How do the books upon which we now enter, extending to the book of Job, differ from the preceding ones, and from the remaining writings of the Old Testament ? Ans. They are chiefly historical, whereas those of Moses are termed the law, and the others the prophets.

Does the history contained in them go back to a remoter period of antiquity than that of any authentic profane writer? N. B. Although ancient historians have some broken and fabulous traditions extending back to this period, yet Herodotus, who is called the father of History, lived about one thousand years after the date of this book.

Why is this called the book of Joshua? N. B. From Joshua and his deeds being the principal subject of it, and himself perhaps the writer.

What internal evidence does it contain of having been written by Joshua? See ch. 5. 1, 6.25, 24.26.

What are its general contents ? Ans. The entrance of the children of Israel into the land of Canaan—the conquest of Canaan—the distribution of the country among the several tribes—the establishment of religion and the death of Joshua.

How long a period of time does it embrace? N. B. It is supposed to cover the space of about seventeen years; from the death of Moses to that of Joshua.

Is this book referred to and quoted by subsequent inspired writers so as to prove it entitled to a place in the canon? Heb. 13.5. James 2.25. Heb. 11.30,31.

Joshua 1

What command and promise came to Joshua after the death of Moses?

What was typically taught by the death of Moses and the succession of Joshua, before the people had actually entered the land of promise? Gal. 3.24. John 1.17.

Where was the river Jordan situated, and for what did it afterwards become remarkable? Mat.3.6,18.

What special charges, instructions, and encouragements, did the Lord give to Joshua? v,3—9.

What did Joshua do in pursuance of these orders?

Had the manna at this time ceased to fall? ch 5.11,12.

Was this command probably before or after the return of the spies? ch. 2. 22. N. B. The spies were no doubt sent during the thirty days mourning for Moses.

What did he say to the Reubenites, Gadites and half tribe of Manasseh?

What answer did the body of the people through their elders, make to Joshua?

Are we to swear allegiance to the captain of our salvation?

Joshua 2

What method did Joshua adopt to obtain information respecting the city of Jericho?

Relate the circumstances and success of their expedition?

Is Rahab's present, or her former character indicated by the epithet applied to her?

Is her conduct in this affair esperially commended in the New Testament? Heb. 11.31, James 2.25.

In what sense is she said to have been "justified by her works?'' N. B. The Apostle represents the justification of Rahab and Abraham in the same light, viz. that by their works or practical conduct in trying circumstances, they each of them clearly evinced before men the existence of that principle of faith by which they were justified before God. Their obedience made good their claims to the character of believers.

What is to be thought of her answer to the king's messengers? N. B. What she said to them might, for ought we know, have been true of some other persons. But if meant of the spies, it may perhaps be in some measure excused on the ground, that deceptions and stratagems of war, practised upon enemies and persecutors are not absolutely forbidden in the Scriptures; and if there was no other conceivable way by which she could save them, or act according to her faith, it is proper to put the most charitable construction upon her conduct which it will admit of, though by no means to be adduced as an example in ordinary cases. See cases somewhat similar, 2 Sam 16.17-20 ,2 Kings 6.19.

How does Rahab's name stand elsewhere honorably distinguished in the Scripture. Matthew 1.5.

What did she say to the spies after the pursuers were gone, and what recompense did she demand for her services?

Was her anxiety for her relatives a fruit of true grace? Rom. 10. 1.

What assurance did the men give her, and how was their escape effected?

What directions did she give them, and what did they require of her in order to the fulfilment of their promise ?

What further evidence did she immediately give of her faith? v. 21.

What is said respecting the return of the spies and what report did they make to Joshua?

Was this league with a Canaanitish woman contrary to the precept in Deut. 7.2? N.B. This command was to be observed as a general rule, but subsequent facts shew that it might on particular occasions be dispensed with.

Joshua 3

Whither did they remove from Shittim, and how long did they lodge there? v, 5.

What orders did the officers give the people after the expiration of the three days mentioned above, ch. 1. 10,11?

How far distant from the ark were the people required to march, and for what reason?

What commands did Joshua give to the People and to the Priests?

What did the Lord now say to Joshua?

Did the Lord Jesus, the antitype of Joshua, begin also to be magnified at the river Jordan and near or at this very place? John 1.28. N. B. Bethabara, the place where John baptised, and where Christ himself probably submitted to that ordinance, signifies house of passage, and is thought by many to have received its name from the passage of the Israelites under Joshua.

What did Joshua say to the people previous to their entering the river? v. 9—11.

For what purpose were the twelve men selected one of each tribe? ch. 4. 3.

What prophetic information does he give to the people? V. 13. N. B. It does not appear that they had as yet been informed how they were to cross the river; but being strong in faith they staggered not at seeming impossibilities.

What was the condition of the river at this season ?

Relate the circumstances of their passage?

Where were the priests stationed with the ark while the people passed over?

Of what is this passage over Jordan typical? Jer. 12.5.

What gives support to the dying believer in making this passage?

Have we any striking allusion to this event in the Psalms? Ps. 114.

Joshua 4

What command did the Lord give to Joshua when the people were all passed over, and what did he do in compliance with it?

What was the design of this step?

Who are said in the 8th v. to have executed this order, and why is it attributed to them? N. B. This is one of the numerous instances occurring in Scripture, in which a company or multitude are said to do that which is done by their constituted agents—a principle of great importance when considered in relation to ecclesiastical proceedings.

Was there more than one heap of stones erected on this occasion?

Who came last out of the river, and who marched in front?

Was this according to a prior understanding?

How did the people henceforward regard Joshua?

Did the Priests wait for a special command before they came up out of the river?

What followed immediately upon their emerging?

At what time was this passage made; how long after they left Egypt; and where did they encamp? N. B. It was forty years lacking five days after the departure from Egypt; the remaining days being necessary to preparation for the Passover.

Is it intimated that these stones were to remain for a long period where they are placed? N.B. As John is supposed to have baptised at this place, it is not improbable that he might have alluded to this heap when he said; "God is able, of these stones, to raise up children to Abraham."

Joshua 5

How were the Canaanites affected by the news of Israel's arrival on their coasts?

Of what prophecy was this a fulfillment? Ex 15.14—17.

What was Joshua commanded to do, and what, was the occasion of it? N. B. The omission in this case was probably with the divine connivance, as the people knew not the precise times when they were to march, and a removal immediately after the operation, might have been dangerous to tender infants. Moreover, as one design of this rite was to distinguish the Israelites from all other people, it was not so necessary to be administered while they were secluded from the world for forty years in the wilderness. This case however is not to be pleaded as authorising the neglect or postponement of any divine ordinance in common circumstances.

How long did they abide in their camp ?

What is meant by "rolling away the reproach of Egypt?" N. B. By their being brought in triumph to the promised land, and put in possession of the covenanted blessings stipulated to the seed of Abraham, of which circumcision was the seal on their part, the reproach or disgrace of their Egyptian bondage was rolled away, and therefore the place was called Gilgal, which signifies rolling.

At what time did the people keep the passover; when did the manna cease; and what did they eat instead of it ?

What miraculous appearance was made to Joshua near Jericho?

How did he accost him, and what answer did he receive? N B.Joshua's ready challenge to the stranger evinced both his great courage, and his concern for the people. "So heartily is lie embarked in Israel's interests, that none shall stand by him with the face cf a man, but he will know whether he be a friend or a foe." Henry

What honours did Joshua pay to him, and whom does this fact shew him to have been? ch.6.2.

Why did he probably assume that appearance? N. B. His appearance as an armed man was a virtual Junction of the war in which Joshua was engaged, and a pledge that He would be with him and bless him in carrying it on.

What peculiar titles are given to Christ probably in reference to this event? Heb. 2.10. Is. 55.4.

Joshua 6

What was the condition of Jericho at this time?

What did the Lord, whose appearance is related in the foregoing chaptcr, now say to Joshua? V.2-5

What did Joshua and the people do in pursuance of these orders? V. 6—9.

Were the people required to march in perfect silence? V. 10.

In what order did the Priests, armed men, &c. move forward?

What did Joshua say to the people at the seventh circuit on the seventh day ? N. B. As it does not appear that the people were informed how they were to cross the Jordan till they came, to the river's bank, so on this occasion Joshua forbore to tell them how they were to become masters of the city, till they had compassed it six times. Their implicit obedience therefore strikingly evinced their faith; which is commended by the Apostle, Heb.11.30.

What did he say concerning the city and its inhabitants and what charges did he give them as to the disposal of the spoil?

What came to pass when the people shouted, and what did they do hereupon?

What Was done for Rahab and her family?

Of what was this typical?

How did Joshua adjure the people at that time?

What similar instance of the imposition of an oath may be given? 1 Sam. 14.24.

Did this prophetic curse afterwards come to pass, and upon whom? 1 Kings 16.34. N.B. The denunciation here mentioned did not extend to the future inhabitants of the city, but to him only who should attempt to rebuild it. For it was inhabited in the times of Elijah, and of Elisha, and also of Christ.

What is said of the celebrity which Joshua acquired in these transactions?

Joshua 7

By what means was the anger of God against the whole congregation incurred?

On what occasion did the divine displeasure manifest itself? v. 2—5.

What did the Elders and Joshua do in these circumstances?

What pleas did Joshua make in his prayer?

What answer did he obtain from God, as to the cause of the disaster, and what was he required to do? V. 10—15.

Why does the Lord say "Israel hath sinned," when it was the offence of one man? 1 Cor.5.6.

How did Joshua proceed in obedience to the divine command?

What was the tribe, family &c. of the offender, and how were they designated? Ans, Probably by lot, the issues of which were determined by a special interposition of Providence, according to Prov. 16.33.

What did Joshua say to him, and what was his confession?

How does James speak of the process of successful temptation? James 1.14,15.

How did Joshua ascertain the truth of his words, and what was done with the articles?

What did they then do in executing the punishment on Achan?

What did Joshua say to him, and by what means was he put to death?

Were his family slain with him? ch. 22.20 N. B. Possibly they might have been accessory to the crime ; at any rate, no injustice was done them; and the example would point out the exceeding enormity of the crime in the most affecting and alarming manner.

How was the affair commemorated, what was the effect of it, and what name was the place designated by? N. B. Achor signifies trouble; and Achan himself in the subsequent history, 1 Chron. 2.7. is called Achar.

What allusion do we elsewhere find to this place, and how is it to be understood ? Hos. 2.15. N.B. By the "valley of Achor for a door of hope," may be meant, that as the children of Israel at their first entrance upon the promised land experienced in this valley troublesome beginings, which ended happily, so those to whom the Prophet spake might take that circumstance as a pledge that their present afflictions should be succeeded by the most signal mercies.

What important practical lesson is taught by this whole narrative? Ans. That it is dangerous tampering with temptation—that our sins will sooner or later find us out—that condign punishment will inevitably overtake the guilty—that the transgressions of one or a few may subject a whole community to heavy judgments—and that when the divine favor is once forfeited by presumptuous sin it is with extreme difficulty recovered.

Joshua 8

How was Joshua encouraged and what was he instructed by God to do?

In what respects was the capture of the city to differ from that of Jericho?

Is it to be inferred from this that stratagems of war are lawful? N. B. They are undoubtedly as lawful as war itself is.

Why were so many men employed in this expedition ? N. B. From the ease with which Jericho had fallen into their hands, Joshua and the people were perhaps too sure of uninterrupted success. They were here taught that their utmost efforts were necessary, and the whole force of Israel was to be brought into the field against their enemies.

How many of the enemy fell that day?

What was done with the spoil, and what with the king of Ai?

What did Joshua do on Mount Ebal, and in obedience to what command? Deut. 27.4—0.

Joshua 9

What measures did the Canaanitish Kings enter into to withstand Joshua?

What people excepted themselves from this alliance, and what plan did they adopt to effect their preservation? v. 3—6.

Was this a powerful people? ch. 10. 2.

By what other name were the Gibeonites called? ch. 11. 19.

What did the men of Israel say to them?

What answer did they give to Joshua, when asked where they came from? v, 9—13.

What did the Israelites do to satisfy themselves of the truth of this statement, and what was the result? v. 14, 15.

What was there that was highly sinful in their conduct on this occasion? v. 14. Prov. 3. G.

How long was it before they came to their cities, and discovered the imposition that had been practised upon them?

What appears to have been the ground of the congregation's murmuring against the princes?

What did the princes answer them, and to what were the Gibeonites condemned for their treachery?

Is the violation of treaties pointedly forbidden in the Scriptures? Rom. 1.31. 1 Tim. 1.9,10. 2 Tim. 3.3.

What did Joshua say to them, and how did they answer him?

What name were they subsequently called by, and what does it signify ? 1 Chron. 9.2. N.B. Nethinim signifies "the given"

What remark of our Saviour is illustrated by this conduct of the Gibeonites? Luke 10.8.

May their conduct on this occasion be proposed in any respect as a pattern to sinful men? Ps. 2.12. Luke 14.32.

Joshua 10

Where did Adoni-bezek reign, and what does his name imply ? N. B. The name signifies Lord of righteousness; and as he reigned at, Salem or Jerusalem, it is thought probable that he might have been a descendant of Melchizedek, as the names are of similar import.

How was he affected by the conquests of Israel and the Gibeonite's league with them, and what politic measures did he take? v. 1—4,

Did the four Kings come into the project,and what did they do in consequence?

What conduct similar to this is sometimes to be seen in spiritual things? John 15.18,19.

What course was taken by the men of Gibeon in their extremity ?

Did Joshua comply, and how was he encouraged?

At what time did he pass up from Gilgal, and what was the result of his attack?

In what miraculous manner did the Lord fight against them?

What other stupenduous miracle was wrought at this time at the command of Joshua?

How does the fact here recorded agree with the modern system of astronomy? N. B. It is according to the general analogy of Scripture to speak of things as they appear to be rather than they actually are.

What opportunity was afforded to the Israelites by this interposition? v. 13.

Did this day become famous afterwards, and how was it commemorated? N. B. The Book of Jasher is supposed to have been a collection of records or poems concerning the chief events of the wars of Israel, which has long since perished.

What is stated in the 15th verse? N. B. As this verse is precisely the same with the last in this chapter, it has probably been misplaced and inserted here by the error of ancient transcribers; for it is scarcely credible that Joshua should have broken off in the midst of a victory, before apprehending the Kings, and returned twenty or thirty miles to the camp.

What became of the five Kings, and the rest of the enemy?

What did Joshua order to be done with them?

What was the fate of Makkedah?

What other places were successively destroyed?

Where were Joshua's head-quarters to which he returned after these victories?

Joshua 11

What measure did the remaining Kings of Canaan adopt in view of the inroads and conquests of the Israelites?

Which was the head of all these Kingdoms? V. 10.

What is said of the number of their forces ? N.B. Josephus tells us it was between two and three hundred thousand.

Were did this hostile army pitch?

How did the Lord encourage Joshua, and what did he bid him do with the horses and chariots?

What was probably the reason of this command? N. B. The Israelites might have been tempted to appropriate the horses and chariots to their own use in carrying on the war; but as God designed that their victories should be achieved in another manner, they were ordered to disable the one, and burn up the other. See Hos. 2. 7.

In what manner did Joshua fall upon them, and what was the result?

What passage in the Psalms is strikingly applicable to this event? Ps. 33.11,17.

What city did Joshua destroy after turning back, and what is said of the entireness of the destruction?

What did he do with the capital cities of all the Kings, and why?

What was done with the cities which "stood still in their strength," or surrendered before their fortifications were destroyed?

What territories did Joshua become possessed of, and how long did he continue the war with these Kings? N. B. The time occupied, as computed from the age of Caleb, ch. 14, 7, 10, is supposed to have been between six and seven years.

What was the only city that made peace with Joshua, and why did not others follow this example?

What nation did Joshua cut off from the mountains, and why is special mention made of it here? Num. 13.33.

Were any of them left and where did they reside?

What celebrated individual subsequently sprung from this stock? 1 Sam. 17.5.

What disposal did Joshua make of the conquered country?

Joshua 12-17

What did the Lord say to Joshua when he was old and stricken in years? ch. 13. 1.

What was to be the inheritance of the tribe of Levi? ch 13.14.

How was the number of the twelve tribes, according to the number of the sons of Israel, complete without including that of Levi? ch.14. 4.

What did Caleb say to Joshua when they were assembled in Gilgal, and what demand did he make?

Did he obtain his request, and what was the previous name of his inheritance?

What enemies did he drive from them?

What alluring offer did he hold out?

Who obtained the prize, and what did he gain in addition? ch. 15. 18—20.

What nation could not he drive out, and why? ch. 15.63. Judges. 2.21. N. B. As the expulsion of these devoted nations is no doubt emblematic of the extermination of the sins of believers, the Jebusites which still clung around the sacred city of Jerusalem, the seat of worship may not unfitly represent those inward corruptions or heart sins, which are the last to be subdued by the spirit of grace?

What provision had the Lord made for thedaughters of Zelophehad, and what was the success of the claim which they now presented ? ch. 17. 3, 4. Num. 27.7.

What was the plea of the children of Joseph, and what answer did they obtain? ch. 17.14—18.

Joshua 18-21

Where was the Tabernacle set up after being removed from Gilgal? N. B. Shiloh was no doubt, selected from its central position. The name is the same with that by which Jacob predicted the Messiah. Gen. 49.10.

How long did it remain at this place, and on what occasion was it removed ? See 1 Sam 4. N. B. The whole time was between three and four hundred years.

How many tribes remained to be provided with inheritances at this time, and what measure did Joshua propose for completing the distribution?

Was it done accordingly?

Why was the inheritance of Simeon taken out of that of Judah? ch. 19.9.

Was this in fulfilment of prophecy ? Gen. 49.7. N.B. Simeon and Levi were to be scattered among the tribes for their treachery and cruelty towards the Shechemites.

What command did the Lord give to Joshua respecting the appointment of certain cities? ch.28.1.

What directions are given relative to the manner in which these cities were to be made use of? v. 3—6.

How long was the manslayer to abide in the city?

What request did the heads of the Levites bring to Joshua and Eleazer, and on what was it founded? ch. 21. 2. Num 35.2—8.

Did they comply, and how many cities were assigned? v. 41. N. B. This is a larger number than appears to have fallen to any of the other tribes, except Judah, though Levi was one of the least among them. The reason probably was that the Levites dwelt only in cities, whereas the other tribes were not thus confined, but were dispersed at large over the country.

How is the faithfulness of God in fulfilling his promises acknowledged? ch. 21.43—45.

Joshua 22

With what words did Joshua dismiss Reuben, Gad, and Manasseh? v. 1—6.

With what booty did they return home?

What did they do when they came to the borders of Jordan?

How were the rest of the people affected, when they heard of this affair, and what occasioned their indignation ? Deut. 12.13,14.

What did they do under these circumstances?

How did these messengers remonstrate with the three tribes? v. 16—20.

What did they say in vindication of themselves? v. 21—29.

Were Phineas and the heads of the congregation satisfied with this explanation, and what did they answer?

How was their report of the affair received by the whole body of the people ?

What did they call the altar, and why ?

Joshua 23-24

What is Joshua said to have done after he had become advanced in years?

By what motives does he exhort them to be steadfast in God's service?

Against what does he solemnly warn them, and with what sanctions? v. 11—16.

Where did he convene the Elders a second time, in order to enforce upon them his final admonitions? ch. 24. 1.

Does his conduct in this respect resemble that of Moses in the closing part of his life?

What historical facts does he recite introductory to his exhortations? v. 2—13.

To what duties does he endeavor to urge the people, and what does he say of his own resolution? V. 14, 15.

What do the people answer him? v. 16—18.

What was Joshua's reply, and what did he intend by it? N. B. His design was by no means to deter them from those solemn engagements, but by exhibiting the holy and sin-avenging character of the God with whom they had to do, to impress their minds as deeply as possible with the real nature of their vows, and with the fearful consequences of disobedience and apostacy. Their professed zeal and forwardness gave him peculiar advantages for this purpose, of which he wisely avails himself.

What did he say to them when the people still professed their determination to persevere in obedience? v. 22, 23.

By what solemn act were these exhortations and stipulations concluded and ratified? v.25.

How was the affair recorded?

At what age did Joshua die, and where was he buried?

What was the character of that generation of the children of Israel compared with others before and after them? N. B. Probably the best on the whole of any during the whole period of their history.

What did they do with the bones of Joseph?

Where was Eleazer buried?

< Previous | Index | Next >