"After the death of Moses the servant of The Lord, The Lord said to Joshua the son of Nun, Moses' minister, "Moses my servant is dead; now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, you and all this people, into the land which I am giving to them, to the people of Israel [see Children of Jacob and The Tribes Of Israel]. Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given to you, as I promised to Moses. From the wilderness and this Lebanon as far as the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites to the Great Sea toward the going down of the sun shall be your territory. No man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life; as I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will not fail you or forsake you. Be strong and of good courage; for you shall cause this people to inherit the land which I swore to their fathers to give them." (Joshua 1:1-6 RSV)
While Moses is considered by many to be Israel's "lawgiver" (the Eternal Laws were actually given to Moses by God - see The Ten Commandments and The Ten Commandments Before Sinai?), Joshua is viewed as one of the greatest God-commanded Israelite military leaders in all Bible History.
- Joshua was born as a slave in Egypt, about 40 years before the Exodus. He was the son of Nun, of the tribe of Ephraim (1 Chronicles 7:20,27).
- Originally named Hoshea (Numbers 13:8), meaning salvation, Moses renamed him Joshua, meaning The Lord is Salvation (Numbers 13:16).
- Joshua was an active participant in the Exodus, and was Moses' military commander when the Israelites defeated the Amalekites in Rephidim about 2 months later (Exodus 17:8-16).
- Joshua was a close aide to Moses. He was permitted to accompany him part of the way up Mount Sinai when Moses received The Ten Commandments from God. During that absence, Aaron permitted the people to run wild (Exodus 32:15-21).
- Joshua was one of the twelve men sent by Moses to explore the land (Numbers 13:16-17), but only Joshua and Caleb gave an encouraging report.
- Before Moses' death (see Heartbreak Mountain), the leadership of Israel was formally transferred to Joshua (Deuteronomy 31:23). The people were encamped at Shittim when he assumed the command. (Joshua 1:1, 2:1)
- The crossing of the Jordan River involved a miracle - despite being at spring flood level, The Lord stopped the flow of water so that the Israelites, led by the Levites carrying the The Ark Of The Covenant, could cross on dry ground (Joshua 3:15-17)
- Once across the Jordan, the Israelites camped at Gilgal where they observed the Passover (Joshua 5:10). The next day, when they began eating from the produce of the Promised Land, the Manna stopped being supplied to them as it had been through their Wilderness Journey (Joshua 5:11-12).
- After the taking of Jericho (see The Fall Of Jericho), Joshua led the Israelites on their campaign to take the land that God commanded them to live in - 6 nations and 31 kings fell to them (Joshua 11:18-23, 12:24).
- After the Promised Land came under the effective control of Israel, Joshua divided the land among the tribes, according to God's instructions, with Timnath-serah in Mount Ephraim given to Joshua as his own. (see Division Of The Land and Tribal Lands)
- Joshua died at the age of 110, 25 years after entry into the Promised Land. He was buried in Timnath-serah (Joshua 24:28-30).
Fact Finder: How did the walls of Jericho fall?