Joshua 9-15- Boy, that was a lot of killing!😧

This week we read how Joshua, along with all the Israelites, engaged in the conquest and "moving in" to the territory that made up "the Promised Land".
If one just skims over these chapters, it can leave a feeling of, 😱"Ugg!  How horrific!"  The killing of "all who had breath" (10:40)- that sounds barbaric and merciless by today's standards! What kind of God do we serve who would be so harsh?!😦

Yet, while I was reading, a verse came to me that I remember reading a while back.  I'm so glad God brought it back to the forefront of my mind as I read these chapters!   I remember a scene in Genesis where God was talking with Abraham.  Abraham is at a scenic lookout point, a view that eventual became what we know today as Israel.  God and Abraham just had an exchange about the promise of a son, a promised land, and an explanation of the timing of those events.   In fact, God told Abraham exactly what would happen over the next 400 years! During that conversation, God said something that I thought was remarkable! "In the fourth generation, your descendants will come back here, for the sins of the Amorites has not yet reached its full measure." (Gen. 15:16).

Wait, what? It's going to take 400 years for the Amorites to get so evil there would be no turning back for them?!! Wow! I read a commentary of what these evil people must have been like to get God to wipe them out. They were doing all the things God said the Israelites should not do, found listed in Leviticus 18 & 20.  Take a look at those things and you will see how deplorable these people were when the Israelites wiped them out!

When reading the "do not" list in Leviticus 18, keeping in mind that the Amorites in Canaan were doing ALL of those evil things (Lev. 18:3 & 20:23), I got a better understanding of why God commanded Joshua to "destroy all who had breath".  Another thing to remember is that God had been very merciful to the people in Caanan!!  He had given them 400 years to come to their senses!  Instead, they chose to let their sin "reach its full measure", and get "hard-hearted" to wage war against the Israelites (Joshua 11:20).
The sad thing for those Canaanites is that they never accepted that they could have repented at any time and God would have forgiven, just as he did for Rehab the prostitute in chapter 2.

God has not changed and never will. He was merciful then as he is now.  He was patent then as he is patient now!  He wants people to return to him. Yet, he is also just!  People will get what they deserve if they don't accept his provision for a way out.
Thank you God for your Son, our way out!


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