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Sunday, February 2 2014

Joshua 6: The Fall Of Jericho

"The wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city"

The original city of Jericho was located about 5 miles / 8 kilometers west of the Jordan River. At approximately 800 feet / 240 meters below sea level, it had a tropical climate with intense heat in the summer. It had many date-palm trees, which contributed to its also being known as the City of Palms (Deuteronomy 34:3).

Jericho was the first Canaanite stronghold to fall to the Israelites (see also What Does The Bible Really Say About Canaanites?). The LORD (Who was and is Jesus Christ - see Genesis 1: In The Beginning Was The Word and The Kingdom Of The LORD God) declared to Joshua how the city was to be taken (see also Joshua 1: Joshua's Commission).

"6:1 Now Jericho was straitly shut up because of the children of Israel: none went out, and none came in.

6:2 And the LORD said unto Joshua, See, I have given into thine hand Jericho, and the king thereof, and the mighty men of valour. 6:3 And ye shall compass the city, all ye men of war, and go round about the city once. Thus shalt thou do six days. 6:4 And seven priests shall bear before the ark seven trumpets of rams' horns: and the seventh day ye shall compass the city seven times, and the priests shall blow with the trumpets. 6:5 And it shall come to pass, that when they make a long blast with the ram's horn, and when ye hear the sound of the trumpet, all the people shall shout with a great shout; and the wall of the city shall fall down flat, and the people shall ascend up every man straight before him." (Joshua 6:1-5 KJV)

Approaching Jericho

Joshua then commanded the Levites (see Numbers 4: The Levite Clans) to "Take up the ark of the covenant, and let seven priests bear seven trumpets of rams' horns before the ark of the LORD." They did so for six days.

"6:6 And Joshua the son of Nun called the priests, and said unto them, Take up the ark of the covenant, and let seven priests bear seven trumpets of rams' horns before the ark of the LORD. 6:7 And he said unto the people, Pass on, and compass the city, and let him that is armed pass on before the ark of the LORD.

6:8 And it came to pass, when Joshua had spoken unto the people, that the seven priests bearing the seven trumpets of rams' horns passed on before the LORD, and blew with the trumpets: and the ark of the covenant of the LORD followed them. 6:9 And the armed men went before the priests that blew with the trumpets, and the rereward came after the ark, the priests going on, and blowing with the trumpets. 6:10 And Joshua had commanded the people, saying, Ye shall not shout, nor make any noise with your voice, neither shall any word proceed out of your mouth, until the day I bid you shout; then shall ye shout. 6:11 So the ark of the LORD compassed the city, going about it once: and they came into the camp, and lodged in the camp.

6:12 And Joshua rose early in the morning, and the priests took up the ark of the LORD. 6:13 And seven priests bearing seven trumpets of rams' horns before the ark of the LORD went on continually, and blew with the trumpets: and the armed men went before them; but the rereward came after the ark of the LORD, the priests going on, and blowing with the trumpets. 6:14 And the second day they compassed the city once, and returned into the camp: so they did six days." (Joshua 6:6-14 KJV)

The Israelite army had been given its "rules of engagement" by the LORD before they crossed the Jordan River (see Deuteronomy 20: Articles Of War). Jericho fell to the Israelites on the seventh day of the siege.

Jericho

"6:15 And it came to pass on the seventh day, that they rose early about the dawning of the day, and compassed the city after the same manner seven times: only on that day they compassed the city seven times.

6:16 And it came to pass at the seventh time, when the priests blew with the trumpets, Joshua said unto the people, Shout; for the LORD hath given you the city. 6:17 And the city shall be accursed, even it, and all that are therein, to the LORD: only Rahab the harlot shall live, she and all that are with her in the house, because she hid the messengers that we sent. 6:18 And ye, in any wise keep yourselves from the accursed thing, lest ye make yourselves accursed, when ye take of the accursed thing, and make the camp of Israel a curse, and trouble it. 6:19 But all the silver, and gold, and vessels of brass and iron, are consecrated unto the LORD: they shall come into the treasury of the LORD.

6:20 So the people shouted when the priests blew with the trumpets: and it came to pass, when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city.

6:21 And they utterly destroyed all that was in the city, both man and woman, young and old, and ox, and sheep, and ass, with the edge of the sword." (Joshua 6:15-21 KJV)

Rahab and "and her father, and her mother, and her brethren, and all that she had" were spared, according to the agreement made with her by the scouts (see Joshua 2: Rahab Of Jericho).

"6:22 But Joshua had said unto the two men that had spied out the country, Go into the harlot's house, and bring out thence the woman, and all that she hath, as ye sware unto her.

6:23 And the young men that were spies went in, and brought out Rahab, and her father, and her mother, and her brethren, and all that she had; and they brought out all her kindred, and left them without the camp of Israel." (Joshua 6:22-23 KJV)

Jericho was destroyed - and was to remain so: "Joshua adjured them at that time, saying, Cursed be the man before the LORD, that riseth up and buildeth this city Jericho: he shall lay the foundation thereof in his firstborn, and in his youngest son shall he set up the gates of it."

"6:24 And they burnt the city with fire, and all that was therein: only the silver, and the gold, and the vessels of brass and of iron, they put into the treasury of the house of the LORD.

6:25 And Joshua saved Rahab the harlot alive, and her father's household, and all that she had; and she dwelleth in Israel even unto this day; because she hid the messengers, which Joshua sent to spy out Jericho.

6:26 And Joshua adjured them at that time, saying, Cursed be the man before the LORD, that riseth up and buildeth this city Jericho: he shall lay the foundation thereof in his firstborn, and in his youngest son shall he set up the gates of it.

6:27 So the LORD was with Joshua; and his fame was noised throughout all the country." (Joshua 6:24-27 KJV)

Jericho remained a ruin for over 400 years, before being rebuilt by Hiel of Bethel in the time of King Ahab (see Ahab Of Israel). What price did he pay for ignoring the warning made by Joshua?

"16:34 In his days did Hiel the Bethelite build Jericho: he laid the foundation thereof in Abiram his firstborn, and set up the gates thereof in his youngest son Segub, according to the word of the LORD, which he spake by Joshua the son of Nun." (1 Kings 16:34 KJV)

Fact Finder: Did Rahab have faith? Did the walls of Jericho fall by faith?
Hebrews 11:30-31 and see Lessons Of Perseverance And Faith


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This Day In History, February 2

506: Alaric II, king of the Visigoths (a Germanic people), proclaimed the Breviary of Alaric (Breviarium Alaricianum or Lex Romana Visigothorum), a collection of "Roman law" for the Germanic Empire

Otto I Crown 962: Pope John XII crowned Otto I as the "Holy Roman Emperor" (see Emperors and Popes). When Otto succeeded his father Heinrich (Henry) as German king in 936, the people raised their right hand to show approval and shouted "Sieg und heil" ("victory and salvation") - words revived by Adolf Hitler almost 1,000 years later (see Presidential Quotes On War, Terrorism, Religion). Later historians would view 962 as the beginning of what would later be officially called the Sacrum Romanum Imperium Nationis Germanica ("The Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation"; see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation). The octagonal imperial crown of the "Holy Roman Empire," which was made especially for the coronation of Otto, was the symbol of European unity for centuries afterward. Otto von Habsburg (whose ancestors were some of the "Holy Roman" emperors) called attention to the potential present and future role of that very same crown, which now sits in the Schatzkammer (Royal Treasury) in Vienna, Austria.

1461: The Lancastrians (founded by the son of Henry III, the Earl of Lancaster in 1267) defeated the Yorkists (founded by another son of Henry III, the duke of York) at the second Battle of St. Albans'.

1494: Christopher Columbus began using "Indians" as slaves i.e. native Americans were the first slaves of the "New" World (see Thanksgiving In History and Prophecy).

1509: The Portuguese, led by Francisco de Almeida, destroyed the Muslim fleet in the Battle of Diu, establishing Portuguese control of Indian waters.

1536: Spanish explorer Pedro de Mendoza founded Buenos Aires.

1556: The world's worst earthquake on record, in China's Shaanxi, Shansi and Henan provinces, killed an estimated 830,000 people.

1626: Charles I, the son and successor of James I (after whom the King James Version of the Bible was named), was crowned king of England.

1653: The Dutch established New Amsterdam as a city. After the British took over the colonies that became known as New England, the city was renamed as New York.

1709: British sailor Alexander Selkirk was rescued after being marooned on a desert island for 5 years. His story was the inspiration of Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe.

1808: French forces under Napoleon occupied Rome. Pope Pius VII was arrested and held in custody.

1848: The Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo ended the war between the U.S. and Mexico.

1901: The Funeral of Queen Victoria.

1916: The U.S. Senate granted independence for the Philippines.

1945: During the Second World War, 1,200 British Royal Air Force planes bombed Wiesbaden and Karlsruhe in Germany.

1972: The British Embassy in Dublin was burned down after a day of anti-British demonstrations.

1983: The Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) resumed in Geneva.

1989: Soviet invasion forces completed their withdrawal from Kabul, Afghanistan.



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