Joshua 1 Bible Commentary

The Geneva Study Bible

(Read all of Joshua 1)
1:1 Now after the a 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,

The Argument - In this book the Holy Spirit sets most lively before us the accomplishment of God's promise, who as he promised by the mouth of Moses, that a prophet would be raised up to the people like him, whom he wills to obey, (Deuteronomy 18:15): so he shows himself true to his promise, as at all other times, and after the death of Moses his faithful servant, he raises up Joshua to be ruler and governor over his people, that they should neither be discouraged for lack of a captain, nor have reason to distrust God's promises later. So that Joshua might be confirmed in his calling, and the people also might have no opportunity to grudge, as though he were not approved by God: he is adorned with most excellent gifts and graces from God, both to govern the people with counsel, and to defend them with strength, that he lacks nothing which either belongs to a valiant captain, or a faithful minister. So he overcomes all difficulties, and brings them into the land of Canaan: which according to God's ordinance he divides among the people and appoints their borders: he established laws and ordinances, and put them in remembrance of God's revealed benefits, assuring them of his grace and favour if they obey God, and of his plagues and vengeance if they disobey him. This history represents Jesus Christ the true Joshua, who leads us into eternal happiness, signified to us by this land of Canaan. From the beginning of Genesis to the end of this book is 2567 years. For from Adam to the flood are 1656, from the flood to the departure of Abraham out of Chaldea 423, and from then to the death of Joseph 290. So that Genesis contains 2369, Exodus 140, the other three books of Moses 40, Joshua 27. So the whole makes 2576 years.

(a) The beginning of this book depends on the last chapter of Deuteronomy which was written by Joshua as a preparation to his history.

1:4 From the b wilderness and this Lebanon even unto the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the c Hittites, and unto the great d sea toward the going down of the sun, shall be your coast.

(b) Of Zin, called Kadesh and Paran.
(c) Meaning, the whole land of Canaan.
(d) Called Mediterranean.

1:7 Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it [to] the right hand or [to] the left, that thou mayest e prosper whithersoever thou goest.

(e) He shows where true prosperity consists, even to obey the word of God.

1:8 This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and f 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.

(f) Showing that it is not possible to govern well, without the continual study of God's word.

1:11 Pass through the host, and command the people, saying, Prepare you victuals; for g within three days ye shall pass over this Jordan, to go in to possess the land, which the LORD your God giveth you to possess it.

(g) Meaning, from the day that this was proclaimed, (Joshua 3:2).

1:13 Remember the word which Moses the servant of the LORD commanded you, saying, The LORD your God hath given you rest, and hath given you this h land.

(h) Which belonged to Sihon the king of the Amorites, and Og king of Bashan.

1:15 Until the LORD have given your brethren rest, as [he hath given] you, and they also have possessed the land which the LORD your God giveth them: then ye shall return unto the land of your possession, and enjoy it, which Moses the LORD'S servant i gave you on this side Jordan toward the sunrising.

(i) By your request, but yet by God's secret appointment, (Deuteronomy 33:21).

1:17 According as we hearkened unto Moses in all things, k so will we hearken unto thee: only the LORD thy God be with thee, as he was with Moses.

(k) They not only promise to obey him as long as God is with him: but to help punish all who rebel against him.