Josh 10.1-27 deals with Adoni-zedek, the king of Jerusalem, and four other kings who will come against Joshua and Israel. He will be a picture of the False Messiah. Jerusalem will be a picture of the human heart that will know no peace until Yeshua reigns there. The False Messiah will oppose Yeshua as he comes to take the land (v 1-5). It will also deal with Joshua’s conquest of the land.
The men of Gibeon sent word to Joshua to come and help them, so Joshua went from Gilgal with all the people of war, all the valiant warriors (10.7). This alludes to the point when we realize that only Yeshua can save us and we are weak in ourselves. Yehovah said to Joshua, “Do not fear them for I have given them into your hands.” Satan could not defeat Yeshua alone, so how can he stand now that he is resurrected and has an army. This also alludes to when Yeshua comes with his army of glorified believers to take possession of the land from the False Messiah.
As Joshua confronts these kings, he devastates them. God threw great hailstones from heaven against them, and more died from the hailstones than from the sword. God’s power will also manifest itself in the birth-pains and will be available to those who believe. Yehovah even made the sun stand still in an answer to a prayer by Joshua. This gave him more time to defeat these enemies. Yeshua and the Kahal (believers in his congregation) will also overcome numerous nations during the conquest of the land during the birth-pains (10.12-15).
The five kings fled into a cave in Makkedah (place of shepherds) in the Shephelah (lowland, foothills) Valley or hilly lowland. Caves were used as burial places, so this is a type of “burial.” The flesh always tries to hide from Yeshua. But Joshua found out and rolled large stones against the mouth of the cave. Yehovah and Yeshua are both seen as a “stone” or “rock” in the Scriptures. This also alludes to having the flesh imprisoned and cutting off its activity, and we must guard against its escape.
After the fighting was over, they came back to the cave in peace. They opened the cave and brought out the five kings. They will be judged openly before the people, and they stepped on their necks. He tells them not to be afraid in future battles because the Lord is going to do this to all their enemies. Joshua kills them and hung them on trees until evening (Deut 24.23). They took them down and put their bodies in the cave they had been hiding in, and buried them. This alludes to what will happen at the end of the birth-pains as Yeshua makes his way to Jerusalem. He confronts the “king of Jerusalem” (the False Messiah) and those with him. He will defeat them and they will be judged before the people. Joshua continues to defeat the inhabitants in the south (10.29-43) and after this was done, he returns to Gilgal with the army.
Josh 11.1-23 deals with the conquest of the northern parts of Canaan. The kings in the north came together against Israel. This army of the enemy is going to be much larger than what Israel had seen before. But the Lord told Joshua to hamstring their horses and burn their chariots with fire. This teaches us to have no confidence in worldly might and wisdom. So, Joshua attacked them suddenly and the Lord delivered them into their hands and no survivor was left. In our spiritual battles, we need to attack suddenly with truth and the word will judge the unbeliever so that they cannot stand (John 12.47-48). If the enemy can’t stop your faith (Joshua’s victory in the south, the direction of faith) then he will corrupt our wisdom (the north is the direction of wisdom and reason).
Joshua hamstrung their horses and burned their chariots according to the word of the Lord. This tells us that we are not to rely on the weapons of the world, but on the word of the Lord. The Joshua turned back to defeat Hazor, the head of the northern kings. He utterly destroyed them all and all the cities of the kings. The word was obeyed and it gave them the victory, just like when we obey and we have victory over the world. Israel did not burn their cities that stood on mounds, except Hazor. Joshua is following the pattern set in Exo 23.29-30 by taking the land “little by little.” All the spoil of these cities, the cattle and other things, the sons of Israel took as plunder. We shouldn’t be afraid of taking the spoils. These are things in this world that we can use for the Lord and for what he calls us to do.
Now, the Lord had commanded Moses, and Moses commanded Joshua, and Joshua did it. He left nothing undone of all that the Lord had commanded Moses. Moses is a type of the Messiah who leads the people out of bondage, and Joshua is a picture of the resurrected Messiah (crossed the Jordan) who leads his people into the Olam Haba.
In Josh 11.16-20 it says Joshua will have a complete victory over the land of Canaan, just like Yeshua will. Let’s look at some of the names here and spiritually apply them. He had victory over the mountain country, a picture of earthly power, and the Negev (south is the area of faith). He also took Goshen so that we can “draw near to God.” The lowland (valley) is where we serve and bear fruit. He took everything from Mount Halak (smooth, bald) in the south (the area of faith) to Seir (shaggy goat), even as far as Baal-Gad (Lord of the troop, a type of worldly reason) in the valley of Lebanon (whiteness, self-righteousness)) in the north, at the foot of or under Mount Hermon (devoted to destruction, banned). So, spiritually this alludes to our life being between reason (Baal-gad) and faith (Mount Halak) and it is in our control. Satan rules over the “troops” (Baal-gad) who are in service (the valley) in self-righteousness (Lebanon). But they are devoted to judgment (under Mount Hermon).
There was not a city which made peace with Israel, except the Hivites in Gibeon, they took them all in battle. It was of the Lord to harden their hearts to meet Israel in battle in order that he might destroy them and that they receive no mercy. This is similar to what the Lord did with Pharaoh in order to fulfill his purposes in Egypt.
Josh 11.21-23 says that Joshua came and cut off the Anakim from the mountain country. Anakim means “long-necked” and this is symbolic of pride. He also cut them off in Hebron (communion) and from Debir (word). He also cut them off from Anab (grape, fruit bearing). What is this saying spiritually to us? Pride (Anakim) has no place in the life of our communion with God, his word and our fruit-bearing. There was no Anakim left in the land of Israel, only in Gaza (strong), Gath (wine-press, a type of sensual joy) and Ashdod (I will spoil). Spiritually, the Philistines (“wallower”) are a type of apostasy and it is alive and has power and is strong. It gives us a false, sensual joy and spoiling men by wallowing in false doctrine (2 Pet 2.22).
Joshua took the whole land according to all the Lord spoke to Moses. Joshua gave it as an inheritance to Israel according to their divisions by their tribes, and the land rested. Yeshua’s victory does this also, and as the land rested under Joshua, so will the whole earth rest under Yeshua in the Olam Haba.
We will pick up in Josh 12.1-24 in Part 5.