Joshua Chapter 6
Joshua 6:1 “Now Jericho was straitly shut up because of the children of Israel: none went out, and none came in.”
The Israelites were not prepared to defeat Jericho in a conventional manner. Although the residents of Jericho were afraid of the Israelites (2:11), the city was fortified, well-armed, and prepared for war. That “Jericho was straitly shut up” is another way of saying that its people were ready for an attack. Ancient fortified cities, with walls as high as 20 feet and as thick as eight feet, and with double or triple gates, could withstand a siege for months if they had sufficient food and a water supply. Guards standing high upon the walls in towers were prepared to shoot arrows, pour hot oil, or dump boulders on enemy warriors who tried to scale the wall or punch through it with a battering ram.
“Jericho”: The city was fortified by a double ring of walls, the outer 6 feet thick and the inner 12; timbers were laid across these, supporting houses on the walls. Since Jericho was built on a hill, it could be taken only by mounting a steep incline, which put the Israelites at a great disadvantage. Attackers of such a “fortress” often used a siege of several months to force surrender through starvation.
Jericho had locked their gates, and they were not letting anyone in or out. Rahab had mentioned to the two spies that the whole town was terrified of what might happen. They had all heard of the destruction of Og and Sihon just across the Jordan from them. Now, they have heard about the Jordan River opening to allow them to cross. They are afraid of Israel’s God, not of Israel.
Verses 2-7: The strange battle strategy must have seemed ridiculous to the inhabitants of “Jericho”, but Israel was to learn from the outset that the campaign for Canaan would be successful only if fought at God’s direction. It was to be a spiritual experience. Victory could come only on the basis of spiritual obedience. Jericho was a strategic Canaanite stronghold. Archaeological excavations reveal that Jericho was the oldest known city in ancient Canaan. Its age and location made it the most prominent city in that region. Its “fall” would open up the whole center of the land to the invaders.
Joshua 6:2 “And the LORD said unto Joshua, See, I have given into thine hand Jericho, and the king thereof, [and] the mighty men of valor.”
Joshua could move forward with confidence because, even before the fighting began, God promised, “I have given into thine hand Jericho”. All believers are “more than conquerors through Him who loved us” (Rom. 8:37). This means every child of God can enter every spiritual battle with the assurance that the war has already been won and, through obedience, the outcome is certain.
The Captain of the Lord’s host and the Lord here are probably the same. This is assurance from the Lord that Jericho will fall into the hands of the Israelites. Jericho had a mighty army that would match any army that came against them, except the army of the Lord. God does not say, “Perhaps I will give”. He says,”I have given.” It is already settled that Jericho is theirs.
Verses 3-5: The Lord’s unusual battle plan was so impossible in the world’s eyes that when Jericho fell, He alone would get the credit. Only His invisible hand would make the city wall “fall down flat”.
Verses 3-21: The bizarre military strategy of marching around Jericho gave occasion for the Israelites to take God at His promise (verse 2). They would also heighten the defender’s uneasiness. Seven is sometimes a number used to signify completeness (compare 2 kings 5:10, 14).
Joshua 6:3 “And ye shall compass the city, all [ye] men of war, [and] go round about the city once. Thus shalt thou do six days.”
Joshua their chief commander under the Lord, and all that were able to make war, even all above twenty years of age. These were to compass the city, not in the form of a siege, but by a procession around it.
“And go round about the city once”: Or one time, only one time in a day and no more.
“Thus shall thou do six days”: One day after another; that is, go round it, once every day. This order was given, according to the Jews, the twenty second of Nisan, after the feast of unleavened bread was over.
The entire army, which were literally hundreds of thousands of men, should walk around the city wall once each day for six days.
Joshua 6:4 “And seven priests shall bear before the ark seven trumpets of rams’ horns: and the seventh day ye shall compass the city seven times, and the priests shall blow with the trumpets.”
The ark was to be taken up and carried by priests round the city. Ben Gersom observes, that this was to direct the Israelites to keep and do according to all that was written in it. That is, in the law, which was contained in it. But no doubt the design of it was to show, that the subduing of Jericho, and the miracle that would be wrought, were owing to the power and presence of God, of which the ark was a symbol. And before it were to go seven other priests, with trumpets in their hands. Which, according to our version, were made of rams horns.
“And the seventh day ye shall compass the city seven times”: In the same manner as on the other days.
“And the priests shall blow with the trumpets”: Which they were to do; and did every day.
It appears, that each day the priests went with the trumpets of ram’s horns around the city once for six days. They blew the ram’s horns, as they walked around the wall. Again, the priests with the horns were in front of the Ark of the Covenant going around with them. “Seven” means spiritually complete. Notice the seven priests with seven horns, walked seven days around the city wall. The seventh day they went around seven times. This is a spiritual war that God will complete. These trumpets were like jubilee. They were the sound of victory. These are not the silver trumpets, but of rams’ horns.
Joshua 6:5 “And it shall come to pass, that when they make a long [blast] with the ram’s horn, [and] when ye hear the sound of the trumpet, all the people shall shout with a great shout; and the wall of the city shall fall down flat, and the people shall ascend up every man straight before him.”
Continue blowing, and protracting, and drawing out the sound a long time. Which they did only on the seventh day. On the other days, it was but a short blast they made at a time. So that this being different, it would be a good sign and token to the people to do what they are next directed to.
“And when ye hear the sound of the trumpet”: Drawn out to a great length.
“All the people shall shout with a great shout”: At once, as when an onset is made in battle, or a victory is obtained.
“And the wall of the city shall fall down flat”: Or “under itself”; which Jarchi interprets, in its place; that is, where it stood, and be swallowed up in it. So the Targum, “and it shall be swallowed up under it; ”yet so that somewhat of it should be seen, as an attestation and proof of the miracle. As Kimchi; who says, “it means that it should be swallowed up in its place under the earth, and a little of it appear above ground for a memorial of the miracle:”
“And the people shall ascend up, every man straight before him”: Just as they were in the order of procession. For the wall being fallen everywhere, they would have no occasion to make up to one certain place. As when a breach is only made in one place, and the besiegers are obliged to go so many a breast to enter at it. But in this case, they might go straight up from whence they were, and enter the city without any obstruction and difficulty. God assured Israel of an astounding miracle, just as He had done at the Jordan.
The horn of jubilee was to sound with a long blast with the ram’s horn. When the people hear the blast from the horn that is long, then they give out with a shout from all of the hundreds of thousands of warriors. Some writers compare the horn that blows here and topples the walls of Jericho, with the trumpet that Jesus blows and calls the people to Him in the sky. In both cases, the people ascend.
Joshua 6:6 “And Joshua the son of Nun called the priests, and said unto them, Take up the ark of the covenant, and let seven priests bear seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark of the LORD.”
Not the Levites and Kohathites, whose business it was in common to bear the ark, but upon this occasion the priests. Not all of them, but as many as were sufficient for the purpose.
“And said unto them, take up the ark of the covenant”: By putting the staves into the rings of it, and so carry it (Exodus 25:14; see Num. 7:9).
“And let seven priests bear seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark of the Lord”: (see notes on Joshua 6:4).
Just as the priests carrying the Ark of the Covenant led the way into the Jordan River, they go with the army here. The main difference is there are seven priests with rams’ horns trumpets.
Joshua 6:7 “And he said unto the people, Pass on, and compass the city, and let him that is armed pass on before the ark of the LORD.”
God would have them armed, both for the defense of themselves and the ark, in case the enemies should make an invasion upon them. And for the execution of the Lord’s vengeance upon that city.
“And let him that is armed pass on before the ark of the Lord”: To guard the ark, protect the priests, and defend the people, should any attack be made by the enemy upon them. These seem to design all the males that were above twenty years of age able to bear arms, and fit for war. Though some restrain it to the forty thousand of the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and Manasseh (Joshua 1:14).
The priests, possibly passed the message on to the troops as they passed them. It appears from this that, Reuben’s, Gad’s, and the half tribe of Manasseh’s armed men went before the priests with the horns and then the ark, and then the other members of the army.
Verses 8-10: Picture the parade: out in front were the soldiers, followed by the “seven priests” with the “rams’ horns”, followed by more soldiers. The city of Jericho was only about half a mile around, so the trip would not have taken very long. The plan was constructed to strike terror into the hearts of the people of Jericho.
Joshua 6:8 “And it came to pass, when Joshua had spoken unto the people, that the seven priests bearing the seven trumpets of rams’ horns passed on before the LORD, and blew with the trumpets: and the ark of the covenant of the LORD followed them.”
Both armed and unarmed. Had finished the orders and directions he gave them before mentioned.
“That the seven priests bearing the seven trumpets of rams’ horns passed on before the Lord”: In his sight, and by his direction, and at his command given by Joshua. And before the ark, the symbol of his presence.
“And blew with the trumpets”: A short blast as they went along. This they did on each of the six days.
“And the ark of the covenant of the Lord followed them”: Being borne by priests (Joshua 6:6).
This is the order of the march around the city wall. It seems, the priests blew the trumpets for the march.
Joshua 6:9 “And the armed men went before the priests that blew with the trumpets, and the rearward came after the ark, [the priests] going on, and blowing with the trumpets.”
Whom Jarchi, Kimchi, and Abarbinel, interpret of Reuben and Gad, and the half tribe of Manasseh. That is, as many of them as Joshua took with him over Jordan. Though rather all the armed men in the camp are meant. At least along with those mentioned went the standards of Judah and Ephraim.
“And the rearward came after the ark”: Because the tribe of Dan was the rear guard in journeying (Num. 2:31). Hence the Targum paraphrases the words, “and the tribe of the house of Dan went after the ark;” and so both Jarchi and Kimchi interpret it. But rather the body of the people unarmed are designed; at least these were brought up by the standard of Dan. Or otherwise no place in this procession is appointed for them, whose business it was to make the great shout on the seventh day with the rest.
“The priests going on and blowing with the trumpets”: The word “priests” is not in the text, but is rightly supplied. For, as Kimchi and Abarbinel observe, this is not said of the rear guard, but of the priests, for they only bore and blew the trumpets. And so the Targum reads, “the priests going on”, etc.
This is very similar to the march through the wilderness. The Ark was between the tribes. The blowing of the trumpets gave the army of Israel courage, and frightened the people of Jericho. The “rearward” means the rear-guard.
Joshua 6:10 “And Joshua had commanded the people, saying, Ye shall not shout, nor make any noise with your voice, neither shall [any] word proceed out of your mouth, until the day I bid you shout; then shall ye shout.”
When he gave them their orders to pass on, and compass the city (Joshua 6:7).
“Saying, ye shall not shout”: That is, on any of the six days as they went round the city, only on the seventh. For this being a sign of victory, it was not to be made until the day when it should be made.
“Nor make any noise with your voice”: As laughing, singing, etc. This profound silence was to be observed, to add to the gravity and solemnity of the procession. And on account of the surprising miracle that was to be wrought. And particularly because of the ark, the symbol of the divine Presence, borne before them. And when God in his providence was about to speak in so awful a manner, and to do such a surprising work, it was very fit and decent that they should be silent before him (see Hab. 2:20).
“Neither shall any word proceed out of your mouth”: No conversation or discourse were to be had with each other as they passed along. For this is only to be restrained to the procession; when they returned, and in their camp.
“Until the day I bid you shout, then shall ye shout”: For as yet it seems Joshua had not told them how many days they should surround the city in this manner. And on what day the shout should be made by them.
The people were not to speak at all, while they were marching around the city. They would give the shout of victory at the precise time that Joshua told them to. Their obedience to the will of God is what really wins this victory for them. The order that this march was done in, makes the people inside the wall even more frightened. They feel the wall around the city will protect them for a time, but they know they are doomed eventually. The people of the city have seen the Ark of the Covenant, which professed the presence of God with this people. They know God is about to do a miracle, but they have no idea what.
Verses 11-16: Joshua did not tell the Israelites how many times they had to circle the city or precisely what would happen when their days of marching were done. The people received instructions one day at a time, and they obeyed one day, one step, at a time.
Joshua 6:11 “So the ark of the LORD compassed the city, going about [it] once: and they came into the camp, and lodged in the camp.”
Being bore by the priests, who carried it round the city. It may as well be rendered and interpreted as it is by Kimchi: “He, i.e. Joshua, caused the Ark of the Lord to compass the city.” That is, he gave orders to the priests to take it up, and go round with it on the first day.
“Going about it once”: On that day, and no more. Keeping at such a distance, as to be out of the reach of stones or arrows cast from the walls of the city.
“And they came into the camp, and lodged in the camp”: The night following; not only the priests that bare the ark, but those that blew with the trumpets, and all the armed men, and the people.
The procession has begun here. Just once around the city the first time.
Joshua 6:12 “And Joshua rose early in the morning, and the priests took up the ark of the LORD.”
Of the second day. To take care of, direct, and prepare everything for another procession on that day. So active and diligent was he to do the will and work of God, exactly and punctually.
“And the priests took up the ark of the Lord”: And carried it about as they had done the day before.
It seemed one group of priests carried the ark, and another group walked in front of it with the trumpets made of rams’ horns.
Joshua 6:13 “And seven priests bearing seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark of the LORD went on continually, and blew with the trumpets: and the armed men went before them; but the rearward came after the ark of the LORD, [the priests] going on, and blowing with the trumpets.”
See (Joshua 6:4).
“Went on continually”: Or, “going they went”: kept on going, making no stop at all, until they had compassed the city.
“And blew with the trumpets”: As they went along.
“And the armed men went before them, but the rearward came after the ark of the Lord”: Which the Targum paraphrases as on (Joshua 6:9).
“The priests going on, and blowing with the trumpets” (see notes on Joshua 6:9).
The armed troops that we know about are the troops of Reuben, Gad, and the half tribe of Manasseh. It appears, they were in front of the priests. The next in procession would be the priests with the trumpets, then the priests carrying the ark. The rest of the troops (rear-guard), of Israel followed the ark.
Joshua 6:14 “And the second day they compassed the city once, and returned into the camp: so they did six days.”
Went round it one time only; as on the first.
“And returned into the camp”: Which was at Gilgal (Joshua 5:10).
“So they did six days”: Four more after these two successively, and proceeded in the same order and manner as on those two days.
This strange procession went around the city once each day for six days. The troops were silent. The only sound was the blowing of the trumpets. The people inside the wall had never seen a battle conducted like this before. They knew in their hearts something was about to happen, but they did not know what.
Joshua 6:15 “And it came to pass on the seventh day, that they rose early about the dawning of the day, and compassed the city after the same manner seven times: only on that day they compassed the city seven times.”
Which Jarchi says was the Sabbath day, and which is a common notion of the Jews. But whether it was or not, it is certain. One of these seven days had to be a Sabbath, in which the several things ordered were done, and the procession made.
“That they rose early, about the dawning of the day”: Having seven times the work to do they did on the other six days.
“And compassed the city after the same manner seven times”: After the same manner as they had done the six preceding days.
“Only on that day they compassed the city seven times”: Whereas on the other days they only went round it once, which distinguished this day from the rest.
This waiting had to be hard on both sides of the wall. The fear was mounting inside Jericho. The marching of the troops on the outside of the wall was teaching them to be obedient to the commands of God. It would have been foolhardy to try to break into the walls ahead of time. Perhaps the LORD was showing them to follow in His ways, which are not understood by common man. They should learn from this, that there is a time to wait patiently before acting. This may be the hardest lesson for any of us to learn. We have discussed the number seven, meaning spiritually complete. It is interesting that this is done on Sabbath. The early rising was to afford them time to compass the city seven times in one day. The spirituality of this day perhaps, entered in here.
Joshua 6:16 “And it came to pass at the seventh time, when the priests blew with the trumpets, Joshua said unto the people, Shout; for the LORD hath given you the city.”
The loud shout in unison expressed an expectation of God’s action to fulfill His guaranteed promise (verses 2, 5, 16).
At the command of Joshua, this entire mass of people shouted in victory. The trumpets of the priests were blowing. This had to be an enormous sound all at once.
Joshua 6:17 “And the city shall be accursed, [even] it, and all that [are] therein, to the LORD: only Rahab the harlot shall live, she and all that [are] with her in the house, because she hid the messengers that we sent.”
“Shall be accursed”: The Hebrew term means “utterly destroyed”, as in verse 21; i.e., to ban or devote as spoil for a deity. Here it is stated to be retained for God’s possession, a tribute belonging to Him for the purpose of destruction.
Jericho was put under a divine ban. “Accursed” translates the Hebrew cherem a “consecrated/devoted thing” so that the “city” and “all that are therein” were under divine disposition. None was to be left alive except “Rahab” and those in her house, and nothing was to be taken as a spoil of war (compare 7:1, 11). Some have questioned the propriety of such a near total extermination of the populace. However, the complete degradation of the Canaanites had received divine condemnation previously (compare Num. 21:1-3; Deut. 7:1-2; 12:29-32; 13:15-17; 20:17-18). Because the time for their judgment had come (compare Gen. 15:16), and because such wickedness could only spell spiritual disaster for the Israelites (compare Deut. 7:23-26), nothing short of a total extermination could suffice. As such Jericho serves as a reminder and prelude of God’s final annihilation of evil.
The entire city full of people will be destroyed, except for faithful Rahab and those of her household. Over and over, we have seen the faithful saved in the middle of the tumult. Rahab is no different. She believed in God, and it was counted unto her as righteousness. Just as Noah’s family was saved by Noah’s act of faith, Rahab’s family was saved by her act of faith. She had been a friend to God.
Joshua 6:18 “And ye, in any wise keep [yourselves] from the accursed thing, lest ye make [yourselves] accursed, when ye take of the accursed thing, and make the camp of Israel a curse, and trouble it.”
From laying hold on, secreting, and enjoying as their own, what was devoted to another use.
“Lest ye make yourselves accursed”: Or devoted to destruction.
“When ye take of the accursed thing”: Any part of it, be it what it will, gold or any other metal, or raiment, and the like.
“And make the camp of Israel a curse, and trouble it”: For being done secretly, and not known who did it, the whole body of the people would be chargeable with it, and suffer on account of it. Unless discovered and punished, and as more fully appears by an after instance.
The entire city except Rahab and her household, was accursed. This meant everything as well as everyone, was accursed. The Israelites were to be a holy people separated from worldliness. They were not to desire anything of this city, because some of the sinfulness of the city would be on those things. These people had worshipped false gods and practiced all sorts of evil. The things of this city would need to be destroyed, to cleanse the city.
Joshua 6:19 “But all the silver, and gold, and vessels of brass and iron, [are] consecrated unto the LORD: they shall come into the treasury of the LORD.”
Or rather, “for all the silver”, etc. as the particle here used sometimes signifies, and is so rendered. Each of these metals, and whatsoever were made of them, were set apart for the Lord, and dedicated to sacred uses, and might not be converted to any other. Unless what were upon their idols, which were to be burnt with fire (Deut. 7:25).
“They shall come into the treasury of the Lord”: Be brought into the tabernacle, as Kimchi and Abarbinel interpret it. Into some apartment there destined for such service, and which is clear from (Joshua 6:24). The same where the offering of the officers was brought after the battle with Midian (Num. 31:54).
The precious metals could be heated and melted. They belonged to God. They would be purified, because they were holiness unto the LORD.
Joshua 6:20 “So the people shouted when [the priests] blew with the trumpets: and it came to pass, when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city.”
What the people shouted was either a war cry (1 Sam. 17:20), or a shout of celebration over the victory they were about to experience (1 Sam. 4:5-6). Reputable scholars such as B. G. Wood argue that the major excavation reports from Jericho contain remarkable parallels with the biblical account, including the collapse of the eastern walls before fire scorched them. This is consistent with the author’s report that the “wall fell down flat” before Israel burned the city (6:24).
Whether this large army of people walking around the wall had weakened the foundation, or whether God sent a small earthquake, or whether the shout from so large a number shattered the walls, we do not know. Whatever happened, it was a miracle of God. The entire wall fell at once. The army did not trickle into the city. They all entered at once. It is interesting that, Rahab’s house was in the city wall, and it did not fall. It was not difficult for them to take the city.
Verses 21-25: The general details of Jericho’s fall have been illustrated by various archaeological excavations. Although the archaeological data relative to Jericho and the date of its conquest have undergone divergent interpretations at the hands of archaeologists and biblical scholars, recent examinations of the evidence had increasingly confirmed the accuracy of a fifteenth century B.C. date for the fall of Jericho, as necessitated by the biblical chronological framework given (in 1 Kings 6:1). Adequate evidence exists for the destruction of Jericho in Joshua’s time.
Joshua 6:21 “And they utterly destroyed all that [was] in the city, both man and woman, young and old, and ox, and sheep, and ass, with the edge of the sword.”
All the inhabitants of it, by the direction of Joshua, and according to the order of the Lord (Deut. 7:1). Being guilty of capital crimes, which deserved death, as idolatry, incest, etc.
“Both men and women, young and old”: Neither sex nor age were spared.
“And ox, and sheep, and ass, with the edge of the sword”: In which creatures chiefly lay the substance of the eastern people (see Job 1:3).
This was total annihilation of every living thing except Rahab’s household. One of the reasons for them not taking booty, is that this was a holy war. They were not to make war for personal gain. The purpose of war is very important.
Verses 22-23: Rahab’s house apparently remained standing, and she and her family were rescued, as the spies promised. (Matthew 1:5), reports that she was absorbed into the Israelite community (see also 6:25). She married an Israelite named Salmon and became the great-great grandmother of David and an ancestor of Jesus.
Joshua honored the promise of safety to the household of Rehab. The part of the wall securing this house must not have fallen, and all possessions in the dwelling were safe.
Joshua 6:22 “But Joshua had said unto the two men that had spied out the country, Go into the harlot’s house, and bring out thence the woman, and all that she hath, as ye sware unto her.”
Whom he had sent on that errand (Joshua 2:1). And what follows he had said unto them before the people entered into the city, and perhaps before the walls of it fell. And indeed from (Joshua 6:16), it appears to have been said at the time he gave the people orders to shout.
“Go into the harlot’s house”: He does not mention her name but they full well knew who he meant.
“And bring out thence the woman, and all that she hath”: Not so much her substance, as her father’s household. She had got together there, that they might be saved, as had been promised her.
“As ye sware unto her”: So that this order was partly on account of her kindness to them (Joshua 6:17). And partly on account of the oath which they had taken, and which Joshua would have inviolably kept.
This is so beautiful to me, because it verifies the following Scripture.
Psalms 91:7 “A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; [but] it shall not come nigh thee.”
God has saved Rahab and her household in the middle of this destruction. Notice, Joshua did not say go, and see if you can find her. She was in her own house (a portion of the wall which was unharmed). The two she had befriended were to come, and get her and her household, and carry them to safety.
Joshua 6:23 “And the young men that were spies went in, and brought out Rahab, and her father, and her mother, and her brethren, and all that she had; and they brought out all her kindred, and left them without the camp of Israel.”
And the young men that were spies went in, and brought out Rahab, and her father, and her mother, and her brethren, and all that she had. And they brought out all her kindred, and left them without the camp of Israel.
They were supernaturally protected by God Himself. They were left outside the camp of Israel, because they were Gentiles. The Jews classed them as unclean.
Joshua 6:24 “And they burnt the city with fire, and all that [was] therein: only the silver, and the gold, and the vessels of brass and of iron, they put into the treasury of the house of the LORD.”
As Babylon the great, of which this city was an emblem, as has been observed (see notes on Joshua 6:20), will be burnt with fire (Rev. 18:8).
“Only the silver and the gold, and the vessels of brass and iron, they put into the treasury of the house of the Lord” (see notes on Joshua 6:19).
The sin of this city was burned away in the fire. The precious metals belonged to God, and were taken to the treasury of the house of the LORD. We discussed how metals are purified and made clean for another use, by heating them until they melt.
Joshua 6:25 “And Joshua saved Rahab the harlot alive, and her father’s household, and all that she had; and she dwelleth in Israel [even] unto this day; because she hid the messengers, which Joshua sent to spy out Jericho.”
From perishing by the sword, as the rest of the inhabitants did. Kimchi says, some interpret it of his giving her food, and an inheritance by which she might live. And Josephus intimates the same: he says, he gave her fields, and had her in great honor and esteem. And it is the notion of some Jewish writers, that he took her to wife, and that this is meant by saving her alive. Which sense Kimchi disapproves of, as being foreign. Besides, it was not Joshua, but Salmon, a prince in Israel, that married her (Matt. 1:5).
“And her father’s household, and all she had”: That is, he saved alive all her relations, and it may be her cattle, if she had any. And those of her kindred also, as their sheep, oxen, and asses, when those of others were killed (Joshua 6:21). Some also understand this of intermarriages of principal persons in Israel with some of her father’s. But it only signifies that their lives were spared, when the whole city was destroyed with the edge of the sword.
“And she dwelleth in Israel even unto this day”: Which may be meant either personally of Rahab, who was living and dwelt in the land of Canaan, when this history was written. And serves to strengthen the opinion that Joshua was the writer of it, and to explain the meaning of the phrase “unto this day”, elsewhere used in this book. And to remove any objection from it against his being the author of it. Or else of her dwelling there in her posterity. And so, she might dwell in it unto the times of the Messiah, who sprang from her (Matt. 1:5).
“Because she hid the messengers which Joshua, sent to spy out Jericho”: This was the reason of her and her father’s family being saved alive (see notes on Joshua 6:17).
Rahab not only was saved, but all her household. She was accepted into Israel because of her faith in the LORD, which caused her to hide the spies.
Joshua 6:26 “And Joshua adjured [them] at that time, saying, Cursed [be] the man before the LORD, that riseth up and buildeth this city Jericho: he shall lay the foundation thereof in his firstborn, and in his youngest [son] shall he set up the gates of it.”
God put a curse on whoever would rebuild Jericho. While the area around it was later occupied to some extent (2 Sam. 10:5), in Ahab’s reign Hiel rebuilt Jericho and experienced the curse by losing his eldest and youngest sons (1 Kings 16:34).
The curse was designed to keep “Jericho” from again becoming a walled stronghold. Although Jericho’s environs were subsequently occupied to some extent (compare 18:21; Judges 3:13; 2 Sam. 10:5), the full weight of the curse was literally carried out against those who attempted to rebuild it as a fortified “city” (1 Kings 16:34).
Even unto this day, Jericho has never been rebuilt. “Adjured” in this verse, means caused them to swear.
Joshua 6:27 “So the LORD was with Joshua; and his fame was [noised] throughout all the country.”
Counselling and directing him what to do, prospering and succeeding him in all that he engaged. The Targum is, “the Word of the Lord was for the help of Joshua.” The essential Word, Christ the Son of God, called the Captain of the Lord’s host (Joshua 5:14). And who, continued with him speaking to him and giving him orders (Joshua 6:2).
“And his fame was noised throughout all the country”: For his wisdom and courage, for the wonderful things done for him and by him. And the great success that attended him, through the power and presence of God with him. Which struck terror into the inhabitants of the land, and made his conquest of it the easier.
God kept His pledge that He would be with Joshua (1:5-9).
Joshua Chapter 6 Question
1. Why was Jericho shut up, so no one could enter or leave?
2. Who are they afraid of?
3. The Captain of the LORD’s host is the same as the ________.
4. What positive statement does God make about Israel and Jericho?
5. How many times each day, were they to go around the city for six days?
6. Who goes before the ark?
7. What do they have with them?
8. The number “seven” means _____________ _____________.
9. How many times were they to go around the city on the seventh day?
10. The trumpets were the sound of __________.
11. What were the horns made of?
12. How large was Israel’s army?
13. When do the people shout?
14. What do some writers compare the horn that blows on the seventh day with?
15. What effect does the shout of the people have?
16. What is different about the priests that carried the ark into the water, and the priests, here, that go with the troops?
17. Who were the armed men, probably?
18. How does the marching order around the city remind us of the march across the wilderness?
19. What had Joshua commanded these troops not to do, until he gave the order for the shout?
20. When they were not marching around the city, what did they do?
21. What was the order of the march?
22. What lesson can be learned by this seven day march?
23. The city shall be __________, even it and all that are therein.
24. Why was Rahab and her household saved?
25. All the metals are to be saved for what?
26. What are some of the possibilities why the walls fell?
27. What did the Israelites utterly destroy?
28. After they brought Rahab out, what did they do with the city?
29. What does “adjured”, in verse 26, mean?