Joshua Challenges Israel to be Faithful
23:1 A long time1 passed after the Lord made Israel secure from all their enemies,2 and Joshua was very old.3 23:2 So Joshua summoned all Israel, including the elders, rulers, judges, and leaders, and told them: “I am very old. 23:3 You saw everything the Lord your God did to all these nations on your behalf, for the Lord your God fights for you.4 23:4 See, I have parceled out to your tribes these remaining nations,5 from the Jordan to the Mediterranean Sea6 in the west, including all the nations I defeated.7 23:5 The Lord your God will drive them out from before you and remove them,8 so you can occupy9 their land as the Lord your God promised10 you. 23:6 Be very strong! Carefully obey11 all that is written in the law scroll of Moses so you won’t swerve from it to the right or the left, 23:7 or associate with these nations that remain near12 you. You must not invoke or make solemn declarations by the names of their gods!13 You must not worship14 or bow down to them! 23:8 But you must be loyal to15 the Lord your God, as you have been16 to this very day.
23:9 “The Lord drove out from before you great and mighty nations; no one has been able to resist you17 to this very day. 23:10 One of you makes a thousand run away,18 for the Lord your God fights for you19 as he promised you he would.20 23:11 Watch yourselves carefully! Love the Lord your God!21 23:12 But if you ever turn away and make alliances with22 these nations that remain near you,23 and intermarry with them and establish friendly relations with them,24 23:13 know for certain that the Lord our God will no longer drive out these nations from before you. They will trap and ensnare you;25 they will be a whip that tears26 your sides and thorns that blind27 your eyes until you disappear28 from this good land the Lord your God gave you.
23:14 “Look, today I am about to die.29 You know with all your heart and being30 that not even one of all the faithful promises the Lord your God made to you is left unfulfilled; every one was realized—not one promise is unfulfilled!31 23:15 But in the same way every faithful promise the Lord your God made to you has been realized,32 it is just as certain, if you disobey, that the Lord will bring on you every judgment33 until he destroys you from this good land which the Lord your God gave you. 23:16 If you violate the covenantal laws of the Lord your God which he commanded you to keep,34 and follow, worship, and bow down to other gods,35 the Lord will be very angry with you and you will disappear36 quickly from the good land which he gave to you.”
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