Joshua 11

Northern Palestine Taken

1 Then it came about, when Jabin king of 1Hazor heard of it, that he sent to Jobab king of Madon and to the king of Shimron and to the king of Achshaph,
2 and to the kings who were of the north in the hill country, and in the 2Arabah -south of Chinneroth and in the lowland and on the heights of Dor on the west -
3 to the Canaanite on the east and on the west, and the Amorite and the Hittite and the Perizzite and the Jebusite in the hill country, and 3the Hivite at the foot of 4Hermon in the land of 5Mizpeh.
4 They came out, they and all their armies with them, 6as many people as the sand that is on the seashore *, with very many horses and chariots.
5 So all of these kings having agreed to meet, came and encamped together at the waters of Merom, to fight against Israel.
6 Then the LORD said to Joshua, "7Do not be afraid because * of them, for tomorrow at this time I will deliver all of them slain before Israel; you shall 8hamstring their horses and burn their chariots with fire."
7 So Joshua and all the people of war with him came upon them suddenly by the waters of Merom, and attacked them.
8 The LORD delivered them into the hand of Israel, so that they defeated them, and pursued them as far as Great Sidon and 9Misrephoth-maim and the valley of 10Mizpeh to the east; and they struck them until no survivor was left to them.
9 Joshua did to them as the LORD had told him; he 11hamstrung their horses and burned their chariots with fire.
10 Then Joshua turned back at that time, and captured 12Hazor and struck its king with the sword; for Hazor formerly was the head of all these kingdoms.
11 13They struck every person who was in it with the edge of the sword, utterly destroying them; there was no * one left who breathed. And he burned Hazor with fire.
12 Joshua captured all the cities of these kings, and all their kings, and he struck them with the edge of the sword, and utterly destroyed them; just 14as Moses the servant of the LORD had commanded.
13 However, Israel did not burn any cities that stood on their mounds, except Hazor alone, which Joshua burned.
14 15All the spoil of these cities and the cattle, the sons of Israel took as their plunder; but they struck every man with the edge of the sword, until they had destroyed them. They left no one who breathed.
15 Just as the LORD had commanded Moses his servant, so Moses commanded Joshua, and so Joshua did; he left nothing * undone * of all that the LORD had commanded Moses.
16 Thus Joshua took all that land: 16the hill country and all the Negev, all that land of Goshen, the lowland, 17the Arabah, the hill country of Israel and its lowland
17 from 18Mount Halak, that rises toward Seir, even as far as Baal-gad in the valley of Lebanon at the foot of Mount Hermon. And he captured 19all their kings and struck them down and put them to death.
18 Joshua waged war a long time with all these kings.
19 There was not a city which made peace with the sons of Israel except 20the Hivites living in Gibeon; they took them all in battle.
20 21For it was of the LORD to harden their hearts, to meet Israel in battle in order that he might 22utterly destroy them, that they might receive no mercy, but that he might destroy them, just as the LORD had commanded Moses.
21 Then Joshua came at that time and cut off 23the Anakim from the hill country, from Hebron, from Debir, from Anab and from all the hill country of Judah and from all the hill country of Israel. Joshua utterly destroyed them with their cities.
22 There were no Anakim left in the land of the sons of Israel; only in Gaza, in 24Gath, and in 25Ashdod some remained.
23 So Joshua took the whole land, according to all that the LORD had spoken to Moses, and 26Joshua gave it for an inheritance to Israel according to their divisions by their tribes. 27Thus the land had rest from war.

Joshua 11 Commentary

Chapter 11

Divers kings overcome at the waters of Merom. (1-9) Hazor is taken and burned. (10-14) All that country subdued, The Anakims cut off. (15-23)

Verses 1-9 The wonders God wrought for the Israelites were to encourage them to act vigorously themselves. Thus the war against Satan's kingdom, carried on by preaching the gospel, was at first forwarded by miracles; but being fully proved to be of God, we are now left to the Divine grace in the usual course, in the use of the sword of the Spirit. God encouraged Joshua. Fresh dangers and difficulties make it necessary to seek fresh supports from the word of God, which we have nigh unto us for use in every time of need. God proportions our trials to our strength, and our strength to our trials. Joshua's obedience in destroying the horses and chariots, shows his self-denial in compliance with God's command. The possession of things on which the carnal heart is prone to depend, is hurtful to the life of faith, and the walk with God; therefore it is better to be without worldly advantages, than to have the soul endangered by them.

Verses 10-14 The Canaanites filled up the measure of their iniquity, and were, as a judgment, left to the pride, obstinacy, and enmity of their hearts, and to the power of Satan; all restraints being withdrawn, while the dispensations of Providence tended to drive them to despair. They brought on themselves the vengeance they justly merited, of which the Israelites were to be executioners, by the command the Lord gave to Moses.

Verses 15-23 Never let the sons of Anak be a terror to the Israel of God, for their day to fall will come. The land rested from war. It ended not in a peace with the Canaanites, that was forbidden, but in a peace from them. There is a rest, a rest from war, remaining for the people of God, into which they shall enter, when their warfare is accomplished. That which was now done, is compared with what had been said to Moses. God's word and his works, if viewed together, will be found mutually to set each other forth. If we make conscience of our duty, we need not question the performance of the promise. But the believer must never put off his armour, or expect lasting peace, till he closes his eyes in death; nay, as his strength and usefulness increase, he may expect more heavy trials; yet the Lord will not permit any enemies to assault the believer till he has prepared him for the battle. Christ Jesus ever lives to plead for his people, and their faith shall not fail, however Satan may be permitted to assault them. And however tedious, sharp, and difficult the believer's warfare, his patience in tribulation may be encouraged by the joyfulness of hope; for he will, ere long, rest from sin and from sorrow in the Canaan above.

Cross References 27

  • 1. Joshua 11:10
  • 2. Joshua 12:3; Joshua 13:27
  • 3. Deuteronomy 7:1; Judges 3:3, 5; 1 Kings 9:20
  • 4. Joshua 11:17; Joshua 13:5, 11
  • 5. Joshua 15:38; Joshua 18:26
  • 6. Judges 7:12
  • 7. Joshua 10:8
  • 8. 2 Samuel 8:4
  • 9. Joshua 13:6
  • 10. Joshua 11:3
  • 11. Joshua 11:6
  • 12. Joshua 11:1
  • 13. Deuteronomy 20:16
  • 14. Numbers 33:50-52; Deuteronomy 7:2; Deuteronomy 20:16
  • 15. Numbers 31:11, 12
  • 16. Joshua 10:40, 41
  • 17. Joshua 11:2
  • 18. Joshua 12:7
  • 19. Deuteronomy 7:24
  • 20. Joshua 9:3, 7
  • 21. Exodus 14:17
  • 22. Deuteronomy 7:16
  • 23. Numbers 13:33; Deuteronomy 9:2
  • 24. 1 Samuel 17:4; 1 Kings 2:39; 1 Chronicles 8:13
  • 25. Joshua 15:46; 1 Samuel 5:1; Isaiah 20:1
  • 26. Deuteronomy 1:38
  • 27. Deuteronomy 12:9, 10; Deuteronomy 25:19; Hebrews 4:8

Footnotes 9

Chapter Summary

INTRODUCTION TO JOSHUA 11

This chapter relates how that the kings of the northern parts of Canaan combine together against Joshua, Jos 11:1-5; and that the Lord encouraged him to fight with them, and did deliver them into his hands, who, with all their people, were smitten by him, Jos 11:6-11; and how that he took their cities, and destroyed the inhabitants of them, and took the spoil of them for a prey, Jos 11:12-15; and so became master of the whole country, both southern and northern, which is described Jos 11:16-20; and the chapter is concluded with an account of his cutting off the Anakim from various parts, which finished the conquest of the whole land, Jos 10:21-23.

Joshua 11 Commentaries