Joshua 4

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1 And it was, as all the nation had finished crossing·​·over the Jordan, that Jehovah said to Joshua, saying,

2 Take for yourselves twelve men out·​·of the people; one man, one man from each tribe,

3 and command ye them, saying, Lift·​·up for yourselves from this place, from the midst of the Jordan, from the place which the feet of the priests stood·​·over, twelve stones prepared, and you shall cause them to cross·​·over with you, and place them in the lodging·​·place in which you shall lodge* tonight.

4 And Joshua called to the twelve men whom he had prepared from the sons of Israel; one man, one man from each tribe.

5 And Joshua said to them, Cross· ye ·over before the ark of Jehovah your God, to the midst of the Jordan, and lift·​·up for yourselves each man one stone on his shoulder, according·​·to the number of the tribes of the sons of Israel,

6 so·​·that this may be a sign among you, when your sons shall ask tomorrow, saying, What are these stones to you?

7 And you shall say to them, Because the waters of the Jordan were cut·​·off from before the ark of the covenant of Jehovah; when it crossed·​·over into the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut·​·off; and these stones shall be for a memorial to the sons of Israel even·​·to eternity.

8 And the sons of Israel did so as Joshua had commanded, and they took·​·up twelve stones out·​·of the midst of the Jordan, as Jehovah had spoken to Joshua, according·​·to the number of the tribes of the sons of Israel; and they brought· them ·across with them to their place·​·to·​·pass·​·the·​·night, and placed them there.

9 And Joshua raised·​·up twelve stones in the midst of the Jordan, beneath the place which the feet of the priests carrying the ark of the covenant stood·​·over; and they are there even·​·to this day.

10 And the priests that bore the ark stood in the midst of the Jordan, until every word was finished that Jehovah commanded Joshua to speak to the people, according·​·to all that Moses commanded Joshua; and the people hastened and crossed·​·over.

11 And it was, when all the people had finished crossing, that the ark of Jehovah and the priests crossed·​·over in the presence* of the people.

12 And the sons of Reuben, and the sons of Gad, and the half tribe of Manasseh crossed·​·over girded·​·to·​·the·​·fifth* before the sons of Israel, as Moses had spoken to them.

13 About forty thousand armed for the army crossed·​·over before Jehovah to battle, to the plains of Jericho.

14 On that day Jehovah magnified Joshua in the eyes of all Israel; and they feared him, as they feared Moses, all the days of his life.

15 And Jehovah said to Joshua, saying,

16 Command the priests who bear the ark of the testimony, and they shall come·​·up out·​·of the Jordan.

17 And Joshua commanded the priests, saying, Come· ye ·up out·​·of the Jordan.

18 And it was, when the priests who bore the ark of the covenant of Jehovah had come·​·up out·​·of the midst of the Jordan, and the soles of the feet of the priests had been pulled·​·out onto the dry ground, that the waters of the Jordan returned to their place, and went over all its banks as from yesterday and the day before*.

19 And the people went·​·up from the Jordan, on the tenth of the first month, and encamped in Gilgal, on the edge of Jericho toward the sunrise.

20 And those twelve stones, which they took out·​·of the Jordan, Joshua raised·​·up in Gilgal.

21 And he said to the sons of Israel, saying, When your sons shall ask their fathers tomorrow, saying, What are these stones?

22 Then you shall let your sons know, saying, On dry land Israel crossed·​·over this Jordan.

23 As Jehovah your God dried·​·up the waters of the Jordan from before you until you had crossed·​·over, as Jehovah your God did to the Suph Sea*, which He dried·​·up from before us until we had crossed·​·over,

24 so·​·that all the peoples of the earth may know the hand of Jehovah, that it is firm, so·​·that you may fear Jehovah your God all the days.

  

Exploring the Meaning of Joshua 4      

Napsal(a) Rev. Julian Duckworth and New Christian Bible Study Staff

Joshua 4: Twelve stones are taken from the river Jordan

In this chapter we pick up on the command to take twelve men, one from each tribe, which was mentioned in chapter 3. The task is for each man to pick up a large stone from where the priests’ feet stand, and take it across, and put it in the lodging place. These stones will be as memorial stones so that later generations who ask what these stones mean will be told about the miracle of the Lord in the crossing of the river Jordan.

Later, the Israelites camped at Gilgal and Joshua set the twelve stones up as a permanent memorial.

A ‘stone’ is a piece of hard rock. It corresponds to a truth; for us it stands for a truth which we have made ours and which guides us in our life (Apocalypse Revealed 231). It might be the truth that the Lord’s providence is involved in everything that happens. It could be the great truth that we will live for ever, or that God came on earth as a human being and overcame the power of hell. These and other truths are rock hard truths or stones.

But here, it is a stone which has been washed and worked on by the waters of the river Jordan, and over much time has become fashioned and rounded by erosion. So, it could be a life-truth, for example that we are to show respect to other people. That’s a great truth, but now it is connected with our understanding of the Lord. So we are to show respect to other people because each and every person has been created by God for a unique purpose. And we can also add that we know how it feels when other people respect us.

So we assemble our twelve memorial stones. These are to be recalled, remembered, revisited by us again and again as time passes. “Yes, God brought me here from where I was before.” (Arcana Caelestia 1988). This meaning of the stones helps us with the apparent contradiction in the chapter between Joshua 4:9 where “the stones are set up in the Jordan and are there to this day” and verse Joshua 4:20 where “Joshua sets up the twelves stones from out of the Jordan, in Gilgal.” Stones can’t be in two places at once, but yes, spiritually they can and need to be.

We need to always remember and be mindful of how the Lord works with us in giving us truths for our life. Everything is the Lord! These are stones in the Jordan. Yet we need to always remember that we are to live, act, and turn away from any evil as if it is only us making that decision and doing it. These are the stones set up at Gilgal (Apocalypse Explained 700[14]). Both of them are involved in our regeneration and spiritual life.

Then we are told that the men of the tribes of Reuben, Gad and half the tribe of Manasseh went across the Jordan armed and went before all the other tribes. This links with several other mentions of these tribes who had chosen to live back over the Jordan and not in the land of Canaan. They stand for our outward life and our life in the world which, while it is not directly spiritual, must have qualities that come from God’s truths. Here, those qualities come from being willing to go in and fight to help take the land (Arcana Caelestia 2184).

Verse 13 says that about 40,000 prepared for war and crossed the river Jordan before the Lord for battle. Here is a number. Numbers in the Word are helpful clues to the inner meaning. The number 40 always stands for some kind of temptation or crisis in the Word – for example, Jesus was in the wilderness 40 days and 40 nights, tempted. Here, 40 has grown to become 40,000 but it has the same meaning of temptation (Arcana Caelestia 2273). Our spiritual life and regeneration will certainly take us into various temptations (‘battles’) and the Lord allows them so that we grow stronger through them. The whole conquest of Canaan is nothing else!

   Studovat vnitřní smysl

Exploring the Meaning of Joshua 4      

Napsal(a) Rev. Julian Duckworth and New Christian Bible Study Staff

Joshua 4: Twelve stones are taken from the river Jordan

In this chapter we pick up on the command to take twelve men, one from each tribe, which was mentioned in chapter 3. The task is for each man to pick up a large stone from where the priests’ feet stand, and take it across, and put it in the lodging place. These stones will be as memorial stones so that later generations who ask what these stones mean will be told about the miracle of the Lord in the crossing of the river Jordan.

Later, the Israelites camped at Gilgal and Joshua set the twelve stones up as a permanent memorial.

A ‘stone’ is a piece of hard rock. It corresponds to a truth; for us it stands for a truth which we have made ours and which guides us in our life (Apocalypse Revealed 231). It might be the truth that the Lord’s providence is involved in everything that happens. It could be the great truth that we will live for ever, or that God came on earth as a human being and overcame the power of hell. These and other truths are rock hard truths or stones.

But here, it is a stone which has been washed and worked on by the waters of the river Jordan, and over much time has become fashioned and rounded by erosion. So, it could be a life-truth, for example that we are to show respect to other people. That’s a great truth, but now it is connected with our understanding of the Lord. So we are to show respect to other people because each and every person has been created by God for a unique purpose. And we can also add that we know how it feels when other people respect us.

So we assemble our twelve memorial stones. These are to be recalled, remembered, revisited by us again and again as time passes. “Yes, God brought me here from where I was before.” (Arcana Caelestia 1988). This meaning of the stones helps us with the apparent contradiction in the chapter between Joshua 4:9 where “the stones are set up in the Jordan and are there to this day” and verse Joshua 4:20 where “Joshua sets up the twelves stones from out of the Jordan, in Gilgal.” Stones can’t be in two places at once, but yes, spiritually they can and need to be.

We need to always remember and be mindful of how the Lord works with us in giving us truths for our life. Everything is the Lord! These are stones in the Jordan. Yet we need to always remember that we are to live, act, and turn away from any evil as if it is only us making that decision and doing it. These are the stones set up at Gilgal (Apocalypse Explained 700[14]). Both of them are involved in our regeneration and spiritual life.

Then we are told that the men of the tribes of Reuben, Gad and half the tribe of Manasseh went across the Jordan armed and went before all the other tribes. This links with several other mentions of these tribes who had chosen to live back over the Jordan and not in the land of Canaan. They stand for our outward life and our life in the world which, while it is not directly spiritual, must have qualities that come from God’s truths. Here, those qualities come from being willing to go in and fight to help take the land (Arcana Caelestia 2184).

Verse 13 says that about 40,000 prepared for war and crossed the river Jordan before the Lord for battle. Here is a number. Numbers in the Word are helpful clues to the inner meaning. The number 40 always stands for some kind of temptation or crisis in the Word – for example, Jesus was in the wilderness 40 days and 40 nights, tempted. Here, 40 has grown to become 40,000 but it has the same meaning of temptation (Arcana Caelestia 2273). Our spiritual life and regeneration will certainly take us into various temptations (‘battles’) and the Lord allows them so that we grow stronger through them. The whole conquest of Canaan is nothing else!

Swedenborg

Hlavní výklad ze Swedenborgových prací:

Arcana Coelestia 1585, 4255


Další odkazy Swedenborga k této kapitole:

Arcana Coelestia 2838, 3858, 6804, 6983, 9396, 9416

Apocalypse Revealed 348, 529

Doctrine of Life 59

True Christian Religion 284


Odkazy ze Swedenborgových nevydaných prací:

Apocalypse Explained 222, 430, 529, 700

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Skočit na podobné biblické verše

Exodus 9:16, 11:3, 12:14, 26, 28, 14:31, 15:19, 24:4

Numbers 17:5

Deuteronomy 6:2, 11:30, 16:3, 33:21

Joshua 1:14, 17, 3:7, 12, 15, 16, 17, 4:6, 21, 5:9, 9:6, 24:11

Judges 20:1

1 Samuel 10:8, 12:18, 17:46

1 Kings 3:28, 8:40, 42

2 Kings 2:1, 15

1 Chronicles 29:25

Job 40:9

Psalms 66:6, 78:4, 106:8

Isaiah 52:10, 12

Jeremiah 10:7

Romans 9:17

Revelation 15:4

Významy biblických slov

nation
The Bible generally uses two different terms for large groups: “people” and “nations.” When it uses “nation,” it is talking about a group with the...

jordan
The river Jordan separates the land of Canaan from the lands to the east. This separation represents the division of the human mind into an internal...

jehovah
The Lord, in the simplest terms, is love itself expressed as wisdom itself. In philosophic terms, love is the Lord's substance and wisdom is His...

said
As with many common verbs, the meaning of “to say” in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Who is speaking? Who is hearing? What...

joshua
Joshua is first mentioned in Exodus 17, where he is told to select men to fight for the children of Israel against the Amalekites in...

men
The relationship between men and women is deep and nuanced, and one entire book of the Writings – Conjugial Love or Love in Marriage –...

people
"Man" is a tricky word to discuss, because the Hebrew of the Old Testament uses six different words that are generally translated as "man," with...

one
A company might have executives setting policy and strategy, engineers designing products, line workers building them, managers handling personnel and others handling various functions. They...

man
The relationship between men and women is deep and nuanced, and one entire book of the Writings – Conjugial Love or Love in Marriage –...

command
To command is to give an order that something must be done, and is directed to an individual, or a group. It is an imperative,...

lift
Like many verbs, the spiritual meaning of "bearing" something depends greatly on context – what it is that's being borne, and why. It is further...

midst
The "midst" of something in the Bible represents the thing that is most central and most important to the spiritual state being described, the motivation...

feet
Our feet are the lowest parts of our bodies, and they're very useful! In the Bible, feet represent the lowest and most utilitarian part of...

priests
Priests' represent the Lord regarding His divine good. When they do not acknowledge the Lord, they lose their signification of the Lord.

stones
Stones in the Bible in general represent truths, or things we know concerning the Lord and what He wants from us and for us in...

lodging
An inn' signifies a place of instruction. An inn' signifies the exterior natural level in general. This cannot be confirmed from parallel passages in the...

lodge
An inn' signifies a place of instruction. An inn' signifies the exterior natural level in general. This cannot be confirmed from parallel passages in the...

pass
'To pass,' as in Genesis 31:52, signifies flowing in. 'To pass the night,' as in Genesis 24:54, signifies having peace. 'To pass through,' as in...

night
The sun in the Bible represents the Lord, with its heat representing His love and its light representing His wisdom. “Daytime,” then, represents a state...

tonight
The sun in the Bible represents the Lord, with its heat representing His love and its light representing His wisdom. “Daytime,” then, represents a state...

called
'To proclaim' signifies exploration from influx of the Lord.

Sons of Israel
'The camp of the sons of Israel' represents the church.

israel
Jacob is told twice that his name will now be Israel. The first time is when he wrestles with an angel on his journey to...

before
In most cases, the meaning of "before" is pretty straightforward, both as a way of assessing relative time, and in its use meaning "in someone's...

ark
A coffin (Gen. 1:26) signifies that wherein something is shut up or concealed.

God
When the Bible speaks of "Jehovah," it is representing love itself, the inmost love that is the essence of the Lord. That divine love is...

stone
Stones in the Bible in general represent truths, or things we know concerning the Lord and what He wants from us and for us in...

tribes
In general, 'the twelve tribes' signify every aspect of the doctrine of truth and good, or of faith and love. Truth and good, or faith...

sign
'A token,' as in Genesis 9:12, 13, 17, signifies causing it to be.

say
As with many common verbs, the meaning of “to say” in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Who is speaking? Who is hearing? What...

memorial
'For a sign and for a memorial,' denotes that a thing should be perpetually remembered.

eternity
In many cases, the use of “eternity” in the Bible is pretty literal, simple meaning forever. This is especially true when the text is referring...

commanded
To command is to give an order that something must be done, and is directed to an individual, or a group. It is an imperative,...

spoken
Like "say," the word "speak" refers to thoughts and feelings moving from our more internal spiritual levels to our more external ones – and ultimately...

day
The expression 'even to this day' or 'today' sometimes appears in the Word, as in Genesis 19:37-38, 22:14, 26:33, 32:32, 35:20, and 47:26. In a...

bore
Like many verbs, the spiritual meaning of "bearing" something depends greatly on context – what it is that's being borne, and why. It is further...

stood
'To stand,' and 'come forth' as in Daniel 7:10, refers to truth. In Genesis 24:13, it signifies a state of conjunction of divine truth with...

word
'Word,' as in Psalms 119:6-17, stands for doctrine in general. 'The Word,' as in Psalms 147:18, signifies divine good united with divine truth. 'Word,' as...

speak
Like "say," the word "speak" refers to thoughts and feelings moving from our more internal spiritual levels to our more external ones – and ultimately...

moses
Moses's name appears 814 times in the Bible (KJV), third-most of any one character (Jesus at 961 actually trails David at 991). He himself wrote...

hastened
'To hasten' or 'hastiness' in the internal sense, does not denote what is quick, but what is certain, and also what is full, thus every...

faces
“The eyes are the windows of the soul.” That’s a sentiment with roots somewhere in murky antiquity, but one that has become hopelessly cliché because...

reuben
'Reuben,' in the highest sense, signifies omniscience. In a spiritual sense, he signifies wisdom, intelligence, science, and faith. In a natural sense, he signifies sight....

gad
Gad, in a supreme sense, signifies omnipotence; in a spiritual sense, the good of life, or use; and in a natural sense, works. Gad, in...

half
Half and double in reference to numbers in the world have a similar signification as the numbers themselves.

manasseh
'Manasseh' signifies the will of the spiritual church.

forty
'Forty' means completeness because 'four' means what is complete, as does 'ten.' Forty is the product of four and ten. Compound numbers have a meaning...

thousand
As children, most of us at some point frustrated our mothers into using the phrase “if I've told you once, I've told you a thousand...

army
A host and an army come from the same Hebrew word and mean the same thing in Bible; when the Children of Israel were numbered...

battle
War in the Word represents the combat of temptation when what is good is assaulted by what is evil or false. The evil that attacks...

plains
'A plain' signifies good and truth in the natural self, because 'the people who dwell in plains,' or 'beneath mountains and hills' are in the...

jericho
Jericho' signifies instruction and also the good of life because no one can be instructed in the truths of doctrine but he who is in...

eyes
It’s common to say “I see” when we understand something. And indeed, “seeing” in the Bible represents grasping and understanding spiritual things. So it makes...

feared
The fearful signify people who have no faith.

days
The expression 'even to this day' or 'today' sometimes appears in the Word, as in Genesis 19:37-38, 22:14, 26:33, 32:32, 35:20, and 47:26. In a...

life
'Lives' is used in the plural, because of the will and understanding, and because these two lives make one.

bear
Like many verbs, the spiritual meaning of "bearing" something depends greatly on context – what it is that's being borne, and why. It is further...

Soles of the feet
'The soles of the feet' correspond to the sensory natural level of a person.

returned
Everyone knows the phrase "the natural order of things." It means that everything is in its proper place, occupying the niche it is meant to...

place
'A room' or 'place' denotes state.

the first
'Resurrection' signifies salvation and eternal life. 'The first,' mentioned in Revelation 20:5, 6, does not mean a first resurrection, but the essence and primary part...

first
Why would it be insulting for a man to refer to his married partner as his “first wife”? Because it implies there will be a...

month
'A month' has respect to the state of truth in a person. 'A month' signifies a full state. Month,' as in Genesis 29, signifies the...

encamped
'Pitch,' as in Genesis 14:10, denotes lusts. 'Burning pitch,' as in Isaiah 34:9, signifies direful fantasies.

gilgal
Gilgal signifies the doctrine of natural truth, serving for introduction into the church.

fathers
Father in the Word means what is most interior, and in those things that are following the Lord's order, it means what is good. In...

know
Like so many common verbs, the meaning of "know" in the Bible is varied and dependent on context. And in some cases – when it...

dried
'Withering and drying up,' as in Ezekiel 17:10, referring to the east wind, signifies when there is no good or truth.

sea
Water generally represents what Swedenborg calls “natural truth,” or true concepts about day-to-day matters and physical things. Since all water ultimately flows into the seas,...

Red sea
'The Red sea' signifies hell and damnation, or temptation.

us
Angels do give us guidance, but they are mere helpers; the Lord alone governs us, through angels and spirits. Since angels have their assisting role,...

earth
'Lands' of different nations are used in the Word to signify the different kinds of love prevalent in the inhabitants.

hand
Scientists believe that one of the most crucial developments in the evolution of humans was bipedalism – walking on two legs. That left our hands...

fear
The fearful signify people who have no faith.

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 Crossing the Jordan
A New Church Bible story explanation for teaching Sunday school. Includes lesson materials for Primary (3-8 years), Junior (9-11 years), Intermediate (12-14 years), Senior (15-17 years) and Adults.
Teaching Support | Ages over 3

 Crossing the Jordan, Jericho
Lesson outline provides teaching ideas with questions for discussion, projects, and activities.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 7 - 10

 Israel Crosses the Jordan into Canaan
A lesson for younger children with discussion ideas and a project.
Sunday School Lesson | Ages 4 - 6

 Joshua and the Twelve Stones
Project | Ages 4 - 10

 Picking Up Stones to Make A Memorial
Coloring Page | Ages 7 - 14

 The Number Twelve in the Word Crossword Puzzle
Discover times when the number twelve appears throughout the Word.
Activity | Ages 9 - 13


Thanks to the Kempton Project for the permission to use this New Church translation of the Word.


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