Judah’s Inheritance

Open Your Bible

Joshua 15:1-63, Genesis 49:1-27, John 10:7-10

My parents live on three acres in the Northern California foothills, where the land’s boundary lines are hard to see. After a forest of pine trees and a jungle of blackberry bushes, our property comes to a point. You’d never know it since our neighborhood acreage spills out into one messy field of overgrown weeds. There are no fences or stakes. Just a field that dead ends at an old street. Being good friends with our neighbors, we’ve always had permission to trot down there anytime we like, silver pails in hand, to harvest blackberries for homemade ice cream.

In the book of Joshua, boundary lines and land borders are given more importance. Joshua 15 thrusts us right into the heart of land divisions. Caleb had just received his inheritance, and it was time for the tribe of the descendents of Judah to receive theirs (Joshua 15:1). Unless you’re the type of person who loves reading detailed lists of ancient real estate, it can be tempting to just skim the rest of the chapter. But stick with me.

First, we’re told about the many twists and turns of the southern border until it hit the Mediterranean Sea (Joshua 15:2–4). After moving past the eastern border in a sentence, we get a detailed description of the northern border that was three times as long as the southern (vv.5–11). After that, we hear about the inhabitants Caleb drove out of their homeland so Judah’s descendents could take up residence (vv.14–15), as well as comprehensive lists of cities Judah inherited by clan: twenty-nine outermost cities, thirty-nine in the Judean foothills, thirty-eight in the hill country, and six in the wilderness (vv.21–62). 

Whew! That’s a lot of people, cities, and borders. Personally, I think it’s easy to want to skip ahead to “the good parts” or take a detour to a familiar psalm. But the text begs another question: Why does this matter for us? You see, to Judah, this was the good part. When we read the statement “this was the boundary of the descendants of Judah around their clans” (Joshua 15:12), we glimpse Judah’s role in redemption history. Because land was an invaluable commodity at the time, this inheritance was tangible evidence of God’s faithfulness and the fulfillment of His promise to them. It was God’s provision. It was their manna.  

The same God who was faithful to Judah is faithful to us today. Even though property boundary lines are a little more loosy-goosy in my parents’ neighborhood than they were in the book of Joshua, they still matter. To us, these invisible lines point to the many trees and butterfly bushes that embody God’s provision for our family over the years. How have you seen God provide for you this year? If you’re still waiting to taste His provision, take a moment to praise Him for the ways He’s already taken care of you, and then ask for the patience to see His faithfulness again.

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51 thoughts on "Judah’s Inheritance"

  1. Stephanie S. says:

    Thanking God for teaching me to love the Provider more than the Provision this year. I know He alone has sustained me. And eventually He will provide — but first, His love and grace has been wrapped in perpetual nos, not yets, and more closed doors than I can count.

  2. Alayna P. says:

    “The same God who was faithful to Judah is faithful to us today.” ❤️

  3. Audren Phalen says:

    As it says in one of the Psalms “The boundary lines have fallen in pleasant places for me.” Lord, thank You for providing a husband, a home where I don’t have to take abuse of others to keep the peace, for the sunshine, peaceful mornings, the list goes on and on! I have tears in my eyes thinking about how much You’ve taken care of me. Please give me the patience to see Your faithfulness again. In Jesus’ name, amen.

  4. George Miller says:

    I’ve been very blessed in my my life. Sometimes when I read the Bible, it seems God picks and chooses certain people. I guess the symbolism is the point. Could you enlighten me?

  5. Susan Lincks says:

    God is always there for me. He provides my peace of mind and trust in Him on a daily basis. Without God, my life would be empty and pointless. I have no doubt that He is always with me.

  6. Victoria Black says:

    God has provided me with a new workplace this year

  7. Leelynn Brady says:

    God provided me with the removal of a very toxic work environment that was affecting my mental health.

  8. Paula Strong says:

    God has provided for my family this year with the ability for both of us to work from home. So thankful for our jobs and the flexibility to take care of our kids. God has been so good to my family.

  9. Suzie Marcheti says:

    I love that! Asking our loving Father for the things that He desires us to have! Caleb’s daughter very sensibly knew she needed springs and asked for one and Caleb gave her two. God gives to us like that. More than we could ask or imagine!

  10. Tracy Mattison Brandon says:

    The provision of land as God promised is a testament of God’s great faithfulness but also God as our source of provision. I couldn’t help by notice this personal request in the midst of Joshua 15

    18When she came to him, she urged him to ask her father for a field. And she got off her donkey, and Caleb said to her, “What do you want?”
    19She said to him, “Give me a blessing. Since you have given me the land of the Negeb, give me also springs of water.” And he gave her the upper springs and the lower springs.
    These scriptures reminded that God, my Father is asking me, “My child, what do you want?” As His daughter, I should not hesitate to ask my Heavenly Father for the things I desire with in His will and desire for me to have them.

  11. Stacy J says:

    Thank you Lord for your provision! You are a provider, protector and healer!

  12. Ruby Everett says:

    Thank you@ Churchmouse, and Rebecca for your comments today. Great insights ! Thanks to all SRT Sisters, love reading all responses. Blessings to all.

  13. Kate Condran says:

    Good reminder that God provides for our needs- he provided manna for the Israelites and he provided land – but in both instances the Israelites had responsibility to not hoard manna and to drive out the people in the land.
    Am I faithfully obeying God where he has me in this season?

  14. Mercy says:

    God has provided for our family faithfully and miraculously throughout this year, with stable jobs, a new home in a nice and quiet neighborhood, and SRT friends and interactions when I was so lonely during this prolonged isolation. Most of all, He gave me good rest from the busyness of life that stole away my time for Him, and many many more I am unaware of, since you know “God is always doing 10,000 things in your life and you might be aware of three”. There were times things looked so bad, but the next moment it was glorious. God turned this tough year into a breakthrough for our family- the year of “walking through deep waters but the water will not overflow you” kind of year. Someone once advised me, you need to buckle yourself as God will take you on a wild ride, never a dull moment. That is true. Glory be to God.

    When Jacob called his sons to gather around, he blessed each son differently according to their own blessing. And the portion of land reward given to each tribe are also different. Our reward may not look the same, as our struggles. While He promises the heavenly home and reward in the time to come, He also provided the physical reward on earth (evidently in our reading today). Jesus came on earth so we can have abundantly earthly life, with the real physical tangible inheritance. What a wonderful God we serve.

    The kingdom of heaven is like what happens when someone finds a treasure hidden in a field and buries it again. Such a person is happy and goes and sells everything in order to buy that field (Matthew 13:44).

  15. Jennifer Ficklen says:

    I want to thank SRT for including the map in today’s lesson. That was a new way for me to see the scripture. I am a visual person and reading it didn’t put it all together for me. No matter how many times I read it the passages never came to life for me. Thank you! I now know that the birth place, the Crucifixion, the resurrection, and Jesus second coming, and His millennial reign all has or will take place on the land that God gave the tribe of Judah! I love how he is so detailed and everything works together!

    1. Angie Guimaray says:

      Me too!!

  16. Mary Pitner says:

    I’m wondering how this area changed over the years so that the Middle East isn’t a Christian majority of nations. Anyone have a good resource for the answer?

  17. Sheryl Gunderson says:

    Thank you, SRT, for your map in the study book! It was SO helpful to visualize the locations of the tribes. I visited Israel a few years ago and it really brought back where I visited and was fascinating to see the lands that I traveled over and now to see whose lands they were given to by God.

  18. Laura J says:

    @Tara Tuttle – Thank you! My computer shows 31 comments with ROSIE MOORMAN being the first of the day.

  19. Krysta Orona says:

    Totally guilty of skimming over the land allotments! Great lesson today ❤️

  20. KJ Johnson says:

    In the Season and study of lent I am constantly reminded of how temporary life on earth is and how our inheritance is waiting as we fight our battles here on earth our inheritance awaits in eternity. Try to set my mind on things above….brings peace and hope during these crazy times. I’m so thankful I found SRT to help me reset from my anxiety and fears.

  21. Taylor says:

    I have definitely seen the Lord provide

    for me even in this season of job searching He has provided for me financially through reffing field hockey and dog sitting this week. He is faithful!

  22. Linda Gilbow says:

    I love the idea that God was detailed and generous in giving the promised inheritance to Israel. Someday they will once again have their land. In the meantime I can rejoice that my inheritance is secure.

  23. Sharon, Jersey Girl says:

    Praising God for His faithfulness this morning – to a thousand generations! (Deuteronomy 7:9) He is faithful to give me a roof over my head, clothes on my back, food on my table. He is always beside me and He never gives up. He sees the depths of my heart and yet – He loves me the same. I praise Him, who is faithful today, just as He was to Judah.

  24. Tara Tuttle says:

    You might have to scroll all the way down it was the first post of the day

  25. E _ says:

    God has been so generous to me… He’s provided me with amazing family and friends, finances, a job that I love, a cozy house in a good neighborhood. But the thing He’s provided that I cherish the most is His unfailing love and His joy. He fills my heart each day and gives me the hope to carry on.

  26. Mari V says:

    How have I seen God provide this past year? I’ve shared it here before. As a single mother of an almost adult son and a freshman in high school I have witnessed God provide where on the outside world it looked impossible. Especially to the unbelievers. I know that they have seen firsthand God provide for me and my kids. I can honestly say, God has not and will never forsake me. And I want to say that to you SRT sisters anyone who is facing the unknown, trust our Father God. He will make away where there is no way simply because He is God.
    Some of you heard this story. Last June 2020. My son and I were in auto accident, totaling my old car. But God……. provided a much newer vehicle. 

  27. Karen Vandenberg says:

    Awesome, thanks for sharing!

  28. Mari V says:

    Welcome Kelly and praising God with you about your daddy.

  29. Kelly Swindell says:

    I just got my first box yesterday so I’m picking up right in the middle of this study but I couldn’t wait to dig in. I’m a bit behind on what’s going on haha! I can tell you that God has protected my family this year. My elderly parents just recovered from COVID and my 81 year old dad miraculously was asymptomatic!! So thankful!!

  30. Laurie Crary says:

    2Tim 3:16. All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for rebuking, for correcting, for training in righteousness,

  31. Tiffany C says:

    This passage is leading me to pray for the people in Hong Kong. With the political turmoil, families are making the tough decision to leave the life they know in HK to elsewhere. My closest family friends are Christians from HK that migrated with my parents in the 80s. Another generation of migration is happening.
    Praying for the local churches to be prepared to welcome and help newcomers. Praying for God’s leading in the migrants’ lives, preparation of where they will settle: employment, community and connection. May we trust in God for He is the source of life, no matter where we reside. Our permanent home is with Him, yet He prepares and allots our earthly homes too.

  32. Laura J says:

    @Rachel From Texas – I can’t see Rebecca’s comments either about Achsah. I am using my laptop to view the daily devotion and posts on the SRT website.

  33. Maura says:

    Thank you Lord for all the ways you provide daily. Food, water, loving friends and family. Strength, grace. God you know my needs and sometimes I am very needy. Give me wisdom, love for others, and time to speak your love and encouragement. Be in the battles I face let me seek you with my whole heart, and teach me to get out of the way so You will be seen. praying for you Elizabeth Harkin and your marriage. He is faithful and so loving. Hugs Sisters and much love.

  34. Angela Sutherland says:

    God has been so faithful to my family. He has provided and even expanded our boundaries. He knows our needs and He is faithful every time. May we walk ever more into obedience as He calls us.

  35. Katherine Westhoff says:

    Thank you for doing a deep dive!! I was about to look into this. The greediness theory does not add up for me. Can’t wait to look into it more.

  36. Rachel from Texas says:

    I can’t see what Rebecca shared. Would someone who can possibly re-post it?

    Hopefully the SRT team can see what/why some posts don’t appear to everyone? I use the web app on my phone to access the daily post and comments.

  37. Kate Emmert says:

    God has provided me food, safety, a job, friends and family, medicine, His word, a place to live.

  38. Erin Lewallen says:

    Thanks for sharing this Rebecca! It is very interesting.

  39. Kerry Arsement says:

    So great! Thanks for digging!

  40. Jeannie Wilson says:

    Rebecca, that you for taking the time to learn more and Aksah and for sharing! I don’t remember hearing of her before today. So, I appreciate your information!

  41. McLean Murphy says:

    This made me wonder about the boundaries God places in our life. Work and home boundaries. Emotional boundaries. Boundaries of obedience. All of them for our good! Today, I pray that our eyes would be open to the boundary lines God has set in place for us and that we would seek to live within those parameters- his best for us!

  42. Lauren Moore says:


  43. Angie says:

    Thank you sisters for your prayers yesterday for my students and me. If you are the parent of a public school child I’d like to, “thank you,” also. The Christian children in my class make a difference. The prayers of Christian parents cover our days. Monday’s tragedy could have been worse. When the child told other children, at recess, what was happening, it was one of the girls who said, “This is bad and I’m going to tell my mom,” which brought it to light and allowed us to get help. The other children around her tried to stop her from telling, they were afraid they would get in trouble. But, thankfully she pushed through their bullying of her and got to me. There were 5 kiddos who knew, and only one told. We were able to have some good conversations about how to handle situations to protect ourselves and other people. So, thank you families who raise your children up for Jesus. Thank you if they are in public school for their witness is recognized. I am not against private schools, one of my daughter-in-laws grew up in one and she is delightful. God’s plan spreads us all over the place. As a public school teacher though, I praise God for his little ones in our building who can help those who do not know Jesus, see Him, and how His love looks at a 9 year old level that they understand. Step by step we continue on until one day we are Home, and oh, I pray that all of my former students and their families will meet me there.

  44. Sharon Smith says:

    Thank you for this Rebecca! I saw this in the reading today and wondered the same about Aksah- your words here were very helpful and YES “asking” is imperative if we are to receive all the gifts God has in store for His faithful people in prayer and love ~

  45. Bronwen Rogers says:

    God has provided for me this year with the courage to keep moving even when I was ready to give up. His provided a good work environment for me even in the pandemic. I am blessed to have a job that was not affected by the pandemic. I see so many provisions. He has given me my voice back. I had gone silent while mourning a loss this year. His devotion to my well-being is remarkable. I praise the Lord my God who is with me wherever I go.

  46. Angie says:

    Heidi, I will pray for you in this beautiful and blessed time of having little ones in your home. God sees your desire to raise your children up to love and serve Him. He wants it even more than you do! When my children were little I was a part of Bible Study Fellowship (BSF). The children and I went weekly and we all studied the same scriptures from the time they were 2 through their junior high years. That was nice because we could talk about it easier since we all read the same stuff. Plus when they were little, I had to help them with their daily reading and writing. I also have some mind-blowing memories of a table of 3-5 year olds sitting together at lunch talking about the Holy Spirit. I was struggling to understand something in the lecture that week and they were just chit-chatting about it as if it were simple. BSF is still going and they are doing so much online right now. My group meets via Zoom and they have these mini lessons (we are just finishing Jacob and in two weeks will start one on Joseph) that anyone can join in for a few weeks and see how they like it and how it fits for them. The online benefits are the children’s questions and materials are right there. (I think you can get them even without joining a group) However, the best thing I took from it for my children was help in how to pray for them. BSF has a single page resource that gives ways to pray for your children and the scriptures to pray over them. I wrote those in the back of my Bible and prayed some each day. Stormie Omartian was also very popular way back when and has a book, Praying for Your Children, that I used also. There are so many things you do every day to show them Jesus. They are watching you and see your love and devotion for Him. My encouragement for you is to continue in your walk with Jesus and let them see it. If you’d like to try some additional stuff, the BSF things are excellent and free. And know, God loves your kiddos even more than you do. He will be your guide. Do what He leads you to, and don’t let the evil one cause you to question, God knows your heart and loves it! Thankfully it is not about being perfect, it is about stepping closer in faith and the power of Jesus.

  47. Kimberly FowlerWillett says:

    God has provided in so many ways that only He could this past year and now. My family and I love where hurricane Laura and Delta made landfall. I was pregnant and due when Laura hit. I evacuated with the kids while my husband stayed behind as an essential worker. God provided me with a doctor to deliver as well as a healthy baby boy. Our house was severely damaged but we have had so many people lend us a hand with labor to fix it! It’s still. It 100% but we have a roof over our head and for that I am extremely grateful! Plus we are all safe and well ❤️. God is so good. Even amongst disastrous circumstances He is good.

  48. Heidi says:

    The part of the story that hits me is that God was willing to hold off on all of this promised good until relationships with Him were right. As pointed out- this land was already theirs. It wasn’t like He still had to go and get it for them. He wanted this FOR them. He, at times it seemed, wanted it MORE than them even though THEY were the ones who were going to benefit so greatly from it. But even if it meant waiting year after year after year to give them this good thing- He did it. He showed incredible restraint to love like that. As a parent of young ones, it is such an example to me. Even gifts have their appropriate timing. Y’all pray for me as I try so hard to navigate this whole mom thing. I want my kids to know Him and love Him and desire Him and represent Him well. And with this whole year of losing out on church’s input in their lives it’s hit hard. And I’m failing miserably at picking up that slack.

  49. Churchmouse says:

    God brings to pass all that He has promised. Canaan was there for the Israelites’ taking. Oh they wandered in the wilderness and there were enemies to defeat. But at all times the land was theirs. That was God’s plan. His purpose was to have a people whole heartedly devoted to Him. He wanted a nation set apart for His glory. The boundary markers reminded them of God’s faithfulness as their provider. The boundary lines reminded them that God makes a way through the wilderness, that obedience is rewarded and discipline is for their gain. Let us recall our own boundary markers in our lives that remind us of the same. Great is His faithfulness.

  50. Rosie Moorman says:

    Thank you for sharing! That’s so interesting x