Joshua 3:1
Early the next morning Joshua got up and left Shittim with all the Israelites. They went as far as the Jordan, where they camped before crossing over.
AdvanceC. M. Southgate.Joshua 3:1
Early RisingA. McAuslane.Joshua 3:1
the Waters Saw Thee; They Were Afraid'Alexander MaclarenJoshua 3:1

I. THE BURIAL OF JOSEPH'S BONES WAS A JUSTIFICATION OF HIS FAITH. Joseph had been so sure that God would give the promised land to Israel that he had made his brethren swear to bring up his bones with them (Genesis 50:25).

(1) True faith will lead to decisive action. It is vain to profess to believe in our heavenly inheritance unless we behave consistently with our belief.

(2) Faith is concerned with the unseen and the future. If we could see all there would be no room for faith.

(3) Faith is justified on earth by providence. It waits its full justification in heaven. As Joseph's faith was justified in the entrance into Canaan, so the old Messianic faith was justified in the advent of Christ, and the Christian faith will be justified at the "consummation of all things."

II. THE BURIAL OF JOSEPH'S BONES WAS AN EXAMPLE OF DEFERENCE TO THE WISHES OF THE DEAD. It is well that children should respect the wishes of departed parents. Much good may be learnt by considering the thoughts and purposes of our ancestors. The people which has no respect for its past is wanting in reverence and in depth of national life. Yet there must be a limit to the influence of antiquity. The ancients lived in the childhood of our race; wisdom should grow with enlarged historical experience. At best they were fallible men, and cannot claim to extinguish the reason and responsibility of their descendants. New circumstances often render the rules and precedents of antiquity entirely obsolete.

III. THE BURIAL OF JOSEPH'S BONES WAS AN ILLUSTRATION OF THE ONENESS OF MANKIND. Ages had passed since the death of Joseph. Yet his bones were preserved and buried in the very "parcel of ground which Jacob had bought." There is a family unity, a national unity, a church unity, a human solidarity. The past lives on in the present. Men are insensibly linked and welded together. We are members one of another. Therefore we should consider the good of each other, and of the whole community, and should take note of past experience and future requirements.

IV. THE BURIAL OF JOSEPH'S BONES REMINDS US OF THE DELAY WHICH PRECEDES THE ENJOYMENT OF THE HIGHEST BLESSINGS. There were centuries of delay between the promise and the possession of Canaan. Many ages passed after the first prophecy of redemption and before the coming of Christ. The second advent of Christ has often been anticipated by the Church and longed for by His people, but it is not yet accomplished. The Christian must wait on earth during years of service before receiving his heavenly inheritance. This is occasioned

(1) by our unbelief - as the unbelief of Israel deferred possession of Canaan;

(2) by the need of fitness - the people needed to be trained in the wilderness; the world needed preparing for Christ, who came in the "fulness of time;" Christians must be made "meet for the inheritance of the saints in light;" the world, must be prepared for the full and perfect reign of Christ." Yet, note, the promise is not violated because the fulfilment is delayed. Finally, the Christian inheritance will not be the unconscious possession of a grave in the promised land, but the enjoyment of heaven with the faculties of an eternal life. - W.F.A.

Joshua rose early in the morning.
Why does Joshua rise early in the morning? He has important and responsible duties to discharge during the day, and this may be one reason. Perhaps this has been his habit during a long succession of years, and now it is as easy and natural to him as breathing. Much has been said by some in favour of early rising, and it has been the practice of many distinguished men. Franklin wrote these words, "The morning has gold in its mouth. Dean Swift declared that he never knew any man come to greatness and eminence who lay in bed of a morning." Doddridge, Barnes, Wesley, Judge Hale, and others we could name, always rose before five o'clock in the morning. As we look upon these sayings, and consider these examples, should we affirm that early rising is the imperative duty of every man? There are certain persons who live to do evil, only evil, and that continually. The longer they remain in bed the better it will be for themselves and others. There are some Who live a life of sheer indolence. Since their sleeping and waking hours are equal, so far as others are concerned, it is of no importance when they rise. In these times, too, when day is turned into night, there are multitudes, especially in our large cities and towns, who cannot go to rest till a late hour, and to whom early rising is therefore a physical impossibility. Besides, no hard and fast line can be drawn regarding measures of sleep, because some require more than others. We believe it would be highly beneficial to the bodies, the minds, and the souls of all, if the old custom — "early to bed and early to rise" — were constantly observed. Let every individual, however, endeavour to discharge every duty which is legitimately imposed upon him; and whether this is done by day or by night, he will fill up the outline of work which God gives to him, and find acceptance in His sight.

(A. McAuslane.)

They removed from Shittim, and came to Jordan.
is the strong word that gathers up the teaching of the chapter.

1. The advance was from a notable past. "Finis" had been written to the first volume of the history of Israel; bondage its preface, vengeance its introduction, mercy its continual illumination. Sin had made their forty years a wilderness, in which they wandered from one oasis to another of heavenly grace set as with palm-trees and wells of water. And the present was rich and satisfying. Eastern Palestine was overflowing with honey and oil and milk. The stately oaks of Bashan, its sheep and goats and mighty bulls waiting to be herded among their riches, its abundant pasturage and countless watercourses, quite outrivaled the land beyond the river. Here they were already in possession; while beyond, fenced cities and disciplined troops forewarned of hardship and blood. This new volume opened to-day will show no such lavishness of miraculous helps. Still the word is "Advance." If the leader is less, the people are more. If miracles and interventions are fewer, courage and skill and power are greater. God's helps are transferred from without to within the hearts of men. He works best for them by working through them.

2. The advance was a long step toward their destiny. God's purposes never turn back. His plan demanded the transfer of the people across the Jordan. Just because Eastern Palestine was broader and richer, they must go over. Their national growth and mission demanded a new type of life. Israel must set his feet by the shore of the great sea, and dwell upon the roads traversed by caravans and armies. Then Alexandria can supply its spiritual philosophy, Greece its culture and language, Rome its law and wide sway, to aid in recording and extending the gospel. Physical geography is potent in civilisation.

3. Advance requires spiritual preparation. It is not first for the sake of earthly reward. An eternal purpose, a holy destiny rules the progress. Before each Jordan is crossed, the people must be sanctified, the leader empowered. The past was no dead past to bury its dead, but was to live in remembrance of deliverance granted and mercies showered, of disastrous and destructive sins.

(C. M. Southgate.)

Adam, Amorites, Canaanites, Girgashite, Girgashites, Hittites, Hivite, Hivites, Israelites, Jebusites, Joshua, Levites, Perizzites
Adam, Jericho, Jordan River, Salt Sea, Sea of the Arabah, Shittim, Zarethan
Camped, Crossed, Crossing, Early, Got, Israelites, Jordan, Joshua, Journey, Lodge, Lodged, Morning, Moved, Moving, Pass, Passed, Removed, Riseth, Rose, Shittim, Sons
1. Joshua come to Jordan
2. The officers instruct the people for their passage
7. The Lord encourages Joshua
9. Joshua encourages the people
14. The water of Jordan are divided

Dictionary of Bible Themes
Joshua 3:1

     4954   morning

Joshua 3:1-17

     4819   dryness

'The Waters Saw Thee; they were Afraid'
'And Joshua said unto the people, Sanctify yourselves: for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you. 6. And Joshua spake unto the priests, saying, Take up the ark of the covenant, and pass over before the people. And they took up the ark of the covenant, and went before the people. 7. And the Lord said unto Joshua, This day will I begin to magnify thee in the sight of all Israel, that they may know that, as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee. 8 And thou shalt command the priests that bear
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

The Meeting Hereafter.
Funeral Service. Joshua iii. 17. "And the priests that bare the Ark of the Covenant of the Lord stood firm on dry ground in the midst of Jordan, and all the Israelites passed over on dry ground, until all the people were passed clean over Jordan." INTRODUCTION.--That must have been a striking sight! The whole of God's people passing over Jordan. On one side, on that of the Wilderness, a crowd pressing down, and going into the deep river bed, on the other, those who had traversed, rising out of
S. Baring-Gould—The Village Pulpit, Volume II. Trinity to Advent

Adam and Zaretan, Joshua 3
I suspect a double error in some maps, while they place these two towns in Perea; much more, while they place them at so little a distance. We do not deny, indeed, that the city Adam was in Perea; but Zaretan was not so. Of Adam is mention, Joshua 3:16; where discourse is had of the cutting-off, or cutting in two, the waters of Jordan, that they might afford a passage to Israel; The waters rose up upon a heap afar off in Adam. For the textual reading "In Adam," the marginal hath "From Adam." You
John Lightfoot—From the Talmud and Hebraica

The New Leaders Commission
'Now after the death of Moses the servant of the Lord it came to pass, that the Lord spake unto Joshua the son of Nun, Moses' minister, saying, 2. Moses My servant is dead: now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, thou, and all this people, unto the land which I do give to them, even to the children of Israel. 3. Every place that the sole of your foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you, as I said unto Moses. 4. From the wilderness and this Lebanon even unto the great river, the river Euphrates,
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

The Charge to the Soldier of the Lord
'Only be then strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded thee... that thou mayest prosper wheresoever thou goest. 8. This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shall meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.'--JOSHUA i. 7,8. This is the central portion of the
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Stones Crying Out
'For the priests which bare the ark stood in the midst of Jordan, until every thing was finished that the Lord commanded Joshua to speak unto the people, according to all that Moses commanded Joshua: and the people hasted and passed over. 11. And it came to pass, when all the people were clean passed over, that the ark of the Lord passed over, and the priests, in the presence of the people. 12. And the children of Reuben, and the children of Gad, and half the tribe of Manasseh, passed over armed
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Some Miscellaneous Matters Belonging to the Country About Jericho.
Let us begin from the last encampings of Israel beyond Jordan. Numbers 33:49: "They encamped near Jordan from Beth-jeshimoth unto Abel-shittim."--"From Beth-jeshimoth to Abel-shittim were twelve miles." It is a most received opinion among the Jews, that the tents of the Israelites in the wilderness contained a square of twelve miles. So the Targum of Jonathan, upon Number 2:2; "The encamping of Israel was twelve miles in length, and twelve miles in breadth." And the Gemarists say, "It is forbidden
John Lightfoot—From the Talmud and Hebraica

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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