Joshua 1; Joshua 2; Joshua 3; Joshua 4

1 Moses, the servant of the Lord, died. After that, the LORD spoke to Joshua, the son of Nun. Joshua was Moses' helper. The LORD said to Joshua, 2 "My servant Moses is dead. Now then, I want you and all of these people to get ready to go across the Jordan River. I want all of you to go into the land I am about to give to the people of Israel. 3 "I will give all of you every place you walk on, just as I promised Moses. 4 Your territory will reach from the Negev Desert all the way to Lebanon. The great Euphrates River will be to the east. The Mediterranean Sea will be to the west. Your territory will include all of the Hittite country. 5 "Joshua, no one will be able to stand up against you as long as you live. I will be with you, just as I was with Moses. I will never leave you. I will never desert you. 6 "Be strong and brave. You will lead these people, and they will take the land as their very own. It is the land I promised with an oath to give their people long ago. 7 "Be strong and very brave. Make sure you obey the whole law my servant Moses gave you. Do not turn away from it to the right or the left. Then you will have success everywhere you go. 8 Never stop reading this Scroll of the Law. Day and night you must think about what it says. Make sure you do everything that is written in it. Then things will go well with you. And you will have great success. 9 "Here is what I am commanding you to do. Be strong and brave. Do not be terrified. Do not lose hope. I am the LORD your God. I will be with you everywhere you go." 10 So Joshua gave orders to the officers of the people. He said, 11 "Go through the camp. Tell the people, 'Get your supplies ready. Three days from now you will go across the Jordan River right here. You will go in and take over the land. The LORD your God is giving it to you as your very own.' " 12 Joshua also spoke to the tribes of Reuben and Gad and half of the tribe of Manasseh. He said to them, 13 "Remember what Moses, the servant of the Lord, commanded you. He said, 'The LORD your God is giving you this land. It's a place where you can settle down and live in peace and rest.' 14 "Your wives, children and livestock can stay here east of the Jordan River. Moses gave you this land. But all of your fighting men must get ready for battle. They must go across ahead of the other tribes. You must help them 15 until the LORD gives them rest. In the same way, he has already given you rest. You must help them until they also have taken over their land. It's the land the LORD your God is giving them. After that, you can come back here. Then you can live in your own land. It's the land that Moses, the servant of the Lord, gave you east of the Jordan River. It's toward the sunrise." 16 Then the tribes of Reuben and Gad and half of the tribe of Manasseh answered Joshua. They said, "We'll do what you have commanded us to do. We'll go where you send us. 17 We obeyed Moses completely. And we'll obey you just as completely. But may the LORD your God be with you, just as he was with Moses. 18 "Suppose people question your authority. And suppose they refuse to obey anything you command them to do. Then they will be put to death. Just be strong and brave!"
1 Joshua, the son of Nun, sent two spies from Shittim. He sent them in secret. He said to them, "Go. Look the land over. Most of all, check out Jericho." So they went to Jericho. They stayed at the house of a prostitute. Her name was Rahab. 2 The king of Jericho was told, "Look! Some of the people of Israel have come here tonight. They've come to check out the land." 3 So the king sent a message to Rahab. It said, "Bring out the men who came into your house. They've come to check out the whole land." 4 But the woman had hidden the two men. She said, "It's true that the men came here. But I didn't know where they had come from. 5 They left at sunset, when it was time to close the city gate. I don't know which way they went. Go after them quickly. You might catch up with them." 6 But in fact she had taken them up on the roof. There she had hidden them under some flax she had piled up. 7 The king's men left to hunt down the spies. They took the road that leads to where the Jordan River can be crossed. As soon as they had gone out of the city, the gate was shut. 8 Rahab went up on the roof before the spies settled down for the night. 9 She said to them, "I know that the LORD has given this land to you. We are very much afraid of you. Everyone who lives in this country is weak with fear because of you. 10 "We've heard how the LORD dried up the Red Sea for you when you came out of Egypt. We've heard what you did to Sihon and Og, the two Amorite kings. They ruled east of the Jordan River. You completely destroyed them. 11 "When we heard about it, our hearts melted away in fear. Because of you, we aren't brave anymore. The LORD your God is the God who rules over heaven above and earth below. 12 "Now then, please take an oath. Promise me in the name of the LORD that you will be kind to my family. I've been kind to you. Promise me 13 that you will spare the lives of my father and mother. Spare my brothers and sisters. Also spare everyone in their families. Promise that you won't put any of us to death." 14 So the men made a promise to her. "We'll give up our lives to save yours," they said. "But don't tell anyone what we're doing. Then we'll be kind and faithful to you when the LORD gives us the land." 15 The house Rahab lived in was part of the city wall. So she let the spies down by a rope through the window. 16 She had said to them, "Go up into the hills. The men who are chasing you won't be able to find you. Hide yourselves there for three days until they return. Then you can go on your way." 17 The men said to her, "You made us take an oath and make a promise. But we won't keep it 18 unless you do what we say. When we enter the land, you must tie this bright red rope in the window. Tie it in the window you let us down through. "Bring your father and mother into your house. Also bring your brothers and everyone else in your family into your house. 19 None of you must go out into the street. If you do, anything that happens to you will be your own fault. Don't hold us accountable. "But if anyone hurts someone who is inside the house with you, it will be our fault. And you can hold us accountable. 20 "Don't tell anyone what we're doing. If you do, we won't have to keep the promise you asked us to make." 21 "I agree," Rahab replied. "I'll do as you say." So she sent them away, and they left. Then she tied the bright red rope in the window. 22 When the spies left, they went up into the hills. They stayed there for three days. By that time the men who were chasing them had searched all along the road. They couldn't find them. So they returned. 23 Then the two spies started back. They went down out of the hills. They went across the Jordan River. They came to Joshua, the son of Nun. They told him everything that had happened to them. 24 They said, "We're sure the LORD has given the whole land over to us. All of the people there are weak with fear because of us."
1 Early one morning Joshua and all of the people of Israel started out from Shittim. They went down to the Jordan River. They camped there before they went across it. 2 After three days the officers went all through the camp. 3 They gave orders to the people. They said, "Watch for the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God. The priests, who are Levites, will be carrying it. When you see it, you must move out from where you are and follow it. 4 Then you will know which way to go. You have never gone this way before. But don't go near the ark. Stay about 1,000 yards away from it." 5 Joshua spoke to the people. He said, "Set yourselves apart to the Lord. Tomorrow he'll do amazing things among you." 6 Joshua said to the priests, "Go and get the ark of the covenant. Walk on ahead of the people." So they went and got it. Then they walked on ahead of them. 7 The LORD said to Joshua, "Today I will begin to honor you in the eyes of all of the people of Israel. Then they will know that I am with you, just as I was with Moses. 8 Speak to the priests who carry the ark of the covenant. Tell them, 'When you reach the edge of the Jordan River, go into the water and stand there.' " 9 Joshua spoke to the people of Israel. He said, "Come here. Listen to what the LORD your God is saying. 10 You will soon know that the living God is among you. You can be sure that he'll drive out the people who are now living in the land. He'll do it to make room for you. He'll drive out the Canaanites, Hittites, Hivites, Perizzites, Girgashites, Amorites and Jebusites. 11 "The ark will go into the Jordan River ahead of you. It's the ark of the covenant of the Lord of the whole earth. 12 "Choose 12 men from the tribes of Israel. Choose one from each tribe. 13 "The priests will carry the ark of the Lord. He's the Lord of the whole earth. As soon as the priests step into the Jordan, it will stop flowing. The water that's coming down the river will pile up in one place. That's how you will know that the living God is among you." 14 So the people took their tents down. They prepared to go across the Jordan River. The priests who were carrying the ark of the covenant went ahead of them. 15 The water of the Jordan was going over its banks. It always does that at the time the crops are being gathered. The priests came to the river. Their feet touched the water's edge. 16 Right away the water that was coming down the river stopped flowing. It piled up far away at a town called Adam near Zarethan. The water that was flowing down to the Dead Sea was completely cut off. So the people went across the Jordan River opposite Jericho. 17 The priests carried the ark of the covenant of the LORD. They stood firm on dry ground in the middle of the river. They stayed there until the whole nation of Israel had gone across on dry ground.
1 After the whole nation had gone across the Jordan River, the LORD spoke to Joshua. He said, 2 "Choose 12 men from among the people. Choose one from each tribe. 3 Tell them to get 12 stones from the middle of the river. They must pick them up from right where the priests stood. They must carry the stones over with all of you. And they must put them down at the place where you will stay tonight." 4 So Joshua called together the 12 men he had appointed from among the people of Israel. There was one man from each tribe. 5 He said to them, "Go back to the middle of the Jordan River. Go to where the ark of the LORD your God is. Each one of you must pick up a stone. You must carry it on your shoulder. There will be as many stones as there are tribes in Israel. 6 "The stones will serve as a reminder to you. In days to come, your children will ask you, 'What do these stones mean?' 7 Tell them that the LORD cut off the flow of water in the Jordan River. Tell them its water stopped flowing when the ark of the covenant of the LORD went across. The stones will always remind the Israelites of what happened there." 8 So the people of Israel did as Joshua commanded them. They took 12 stones from the middle of the Jordan River. There was one stone for each of the tribes of Israel. It was just as the LORD had told Joshua. The people carried the stones with them to their camp. There they put them down. 9 Joshua piled up the 12 stones that had been in the middle of the river. They had been right where the priests who carried the ark of the covenant had stood. And they are still there to this very day. 10 The priests who carried the ark remained standing in the middle of the Jordan River. They stayed there until the people had done everything the LORD had commanded Joshua. It was just as Moses had directed Joshua. All of the people went across quickly. 11 As soon as they did, the ark of the LORD and the priests also went across to the other side. The people were watching them. 12 Among the people who went across the river were men from the tribes of Reuben and Gad and half of the tribe of Manasseh. The men were armed. They went across ahead of the rest of the people of Israel. It was just as Moses had directed them. 13 There were about 40,000 of them. All of them were ready for battle. They went across in front of the ark of the Lord. They went to the flatlands around Jericho. They were prepared to go to war. 14 That day the LORD honored Joshua in the eyes of all of the people of Israel. They had respect for Joshua as long as he lived. They respected him just as much as they had respected Moses. 15 Then the LORD spoke to Joshua. He said, 16 "Command the priests to come up out of the Jordan River. They are carrying the ark where the tablets of the covenant are kept." 17 So Joshua gave a command to the priests. He said, "Come up out of the Jordan River." 18 Then the priests came up out of the river. They were carrying the ark of the covenant of the Lord. As soon as they stepped out on dry ground, the water of the Jordan began to flow again. It went over its banks, just as it had done before. 19 On the tenth day of the first month the people went up out of the Jordan River. They camped at Gilgal on the eastern border of Jericho. 20 Joshua set up the 12 stones at Gilgal. They were the ones the people had taken out of the Jordan. 21 Then he spoke to the people of Israel. He said, "In days to come, your children after you will ask their parents, 'What do these stones mean?' 22 Their parents must tell them, 'Israel went across the Jordan River on dry ground.' 23 The LORD your God dried up the Jordan for you until you had gone across it. He did to the Jordan River the same thing he had done to the Red Sea. He dried up the Red Sea ahead of us until we had gone across it. 24 He did it so that all of the nations on earth would know that he is powerful. He did it so that you would always have respect for the LORD your God."
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