Joshua 10:36
Then Joshua and all Israel with him went up from Eglon to Hebron and fought against it.
Divine SovereigntySketches of SermonsJoshua 10:28-43
The Old Camp and the New FoeA. B. Mackay.Joshua 10:28-43

I. THE DUTY TO BE BRAVE AND STRONG. This is often insisted on in the Book of Joshua (e.g., 1:6). Christianity gives prominence to gentler graces of humility, mildness, and the forgiving spirit. But it does not therefore exonerate us from the more masculine duties (1 Corinthians 16:13; Ephesians 6:10).

(1) It is our duty to be brave. Cowardice is a sin in a Christian even more than in a pagan, because the Christian has higher motives for courage. The exhortation, "Fear not," is not only an encouragement to comfort; it is an incitement to duty, because cowardice leads us to shrink from

(a) danger,

(b) responsibility,

(c) pain and loss,

(d) ridicule; and yet all of these may come in the way of our life's work.

(2) It is our duty to be strong. We should not simply bewail weakness as a calamity; we should repent of it as a failing. Moral weakness comes from moral corruption. It makes us fail in our work of resisting sin and doing good. It is therefore needful that we should overcome it if we are to fulfil our mission.


(1) We are surrounded by alarming dangers;

(a) in our own sinful hearts;

(b) in the evil of the world, and the troubles and temptations which arise from this;

(c) in the mystery of life.

He who is not brave with God's courage will sink before these terrors when once he realises their full proportions.

(2) We are called to difficult tasks;

(a) like the Israelites, we are invited to take possession of an inheritance. The kingdom of heaven is not won without fighting (1 Corinthians 9:26);

(b) like the Israelites, we have foes to resist in sin within and temptation without (1 Peter 5:8, 9);

(c) like the Israelites, we have territory to conquer for God. We have not to fight for our own inheritance and safety only or chiefly, but that we may win the world for Christ (1 Timothy 6:12; 2 Timothy 2:3).


(1) They are derived from God. We are not to fear, because God is with us (Isaiah 43:1, 2). We are to be strong in His strength (Psalm 29:11; Philippians 4:13). Therefore those naturally most timid and weak can be strong and brave in God (Isaiah 40:31; 2 Corinthians 12:10).

(2) They are encouraged by experience. To us it appears a brutal source of courage - those Hebrew captains planting their feet on the necks of the conquered kings in triumph. But rejoicing in the victory, it was well that they should see God's hand in it, and gain strength from it. We may seek strength and courage in the contemplation of the way in which God has helped us in the past (Psalm 34:6).

(3) They are increased by practice. The text is an exhortation. Though strength and courage come from God, they come through our own efforts to be brave and energetic. We must exercise Divine grace in order to realise its efficiency (Philippians 2:12).

(4) They are mutually helpful. Courage and strength are associated. Courage without strength is rash. Strength without courage is futile. We must be strong to justify our courage and brave to use our strength. Thus the various Christian graces are linked together in arming a soul with the whole armour of God (Ephesians 6:11). - W.F.A.

All these kings and their laud did Joshua take at one time, because the Lord... fought for Israel.
Sketches of Sermons.

1. Worldly goods. One is accordingly born to affluence, while another is cradled in poverty. Before they existed they could, of course, have no claims or demerits; and therefore the difference in their tot must be owing to His sovereign disposal of events.

2. Bodily constitution and health. As variety marks all other of God's works, so here it happens that one is naturally robust, another sickly, a third deformed, &c. Who is it that maketh the strong, the beautiful, &c., to differ? The answer may be found in 2 Samuel 22:30, 35.

3. Mental qualifications. "The inspiration of the Almighty giveth understanding." Much, it is true, depends on personal application. But much depends on natural capacity; given "to one five talents, to another two, and to another one"; and much on the opportunities, instructors, &c., which God either gives or withholds.

4. Spiritual privileges. Mankind soon began to have greater or smaller advantages in this respect, as they descended from families more or less holy; and the case is the same to the present day. Instance the Israelites and heathens formerly; Christians and pagans now.


1. We have seen that whatever we possess is of free favour at first, from the original proprietor of all. Such the acknowledgment of the psalmist, "Of Thine own have I given Thee."

2. No person becomes a proprietor of his possessions merely because he has long enjoyed them. Every blessing is a loan resumable at pleasure; and instead of gaining a right by holding it, the holder is becoming more and more indebted. The property is still God's (Psalm 24:1, 10., 12).

3. On this ground He took His own land of promise from the Canaanites and transferred it to Israel. And He still puts down one and raises up another as it pleases Him.


1. That His intelligent and moral creatures are what they are is owing to His sovereign pleasure. Thus Elihu (Job 35:10, 11).

2. Since they are such, and capable of moral government, their nature requires a law, as a test of their obedience and for the exercise of their capabilities; and it is His prerogative, who is not only the sovereign Lord, but infinitely wise, to say what is right, to enact such law.

3. In order to make the law efficient it was necessary it should be guarded and enforced by penal sanctions. Whence it follows —

4. That truth requires, while sovereignty authorises, the just punishment of disobedience to His righteous and equitable commands.

IV. IN EXECUTING HIS RIGHTEOUS PURPOSES GOD MAY EMPLOY WHAT AGENCY OR INSTRUMENTALITY HE PLEASES. He doubtless can and may work immediately on any and every part of His creation. Yet He seldom does so. Oftentimes He employs angels, as in the case of Sennacherib or Herod. And oftentimes storm, pestilence, earthquake, &c. Deists do not object to these. Yet they cavil at God's employing the sword of Israel; a difference merely in the circumstance of instrumentality. Let the subject teach us —

1. Reverence. "Forasmuch as there is none like unto Thee, O Lord," &c. (Jeremiah 10:6, 7). The opposite disposition is reproved (Romans 9:20), and threatened (Isaiah 45:9, 10).

2. Dependence. We enjoy no more or longer than He blesses us, and live no longer than He sustains (Psalm 90:3, 14; Psalm 104:27-29).

3. Humility. "Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom," &c. (Jeremiah 9:23, 24; 1 Corinthians 4:7).

4. Gratitude. Who maketh thee to differ?

(Sketches of Sermons.)

Joshua returned, and all Israel with him
It must have been a great rest and refreshment for the weary warriors to come to such a camp from time to time. It would be to them a Sabbath amid their arduous labours. From this place they would after each visit go more boldly out to deal harder blows against the uncircumcised Canaanites. And it is the same with us in the war which we wage against the inner and the outer foe. We have our headquarters too, a visit to which should stimulate us even more than a visit to Gilgal did the Israelites. What is our Gilgal? The Cross of the Lord Jesus Christ. That remains always our centre. We should come back to it at all times; not only when driven there by defeat, in order to have shelter, but also after every victory, in order to give thanks. Thus shall we maintain faith and a good conscience. Then issuing from such headquarters, so safe, so restful, so hallowed, so purifying, we shall be filled with a holy enthusiasm and unconquerable strength, and march like Israel from victory to victory. When Joshua had come back to the old headquarters word was brought to him of the gathering of a new foe. This was the most numerous army that had as yet been gathered against him. And it was the most powerful, as well as the most numerous army which Joshua had encountered. For the first time in this campaign we hear of war-horses being used, and the war-chariots of iron which were such a terror to the ancient infantry. This army is also better led than any other that had taken the field. Jabin was the commander-in-chief. One of his successors is called king of Canaan (Judges 4:2-24), and therefore he would in all likelihood have been the head of the great confederacy. The word "Jabin" is not a name, but a title borne by the kings of Hazor, and signifies "The Wise," just as Adoni-zedek means "Lord of Righteousness." Therefore, as we have seen the religious head of the Canaanites marshalling the southern army, so here we see the wise head of the Canaanites marshalling the northern army. The southern might be called the coalition of the priest; the northern the coalition of the sage. How graphically is the spiritual experience of the Christian depicted by these conflicts! No sooner is one set of foes subdued than another arises. There is no rest here. There is also a similarity in the kind of opposition which we have to encounter. As the advance of Israel was opposed now by Adoni-zedek and now by Jabin, so the advance of truth is opposed now by apostate Christianity and now by pompous philosophy. As it is with the Church collectively so is it with the individual. He may lay his account sooner or later to face these two, often in the same order. First comes superstition, with its high-sounding titles, its endless genealogies, its imperious claims, its elaborate ritual, its sensuous will-worship, its irrational bondage. It is resisted, it is overcome. Then comes rationalism, and it cries, "Well done. You have routed these infernal hosts. Now come with us. Finish the work you have so well begun. Cast from you the remaining rags of superstition. Follow the light of Reason. Shake off the remaining fetters and be free." Then the sage who argues thus will, like Jabin, muster whole hosts of imposing arguments. How quickly they come at his bidding: from north, south, east, and west, like the sand that is on the seashore for multitude. And when he reviews them, how imposing is their array I It is a critical time for the soul when he stands gazing on that imposing array, if he is not assured that the Lord is on his side; if he hears not, as did Joshua, the words, "Be not afraid because of them, to-morrow will I deliver them up all slain before Israel." But for faith in the Divine presence and this sure word the soul is in a sad case, and with quaking heart and tottering knees will quit the high places of the field. Alas! alas! how many in our day are dazed by the hosts of unsanctified science! The Christian soldier is not worthy of his name who is not ready with unfeigned faith in the truth of God to proclaim it boldly, whether men hear or forbear, to oppose all the glittering phalanxes of false philosophy with the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. As we look at this new army mustered to oppose Joshua, we cannot but renew our wonder at the infatuation of the Canaanites. What a solemn thought it is that the greatest miracles will not in themselves lead the heart of man to subjection! Yet, after all, why should we wonder at these Canaanites, when we have greater cause for wonder in the unbelief of many around us? What were all the miracles of which these Canaanites were cognisant compared with those with which we have been familiar since our childhood?

(A. B. Mackay.).

When Jabin king of Hazor had heard.
I. HEALING AND NOT HEARING. The tidings of the overthrow of Sihon and Og, and the fall of Jericho, seem to have made almost no impression on the sleepy King of Hazor.

II. HEARING, BUT HEARING IN VAIN. When Ai fell there seems to have been a general movement all through Canaan west of Jordan (Joshua 9:1). Before Jabin had gathered the northern legions southern Canaan had been destroyed.

III. HEARING, AND HEARING TO RUIN. When Jabin did exert himself, it was but to proceed straight to destruction. Thus do the wicked delay heedlessly, awaken slowly, and finally bestir themselves to anticipate judgment.

(F. G. Marchant.)

Be not afraid because of them
I. The directions which God gave Joshua on this occasion were prefaced by WORDS OF ENCOURAGEMENT according to the Divine custom. Though Jehovah is not to interpose with mighty power as on former occasions, yet He supports and strengthens His servant with timely encouragement. Nothing could be better timed than these words as a preparation for the work that had to be done. Joshua had been made fully acquainted with the foe. His scouts have returned covered with dust, and reported the position and numbers and equipment of this new enemy. As these particulars were all told we can imagine that the boldest held his breath for a time. Joshua's generals would look at each other as if to say, "What shall we do now?" God knows human nature, therefore at this emergency He steps in with the words, "Be not afraid because of them, for to-morrow about this time will I deliver them up all slain before Israel." God is always well timed in His announcements. When we seek with all our hearts to do His will we shall never lack encouragement, and the greater the enemy, the harder the task, the more emphatic will that encouragement be. And the encouragement God gave was very definite. He did not speak in a general way. He fixed the day, the hour, and the extent of the victory. Whatever our difficulties may be, if we only search God's Word we will find definite encouragement, that which exactly meets our circumstances. The encouragement was also emphatic. We lose somewhat, in our translation, the emphasis of the original. The "I" is most emphatic. The army before Joshua may be as the sand of the sea for multitude, but what are the hosts of Jabin to the hosts of Jehovah? And the man who has on his side Jehovah of hosts can also count on the hosts of Jehovah. Therefore Joshua, even in the sight of such a foe, has no cause for fear. Does not God deal in the very same way with us? With what emphasis does He point to Himself as the glorious source of light and love and life, so that our hearts may be encouraged to put all their trust in Him, to the casting out of every fear. And the encouragement was also suggestive. God's words bring to remembrance other scenes and other victories. Joshua was not the only one whom God had helped in similar emergencies. All the difficulties that may come upon us may be new to us, but not one of them is new to God. He has brought His people triumphantly through the same or worse before, and He can do so again.

II. This Divine encouragement was coupled with a DIVINE COMMAND. The chief object of Israel's fear would naturally be the horses and chariots which were Jabin's pride and confidence; and it is to them that the command has special reference. God ordered His servants not to seize them and turn them against the enemy, but to destroy them utterly. This command is given for the express purpose of removing a temptation to carnal confidence. Jehovah wishes His people to look to Him alone for victory. This is to be their constant attitude, the holy habit of their souls. The bearing of this command on us is plain, and the lesson is much needed in our day. We are to carry on God's work in God's way. There are many of the weapons and devices of the world which ought not to be pressed into the service of the Church. To handle the iron chariots and the prancing horses of human philosophy against the hosts of unbelief, at the same time retaining our confidence in God as the Giver of every victory, and the consciousness that not a single soul can be savingly convinced except by His might — this is an attainment which the history of the Church from the beginning has proved a practical impossibility. Our one work in the prosecution of the campaign of salvation is to preach "Christ and Him crucified," though fully conscious of the fact that to some it is foolishness, not worth a row of pins; and to others a stumbling-block, utterly repugnant. There is, and has always been, a fatal tendency to use the world's weapons in the Church's work; to worship intellect, learning, genius, scholarship, eloquence; to look on these things as the treasury and armoury of the Church; to depend on what is outward and human, instead of what is spiritual; to depend on that which appeals to the eye, the ear, the intellect, the emotions, rather than on the living God and His glorious gospel. They are the mightiest champions who, like the Master, do all the fighting "not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit, and with power." Thus encouraged and commanded, Joshua brought his army into close proximity to the foe. He rested during that night, and when the grey dawn was lighting up the rushy marshes round the waters of Merom, he burst like a thunderbolt upon Jabin's camp. The victory could not have been more complete; and it was speedily followed up, as in the south, by the subjugation of all the leading cities in the northern portion of Canaan; the city of Hazor, Jabin's capital, being destroyed with fire. As we think on this crowning victory we remember the words, "An horse is a vain thing for safety, neither shall he deliver any by his great strength." Jabin found this out in that dire encounter. So will it be with all who harden themselves against the gospel of Christ. The more stout in heart they are to resist, the more terrible will be their overthrow. And if Jabin's overthrow reminds us of these things, this last great victory of Joshua also places very emphatically before us the conditions of success in the work of the Lord. They are few and simple, and easy to be understood. They comprise wise purpose, believing courage, sleepless energy, scrupulous obedience, hard blows. As a young student said to a friend when they were speaking of the work to which they had devoted themselves, "Our great work in preaching to people is not to dish up dainty ideas, but to pound them with the truth." Let us only listen to God's encouragement, obey God's command, march with unfeigned faith, and strike with all our might, and victory is sure.

(A. B. Mackay.)

1. The enemies of Christ are very many in number.

2. Not only are the enemies of Christ very numerous, but they are perfectly united. There is a common consent amongst them. They hate the good. They are unanimous, and their unanimity is power.

3. The forces of evil are many, united, and desperate. They have made up their minds to work rack and ruin.

(J. Parker, D. D.)

All the spoil of these cities, and the cattle, the children of Israel
These at the end would amply make up for the toils and sufferings of conflict, and for all the privations and prohibitions they had been laid under. This is that which should engage the Christian's hopes, and on which his whole heart should be set, the end of warfare, when He who poured out his soul unto death, and was numbered with transgressors, will, in assigning the fruits of His eternal conquests, divide the spoil with the strong, and His portion with the great. Unsearchable the riches, and invaluable the spoils, to be shared in the heavenly world: treasures of everlasting bliss and glory that await every holy warrior. These are appropriate only to the elevation of perfect being and blessedness; and then to be enjoyed, when the conflicts of time end in the triumphs of eternity. Nothing will be found marked with a prohibition, nor anything less be obtained, than an unwithering crown of life. This will compensate for all the sufferings that can now be endured, and for all the sacrifices that may ever be made, the hope of which, as realised in the mind, yields no small support.

(W. Seaton.)

Adonizedec, Amorites, Debir, Eglon, Gibeon, Hoham, Horam, Israelites, Japhia, Jasher, Joshua, Piram
Ai, Azekah, Beth-horon, Debir, Eglon, Gaza, Gezer, Gibeon, Gilgal, Hebron, Jarmuth, Jericho, Jerusalem, Kadesh-barnea, Lachish, Libnah, Makkedah, Negeb, Valley of Aijalon
Assaulted, Attack, Attacked, Eglon, Fight, Fought, Hebron, Joshua
1. Five kings war against Gibeon
6. Joshua rescues it
10. God fights against them with hailstones
12. The sun and moon stand still at the word of Joshua
16. The five kings are murdered in a cave
22. They are brought forth
24. scornfully used
26. and hanged
28. Seven kings more are conquered
43. Joshua returns to Gilgal

Dictionary of Bible Themes
Joshua 10:29-42

     5214   attack

Joshua 10:29-43

     5354   invasions

Five Kings in a Cave
TEXT: "And it came to pass, when they brought out those kings unto Joshua, that Joshua called for all the men of Israel, and said unto the captains of the men of war which went with him, Come near, put your feet upon the necks of these kings. And they came near, and put their feet upon the necks of them. And Joshua said unto them, Fear not, nor be dismayed, be strong and of good courage: for thus shall the Lord do to all your enemies against whom ye fight."--Joshua 10:24-25. The history of the
J. Wilbur Chapman—And Judas Iscariot

Praying Saints of the Old Testaments
The Holy Spirit will give to the praying saint the brightness of an immortal hope, the music of a deathless song, in His baptism and communion with the heart, He will give sweeter and more enlarged visions of heaven until the taste for other things will pall, and other visions will grow dim and distant. He will put notes of other worlds in human hearts until all earth's music is discord and songless.--Rev. E. M. Bounds Old Testament history is filled with accounts of praying saints. The leaders of
Edward M. Bounds—Prayer and Praying Men

Gibeon. Josh 10:06

John Newton—Olney Hymns

The Northern Coast of Judea. Beth-Horon.
This coast is marked out Joshua 18:12; where, at verse 14, are very many versions to be corrected, which render the sea; such are, the Syriac, the Seventy, the Vulgar, the Italian, ours, &c.: whence ariseth a sense of insuperable difficulty to a chorographical eye: when it should, indeed, be rendered of the west, as the Chaldee, Arabic, R. Solomon, &c. rightly do. We read of a double Beth-horon in the Old Testament, but one only under the second Temple... At that place that great Canaanitish army
John Lightfoot—From the Talmud and Hebraica

Subterraneous Places. Mines. Caves.
Thus having taken some notice of the superficies of the land, let us a little search into its bowels. You may divide the subterraneous country into three parts: the metal mines, the caves, and the places of burial. This land was eminently noted for metal mines, so that "its stones," in very many places, "were iron, and out of its hills was digged brass," Deuteronomy 8:9. From these gain accrued to the Jews: but to the Christians, not seldom slavery and misery; being frequently condemned hither by
John Lightfoot—From the Talmud and Hebraica

Sign Seekers, and the Enthusiast Reproved.
(Galilee on the Same Day as the Last Section.) ^A Matt. XII. 38-45; ^C Luke XI. 24-36. ^c 29 And when the multitudes were gathering together unto him, ^a 38 Then certain of the scribes and Pharisees answered him, saying, Teacher, we would see a sign from thee. [Having been severely rebuked by Jesus, it is likely that the scribes and Pharisees asked for a sign that they might appear to the multitude more fair-minded and open to conviction than Jesus had represented them to be. Jesus had just wrought
J. W. McGarvey—The Four-Fold Gospel

Subjects of Study. Home Education in Israel; Female Education. Elementary Schools, Schoolmasters, and School Arrangements.
If a faithful picture of society in ancient Greece or Rome were to be presented to view, it is not easy to believe that even they who now most oppose the Bible could wish their aims success. For this, at any rate, may be asserted, without fear of gainsaying, that no other religion than that of the Bible has proved competent to control an advanced, or even an advancing, state of civilisation. Every other bound has been successively passed and submerged by the rising tide; how deep only the student
Alfred Edersheim—Sketches of Jewish Social Life

The Hebrews and the Philistines --Damascus
THE ISRAELITES IN THE LAND OF CANAAN: THE JUDGES--THE PHILISTINES AND THE HEBREW KINGDOM--SAUL, DAVID, SOLOMON, THE DEFECTION OF THE TEN TRIBES--THE XXIst EGYPTIAN DYNASTY--SHESHONQ OR SHISHAK DAMASCUS. The Hebrews in the desert: their families, clans, and tribes--The Amorites and the Hebrews on the left bank of the Jordan--The conquest of Canaan and the native reaction against the Hebrews--The judges, Ehud, Deborah, Jerubbaal or Gideon and the Manassite supremacy; Abimelech, Jephihdh. The Philistines,
G. Maspero—History Of Egypt, Chaldaea, Syria, Babylonia, and Assyria, V 6

Meditations of the True Manner of Practising Piety on the Sabbath-Day.
Almighty God will have himself worshipped, not only in a private manner by private persons and families, but also in a more public sort, of all the godly joined together in a visible church; that by this means he may be known not only to be the God and Lord of every Singular person, but also of the creatures of the whole universal world. Question--But why do not we Christians under the New, keep the Sabbath on the same seventh day on which it was kept under the Old Testament? I answer--Because our
Lewis Bayly—The Practice of Piety

Divine Support and Protection
[What shall we say then to these things?] If God be for us, who can be against us? T he passions of joy or grief, of admiration or gratitude, are moderate when we are able to find words which fully describe their emotions. When they rise very high, language is too faint to express them; and the person is either lost in silence, or feels something which, after his most laboured efforts, is too big for utterance. We may often observe the Apostle Paul under this difficulty, when attempting to excite
John Newton—Messiah Vol. 2

The book of Joshua is the natural complement of the Pentateuch. Moses is dead, but the people are on the verge of the promised land, and the story of early Israel would be incomplete, did it not record the conquest of that land and her establishment upon it. The divine purpose moves restlessly on, until it is accomplished; so "after the death of Moses, Jehovah spake to Joshua," i. 1. The book falls naturally into three divisions: (a) the conquest of Canaan (i.-xii.), (b) the settlement of the
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

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