Joshua 10:28-43: The God of Israel
Read: Joshua 10:28-43
Joshua and Israel wasted no time after they put the 5 Amorite kings under their feet. They proceeded to conquer seven cities in the southern part of what is now modern day Israel. The book of Joshua does not go into great detail as to how these cities were conquered as it did for Jericho and Ai, because these cities served as the prototype for how Israel was to conquer the rest of the cities in Canaan. The cities were utterly destroyed under “the ban” because of the sinfulness of the people in these cities. The book makes a special note in verse 42 concerning the campaign in the south: the cities were conquered because the Lord fought for Israel. This is the second time in the chapter that the book notes that God fought for Israel (the first is Joshua 10:14). The verse and also in verse 40 place a special emphasis on the fact that the Lord was the God of Israel. In a matter of summary, the verses gives credit to God for the astounding victories Israel had.
Israel by themselves were a people without a land who had been living under the bondage of the Egyptians. The story of deliverance and the story of conquering the land of Canaan make God out to be the hero in the story. The might of kings and armies were no match for God, and the beneficiaries were the people of Israel. When the book of Joshua calls the “Lord” (that is “יהוה” the unspoken name of God) the God of Israel, he is using the word “god” in the general since of the word. The book is in a manner of speaking lifting God above the gods of the other peoples they conquered. The gods of the other people were unable to deliver them even in part from the God of Israel. Without fail, God proved yet again that he was supreme above all others.
The supremacy of God cannot be question. What can be question is whether or not the God of Israel is one’s personal God. When Jesus came to earth, he claimed to have oneness with the Father – that is oneness with God (John 1:1-2, John 10:30, John 8:58). While not everyone accepted this fact, there were many that did. Thomas, who is often noted for his doubt, makes a bold statement of Jesus in John 20:28, call Jesus his “Lord” and his “God”. Thomas was acknowledging Jesus was Yahweh the God of Israel, but even more so that Jesus was his God. Jesus is God, and when one believing this fact. At the same time, one also knows that he or she has faith in the God above all others and that this God can fight on one’s behalf in all things. He is the hero – the one who is mighty and can save one from all things!
Lord, you are the God of Israel and the God of me!