Joshua 11

Study

           

1 Now Jabin, king of Hazor, hearing of these things, sent to Jobab, king of Madon, and to the king of Shimron, and to the king of Achshaph,

2 And to the kings on the north in the hill-country, and in the Arabah south of Chinneroth, and in the lowland, and in the highlands of Dor on the west,

3 And to the Canaanites on the east and on the west, and to the Amorites and the Hittites and the Perizzites, and the Jebusites in the hill-country, and the Hivites under Hermon in the land of Mizpah.

4 And they went out, they and all their armies with them, a great people, in number like the sand on the seaside, with horses and war-carriages in great number.

5 And all these kings came together, and put their forces in position at the waters of Merom, to make war on Israel.

6 And the Lord said to Joshua, Have no fear of them: for tomorrow at this time I will give them all up dead before Israel; you are to have the leg-muscles of their horses cut and their war-carriages burned with fire.

7 So Joshua and all the men of war with him came against them suddenly at the waters of Merom, and made an attack on them.

8 And the Lord gave them up into the hands of Israel, and they overcame them driving them back to great Zidon and to Misrephoth-maim and into the valley of Mizpeh to the east; and they put them all to death, no man got away safely.

9 And Joshua did to them as the Lord had said to him; he had the leg-muscles of their horses cut and their war-carriages burned with fire.

10 At that time, Joshua went on to take Hazor and put its king to the sword: for in earlier times Hazor was the chief of all those kingdoms.

11 And they put every person in it to death without mercy, giving every living thing up to the curse, and burning Hazor.

12 And all the towns of these kings, and all the kings, Joshua took, and put them to the sword: he gave them up to the curse, as Moses, the servant of the Lord, had said.

13 As for the towns made on hills of earth, not one was burned by Israel but Hazor, which was burned by Joshua.

14 And all the goods taken from these towns, and their cattle, the children of Israel kept for themselves; but every man they put to death without mercy, till their destruction was complete, and there was no one living.

15 As the Lord had given orders to Moses his servant, so Moses gave orders to Joshua, and so Joshua did; every order which the Lord had given to Moses was done.

16 So Joshua took all that land, the hill-country and all the South, and all the land of Goshen, and the lowland and the Arabah, the hill-country of Israel and its lowland;

17 From Mount Halak, which goes up to Seir, as far as Baal-gad in the valley of Lebanon under Mount Hermon: and all their kings he overcame and put to death.

18 For a long time Joshua made war on all those kings.

19 Not one town made peace with the children of Israel, but only the Hivites of Gibeon: they took them all in war.

20 For the Lord made them strong in heart to go to war against Israel, so that he might give them up to the curse without mercy, and that destruction might come on them, as the Lord had given orders to Moses.

21 And Joshua came at that time and put an end to the Anakim in the hill-country, in Hebron, in Debir, in Anab, and in all the hill-country of Judah and Israel: Joshua gave them and their towns to the curse.

22 Not one of the Anakim was to be seen in the land of the children of Israel: only in Gaza, in Gath, and in Ashdod, some were still living.

23 So Joshua took all the land, as the Lord had said to Moses; and Joshua gave it to the children of Israel as their heritage, making division of it among them by their tribes. And the land had rest from war.

  

Exploring the Meaning of Joshua 11      

Joshua 11: Joshua conquers the entire land.

In this chapter, the Canaanite kings of the north, east and west heard that Israel had conquered all of the southern Canaanite territories. Jabin, king of Hazor, called upon the other Canaanite kingdoms to join forces and attack Israel with a great army.

The Lord reassured Joshua, “Be not afraid because of them: for tomorrow about this time will I deliver them up all slain before Israel” (verse 6). So Joshua counterattacked, and Israel defeated the Canaanites just as the Lord had said.

The rest of the chapter is an account of Joshua’s victories, now here, now there. Israel destroyed each of the Canaanite cities and territories and not one of them was left undefeated (See Swedenborg’s work, The New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine 161-164). In all of Canaan, only the Gibeonites were spared because they had made a peace treaty with Israel. The chapter closes with these words: “So Joshua took the whole land according to all that the Lord had said to Moses, and Joshua gave it as an inheritance to Israel according to their divisions by their tribes. Then the land had rest from war” (verse 23).

Now we turn to the spiritual meaning of all this, and its meaning for us. Because of our inherited, human nature, each of us has internal things we have to contend with in our natural life. These Canaanites - the faults we must overcome - are described by the compass points: north, south, east and west. Here are the spiritual meanings of the four cardinal directions (see Swedenborg’s work, Heaven and Hell 141-153):

West = less love

East = greater love

North = less light and wisdom

South = greater light and wisdom

Swedenborg tells us that heaven is organized by this principle. Angels with the clearest perception of love live in the eastern region of heaven, while those with a more hazy understanding live in the west. The same thing applies to the north/south axis; those in a “clear light of wisdom” live in the south, and those in a “dim light of wisdom” live in the north (Heaven and Hell 148). These poles represent angels’ states of love and wisdom, and their use. Just like people on earth, angels experience varying states of love and wisdom - sometimes more, sometimes less - but with angels this leads to them turning again to the Lord to acknowledge that he is their God.

The same pattern exists in hell, but instead of love and wisdom there is self-love (or even hatred) and false thinking from this distorted love. In hell, the degree of intensity in these states is between the rage to dominate and the exhaustion of failing.

In our life on earth, we experience states of both heaven and hell. As we are only partly regenerated, we rapidly switch between these states because of our emotions and the upheavals of life in this world. This chapter about the conflict between Israel and the Canaanites represents our own, personal decisions about what will be the ruling influence in our lives - heaven or hell (See Swedenborg’s work, Arcana Caelestia 5982).

The end of this chapter offers two important statements describing the conflict between heaven and hell. The first one (in verse 20) says the Lord hardened the hearts of Israel’s enemies so that they came to attack, and consequently were destroyed. This tells us that we have to see our evils for what they are in order to turn away from them (See Swedenborg’s unpublished work, Charity 179-180).

The second statement (verses 21-22) says that Joshua completely destroyed the Anakim, except beyond the borders of the land. The Anakim were giants, and they stand for those enormous tensions and rages which evil spirits from hell bring us at times. This (reassuringly) helps us see that we are not like that ourselves, but we could be if we let those evil spirits make a home in our hearts and minds (Arcana Caelestia 2909[3]).

    Studovat vnitřní smysl

Přeložit: