So after Moses is dead, God comes to Joshua and says, “Moses is dead.”
Moses: I’m not dead yet…
Joshua: He says he’s not dead…
God: Right… one second. There. Killed him myself. Double tap. Now get up. Go across Jordan, kill those Canaanites, and take their land, like I told Abraham you guys would. I’m going to be with you and no one will be able to stand against you your entire life, you know.. unless you guys really cheese me off again, and what are the odds of that happening?”
And Joshua said, “Wow, you’re talking to me! I thought you said Moses was the only prophet you talked to face to face.”
And God said, “Oh dear…” and winked out of existence… no, not really. I guess Joshua is technically not a prophet.
Then Joshua went and told the leaders to tell the people that the invasion was going to happen in three days. Then he reminds the Gadites, the Reubenites, and half of the Manassehites that they promised to send troops over to kill those Canaanites and they agreed.
So Joshua displaying great trust in the Lord, sends two spies into Canaan. He did, however, learn his lesson from Moses’ spycraft and sent the two men into the land without telling everyone. So the men came to Jericho and somehow, I don’t know how, but they somehow found themselves in a local brothel. It was a complete and total mystery how they ended up there, without clothes, and accidentally falling on a prostitute and carelessly leaving some of their coins behind on the nightstand. No idea how that happened.
But word comes to the king of Jericho. “Some Jewish men accidentally wandered into the brothel and lost their clothes, we should probably do something about that.”
So they sent some soldiers, but Rahab hides them and tells the troops that the Jews found their clothes and ran away.
Rahab tells her two customers that she knows that God is with them and Jericho will fall, so she tells them to promise her that they’ll spare her and her family. And the men said, “Hey, you saved our butts, so don’t tell anyone and we’ll make sure we don’t kill your family.”
So she lets them down with a red rope over the wall and they tell her to hang the rope out of her window and everyone in her house will live, but if they leave their house, they’re going to die. And she sends the spies back to Joshua and they said, “Let’s go kill every man, woman, and child, except for the girls in the brothel.” And this sounded like a good idea to everyone.
So they all set out from Shittim. Yes, Shittim. I can write that without feeling bad, because it’s in the bible. Shittim Shittim Shittim Shittim Shittim Shittim Shittim Shittim Shittim…
Okay, I’m done. Shittim.
Now I’m done.
They go the Jordan River and the leaders come out and say, “Let the priests lead the way, because you don’t know where you’re going because you haven’t been here before.” Presumably, the priests haven’t been here before either (unless they were sneaking out to hang out in Rahab’s house) but we’ll let it slide.
God tells Joshua to tell the priests carrying the ark to go stand in the Jordan river, and as soon as they set foot in it, the river stops flowing and everyone crosses over on dry ground until they’re all done crossing, then the river starts flowing again.
And the Gadites, Reubenites, and Manasseh looked back and said… “Wait, you’re going to do that again when the wars are over and we go back home over there, right?”
And all of the congregation had a good laugh….