And it came to pass a long time after that the LORD had given rest to Israel from all their enemies round about, that Joshua waxed old and stricken in age.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)XXIII.
JOSHUA’S LAST CHARGE.
(a) To the rulers (Joshua 23).
(b) To the people (Joshua 24 to Joshua 24:25).
(a) To THE RULERS.
(1) Joshua waxed old and stricken in age.—The same expression employed in Joshua 13:1. It is possible that we ought to translate thus: “It came to pass, a long time after the Lord had given rest . . . and (after) Joshua had grown old, advanced in days, that Joshua called . . .” Or it may be that we have here, as it were, “the two evenings” of Joshua’s life: the early evening, when his sun began to decline—the afternoon; and the late evening, just before its glorious setting in the service of Jehovah on earth, to “serve Him day and night in His temple.”Joshua 23:1-2. A long time after the Lord had given rest unto Israel — That is, about fourteen years after the conquest of the country, and seven after the division of it among the tribes: see Joshua 11:23; Joshua 14:10. Joshua called — Either to his own city, or rather to Shiloh, the usual place of such assemblies, where his words, being uttered before the Lord, were likely to have the more effect upon them. All Israel — Not all the people in their own persons, but in their representatives, by their elders, heads, judges, and officers. Probably he took the opportunity of one of the three great feasts. You will not have me long to preach to you; therefore observe what I say, and lay it up for the time to come.Deuteronomy 31, etc.). Compare throughout the marginal references.
Jos 23:1, 2. Joshua's Exhortation before His Death.
1. a long time after that the Lord had given rest unto Israel from all their enemies—about fourteen years after the conquest of Canaan, and seven after the distribution of that country among the tribes.Joshua being old assembles the people; declares the wonders God had wrought for them, and would work, in expelling the Canaanites, Joshua 23:1-5. Exhorts them to be courageous, to observe the law, and beware of idolatry, Joshua 23:6-8; which he enforces by former benefits, and promises, Joshua 23:9-11; by threatenings, Joshua 23:12-16.
that the Lord had given rest unto Israel from all their enemies round about; the greatest part of the land of Canaan was subdued, the whole divided by lot to the tribes of Israel, and they quietly settled in the respective portions assigned them, the Canaanites that remained giving them no disturbance, in which state of rest and peace they had now been for some years; and this may be reasonably supposed to be the last year of the life of Joshua, see Joshua 23:14.
that Joshua waxed old and stricken in age; and became feeble and decrepit, and greatly declined; for though he was ten years younger than Moses when he died, yet not so vigorous, strong, and robust as he, but was pressed and bore down with the infirmities of age.And it came to pass a long time after that the LORD had given rest unto Israel from all their enemies round about, that Joshua waxed old and stricken in age.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Joshua 23:1-16. Joshua’s first Farewell Address
1. had given rest] Comp. Joshua 21:43-44; Joshua 22:3-4.
waxed old] Comp. Joshua 13:1, “Now Joshua was old and stricken in years.”
stricken in age] Heb. come into days; “of ful eld age,” Wyclif.Verse 1. - Waxed old and stricken in age. Literally, was old, advanced in days (see Joshua 13:1). But this refers to a more advanced age still, when the patriarch felt his powers failing him, and desired, as far as his influence went, to preserve the Israelites in the path in which they had walked since their entrance into Canaan. Calvin has some good remarks on the "pious solicitude" shown by the aged warrior for those whom he had led in time of war and guided in time of peace. He seems to have sent for the chief men in Israel to his home at Timnath-Serah, where apparently he had led a retired and peaceful life, only coming forward to direct the affairs of the nation when necessity required. His address is simple and practical. He reminds them that they will soon lose the benefit of his experience and authority, and of the work that he had done, under God's direction, in settling them in the land. Then he proceeds to urge strict obedience to the law of God, reminding them that victory is assured to them, if they will but be true to themselves and their calling as the servants of God, but that as certainly as they neglect to do so, wrath and misery will be their portion. He emphasizes his words by reminding them how amply God had fulfilled his promise, and concludes with a picture of the evil which will befall them if they rebel against God. 1 Samuel 24:7; 1 Samuel 26:11; 1 Kings 21:3), to rebel against Jehovah," etc.
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