A. Passes on the Vision (Joshua 13:1)
Now Joshua was old and advanced in years when the LORD said to him, “You are old and advanced in years, and very much of the land remains to be possessed (Joshua 13:1).
B. Seeing the Need (Joshua 13:2-5)
This is the land that remains: all the regions of the Philistines and all those of the Geshurites; from the Shihor which is east of Egypt, even as far as the border of Ekron to the north (it is counted as Canaanite); the five lords of the Philistines: the Gazite, the Ashdodite, the Ashkelonite, the Gittite, the Ekronite; and the Avvite to the south, all the land of the Canaanite, and Mearah that belongs to the Sidonians, as far as Aphek, to the border of the Amorite; and the land of the Gebalite, and all of Lebanon, toward the east, from Baal-gad below Mount Hermon as far as Lebo-hamath. (Joshua 13:2-5).
- Who is speaking in these verses?
- What is he describing? Get an Old Testament map of the conquest and identify a few places mentioned in verses 2-5. (see map in section D).
- What does Joshua 11:23 state that Joshua did?
- Take a quick look at Joshua 12. What is recorded there?
- If Joshua did such a good job, why do you think God was so concerned with these small sections of land.?
- Do you think this is a parallel to how God responds to us when we tolerate a little sin in our lives? Please explain.
- How might this apply to the worldwide mission program as found in the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20)? Summarize what God wants done. What parts are left to be done? (Check out www.calebproject.org).
C. Lives by Faith (Joshua 13:6)
All the inhabitants of the hill country from Lebanon as far as Misrephoth-maim, all the Sidonians, I will drive them out from before the sons of Israel; only allot it to Israel for an inheritance as I have commanded you (Joshua 13:6).
- What is God’s promise here in Joshua 13:6?
- What is the condition that God puts upon this promise (13:6)?
- Why is this so important? Discuss. What would happen if it was not done?
- How is this similar to what Jesus did with His disciples before and after His resurrection?
- “A great leader always equips and trains those around him to carry on the work after he is gone.” Do you agree or not? Why?
- How do we train leaders in our own congregation? Can you name a few ways we can practically train a leader?
D. Distributes the Responsibility (Joshua 13:7-33)
So Moses gave an inheritance to the tribe of the sons of Reuben according to their families. And their territory was from Aroer, which is on the edge of the valley of the Arnon, with the city which is in the middle of the valley and all the plain by Medeba; Heshbon, and all its cities which are on the plain: Dibon and Bamoth-baal and Beth-baal-meon, and Jahaz and Kedemoth and Mephaath, and Kiriathaim and Sibmah and Zereth-shahar on the hill of the valley, and Beth-peor and the slopes of Pisgah and Beth-jeshimoth, even all the cities of the plain and all the kingdom of Sihon king of the Amorites who reigned in Heshbon, whom Moses struck with the chiefs of Midian, Evi and Rekem and Zur and Hur and Reba, the princes of Sihon, who lived in the land. The sons of Israel also killed Balaam the son of Beor, the diviner, with the sword among the rest of their slain. And the border of the sons of Reuben was the Jordan. This was the inheritance of the sons of Reuben according to their families, the cities and their villages. (Joshua 13:15-23).
- What does God tell Joshua specifically to do in 13:7?
- What does the Lord describe in 13:14-23. How does He do this?
- Scan through 13:8-33. What does this describe?
- Read 14:1. What does the passage starting in chapter 14 discuss?
- Again, we see God specifically shaping Joshua’s leading of the people. Why is allotting the land to the different tribes so important? There are several answers to this question. We might similarly ask, “What would go wrong if Joshua did not do this?”
- Did you ever recognize a leader who was unwilling to train others? Why might they neglect this important task of leadership? What do they have to profit if they do this?