God Gives Israel the Land

Open Your Bible

Joshua 10:16-43, Romans 1:18-20, Ephesians 1:20-21

Should we cheer or should we grieve? I certainly cheer as I read about the nation of Israel finally entering the promised land of Canaan. What a celebration and relief for God’s people! Their forty-year-long desert detour was over! Now, these men, women, and children were free to settle down in the abundant land God had promised Abraham so long ago. 

I also cheer for Joshua, Moses’s protégé and successor. As God’s chosen man, he led the people into Canaan. However, all was not smooth sailing. After crossing the Jordan River, Israel was met with resistance. Canaan was not an empty, unsettled territory. City after city fortified itself against Joshua and his advancing Israelite army. King after king dispatched troops to fight for land and dominance. From the city of Makkedah, to Libnah, to Lachish, to Eglon, to Hebron, to Debir, our reading follows Joshua and his soldiers as they march to victory across the southern region of Canaan. 

I can almost hear Israel’s victorious battle cry, but if I’m being honest, my cheers give way to heaviness. As United States Army General Sherman soberly stated, “War is hell.” We may grieve as we recognize that Israel’s long-awaited entrance into the promised land was an invasion. We may be troubled as we remember that Joshua was not only Israel’s strong and courageous national leader; he was also its top military general. He obeyed direct orders from God to mobilize troops and strategically conquer Canaanite strongholds.

Are you wrestling with this account of God declaring war? Let’s press into ancient texts to get a better glimpse of God as a righteous warrior. For hundreds of years, the Canaanites had been increasingly sinful (Genesis 15:16). The root of their sin was idolatry: worshiping false gods instead of the one, true God. The fruit of their idolatry included brutal child sacrifice and witchcraft (Deuteronomy 18:9–12). Any person settling in Canaan would suffer from this way of life. Worse yet, all future generations would be twisted and dehumanized by such deeply entrenched sin patterns and spiritual darkness long at work in the land. 

We see that God declared war against this deadly system, but do we know what He was fighting for? Joshua experienced victory “because the LORD, the God of Israel, fought for Israel” (Joshua 10:42). By demolishing Canaanite strongholds, God uprooted destructive wickedness and prepared the land for faithful, flourishing life. He fought to protect and preserve His people.

We reflect on Israel’s conquest of Canaan with both grief and gratefulness. We grieve over the deadly seriousness of rejecting God and over the destructive powers of sin and darkness. Yet, we also gratefully rejoice as we see God declaring love for His people by declaring war on sin, both in the promised land and in our own hearts today. To Him, the fight against sin and death is worthy of the shed blood of His own Son, Jesus. Thanks be to God.

(94) Comments

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94 thoughts on "God Gives Israel the Land"

  1. Danielle Thompson says:

    I agree with you that the people of Canaan are children of God. I believe that God loved them.

    However, they were doing terrible things.

    These people were not asking for forgiveness or repentance. If they would have turned their hearts to God he would have loved them and honored that. However, these kings heard of how great Israel’s God was and instead of turning their hearts to repent they chose to fight. Therefore they had to be destroyed.

    Here in America we have the same situation just told a different way and we also have it easier than the OT. We just have to accept Jesus and follow him instead of following all the OT sacrificial ceremonies. Many people hear of who God is and many people choose to fight him. He gives people opportunity after opportunity to choose Him and in the days of Revelations if they do not choose Him they will be destroyed.

  2. Paula Strong says:

    Remember later God did the same to his own son. Listen to the pod cast it is really good and does a great job of explaining it.

  3. Paula Strong says:

    True but our story is not over yet.

  4. Sarah Hamm says:

    Yes, I totally agree. I am not comfortable with defending these stories by citing the sinful nature of Canaanites.

  5. Nana Verschaeren says:

    It was like you were reading my mind

  6. Christin-Joy Armstrong says:

    By the author of the summary’s logic, America would be worthy of the same fate as Canaan. As human beings, Canaanites were also children of God, regardless of their sin. As are we. I think there’s a lot more to learn here than this analysis provides. About the books of the OT, their authors, and their audience. As historians say: conquerors get to tell the story of the conquered.

  7. Julie Myhre says:


  8. Mari Sanchez says:

    Such a great perspective. To God, the fight against sin and death is worthy of the shed blood of his only son, Jesus. THANKS BE TO GOD!

  9. Jennifer Sporin says:

    They in Canaan were the physical enemies of God. We war against the spiritual enemies of God. They are seeking to destroy the abundant life God promised to all believers who walk by the Spirit. We can have confidence that no matter what we are facing, our God is for us, if He called you to it!! We should be strong and courageous because Jesus fights the battles for us! “I can do all things through Him who gives me strength”. AMEN! Don’t let the enemy defeat you. Take your stand and fight against him. Jesus will give you the victory!

  10. Paula Strong says:

    As I am reading this I am thinking how difficult this must have been for Joshua. It would bother my mind so much. I’m sure God thought of that and protected all of them. It was for good of course but all of it played like an action movie in my mind. How difficult this might have been. Anyways just some thoughts I had while reading.

  11. Tracy Mattison Brandon says:

    I believe that God is calling forth Joshuas who will fight to tear down spiritual strongholds, stand up against sin and stand up for righteousness encouraging faithfulness to God.

  12. Tracy Mattison Brandon says:

    I believe God is calling forth “Joshuas” to tear down spiritual strongholds, stand up against sin and

  13. Brandy Deruso says:

    Give god praise for the victory!

  14. Megan L says:

    Thank you for this. I needed to know why all this death was necessary. It’s hard to read at face value, but now I understand.

  15. Priscilla Estrada says:

    Wow, the last few lines, just wow. Thanks be to God.

  16. Chelsea Little says:

    Love this!! Are we willing to be the Joshua of our world today? Are we willing to stand against all evil so that the gospel can move forward?

  17. Hannah McConnell says:

    I realize that since I’m not a Jew… I’m a Gentile. I’m a Canaanite. The punishment of sin is death. I would have been in one of those fortified cities lost in sin. But God made a way BECAUSE of His great love. Jesus bore the sins of the world and sacrificially took the punishment that was meant for US. To say that I am thankful is an understatement!

  18. Rosalyn Horn says:

    This was such a great reminder – I was having a conversation and how challenging it was to read about the endless killing but I loved how she reminded me about the reason for it, to get rid of the deeply rooted sin.

  19. Elena S says:

    “all future generations would be twisted and dehumanized by such deeply entrenched sin patterns and spiritual darkness long at work in the land.”

    Lord, let us see how we have been twisted and dehumanized by the deeply entrenched sin patterns and spiritual darkness that has long been at work in our land. Let us grieve and repent and fight with the courage of Joshua against the strongholds at work here in our county and our communities. May we rise up against the injustices, the lies, and the discord that permeate. May we pull them up from the roots.

  20. Jamie Trice says:

    Thank you God for fighting for Israel. Thank you for continuing to fight for me and my heart. I have always struggled with the war against people in the Bible, but this explained it so well. I understand it so much more now. Thank you!

  21. Lisa C says:

    Thank you❤️

  22. Laurie Crary says:

    Excellent commentary. Thank you Patti!!!

  23. Nicole VazquezNorcross says:

    Thanks be to God. Amen!

  24. KS Wilson says:

    I am so thankful for the new covenant and the hope of redemption. I believe that even the most desolate and evil can be transformed. It grieves me that lives were taken in this passage for the sake of establishing a physical nation. I understand the explanation and the ridding of evil. It still doesn’t sit well. And so I celebrate the new covenant full of grace, redemption, and mercy.

  25. Mercy says:

    Dear Rebecca, I will be praying for your niece, her daughter and their safety. May God give her awakening and protect her and her daughter. Thank you for sharing your story. I will keep them and you in prayers and may God strengthen you with boldness and help to approach this situation. Bless you Rebecca.

  26. Rebecca Mann says:

    Mercy, what you’ve written has given me heart! My 33 year old niece has moved herself and her 8 year old daughter into the home of a 61 year old man and within a week they were engaged. This man (at age 51 -not a “youthful indiscretion”) was put on the sexual offender list for 3rd degree sexual assault along with contributing to the delinquency of a minor, and possession of marijuana with enough to traffic. I am appalled, outraged that my niece is ok with this and is exposing her daughter to this man. I have prayed and prayed for guidance and after being told by a few different people that I am not being a Christian because if I were a good Christian I would be forgiving of his past and not being so judgmental. I have been on my knees even more. But, after reading this – I AM JOSHUA! I will continue to fight for what is good and and for the protection of my great niece. Thank you for your thoughts and words.

  27. Emily McGrath says:


  28. Kasey Stringer says:


  29. Susan Crosby says:

    Sin death and destruction. Not what God had in mind for mankind when He created man and then gave man a helper. From the time sin entered the garden of Eden the earth became corrupted by Satan. He is out to kill steal and destroy. The battles in these passages today with so much death remind of the passages in Genesis where God says He was sorry He made man. God was searching for righteous men and at one point only found one man to find favor on. Noah and his family were the only survivors of the flood that destroyed everything else. All of the horrific sins especially sexual sins in the Old Testament were plans from Satan to attempt to corrupt the genealogy of the line from which Jesus would come. Modern day Christianity does not take sin seriously in my opinion. We fail to really understand how God judges all sin and try to sweep it under the rug and even debate whether God really said…Who can know the mind of God?…He alone is sovereign over all things…❤️

  30. Allison Bentley says:

    Yes @Mercy!! Something to ponder for sure!! Thank you for your insight and view!

  31. Mercy says:

    When we look at Joshua killing through obedience to God, some would feel sad for those who got erased for their sins. What do we say if God calls us to be the Joshua of our day, to wipe out the evil around us? Would we overcome your emotions to be the executioner? Or would we hold back to not offend people, to not hurt their “opinions”, and thus tolerate evil and offend God. “The fear of the Lord is to hate evil” (Proverbs 8: 13). The evil practice of the pagan nations which God calls abomination (extremely disgusting and loathing crime), such as fortune telling, palm reading, casting spells, astrology/zodiac, child sacrifice/modern day abortion/pro-choice (different labels on the same practice)- do we look at these as an abomination as well, agreeing with God, or we might think “it’s actually not that bad, to each his own”. It takes renewing of the mind, and not conforming to the world (Romans 12:2) to not be deceived. May God unveil the crafty scheme of the devil in our days.

    If God calls you to be the Joshua of in your time and age, will you say yes? “No man that wars get entangled in the concerns of civilian life, he seeks to please the commanding officer” (2 Timothy 2:4). It is better to please God than men (Acts 5:29). Such a great devotion we have today, though this might be a difficult chapter to learn, I am thankful that “tough meat” is given and not just milk. Let us graduate to a new level of understanding about who God is -extremely fearsome to the wicked. Let us pray even more for the lost. Be blessed and strengthened in the Lord dear SRT sisters. God is good :-)

  32. Kali says:

    Thank you! I appreciated the song recommendation.

  33. Melanie B. says:

    Marcia, I’d prefer to be left off praying with you on this matter – in which it is obvious we are not aligned. Rather, I am stating I don’t believe be this forum/platform or that today’s reading had anything to do with your statement. We can leave it as agreeing to disagree.

  34. PamC says:

    Patti, thank you for the references here. I love it when the stories in the Bible interlock & the connections are pointed out.
    My heart went out to Joshua & the soldiers too. Don’t you think they were exhausted & overwhelmed by all that fighting, bloodshed, destruction? It must have made them heart sick. But isn’t it the same for us today? The sin that surrounds us, that we see or is forced down our throats as “righteous” these days. Then there’s the daily battle for our own hearts against sin that creeps in.
    Thank you Father God for our Lord Jesus Christ.

  35. Monica H says:

    If you have time, the song “Questions” by 7eventh Time Down may help minister to you. Love all sisters in Christ and know we serve a God who is big enough to handle our need to understand Him and His Word. May He bless you all today!

  36. Ana Valenzuela says:

    “- because the Lord, the God of Israel, fought for Israel” I have no doubts that God is fighting for our nation, for our babies.

  37. Taylor says:

    Lord I am the chief of sinners. May you daily war against the sin in my life, and may I daily join in the battle to remove all separation from You and to walk in Your ways. May you and I work together to uproot the wickedness in my life and also to find causes worth fighting for to uproot wickedness in our current society

  38. Buffy Rennie says:

    The issue is sin and all sin is separation from God.
    The only answer to sin is death. Animal sacrifices, destruction of whole towns, cities, regions, and then Jesus.
    Brutal in our minds eye. But yet we continue down the path of our selfish, worldly acts of doing what we “feel” is right and “true” and what feels good for me.
    God HATES, yes hates that we are not walking in the garden with Him and that we choose everything except Him. God grieves every heart that turns from Him.
    Romans 1:20 says it all, “…we are without excuse.”
    Choose relationship with God over selfishness. He is the only answer.

  39. Jan says:

    As I am reading through this passage and this commentary, these thoughts came to mind.
    Why does God hate sin? He hates it because it separates us from Him. It ruins life on ths earth and it ruins eternity for those in sin. He will fight to uproot it – for US!
    The fighting after reaching the promised land reminds me of the the sinful desires and/or practices in our lives that we have to war against even after salvation. Evil continues and Satan stalks us.
    The struggle and warfare are real. It was real for them and it is real for us. But we rejoice because we already know the outcome. And it is GOOD! Thanks be to GOD for his indescribable gift!

  40. Marcia Myers RN BSN says:

    Thank you Melanie B.for sharing your view regarding this timely Scriptural text which includes Gen.15:16.It is current and strikes my heart! No human judgement, but deep sorrow for sure!
    I grieve WITH you, and join you in mourning the reality of child/infant deaths/sacrifice, as it was, as it is, as it continues. Together,please join me in mourning worldwide.
    Marcia Myers RN BSN

  41. Chelsea Nix says:


  42. Sandra K Arnold says:

    I’ve read this passage in the past and was always confused on why God would allow entire communities to be wiped out. This study has helped me understand that. It also makes me more prayful for the United States.

  43. Melanie B. says:

    @Marcia Myers – I don’t feel that this is the place for you to post something like this. I understand you might feel that way but you don’t know what’s going on in the hearts of others who have made the struggle and option of terminating a pregnancy. I really wish the administrators would take down your post. I feel like it’s taking away from what this devotional is really about.

  44. Kitty Mc Donald says:

    He fought for Israel! Comforting words, because He fights for us too. His children! We are Chosen also!! WOW!

  45. Makayla White says:

    Patti hit the nail right on the head for me this morning. This is not the first time I’m reading the Bible and struggling with the warfare, destruction of whole family units, and plagues that killed thousands in the wilderness; and felt grief for those killed that may not have been sinful. I’m so glad she put this in perspective for us so that I can see the true meaning of God’s workings.

  46. Ashley F says:

    Ehhh, I don’t find the commentary enlightening but it’s a difficult passage to gain understanding from. Maybe the victory is only that — a victory from God.

  47. Jessie Chatigny says:

    Kristina, thanks for resharing the link to the “thinking thru” article. I wanna encourage any of sisters struggling with these passages to honor the struggle. Even just asking questions, whatever. God prefers that over simplification or brushing things under the rug.

  48. Marcia Myers RN BSN says:

    Thank you Patti.
    This Scripture reminds me of the parallel of modern U.S.reality since 1973 Roe v. Wade. Some 63 Million preborn lives killed/ aborted.
    [Gen.15:16 states the ppl practiced child sacrifice.]
    I mourn over our U.S. convenience—death culture and our federal tax-payer funds for far-reaching abortions beyond.
    I mourn.
    Marcia Myers

  49. Jo Turnbull says:

    I was convicted today about why it’s so easy to read the account of noah but so hard to read these accounts in Joshua. God destroying the whole population of the earth should be harder to process, but I think that in these accounts it gets smaller, more personal , we consider a city, individual people, and it suddenly is hard to stomach. Such a strong parallel with my instinctive reaction to sin. I find it easy to think that God should punish sin, after all he is just and fair, but individually, do I accept he will punish my friends, my children, me? That’s what I got from today. Sin is sin, and God is just. I am a person and I am not just. God make me trust you more and submit more fully to YOUR way, and tell all I can about your love and grace. Praise the Lord his first instinct is toward grace and mercy and that destruction saddens him more than us.

  50. Sylvia Tomlinson says:

    Thank you for the wonderful
    commentary and truth you placed
    on the table this morning Patti Saul’s ♥️

  51. Heather says:

    Thank you! The notion of peace feels so challenging in light of today’s study! I find myself wrestling with the “why, God?” Even though my head understands why He God commanded and even allowed the brutality of Joshua and his armies to clear the land, it hurts my human heart.

    then again, to realize what it takes to abolish sin is pretty gruesome. The death of Jesus on the cross was certainly very gruesome. We are a privileged people to be living in the age of the church! After all of the destruction, after all of the bloodshed, living in a redeemed state. I thank you Lord, that the blood shed in our history has allowed us peace. ❤️

  52. Desiree R says:

    I didn’t realize there was so much fighting and war in the Bible. Just as there is today.. it makes me sad

  53. Mari V says:

    ONCE and for ALL! All we have to do is accept it.❤️

  54. Christina Ng says:


  55. Nancy Henry says:

    I, too, am so thankful for the clarity of the devotion reading today. I grieve for the innocents who were lost in these battles. I have a hard time reconciling God’s vengeance with God’s love and mercy. As I think about Christ’s sacrifice, though, I remember that Christ died once for all to bring us to God.

  56. Laura Thomas says:

    God declaring war on “deadly systems” is such a powerful concept – one that honestly I had never considered before! I work in public health to change and improve the systems that are linked to poor health outcomes. It’s a good feeling to more strongly connect my work to my faith through today’s example of how God moves to destroy deadly, unjust systems. Wow!

  57. Connie Beers says:

    Praying for you Heather

  58. Jennifer Ficklen says:

    I Appreciate what the devotional brought to the story today. I have often wondered what went through the Canaanites mines as they were attacked. I often wondered why God would turn on innocent people. However today I learned that these people were not innocent. They were worshiping idols, other gods, performing witchcraft, and sacrificing babies. God did declare war on sin at the beginning and he will continue to do so until the end when he abolishes it. I am so thankful and so grateful that he has shown me grace and that he has adopted me into his family. Thank you God. I love you Jesus thank you for dying for me.

  59. Cheri says:

    Praying for you, Heather.

  60. Sarah Ritchie says:

    I am praying for you this morning Heather. Something tells me you are going to be just fine. ❤️

  61. Gina says:

    The taking over of Canaan, with all the death and bloodshed, is truly a difficult passage to read and comprehend. I think that only when we stand before a holy God will we know His amazing Righteousness, and His amazing Justice and Mercy. And we will be able to understand how God hates sin and did not want His chosen people to have a new land for themselves with even a trace of iniquity. Of course sin begins in the heart, and the Israelites carried sin into Canaan with them. But God had taken them out of slavery, given them the law and chosen them to be a separate nation, a nation without the blemish of false gods. I am not in any way, shape or form a Bible scholar. But I am also doing a study on Revelation and God’s hatred of wickedness is clear. As is His mercy. Every knee shall bow and declare Him Lord. It’s unfathomable! And yet it will indeed happen one day. His Word is true. It’s so worth our time to study and consider this time of Joshua and Canaan. It’s all a part of His amazing plan of salvation. It gives me fresh perspective of the sin in my life and the aching desire to ask the Lord to cleanse me, daily. Thank you all for your comments. Especially Patti for explaining a very difficult passage in the Bible to us. God bless you.

  62. Tina says:

    Patti Saul, you make a mean argument for God for all the destruction and deaths that have happened in our Joshua readings so far..
    It has been hard to read .. hard to understand and even take on board..

    But God..

    I am a “God people” that has had to go through ‘stuff’. The heartache, the destruction, the lack, the wandering in my personal wilderness..all in hope and believing the ‘promised land’ is coming..
    I am just thankful that our battles have been won by Jesus’s death on the cross and His resurrection! I am also thankful that our battles are not so destructive as we read in the old testament, many thousands losing life to save God’s people (you and I)

    Thank you Jesus. Thank you for the cross, for your goodness, and your love that never fails.

    But God..

    He reigns. He is sovereign and His judgments were right for the betterment of His people.


    Happy Thursday my sisters.. Happy Thursday! With love always..❤

  63. Tiffany C says:

    This makes me reflect on what sin I need to eradicate from my life. What do I indulge in that makes me disobey God?
    If I am to live in God’s land for me, to live in His ways, sin will hold me back. What sin do I need to utterly destroy for me to thrive in God’s kingdom?

  64. Sarah D. says:

    Definitely a sobering read today…but it makes me think of the fate of those who do not believe. If we as Christ followers, truly believe in Jesus, in his life, death, and resurrection, and in the heaven he promises, why would we not share this news with others? I heard a quote yesterday that said, “How much do you have to hate someone to not share the gospel with them?” Convicting for sure. Praying I would not be afraid to share the news that changed my life and so many others.

  65. Rhonda J. says:

    I love this study! So much clarification on Joshua, and puts it in context for us to understand! And your comments really help too. This really raises me up to a higher standard as well, as someone said! There will be wrath and there will be no excuses for not knowing. It is our job and duty as Christians to be the light, share our testimony, and bring people to God! May I look to God every day, hour, second to be directed by Him!

  66. Christine Cyphers says:

    Wow. The attached devotional was spot on. As I read the scripture passages for today, I did truly feel torn! Of course I know that God called Joshua to pursue these battles, but I couldn’t help but wonder about the other side. History is not my strong suit, and I’m such a people pleaser and person who tries to see all sides, that reading it, I did in fact feel the grief! The devo was spot on to bring understanding to that grief, and to clarify my wondering of the other sides.

  67. Jen M says:

    I was pleased that the author addressed the troubling nature of Joshua and the armies of Israel invasion of the land of Canaan. But it is hard to wrap my head around the idea that God demanded the slaughter of even children. That there was no room for redemption from sin. It’s passages like these that make it hard for believers to reconcile the God of the OT & NT as the same God.

  68. Amaris Robinson says:

    Praying for you, Heather! That you would have peace in the waiting & a good report!

  69. Nicole Van Zante says:

    “Are you wrestling with this account of God declaring war?” Why yes, Patti Sauls, I am… This devotional was sooooooo helpful in making sense of this reading!!

  70. AnneLyn P says:

    Thank you for sharing about this article, Kristina Mari. Very helpful.

  71. Deanna says:

    Ah the dichotomy of wanting God’s will to be done and his punishment to be meted out against those who have sinned against him… and knowing that I’m one of those sinners, daily.

    1. Annette Kendall says:

      Yes. This!!

  72. Deanna says:

    @Heather – prayers that all turns out well with your procedure today. Praying for peace of heart and mind and clarity and wisdom for your care team.

  73. Linda J says:

    Praying for you Heather.

  74. Heather O’Malley says:

    Joshua has been such a perfect book to read in this season of my life. Last week I had an ultrasound which confirmed a small mass in my breast. Today I have a biopsy, and I would be grateful for your prayers. It’s been hard to wait, and I know I won’t likely have any answers until next week, but Joshua 1:9 gives me comfort. Even these violent passages give me comfort because I know my God goes before me, and the battle is already won. Thank you, ladies ❤️

  75. Churchmouse says:

    God is sovereign over all nations. He will deliver judgment as He sees fit, when He sees fit. I may not understand it but that’s really of little consequence. EXCEPT as a warning. He delights to shower blessings on those who follow Him but He will not long tolerate sin by those who choose their own way. He is a just God. His heart cry is that none would perish. The choice we make regarding His sovereignty determines our destiny. He acts based on our choice. Let us repent and live righteously.

  76. Renee Beamer says:

    To not believe God’s promise to eradicate sin (through Joshua’s leadership) on behalf of Israel and subsequently on behalf of us (through Jesus), is to not believe he is holy. To not believe that God gave Canaanite men and women generous opportunities to turn from wickedness and worship him, the one true and eternal God, is to not believe he is merciful.

    It’s the same crux/cross we experience in the earth now: To Jesus, our deliverer we pray, “Even so, Lord Jesus, come!” And in the same breath, “But wait! There are billions not yet ready for your return.”

    That the world may know.

  77. Brandi says:

    Father, I thank You today because You are my Mighty Warrior! You are demolishing those strongholds in my life! You are uprooting destructive wickedness and preparing me, my heart, for a faithful, flourishing life! You are always fighting to protect and preserve Your people! And You never lose! Help me to walk in that victory today as a daughter of the King!

  78. Katie Schisler says:

    The danger of these passages is that we truly don’t understand them. We can’t. And yet we can manipulate them to our own human thinking. I think of times in history like the Crusades in the Middle Ages where they we going to purge the land of ungodliness and save the world. This is different. It was a direct order from God to Joshua to inhalation the peoples of this land for His glory. Again, my mind can’t wrap my mind around it. Thank you for the website and podcast suggestions. I look forward to meditating more on these thoughts.

  79. Jenn Burris says:

    Such a sobering passage when you think about what took place. It caused me to be so full of gratitude for the mercy and grace found in Jesus Christ. This is how God is just. The wickedness of the people in Canaan was so great and the punishment for sin is death, that is so clearly obvious here (even if it doesn’t sit well). But Jesus! Now He justifies every and all sin because of the cross so this is no longer what needs to happen due to sin. Thank God!

  80. Sarah SherrodBrown says:

    This was a tough passage to read. Thank you for shedding light on the historical context.

  81. Kate Condran says:

    A violent passage to read but I appreciated the reminders in the devotional that God is holy & righteous and therefore cannot stand sin- meaning the Israelites had to act in violence to clear the land. Because the Israelites don’t do this 100%, it’ll lead to so much pain down the road! Good thoughts to ponder today.

  82. Magdalena Hauman says:

    There is a lot of violence in Joshua but those who were destroyed lived lives of horrible everyday violence. Sacrificing their children and practicing witchcraft, I can’t even imagine – we’ve seen throughout the OT situations where the Israelites dad spare women and children and then years later those they spared came back to lead them away from God with bad consequences- God wanted to protect His people but I also think that it’s a warning to all generations to come. Our nation sacrifices children through abortion every single day and we need to be aware that there are consequences to all our wickedness.
    Rom 1:18-21 gave me peace about what happened in Joshua. God is a jealous God but He is merciful and gives us every opportunity to repent.

  83. Kasey Stringer says:

    I encourage you to listen to the podcast that goes along with this week’s readings. I believe God is good. I hate death, it brings so much hurt, but even good people die and we don’t understand. Cancer takes our loved ones, kids drown or are trafficked and that makes me so angry. We can’t sit and think about why God would let that happen. I turn my thoughts to hope. I think about where Paul says to live is a Christ, to die is gain. (For believers) John 5:28-29 says everyone will be raised from the dead. Me, you, those innocent people, Hitler, everyone. Then there will be judgment from a Man who suffered equally to them. The judgement will then come from Him, not our understanding and we trust that He is good and we hold on to that. I’m one to let my mind wonder and it causes me to be weak and doubt. I can’t let the enemy distract me. We know God is good. We’ve seen it in His mercies throughout the Old Testament and his Son in the New Testament. In the Old Testament hard times and in today’s hard times, we’ve got to have faith and not lean on our own understanding. ❤️❤️❤️ These are just my thoughts, from one skeptic to the next. I hope this helps anyone doubting. Our hope is in Christ.

  84. Kristen says:

    @Searching I pray for those people that you mentioned. Those that may know, but defiantly turn their backs on God and those that claim they don’t know or want to know. However, as the Scripture she gave us says; Romans 1:18–20 (CSB): 18 For God’s wrath is revealed from heaven against all godlessness and unrighteousness of people who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth, 19 since what can be known about God is evident among them, because God has shown it to them. 20 For his invisible attributes, that is, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen since the creation of the world, being understood through what he has made. As a result, people are without excuse.
    I agree with you. My sins are also an offense to God for He is Holy.
    I’m asking everyone to please join me in praying for the lost. Let’s ask God to turn even the ones that people think are most wicked and depraved to conviction and repentance and salvation.(I say that people think is the worst, because All sin is wrong and offensive) May their blind eyes or purposely blind eyes not be able to deny truth anymore. Let everyone see how horrifying their sins are and how deeply they/ we need a Savior. Let them know that God is whom they should be terrified of. Our pastor told us that your father is either God or the devil. He listed all that the devil wants for you which is all evil and eventually eternal damnation and torment and compared those to what God offers and wants for you as your Father. Oh, please let their eyes be open to the Truth, so the can’t deny Him anymore. Please the the grip of the devil be off them. Also, let’s pray for those that think they are saved because they think that going to church and not being so bad saves them. Let them know that it is only by Jesus. Please help us turn from living for temporal pleasures that aren’t in line with God’s Word and to live for the eternal. In Jesus Name Amen!
    Also, @ Lauren. I listened to the podcast that goes with this. They talk about the wars and killing that took place. The people were practicing so many detestable things. They were sacrificing their children. Maybe, the children that survived would have grown up to do those same things. ( That’s my thoughts.) They talked about how sometimes we don’t think about the Holiness of God and the seriousness of sin. Listening to them is better than my attempt to relay their words. Sorry! I have questioned many things too. I have listened to teachings from R C Sproul and John MacAuthor about the Holiness of God and seriousness of sin. I know His ways aren’t our ways and His thoughts are aren”t ours. His ways and thoughts are so much higher. This has helped me to sit with He is God and I can’t understand everything. He is Good and Sovereign and things will be clear in Heaven. Hope this helps.

  85. ERB says:

    Romans 1:18-23 “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.”

    I found this super convicting…(especially v20-22) in a good, God is bringing me up to a higher existence kind of way. I have way too often excused the seriousness of sin and Who God is and what He requires (a completely surrendered heart and life) and I have not followed through the way God asked me to because of fear and unbelief. Lord please correct this in me. Help me to go BOLDLY before your throne.. Thank You Jesus. Amen

  86. Lisa A says:

    And that I definitely want Him fighting FOR, not against me!

  87. Lisa A says:

    To be honest, the last few days of SRT have been a little scary–sobering. But today I am thinking that God’s victories are thorough and complete wins.

  88. Kristina Mari says:

    For some reason you’re unable to select the link in my previous comment. I recommend doing an online search of “Thinking Through Old Testament Violence”

  89. Kristina Mari says:

    Someone (I forget who) shared in the comments the other day an online article by Andrew Judd, titled “Thinking Through Old Testament Violence”. The link is below if anyone wants to copy and paste it into their browser. Reading it helped me make some sense (although I am still uncomfortable with the violence) of what’s going on in the book of Joshua. Hope this helps!


  90. Angie says:

    Thank you, Patti. I feel like you did an excellent job speaking truth regarding the celebration of the victories of God’s people, as well as why the sin needed to be completely erased. The last paragraph especially, so powerful.

    The land was a part of the promise but, it wasn’t about the land as much as it was about a place where God’s people could live for Him wholly and fully. Is it much different for me today? Yes, and no. I live, love, and worship the One and Only True God today, because the Holy Spirit indwells me. Praise God, thank you, Jesus! But, we are aliens in a foreign land where sin runs rampant and little “g” gods, fight for control and power. I look forward to eternity, face to face with my Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ, but there may be some battles until that day. I am not Home, yet. Thankfully, the battle is the Lord’s. His victory already won. Praise God!

  91. Searching says:

    In tears this morning thinking of all the horrific sins in today’s world, its perpetrators and its victims (especially the innocent), who don’t understand, don’t know, don’t care or don’t believe in the truth of God – His love or His wrath. Thinking of those that look the other way, encourage continuation of the behaviors, cheering/embracing such. Thinking of the “not so horrific” sins in my own life and knowing that those are against God as well. Lord, please guide my thoughts, words and actions today and everyday, that I will make good choices and decisions and that my actions will be the right ones in Your eyes, and that I will be aware when they are not.

  92. Lauren Haykus says:

    I am always disturbed how God had them destroy and kill even the children. I know we can’t and don’t understand everything. So I keep my faith. Just always looking for input. So what are ideas if any. I have talked this over with my group. I think that the blanket answer is there are things we won’t understand until we meet our Lord. So don’t beat yourself up trying to figure some things out. But all praise to God our father, Amen.

  93. Marianne says:

    Thank you for enlighten us about the background of those wars. I was in fact a bit concerned about the inhabitants … Made me think of how in the past often “white men” invaded foreign continents and deprived the inhabitants from what was theirs. I wondered whether they saw themselves in this line and justified their wars with those in old testament times …