Joshua 5; Joshua 6; Joshua 7; Joshua 8

1 When all the Amorite kings across the Jordan to the west and all the Canaanite kings near the sea heard how the Lord had dried up the waters of the Jordan before the Israelites until they had crossed over, they lost heart and their courage failed because of the Israelites. 2 At that time the Lord said to Joshua, "Make flint knives and circumcise the Israelite men again." 3 So Joshua made flint knives and circumcised the Israelite men at Gibeath-haaraloth. 4 This is the reason Joshua circumcised [them]: All the people who came out of Egypt who were males-all the men of war-had died in the wilderness along the way after they had come out of Egypt. 5 Though all the people who came out were circumcised, none of the people born in the wilderness along the way were circumcised after they had come out of Egypt. 6 For the Israelites wandered in the wilderness 40 years until all the nation's men of war who came out of Egypt had died off because they did not obey the Lord. So the Lord vowed never to let them see the land He had sworn to their fathers to give us, a land flowing with milk and honey. 7 Joshua raised up their sons in their place; it was these he circumcised. They were still uncircumcised, since they had not been circumcised along the way. 8 After the entire nation had been circumcised, they stayed where they were in the camp until they recovered. 9 The Lord then said to Joshua, "Today I have rolled away the disgrace of Egypt from you." Therefore, that place has been called Gilgal to this day. 10 While the Israelites camped at Gilgal on the plains of Jericho, they kept the Passover on the evening of the fourteenth day of the month. 11 The day after Passover they ate unleavened bread and roasted grain from the produce of the land. 12 And the day after they ate from the produce of the land, the manna ceased. Since there was no more manna for the Israelites, they ate from the crops of the land of Canaan that year. 13 When Joshua was near Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with a drawn sword in His hand. Joshua approached Him and asked, "Are You for us or for our enemies?" 14 "Neither," He replied. "I have now come as commander of the Lord's army." Then Joshua bowed with his face to the ground in worship and asked Him, "What does my Lord want to say to His servant?" 15 The commander of the Lord's army said to Joshua, "Remove the sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy." And Joshua did so.
1 Now Jericho was strongly fortified because of the Israelites-no one leaving or entering. 2 The Lord said to Joshua, "Look, I have handed Jericho, its king, and its fighting men over to you. 3 March around the city with all the men of war, circling the city one time. Do this for six days. 4 Have seven priests carry seven ram's-horn trumpets in front of the ark. But on the seventh day, march around the city seven times, while the priests blow the trumpets. 5 When there is a prolonged blast of the horn and you hear its sound, have all the people give a mighty shout. Then the city wall will collapse, and the people will advance, each man straight ahead." 6 So Joshua son of Nun summoned the priests and said to them, "Take up the ark of the covenant and have seven priests carry seven trumpets in front of the ark of the Lord." 7 He said to the people, "Move forward, march around the city, and have the armed troops go ahead of the ark of the Lord." 8 After Joshua had spoken to the people, seven priests carrying seven trumpets before the Lord moved forward and blew the trumpets; the ark of the Lord's covenant followed them. 9 While the trumpets were blowing, the armed troops went in front of the priests who blew the trumpets, and the rear guard went behind the ark. 10 But Joshua had commanded the people: "Do not shout or let your voice be heard. Don't let one word come out of your mouth until the time I say, 'Shout!' Then you are to shout." 11 So the ark of the Lord was carried around the city, circling it once. They returned to the camp and spent the night there. 12 Joshua got up early the next morning. The priests took the ark of the Lord, 13 and the seven priests carrying seven trumpets marched in front of the ark of the Lord. While the trumpets were blowing, the armed troops went in front of them, and the rear guard went behind the ark of the Lord. 14 On the second day they marched around the city once and returned to the camp. They did this for six days. 15 Early on the seventh day, they started at dawn and marched around the city seven times in the same way. That was the only day they marched around the city seven times. 16 After the seventh time, the priests blew the trumpets, and Joshua said to the people, "Shout! For the Lord has given you the city. 17 But the city and everything in it are set apart to the Lord for destruction. Only Rahab the prostitute and everyone with her in the house will live, because she hid the men we sent. 18 But keep yourselves from the things set apart, or you will be set apart for destruction. If you take any of those things, you will set apart the camp of Israel for destruction and bring disaster on it. 19 For all the silver and gold, and the articles of bronze and iron, are dedicated to the Lord and must go into the Lord's treasury." 20 So the people shouted, and the trumpets sounded. When they heard the blast of the trumpet, the people gave a great shout, and the wall collapsed. The people advanced into the city, each man straight ahead, and they captured the city. 21 They completely destroyed everything in the city with the sword-every man and woman, both young and old, and every ox, sheep, and donkey. 22 Joshua said to the two men who had scouted the land, "Go to the prostitute's house and bring the woman out of there, and all who are with her, just as you promised her." 23 So the young men who had scouted went in and brought out Rahab and her father, mother, brothers, and all who belonged to her. They brought out her whole family and settled them outside the camp of Israel. 24 They burned up the city and everything in it, but they put the silver and gold and the articles of bronze and iron into the treasury of the Lord's house. 25 But Joshua spared Rahab the prostitute, her father's household, and all who belonged to her, because she hid the men Joshua had sent to spy on Jericho, and she lives in Israel to this day. 26 At that time Joshua imposed this curse: Cursed before the Lord is the man who undertakes the rebuilding of this city, Jericho. He will lay its foundation [at the cost of] his firstborn; He will set up its gates [at the cost of] his youngest. 27 And the Lord was with Joshua, and his fame spread throughout the land.
1 The Israelites, however, were unfaithful regarding the things set apart for destruction. Achan son of Carmi, son of Zabdi, son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, took some of what was set apart, and the Lord's anger burned against the Israelites. 2 Joshua sent men from Jericho to Ai, which is near Beth-aven, east of Bethel, and told them, "Go up and scout the land." So the men went up and scouted Ai. 3 After returning to Joshua they reported to him, "Don't send all the people, but send about 2,000 or 3,000 men to attack Ai. Since the people of Ai are so few, don't wear out all our people there." 4 So about 3,000 men went up there, but they fled from the men of Ai. 5 The men of Ai struck down about 36 of them and chased them from outside the gate to the quarries, striking them down on the descent. As a result, the people's hearts melted and became like water. 6 Then Joshua tore his clothes and fell before the ark of the Lord with his face to the ground until evening, as did the elders of Israel; they all put dust on their heads. 7 "Oh, Lord God," Joshua said, "why did You ever bring these people across the Jordan to hand us over to the Amorites for our destruction? If only we had been content to remain on the other side of the Jordan! 8 What can I say, Lord, now that Israel has turned its back [and run] from its enemies? 9 When the Canaanites and all who live in the land hear about this, they will surround us and wipe out our name from the earth. Then what will You do about Your great name?" 10 The Lord then said to Joshua, "Stand up! Why are you on the ground? 11 Israel has sinned. They have violated My covenant that I appointed for them. They have taken some of what was set apart. They have stolen, deceived, and put [the things] with their own belongings. 12 This is why the Israelites cannot stand against their enemies. They will turn their backs [and run] from their enemies, because they have been set apart for destruction. I will no longer be with you unless you remove from you what is set apart. 13 "Go and consecrate the people. Tell them to consecrate themselves tomorrow, for this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says, 'There are among you, Israel, things set apart. You will not be able to stand against your enemies until you remove what is set apart. 14 In the morning you must present yourselves tribe by tribe. The tribe the Lord selects is to come forward clan by clan. The clan the Lord selects is to come forward family by family. The family the Lord selects is to come forward man by man. 15 The one who is caught with the things set apart must be burned, along with everything he has, because he has violated the Lord's covenant and committed an outrage in Israel.' " 16 Joshua got up early the next morning. He had Israel come forward tribe by tribe, and the tribe of Judah was selected. 17 He had the clans of Judah come forward, and the Zerahite clan was selected. He had the Zerahite clan come forward by heads of families, and Zabdi was selected. 18 He then had Zabdi's family come forward man by man, and Achan son of Carmi, son of Zabdi, son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, was selected. 19 So Joshua said to Achan, "My son, give glory to the Lord, the God of Israel, and make a confession to Him. I urge you, tell me what you have done. Don't hide anything from me." 20 Achan replied to Joshua, "It is true. I have sinned against the Lord, the God of Israel. This is what I did: 21 When I saw among the spoils a beautiful cloak from Babylon, 200 silver shekels, and a bar of gold weighing 50 shekels, I coveted them and took them. You can see for yourself. They are concealed in the ground inside my tent, with the money under the cloak." 22 So Joshua sent messengers who ran to the tent, and there was the cloak, concealed in his tent, with the money underneath. 23 They took the things from inside the tent, brought them to Joshua and all the Israelites, and spread them out in the Lord's presence. 24 Then Joshua and all Israel with him took Achan son of Zerah, the silver, the cloak, and the bar of gold, his sons and daughters, his ox, donkey, and sheep, his tent, and all that he had, and brought them up to the Valley of Achor. 25 Joshua said, "Why have you troubled us? Today the Lord will trouble you!" So all Israel stoned him to death. They burned their bodies, threw stones on them, 26 and raised over him a large pile of rocks that remains to this day. Then the Lord turned from His burning anger. Therefore that place has been called the Valley of Achor to this day.
1 The Lord said to Joshua, "Do not be afraid or discouraged. Take the whole military force with you and go attack Ai. Look, I have handed over to you the king of Ai, his people, city, and land. 2 Treat Ai and its king as you did Jericho and its king; you may plunder its spoil and livestock for yourselves. Set an ambush behind the city." 3 So Joshua and the whole military force set out to attack Ai. Joshua selected 30,000 fighting men and sent them out at night. 4 He commanded them: "Pay attention. Lie in ambush behind the city, not too far from it, and all of you be ready. 5 Then I and all the people who are with me will approach the city. When they come out against us as they did the first time, we will flee from them. 6 They will come after us until we have drawn them away from the city, for they will say, 'They are fleeing from us as before.' While we are fleeing from them, 7 you are to come out of your ambush and seize the city, for the Lord your God has handed it over to you. 8 After taking the city, set it on fire. Follow the Lord's command-see [that you do] as I have ordered you." 9 So Joshua sent them out, and they went to the ambush site and waited between Bethel and Ai, to the west of Ai. But he spent that night with the troops. 10 Joshua started early the next morning and mobilized them. Then he and the elders of Israel led the troops up to Ai. 11 All those who were with him went up and approached the city, arriving opposite Ai, and camped to the north of it, with a valley between them and the city. 12 Now Joshua had taken about 5,000 men and set them in ambush between Bethel and Ai, to the west of the city. 13 The military force was stationed in this way: the main camp to the north of the city and its rear guard to the west of the city. And that night Joshua went into the valley. 14 When the king of Ai saw [the Israelites], the men of the city hurried and went out early in the morning, so that he and all his people could engage Israel in battle at a suitable place facing the plain [of the Jordan]. But he did not know there was an ambush [waiting] for him behind the city. 15 Joshua and all Israel pretended to be beaten back by them and fled toward the wilderness. 16 Then all the troops of Ai were summoned to pursue them, and they pursued Joshua and were drawn away from the city. 17 Not a man was left in Ai or Bethel who did not go out after Israel, leaving the city exposed while they pursued Israel. 18 Then the Lord said to Joshua, "Hold out the sword in your hand toward Ai, for I will hand the city over to you." So Joshua held out his sword toward it. 19 When he held out his hand, the men in ambush rose quickly from their position. They ran, entered the city, captured it, and immediately set it on fire. 20 The men of Ai turned and looked back, and smoke from the city was rising to the sky! They could not escape in any direction, and the troops who had fled to the wilderness now became the pursuers. 21 When Joshua and all Israel saw that the [men in] ambush had captured the city and that smoke was rising from it, they turned back and struck down the men of Ai. 22 The men in the ambush came out of the city against them, and the men of Ai were [trapped] between the Israelite forces, some on one side and some on the other. They struck them down until no survivor or fugitive remained, 23 but they captured the king of Ai alive and brought him to Joshua. 24 When Israel had finished killing everyone living in Ai who had pursued them into the open country, and when every last one of them had fallen by the sword, all Israel returned to Ai and struck it down with the sword. 25 The total of those who fell that day, both men and women, was 12,000-all the people of Ai. 26 Joshua did not draw back his hand that was holding the sword until all the inhabitants of Ai were completely destroyed. 27 Israel plundered only the cattle and spoil of that city for themselves, according to the Lord's command that He had given Joshua. 28 Joshua burned Ai and left it a permanent ruin, desolate to this day. 29 He hung [the body of] the king of Ai on a tree until evening, and at sunset Joshua commanded that they take his body down from the tree. They threw it down at the entrance of the city gate and put a large pile of rocks over it, which remains to this day. 30 At that time Joshua built an altar on Mount Ebal to the Lord, the God of Israel, 31 just as Moses the Lord's servant had commanded the Israelites. He built it according to what is written in the book of the law of Moses: an altar of uncut stones on which no iron tool has been used. Then they offered burnt offerings to the Lord and sacrificed fellowship offerings on it. 32 There on the stones, Joshua copied the law of Moses, which he had written in the presence of the Israelites. 33 All Israel, foreigner and citizen alike, with their elders, officers, and judges, stood on either side of the ark of the Lord's covenant facing the Levitical priests who carried it. As Moses the Lord's servant had commanded earlier, half of them were in front of Mount Gerizim and half in front of Mount Ebal, to bless the people of Israel. 34 Afterwards, Joshua read aloud all the words of the law-the blessings as well as the curses-according to all that is written in the book of the law. 35 There was not a word of all that Moses had commanded that Joshua did not read before the entire assembly of Israel, including the women, little children, and foreigners who were with them.
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