All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. - 2 Timothy 3:16-17

Last Deeds of Joshua

After the conquest of the southern half of Canaan, the tribes of northern Canaan become terrified of Joshua and the armies of Israel and form a coalition against them with Jabin of Hazor as the head. Their army is very large and contains many horses and chariots. But the Lord says to Joshua, “Do not be afraid because of them, for tomorrow about this time I will deliver all of them slain before Israel. You shall hamstring their horses and burn their chariots with fire.” Joshua 11:6.

Hamstringing a horse by severing one of the tendons on the back of its leg makes it lame, and the chariots are to be burned. These two instructions are to be carried out so Israel can never use them in future warfare. Instead, they are to trust in the Lord for victory.

Joshua follows the Lord’s command, and his army suddenly attacks the enemy and soundly defeats them. They chase them to the valley of Mizpah, where all are killed, but the war continues on for a long period with many battles that result in the destruction of city after city. Because of this, Israel becomes enriched, since they keep all the livestock and spoils of war.

However, not every part of Canaan is completely conquered; and although Joshua is old, the Lord gives him a new task to fulfill before he dies—that of dividing the land among the nine-and-one-half tribes that are to settle west of the Jordan River. The two-and-one-half tribes east of the Jordan have already received their land inheritance from Moses.

Although some sections of the land have not been completely conquered, each tribe must clear their own territory; but some do not. Many of the conquered cities are placed into forced labor, and not completely destroyed, as God has commanded (Joshua 16:10; 17:13).

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