Joshua 1-4; Psalm 143; Luke 14
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The following text is from the English Standard Version.
After the death of Moses the servant of the LORD, the LORD said to Joshua the son of Nun, Moses’ assistant,
‘Moses my servant is dead. Now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, you and all this people, into the land that I am giving to them, to the people of Israel.
Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given to you, just as I promised to Moses.
From the wilderness and this Lebanon as far as the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites to the Great Sea toward the going down of the sun shall be your territory.
No man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life. Just as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you or forsake you.
Be strong and courageous, for you shall cause this people to inherit the land that I swore to their fathers to give them.
Only be strong and very courageous, being careful to do according to all the law that Moses my servant commanded you. Do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may have good success wherever you go.
This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”
And Joshua commanded the officers of the people,
‘Pass through the midst of the camp and command the people, ‘Prepare your provisions, for within three days you are to pass over this Jordan to go in to take possession of the land that the LORD your God is giving you to possess.”’
And to the Reubenites, the Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh Joshua said,
‘Remember the word that Moses the servant of the LORD commanded you, saying, ‘The LORD your God is providing you a place of rest and will give you this land.’
Your wives, your little ones, and your livestock shall remain in the land that Moses gave you beyond the Jordan, but all the men of valor among you shall pass over armed before your brothers and shall help them,
until the LORD gives rest to your brothers as he has to you, and they also take possession of the land that the LORD your God is giving them. Then you shall return to the land of your possession and shall possess it, the land that Moses the servant of the LORD gave you beyond the Jordan toward the sunrise.”
And they answered Joshua, ”All that you have commanded us we will do, and wherever you send us we will go.
Just as we obeyed Moses in all things, so we will obey you. Only may the LORD your God be with you, as he was with Moses!
Whoever rebels against your commandment and disobeys your words, whatever you command him, shall be put to death. Only be strong and courageous.”
And Joshua the son of Nun sent two men secretly from Shittim as spies, saying, ”Go, view the land, especially Jericho.” And they went and came into the house of a prostitute whose name was Rahab and lodged there.
And it was told to the king of Jericho, ”Behold, men of Israel have come here tonight to search out the land.”
Then the king of Jericho sent to Rahab, saying, ”Bring out the men who have come to you, who entered your house, for they have come to search out all the land.”
But the woman had taken the two men and hidden them. And she said, ”True, the men came to me, but I did not know where they were from.
And when the gate was about to be closed at dark, the men went out. I do not know where the men went. Pursue them quickly, for you will overtake them.”
But she had brought them up to the roof and hid them with the stalks of flax that she had laid in order on the roof.
So the men pursued after them on the way to the Jordan as far as the fords. And the gate was shut as soon as the pursuers had gone out.
Before the men lay down, she came up to them on the roof
and said to the men, ”I know that the LORD has given you the land, and that the fear of you has fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land melt away before you.
For we have heard how the LORD dried up the water of the Red Sea before you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan, to Sihon and Og, whom you devoted to destruction.
And as soon as we heard it, our hearts melted, and there was no spirit left in any man because of you, for the LORD your God, he is God in the heavens above and on the earth beneath.
Now then, please swear to me by the LORD that, as I have dealt kindly with you, you also will deal kindly with my father’s house, and give me a sure sign
that you will save alive my father and mother, my brothers and sisters, and all who belong to them, and deliver our lives from death.”
And the men said to her, ”Our life for yours even to death! If you do not tell this business of ours, then when the LORD gives us the land we will deal kindly and faithfully with you.”
Then she let them down by a rope through the window, for her house was built into the city wall, so that she lived in the wall.
And she said to them, ”Go into the hills, or the pursuers will encounter you, and hide there three days until the pursuers have returned. Then afterward you may go your way.”
The men said to her, ”We will be guiltless with respect to this oath of yours that you have made us swear.
Behold, when we come into the land, you shall tie this scarlet cord in the window through which you let us down, and you shall gather into your house your father and mother, your brothers, and all your father’s household.
Then if anyone goes out of the doors of your house into the street, his blood shall be on his own head, and we shall be guiltless. But if a hand is laid on anyone who is with you in the house, his blood shall be on our head.
But if you tell this business of ours, then we shall be guiltless with respect to your oath that you have made us swear.”
And she said, ”According to your words, so be it.” Then she sent them away, and they departed. And she tied the scarlet cord in the window.
They departed and went into the hills and remained there three days until the pursuers returned, and the pursuers searched all along the way and found nothing.
Then the two men returned. They came down from the hills and passed over and came to Joshua the son of Nun, and they told him all that had happened to them.
And they said to Joshua, ”Truly the LORD has given all the land into our hands. And also, all the inhabitants of the land melt away because of us.”
Then Joshua rose early in the morning and they set out from Shittim. And they came to the Jordan, he and all the people of Israel, and lodged there before they passed over.
At the end of three days the officers went through the camp
and commanded the people, ”As soon as you see the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God being carried by the Levitical priests, then you shall set out from your place and follow it.
Yet there shall be a distance between you and it, about 2,000 cubits in length. Do not come near it, in order that you may know the way you shall go, for you have not passed this way before.”
Then Joshua said to the people, ”Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do wonders among you.”
And Joshua said to the priests, ”Take up the ark of the covenant and pass on before the people.” So they took up the ark of the covenant and went before the people.
The LORD said to Joshua, ”Today I will begin to exalt you in the sight of all Israel, that they may know that, as I was with Moses, so I will be with you.
And as for you, command the priests who bear the ark of the covenant, ‘When you come to the brink of the waters of the Jordan, you shall stand still in the Jordan.”’
And Joshua said to the people of Israel, ”Come here and listen to the words of the LORD your God.”
And Joshua said, ”Here is how you shall know that the living God is among you and that he will without fail drive out from before you the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Hivites, the Perizzites, the Girgashites, the Amorites, and the Jebusites.
Behold, the ark of the covenant of the Lord of all the earth is passing over before you into the Jordan.
Now therefore take twelve men from the tribes of Israel, from each tribe a man.
And when the soles of the feet of the priests bearing the ark of the LORD, the Lord of all the earth, shall rest in the waters of the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan shall be cut off from flowing, and the waters coming down from above shall stand in one heap.”
So when the people set out from their tents to pass over the Jordan with the priests bearing the ark of the covenant before the people,
and as soon as those bearing the ark had come as far as the Jordan, and the feet of the priests bearing the ark were dipped in the brink of the water (now the Jordan overflows all its banks throughout the time of harvest),
the waters coming down from above stood and rose up in a heap very far away, at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan, and those flowing down toward the Sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, were completely cut off. And the people passed over opposite Jericho.
Now the priests bearing the ark of the covenant of the LORD stood firmly on dry ground in the midst of the Jordan, and all Israel was passing over on dry ground until all the nation finished passing over the Jordan.
When all the nation had finished passing over the Jordan, the LORD said to Joshua,
‘Take twelve men from the people, from each tribe a man,
and command them, saying, ‘Take twelve stones from here out of the midst of the Jordan, from the very place where the priests’ feet stood firmly, and bring them over with you and lay them down in the place where you lodge tonight.”’
Then Joshua called the twelve men from the people of Israel, whom he had appointed, a man from each tribe.
And Joshua said to them, ”Pass on before the ark of the LORD your God into the midst of the Jordan, and take up each of you a stone upon his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel,
that this may be a sign among you. When your children ask in time to come, ‘What do those stones mean to you?’
then you shall tell them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the LORD. When it passed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall be to the people of Israel a memorial forever.”
And the people of Israel did just as Joshua commanded and took up twelve stones out of the midst of the Jordan, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel, just as the LORD told Joshua. And they carried them over with them to the place where they lodged and laid them down there.
And Joshua set up twelve stones in the midst of the Jordan, in the place where the feet of the priests bearing the ark of the covenant had stood; and they are there to this day.
For the priests bearing the ark stood in the midst of the Jordan until everything was finished that the LORD commanded Joshua to tell the people, according to all that Moses had commanded Joshua.The people passed over in haste.
And when all the people had finished passing over, the ark of the LORD and the priests passed over before the people.
The sons of Reuben and the sons of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh passed over armed before the people of Israel, as Moses had told them.
About 40,000 ready for war passed over before the LORD for battle, to the plains of Jericho.
On that day the LORD exalted Joshua in the sight of all Israel, and they stood in awe of him just as they had stood in awe of Moses, all the days of his life.
And the LORD said to Joshua,
‘Command the priests bearing the ark of the testimony to come up out of the Jordan.”
So Joshua commanded the priests, ”Come up out of the Jordan.”
And when the priests bearing the ark of the covenant of the LORD came up from the midst of the Jordan, and the soles of the priests’ feet were lifted up on dry ground, the waters of the Jordan returned to their place and overflowed all its banks, as before.
The people came up out of the Jordan on the tenth day of the first month, and they encamped at Gilgal on the east border of Jericho.
And those twelve stones, which they took out of the Jordan, Joshua set up at Gilgal.
And he said to the people of Israel, ”When your children ask their fathers in times to come, ‘What do these stones mean?’
then you shall let your children know, ‘Israel passed over this Jordan on dry ground.’
For the LORD your God dried up the waters of the Jordan for you until you passed over, as the LORD your God did to the Red Sea, which he dried up for us until we passed over,
so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the LORD is mighty, that you may fear the LORD your God forever.”
Hear my prayer, O LORD; give ear to my pleas for mercy! In your faithfulness answer me, in your righteousness!
Enter not into judgment with your servant, for no one living is righteous before you.
For the enemy has pursued my soul; he has crushed my life to the ground; he has made me sit in darkness like those long dead.
Therefore my spirit faints within me; my heart within me is appalled.
I remember the days of old; I meditate on all that you have done; I ponder the work of your hands.
I stretch out my hands to you; my soul thirsts for you like a parched land. Selah
Answer me quickly, O LORD! My spirit fails! Hide not your face from me, lest I be like those who go down to the pit.
Let me hear in the morning of your steadfast love, for in you I trust. Make me know the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.
Deliver me from my enemies, O LORD! I have fled to you for refuge!
Teach me to do your will, for you are my God! Let your good Spirit lead me on level ground!
For your name’s sake, O LORD, preserve my life! In your righteousness bring my soul out of trouble!
And in your steadfast love you will cut off my enemies, and you will destroy all the adversaries of my soul, for I am your servant.
One Sabbath, when he went to dine at the house of a ruler of the Pharisees, they were watching him carefully.
And behold, there was a man before him who had dropsy.
And Jesus responded to the lawyers and Pharisees, saying, ”Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath, or not?”
But they remained silent. Then he took him and healed him and sent him away.
And he said to them, ”Which of you, having a son or an ox that has fallen into a well on a Sabbath day, will not immediately pull him out?”
And they could not reply to these things.
Now he told a parable to those who were invited, when he noticed how they chose the places of honor, saying to them,
‘When you are invited by someone to a wedding feast, do not sit down in a place of honor, lest someone more distinguished than you be invited by him,
and he who invited you both will come and say to you, ‘Give your place to this person,’ and then you will begin with shame to take the lowest place.
But when you are invited, go and sit in the lowest place, so that when your host comes he may say to you, ‘Friend, move up higher.’ Then you will be honored in the presence of all who sit at table with you.
For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”
He said also to the man who had invited him, ”When you give a dinner or a banquet, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, lest they also invite you in return and you be repaid.
But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind,
and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. You will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.”
When one of those who reclined at table with him heard these things, he said to him, ”Blessed is everyone who will eat bread in the kingdom of God!”
But he said to him, ”A man once gave a great banquet and invited many.
And at the time for the banquet he sent his servant to say to those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’
But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have bought a field, and I must go out and see it. Please have me excused.’
And another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to examine them. Please have me excused.’
And another said, ‘I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.’
So the servant came and reported these things to his master. Then the master of the house became angry and said to his servant, ‘Go out quickly to the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in the poor and crippled and blind and lame.’
And the servant said, ‘Sir, what you commanded has been done, and still there is room.’
And the master said to the servant, ‘Go out to the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled.
For I tell you, none of those men who were invited shall taste my banquet.”’
Now great crowds accompanied him, and he turned and said to them,
‘If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple.
Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple.
For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?
Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him,
saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’
Or what king, going out to encounter another king in war, will not sit down first and deliberate whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand?
And if not, while the other is yet a great way off, he sends a delegation and asks for terms of peace.
So therefore, any one of you who does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple.
‘Salt is good, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored?
It is of no use either for the soil or for the manure pile. It is thrown away. He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”