and those of the Avvim, in the south, all the land of the Canaanites, and Mearah that belongs to the Sidonians, to Aphek, to the boundary of the Amorites, and the land of the Gebalites, and all Lebanon, toward the sunrise, from Baal-gad below Mount Hermon to Lebo-hamath, all the inhabitants of the hill country from Lebanon to Misrephoth-maim, even all the Sidonians. I myself will drive them out from before the people of Israel. Only allot the land to Israel for an inheritance, as I have commanded you. Now therefore divide this land for an inheritance to the nine tribes and half the tribe of Manasseh.”

    With the other half of the tribe of Manasseh the Reubenites and the Gadites received their inheritance, which Moses gave them, beyond the Jordan eastward, as Moses the servant of the LORD gave them: from Aroer, which is on the edge of the Valley of the Arnon, and the city that is in the middle of the valley, and all the tableland of Medeba as far as Dibon; and all the cities of Sihon king of the Amorites, who reigned in Heshbon, as far as the boundary of the Ammonites; and Gilead, and the region of the Geshurites and Maacathites, and all Mount Hermon, and all Bashan to Salecah; all the kingdom of Og in Bashan, who reigned in Ashtaroth and in Edrei (he alone was left of the remnant of the Rephaim); these Moses had struck and driven out. Yet the people of Israel did not drive out the Geshurites or the Maacathites, but Geshur and Maacath dwell in the midst of Israel to this day.

    To the tribe of Levi alone Moses gave no inheritance. The offerings by fire to the LORD God of Israel are their inheritance, as he said to him.

    And Moses gave an inheritance to the tribe of the people of Reuben according to their clans. So their territory was from Aroer, which is on the edge of the Valley of the Arnon, and the city that is in the middle of the valley, and all the tableland by Medeba; with Heshbon, and all its cities that are in the tableland; Dibon, and Bamoth-baal, and Beth-baal-meon, and Jahaz, and Kedemoth, and Mephaath, and Kiriathaim, and Sibmah, and Zereth-shahar on the hill of the valley, and Beth-peor, and the slopes of Pisgah, and Beth-jeshimoth, that is, all the cities of the tableland, and all the kingdom of Sihon king of the Amorites, who reigned in Heshbon, whom Moses defeated with the leaders of Midian, Evi and Rekem and Zur and Hur and Reba, the princes of Sihon, who lived in the land. Balaam also, the son of Beor, the one who practiced divination, was killed with the sword by the people of Israel among the rest of their slain. And the border of the people of Reuben was the Jordan as a boundary. This was the inheritance of the people of Reuben, according to their clans with their cities and villages.

    Moses gave an inheritance also to the tribe of Gad, to the people of Gad, according to their clans. Their territory was Jazer, and all the cities of Gilead, and half the land of the Ammonites, to Aroer, which is east of Rabbah, and from Heshbon to Ramath-mizpeh and Betonim, and from Mahanaim to the territory of Debir, and in the valley Beth-haram, Beth-nimrah, Succoth, and Zaphon, the rest of the kingdom of Sihon king of Heshbon, having the Jordan as a boundary, to the lower end of the Sea of Chinnereth, eastward beyond the Jordan. This is the inheritance of the people of Gad according to their clans, with their cities and villages.

    And Moses gave an inheritance to the half-tribe of Manasseh. It was allotted to the half-tribe of the people of Manasseh according to their clans. Their region extended from Mahanaim, through all Bashan, the whole kingdom of Og king of Bashan, and all the towns of Jair, which are in Bashan, sixty cities, and half Gilead, and Ashtaroth, and Edrei, the cities of the kingdom of Og in Bashan. These were allotted to the people of Machir the son of Manasseh for the half of the people of Machir according to their clans.

    These are the inheritances that Moses distributed in the plains of Moab, beyond the Jordan east of Jericho. But to the tribe of Levi Moses gave no inheritance; the LORD God of Israel is their inheritance, just as he said to them.

(Joshua 12-13 ESV)

Psalm 145

 A Song of Praise. Of David.

    I will extol you, my God and King,
        and bless your name forever and ever.
    Every day I will bless you
        and praise your name forever and ever.
    Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised,
        and his greatness is unsearchable.
    
    One generation shall commend your works to another,
        and shall declare your mighty acts.
    On the glorious splendor of your majesty,
        and on your wondrous works, I will meditate.
    They shall speak of the might of your awesome deeds,
        and I will declare your greatness.
    They shall pour forth the fame of your abundant goodness
        and shall sing aloud of your righteousness.
    
    The LORD is gracious and merciful,
        slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
    The LORD is good to all,
        and his mercy is over all that he has made.
    
    All your works shall give thanks to you, O LORD,
        and all your saints shall bless you!
    They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom
        and tell of your power,
    to make known to the children of man your mighty deeds,
        and the glorious splendor of your kingdom.
    Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
        and your dominion endures throughout all generations.
    
    [The LORD is faithful in all his words
        and kind in all his works.]
    The LORD upholds all who are falling
        and raises up all who are bowed down.
    The eyes of all look to you,
        and you give them their food in due season.
    You open your hand;
        you satisfy the desire of every living thing.
    The LORD is righteous in all his ways
        and kind in all his works.
    The LORD is near to all who call on him,
        to all who call on him in truth.
    He fulfills the desire of those who fear him;
        he also hears their cry and saves them.
    The LORD preserves all who love him,
        but all the wicked he will destroy.
    
    My mouth will speak the praise of the LORD,
        and let all flesh bless his holy name forever and ever.

(Psalm 145 ESV)

Something to Consider

Joshua 13: The second half of the book begins much like the first half by describing the status of Israel’s current leader. The book begins with a description of Moses’ death, and here the second half of the book begins with a description of Joshua nearing death. No matter our current condition and the circumstances that surround us, God will do His work that He has promised to do in His own time and pleasure. 

As Joshua is nearing death, we’ve been told that “the land had rest from war” (Joshua 11). However, this presents an interesting observation in that there still remained “much land to possess.” We will come to discover as we reach the end of the Old Testament that the hope of God’s earthly rule over His own people in the land that He had promised to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob remained (and still remains) unfulfilled. Again, God will do His work that He has promised, but He will do it in His own time and pleasure. 

The inheriting of the land of Canaan foreshadows the ultimate inheritance that is still yet future. God’s people have yet to experience the final fulfillment of God’s covenant promise to rule over them in the land that He swore to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, but we can rest assured that this promise awaits its certain fulfillment and consummation in God’s promise of an eternal New Earth with its New Jerusalem. “For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come” (Hebrews 13). For Abraham himself was “looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God” (Hebrews 11). May we continue in confident expectation of the certain inheritance that is yet to come. For God’s people “desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared for them a city” (Hebrews 11).