Joshua 15 Commentary
In accordance with the Lord’s command to him, Joshua gave to Caleb a portion in Judah, Hebron. From Hebron Caleb drove out the three Anakites. From here we can again see that there is a very big difference between ownership and possession. The Anakites possessed the land but didn’t own it. Caleb owned the land but didn’t possess it. The one in possession of an asset is the only one who enjoys the benefits. Caleb needed to drive out the Anakites before he could enjoy the benefits of ownership.
The Christian walk involves battle to take possession of that which the LORD has generously given to the saint.
Chapter 15 is long and difficult to read. But if you are Judah, I guess you would know every city, every town and every place mentioned in this chapter. These are land beacons marking out the extent of Judah’s wealth.
We can also tell that Judah received a very big portion of land. Judah was a super power amongst the tribes of Israel. The blessing of Judah is dominion. Jacob encapsulated the blessing of Judah in all the different shades of lions – the Lion, the Lioness and the Lion’s cub. Little wonder that both the splendor and prowess of the kings of Judah were captioned by the Lion. And the son of David would be called the Lion of the tribe of Judah.
You are a lion’s cub, Judah; you return from the prey, my son. Like a lion he crouches and lies down, like a lioness—who dares to rouse him? The scepter will not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet, until he to whom it belongs shall come and the obedience of the nations shall be his. Genesis 49 verses 9 and 10.
The kingly Lion, the power and agility of the Lioness, and the safety of the Lion’s cub, these are the traits the saint inherits by salvation. Of course the scripture has time to talk about the saint as sheep in the manner of the Lamb of God in Jesus Christ. Human wisdom would call for a balance between the two. The scripture however expects the saint to live the life of a sheep full time. It is in the fragility of the sheep that the LORD deposits treasure and kingly existence. Not many have the privilege of appreciating this mystery.
We can see from here that the famous 5 Philistine cities Ekron, Gaza, Ashdod, Ashkelon and Gath, were all within Judah’s territory. During the entire time of the Judges, including the time of David, the Philistines were a constant problem for Israel. What you fail to drive out lives to cause you pain and suffering endlessly.
Chapter 15 celebrates the generosity of the LORD in giving Judah the largest portion of land. It is symbolic of the LORD’s ultimate gift to mankind in the seed that came out of Judah – the Lion of the tribe of Judah.
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