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fenced cities. And all the people returned to the camp to Joshua at Makkedah in peace: none moved his tongue against any of the children of Israel. Then said Joshua, Open the mouth of the cave, and bring out those five kings unto me out of the cave. And they did so, and brought forth those five kings unto him out of the cave, the king of Jerusalem, the king of Hebron, the king of Jarmuth, the king of Lachish, and the king of Eglon. And it came to pass, when they brought out those kings unto Joshua, that Joshua called for all the men of Israel, and said unto the captains of the men of war which went with him, Come near, put your feet upon the necks of these kings. And they came near, and put their feet upon the
25 In what a truly noble spirit does their leader refer the victors to
Jehovah! how pointedly does he
necks of them. 25 And Joshua said unto them, Fear not, nor be dismayed, be strong and of good courage: for thus shall the LORD do to all your enemies against whom ye fight. And afterward Joshua smote them, and slew them, and hanged them on five trees: and they were hanging upon the trees until the evening. And it came to pass at the time of the going down of the sun, that Joshua commanded, and they took them down off the trees, and cast them into the cave wherein they had been hid, and laid great stones in the cave's mouth, which remain until this very day. And that day Joshua took Makkedah, and smote it with the edge of the sword, and the king thereof he utterly destroyed, them, and all the souls that were therein; he let none remain: and he did to the king of Makkedah as he did unto the king of Jericho. Then Joshua passed from Makkedah, and all Israel with him, unto Libnah, and fought against Libnah: and the LORD delivered it also, and the king thereof, into the hand of Israel; and he smote it with the edge of the sword, and all the souls that were therein; he let none remain in it; but did unto the king thereof, as he did unto the king of Jericho. And Joshua passed from Libnah, and all Israel with him, unto Lachish, and encamped against it, and fought against it: and the LORD delivered Lachish into the hand of Israel, which took it on the second day, and smote it with the edge of the sword, and all the souls that were therein, according to all that he had done to Libnah. Then Horam king of Gezer came up to help Lachish; and Joshua smote him and his people, until he had left him none remaining. And from Lachish Joshua passed unto Eglon, and all Israel with him; and they
encamped against it, and fought against it: and they took it on that day, and smote it with the edge of the sword, and all the souls that were therein he utterly destroyed that day, according to all that he had done to Lachish. And Joshua
went up from Eglon, and all Israel with him, unto Hebron ; and they fought against it: and they took it, and smote it with the edge of the sword, and the king thereof, and all the cities thereof, and all the souls that were therein; he left none remaining, according to all that he had done to Eglon; but destroyed it utterly, and all the souls that were therein. And Joshua returned, and all Israel with him, to Debir; and fought against it; and he took it, and the king thereof, and all the cities thereof; and they smote them with the edge of the sword, and utterly destroyed all the souls that were therein; he left none remaining: as he had done to Hebron, so he did to Debir, and to the king thereof; as he had done also to Libnah, and to her king. So Joshua smote all the country of the hills, and of the south, and of the vale, and of the springs, and all their kings: he left none remaining, but utterly destroyed all that breathed, as the LORD God of Israel commanded. And Joshua smote them from Kadesh-barnea even unto Gaza, and all the country of Goshen, even unto Gibeon. 42 And all these kings and their land did Joshua take at one time, because the LORD God of Israel fought for Israel. 43 And Joshua returned, and all Israel with 43 How glorious that day of triumph, him, unto the camp to Gilgal. when the Church on earth-her warfare being accomplished-shall be united with the Church in Heaven, and her sons receive each his crown, as a triumphant soldier of the cross.
42 This acknowledgement "that the hand of the Lord did gain the victory" is repeated; lest future ages should forget a truth with which the immediate actors in the scene were so deeply and blessedly impressed.
EVENING. JOSHUA Xxiii.
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. And Joshua called for all Israel, and for their elders, and for their heads, and for their judges, and for their officers, and said unto them, I am old and stricken in age: ' and ye have seen all that the LORD your God hath done unto all these nations because of you; for the LORD your God is he that hath fought for you.
3 Faith in God as the Author of all our blessings, nationally and individually-victory in war, and prosperity in peace was the prevailing spirit in the heart of Joshua, even to
This counsel comes with added force from the lips of the veteran warrior, whose own courage never quailed*.
Behold, I have divided unto you by lot these nations that remain, to be an inheritance for your tribes, from Jordan, with all the nations that I have cut off, even unto the great sea westward. And the LORD 5 Faith in past mercies leads Joshua your God, he shall expel to a noble trust for future blessings. them from before you, and drive them from out of your sight; and ye shall possess their land, as the LORD your God hath promised unto you. "Be ye therefore very courageous to keep and to do all that is written in the book of the law of Moses, that ye turn not aside therefrom to the right hand or to the left; that ye come not among these nations, these that remain among you; neither make mention of the name of their gods, nor cause to swear by them, neither serve them, nor bow yourselves unto them: * but cleave unto the LORD your God, as ve have done unto this day. For the Lord hath driven out from before you great nations and strong: but as for you, no man hath been able to stand before you unto this day. One man of you shall chase a thousand: for the LORD your God, he it is that fighteth for you, as he hath promised you. Take good heed therefore unto yourselves, that ye love the LORD your God. "Else if 12 So surely cometh it to pass that ye do in any wise go back, "evil communication corrupts good and cleave unto the remnant manners." (1 Cor. xv. 33.) of these nations, even these that remain among you, and shall make marriages with them, and go in unto them, and they to you: know for a certainty that the LORD your God will no more drive out any of these nations from before you; but they shall be snares and traps unto you, and scourges in your sides,
8 How blessed a privilege that we are permitted to cleave unto the Lord, our God-not to let him go. the angel, so the language of faith As with Jacob, in his wrestling with ever is "I will not let thee go; except thou bless me." (Gen. xxxii. 26.)
* There is a high moral courage necessary for our Christian warfare, even though God is to be all in all. How vain those who would deny the necessity for exercising the Christian graces and virtues, and for diligence in fulfilling the active duties of life, because it is God's grace which alone is the efficient cause of success! God's grace it was which gave success to Israel; but He required of the very soldiers to whom He was about to give victory, that they should themselves be very courageous to obey Him, who was the giver of victory. So St. Paul fought the fight, as if victory depended upon himself; though so entirely did he trust in divine grace, that he humbly declares, that "we are not sufficient of ourselves, to think any thing as of ourselves-our sufficiency is of God."
and thorns in your eyes, until ye perish from off this good land which the LORD your God
hath given you.
14 What an affecting and instructive scene! If truth prevail anywhere, it is on a death-bed; and its voice comes with added force from the lips of aged and experienced piety. Heed then the dying Joshua.
thing hath failed of all the good things which the LORD your God spake concerning you; all are come to pass unto you, and not one thing hath failed thereof. Therefore it shall come to pass, that as all good things are come upon you, which the LORD your God promised you; so shall the Lord bring upon you all evil things, until he have destroyed you from off this good land which the LORD your God 16 Let me be.a true and faithful soldier of Christ, even to the end! so may I gain at last my promised Canaan, and dwell therein for ever. which he commanded you, and have gone and served other gods, and bowed yourselves to them; then shall the anger of the LORD be kindled against you, and ye shall perish quickly from off the good land which he hath given unto you.
hath given you. When ye have transgressed the covenant of the LORD your God,
The second Sunday after Trinity.
MORNING JUDGES iv.
1 AND the children of Israel again did evil in the sight of the LORD, when Ehud was dead. And the LORD sold them into the hand of Jabin
1 None do wrong, but that the Lord seeth them, and prepares punish
What a check to evil is this thought! The all-seeing God has a thousand ways of punishment.
king of Canaan, that reigned in Hazor; the captain of whose host was Sisera, which dwelt in Harosheth of the Gentiles.
And the children of Israel cried unto the LORD: for he had nine hundred chariots of iron; and twenty years he mightily oppressed the children of Israel. And Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lapidoth, she judged Israel at that time. And she dwelt under the palm tree of Deborah, between Ramah and Beth-el in mount Ephraim and the children of Israel came up to her for judgment. And she sent and called Barak the son of Abinoam out of Kedesh-naphtali, and said unto him, Hath not the LORD God of Israel commanded, saying, Go and draw toward mount Tabor, and take with thee ten thousand men of the children of
3 If danger lead to repentance and prayer, blessed be the fear of it-it is the beginning of wisdom!
Naphtali and of the children of Zebulun? And I will draw unto thee to the river Kishon Sisera, the captain of Jabin's army, with his chariots and his multitude; and I will deliver him into thine hand. And Barak said unto her, If thou wilt go with me, then I will go: but if thou wilt not go with me, then I will not go. And she said, I will surely go with thee: notwithstanding the journey that thou takest shall not be for thine honour; for the LORD shall sell Sisera into the hand of a woman. And Deborah arose, and went with Barak to Kedesh. And Barak called Zebulun and Naphtali to Kedesh; and he went up with ten thousand men at his feet: and Deborah went up with him. Now Heber the Kenite, which was of the children of Hobab the father in law of Moses, had severed himself from the Kenites, and pitched his tent unto the plain of Zaanaim, which is by Kedesh. And they shewed Sisera that Barak the son of Abinoam was gone up to mount Tabor. And Sisera gathered together all his chariots, even nine hundred chariots of iron, and all the people that were with him, from Harosheth of the Gentiles unto the river of Kishon. And Deborah said unto Barak, Up; for this is the day in which the LORD hath delivered Sisera into thine hand: is not the LORD gone out before thee? So Barak went down from mount Tabor, and ten thousand men after him. And the LORD discomfited Sisera, and all his chariots, and all his host, with the edge of the sword before Barak; so that Sisera lighted down off his chariot, and fled away on his feet. But Barak pursued after the chariots, and after the host, unto Harosheth of the Gentiles and all the host of Sisera fell upon the edge of the sword; and there was not a man left. Howbeit Sisera fled away on his feet to the tent of Jael the wife of Heber the Kenite for there was peace between Jabin the king of Hazor and the house of Heber the Kenite. And Jael went out to meet Sisera, and said unto him, Turn in, my lord, turn in to
* Barak was wise as he was courageous, in trusting to God. What is man's courage without God's blessing? What man's wisdom without God's Spirit!
14 So the "Lord goeth out before" every faithful soldier of Christ. The God of Deborah is our God-the leader of the army of Barak, is the great Captain of our salvation, leading us on to victory.
The hearts of kings, and the courage of their armies, are in God's rule and governance. Hence Barak's anxiety to have with him the prophetess God's minister. This fact well warns the proud, not to despise the ministers of the Gospel; lest in despising the servant, they despise the Master.