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1 Now after the death of Moses the servant of the LORD it came to pass, that the LORD spake unto Joshua the son of Nun, Moses' minister, saying,

2 Moses my servant is dead; now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, thou, and all this people, unto the land which I do give to them, even to the children of Israel.

3 Every place that the sole of your foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you, as I said unto Moses.

4 From the wilderness and this Lebanon even unto the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and unto the great sea toward the going down of the sun, shall be your coast.

5 There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.

6 Be strong and of a good courage: for unto this people shalt thou divide for an inheritance the land, which I sware unto their fathers to give them.

7 Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper whithersoever thou goest.

8 This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.

9 Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.

10 Then Joshua commanded the officers of the people, saying,

11 Pass through the host, and command the people, saying, Prepare you victuals; for within three days ye shall pass over this Jordan, to go in to possess the land, which the LORD your God giveth you to possess it.

12 And to the Reubenites, and to the Gadites, and to half the tribe of Manasseh, spake Joshua, saying,

13 Remember the word which Moses the servant of the LORD commanded you, saying, The LORD your God hath given you rest, and hath given you this land.

14 Your wives, your little ones, and your cattle, shall remain in the land which Moses gave you on this side Jordan; but ye shall pass before your brethren armed, all the mighty men of valour, and help them;

15 Until the LORD have given your brethren rest, as he hath given you, and they also have possessed the land which the LORD your God giveth them: then ye shall return unto the land of your possession, and enjoy it, which Moses the LORD'S servant gave you on this side Jordan toward the sunrising.

16 And they answered Joshua, saying, All that thou commandest us we will do, and whithersoever thou sendest us, we will go.

17 According as we hearkened unto Moses in all things, so will we hearken unto thee: only the LORD thy God be with thee, as he was with Moses.

18 Whosoever he be that doth rebel against thy commandment, and will not hearken unto thy words in all that thou commandest him, he shall be put to death: only be strong and of a good courage.

Commentary for Joshua 1

Here is the history of Israel's passing into the land of Canaan, conquering and dividing it, under the command of Joshua, and their history until his death. The power and truth of God in fulfilling his promises to Israel, and in executing his justly threatened vengeance on the Canaanites, are wonderfully displayed. This should teach us to regard the tremendous curses denounced in the word of God against impenitent sinners, and to seek refuge in Christ Jesus.The Lord appoints Joshua to succeed Moses. (1-4) God promises to assist Joshua. (5-9) Preparation to pass over Jordan. (10-15) The people promise to obey Joshua. (16-18)1-4 Joshua had attended upon Moses. He who was called to honour, had been long used to business. Our Lord Jesus took upon him the form of a servant. Joshua was trained up under command. Those are fittest to rule, who have learned to obey. The removal of useful men should quicken survivors to be the more diligent in doing good. Arise, go over Jordan. At this place and at this time the banks were overflowed. Joshua had no bridge or boats, and yet he must believe that God, having ordered the people over, would open a way.

5-9 Joshua is to make the law of God his rule. He is charged to meditate therein day and night, that he might understand it. Whatever affairs of this world we have to mind, we must not neglect the one thing needful. All his orders to the people, and his judgments, must be according to the law of God. Joshua must himself be under command; no man's dignity or dominion sets him above the law of God. He is to encourage himself with the promise and presence of God. Let not the sense of thine own infirmities dishearten thee; God is all-sufficient. I have commanded, called, and commissioned thee to do it, and will be sure to bear thee out in it. When we are in the way of duty, we have reason to be strong and very bold. Our Lord Jesus, as Joshua here, was borne up under his sufferings by a regard to the will of God, and the commandment from his Father.

10-15 Joshua says to the people, Ye shall pass over Jordan, and shall possess the land; because God had said so to him. We honour the truth of God, when we stagger not at the promise of God. The two tribes and a half were to go over Jordan with their brethren. When God, by his providence, has given us rest, we ought to consider what service we may do to our brethren.

16-18 The people of Israel engage to obey Joshua; All that thou commandest us to do we will readily do, without murmuring or disputing, and whithersoever thou sendest us we will go. The best we can ask of God for our magistrates, is, that they may have the presence of God; that will make them blessings to us, so that in seeking this for them, we consult our own interest. May we be enabled to enlist under the banner of the Captain of our salvation, to be obedient to his commands, and to fight the good fight of faith, with all that trust in and love his name, against all who oppose his authority; for whoever refuses to obey him must be destroyed.

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for Joshua 1

  • Lakesha P
    I love the spirit of Joshua. He was determined to follow God from a young age. I like how the Bible describes him and Caleb of "having a different spirit". It is obvious by his actions of obedience that he was a man of great courage, as instructed. Faithful to the end as I'm sure his wife was and of strong character.
  • Dayo Joseph Olufe
    What a true servant is Joshua! God give me the heart of obedient to your commandments like Joshua minister of Moses, Joshua 8:1
  • Jane
    Joshua was very obedient to the word GOD and no wonder God gave him success
  • Kersh
    I love how Joshua did not exhalt himself above Moses' ways of leadership Joshua built upon Moses' leadership skills and used Moses prophetic words from the Lord to remind God's people of God's promises. Hence, the people honored Joshua and vowed to protect follow his commands the same way that they have obeyed the voice of Moses.
  • Opiyo james
    I was really encouraged at v1-8.it tell me that the word of GOD Will remain the same it will never change.stay BLESS
  • Ivy Johnson
    God: willing: able:use anybody: death of Moses: LORD’s Servant:LORD spake unto Joshua: go over this Jordan: Every place that the sole of your foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you:as I said unto Moses: Inheritance mapped out: tribes of Israel! Moses: crossing of the Red Sea: Joshua: Jordan's Crossing: Walls of Jericho: Me
  • Ivy Johnson
    God: Loving: Kind: Forgiving: Moses couldn’t take: Children of Israel: Promised Land: God used him: Mount of Transfiguration: People would think: God finished with Moses: Man: impeccable character: grace: integrity: compassion: courage: what a task:How could I cope? all these people: murmurings: disobedience: unhappy:Christians: trials come:
    Disappointments: heartaches: tend go back to Egypt too
  • Gwendolyn Roberson
    I receive the encouragement it gives. I feel the scriprure...Joshua 1:8 Tells us to remember to meditate on the Word of God day in and day out. That is where your strength and courage in whatever you do comes from.
    Joshua believe and trust God...I really like this passage..it encourages me this morning even with a clearer understanding..thank you...if jesus say do it then do it
  • Ivy Johnson
    God was telling Joshua to be strong, and of a good courage. Joshua mighty man of God. Obedient to God and Moses. God was preparing him to take over from Moses. Both God and Moses could rely on him. The people recognized that God was with him, they were not putting up with any form of rebellion. People would be put to death. Rahab and the spies. They kept their word. She is in the genealogy. Amen.

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Bible Trivia

After Moses' death who did God want to lead His people?
  • Jesus
  • Abraham
  • Peter
  • Joshua