First United Methodist Church of Conway, South Carolina
Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Week 9

Feb 22: Deuteronomy 27-30    Renewal of the Covenant
As the book of Deuteronomy nears its end, the covenant is renewed. The emphasis is on the choices before the Israelites – obey God’s law and be blessed, or disobey and face disaster.
After crossing the Jordan, the Israelites are to divide into two groups of six tribes facing one another from Mount Gerizim and Mount Ebal. The blessings and curses are a symbolic reminder that Israel faces the same choices. Moses encourages the people to “Choose life so that you and your descendants may live” (Deut. 30:19).
 
Feb 23: Deuteronomy 31-34    Last Days of Moses
The book of Deuteronomy concludes with of Joshua succeeding Moses and Moses’ death. The Blessing of Moses on the tribes includes each of the twelve, except Simeon.
 
Feb 24: Joshua 1-4    Into the Promised Land
In the book of Joshua the promises made to the Patriarchs finally come to fruition.  Joshua tells about the conquest of the land and the allotments to the individual tribes. The use of spies reminds us of the earlier attempt to settle the land. However in that case the twelve spies had focused on the southern part of the country. Now two spies are sent to Jericho. There they meet Rahab. We hear from her again in the New Testament in Jesus’ genealogy (Matthew 1:5), as a model of faith (Hebrews 11:31) and as a model of good works (James 2:25).
 
Feb 25: Joshua 5-8    Beginning the Conquest
Before the conquest of the land begins, two sacred rites are observed - circumcision and the celebration of the Passover.
Crossing the Jordan brings the end of the daily supply of manna, God has a new provision for the Israelites.
In the conquest of Jericho, the number seven symbolizes completeness. 
 
Feb 26: Joshua 9-12    The Gibeonites
When God is not consulted, trouble follows.  Even though the Israelites were deceived, we see that a sworn oath binding. We will see other examples of this as we read further in the Old Testament.
 
Feb 27: Joshua 13-17    Distributing the Land (part 1)
Joshua begins the allocation of the land.  The distribution is made by lot, indicating that God is determining the tribal allotments.
 
Feb 28: Joshua 18-21    Distributing the Land (part 2)
The distribution continues with the final seven tribes. Generally these tribes are smaller and allocated territory in the northern part of the country. Then Joshua designates the cities of refuge west of the Jordan and the levitical towns.