Joshua A Type of Christ
Text: Josh. 1:7 Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper withersoever thou goest.
As we open the book of Joshua, there is a transition taking place in the leadership. Moses has come to the end of his life. For forty years he led the Israelites. He has gone up the mountain never to come down again. It is difficult to imagine that the death of one who had been such a religious leader, such a wise lawgiver, and above all such a patient and humble leader, but as long as Moses lived, they could not enter the Promised Land. While he lived, the Israelites were just a river crossing from the Promise Land. They must remain on the wilderness side of Jordan. Moses might bring the people to its edge of Jordon, he might see the Promise Land, but he would not cross Jordan or to bring the people over into the inheritance which God had promised them.
Much as they had reason to love him and as long and sincere as was their mourning for him, they must have felt that his life hindered them from entering into possession of the land of blessing. When an announcement of his death along with the commission of Joshua to go over Jordan it must have moved the people to exchange the spirit of heaviness for the garments of praise and assured them that the last obstacle was removed Moses was dead. Of all the times to die, why now?
Why after renouncing the pleasures and riches of Egypt after forty years training in the desert of Midian, and after forty weary years of the wilderness journey its murmuring and complaining people, the threats on his life, the challenges to his leadership, all his hopes and fears was this man not permitted to reap the fruit of his sacrifice?
Why then must he die before entering the Promise Land? Did his LORD not love him? We cannot doubt that He loved him. Moses talked with God. It was said that the LORD spake unto Moses face to face as a man speaketh unto his friend. God paid him such honor, which he alone of all that ever died was buried by none other than the hand of God. The LORD loved Moses. It was Moses who stood with the LORD on the Mount of Transfiguration there to speak with Him and Elijah.
These things happened as examples of types, and they are written for our admonition. God used the men of old who were types living parables by which God has shown the truths that He desired to teach us.
So, what is this different truth concealed in the mysterious death of Moses? Moses was the representative of the LAW. The law was given by Moses.
When our LORD was transfigured there appeared with Him the two men who represented two divisions of time that were passing away to leave behind the glory of the gospel of Christ. These two men, Moses and Elijah, served the Law and the Prophets. Moses, my servant, dead arises, therefore, go over this Jordan.
Here is the experience God wants us to understand.
First, that one violation of the law eliminates one from the Promised Land. Secondly, it is not by Moses or the law but by Joshua that one enters the Promise Land. The transition is about to take place. The Law would pass, and Grace would come.
The faithfulness of Moses cannot be questioned. Moses was above all men faithful to God. Even God Himself said of him He is faithful in all Mine house. There was no one in his generation who held more constant communion with God. No one who obeyed God more literally. No one who walked with Him more intimately. No one in keeping the commandments could be entitled to the blessing or could produce a more accurate title than Moses. But he had ONE problem, he disobeyed the LORD.
Whosoever shall keep the whole law and yet offend in one point is guilty of all that is he is a transgressor of the law.( James 2:10)
As we learned in the study of the Law series, Moses disobeyed the LORD when he struck the rock rather than speaking to it. It was from his lack of faith that he would not be granted the privilege to enter the Promise Land.
The question was asked, Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord and who shall stand in His holy place? The answer is, He that hath clean hands and a pure heart who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity nor sworn deceitfully.
If you are going to keep the Law, you must keep it to the smallest jot and tittle.
In the story of the Rich Young Ruler, a young man came to Jesus and asked how he might have eternal life. Jesus quoted the commandments to him. He said that from his youth he had been keeping the commandments. Jesus then said, One thing thou lackest. The one thing that he was lacking made him fall short of the keeping the whole law. This made him a transgressor of the Law and guilty of breaking the Law.
There are people seeking a means whereby they can earn a specific measure of holiness. They are trying to find righteousness by the works of the Law. They are endeavoring to obtain pardon by mixing the Law with Christ. They do not understand the Gospel.
Paul explains in the tenth chapter of Romans how these people think. Paul says I want my people to be saved. They are trying hard to follow God in their way, but they don't know the right direction. They are trying to make themselves right, but they won't accept God's way of making people right. They cannot accept the fact that Christ ended the Law.
They do not believe that My servant Moses is dead. They do not see the meaning of the words Moses is DEAD. They continue to bring Moses to life again and hope by his help to be delivered from judgment and enjoy the Promised Land. Moses must die, or rather you must die to Moses or the law before you can live unto God. The connection with the law must be broken by death before Joshua (Jesus) can lead you to the inheritance. That it is only death that separates that relationship this is made clear from the apostle's writing in Roman 5:1, Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth? He goes on to say But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter. Romans 7:6
By this, we can see that under Moses (Law) the Israelites could not enter the Promise Land. It was only with Joshua (Grace) they could inherit the land. Anyone who enters the land of blessing must obtain that entrance not by the Law, but by Grace of Jesus Christ.
To enter the land, they were faced with a barrier, the river Jordan. They would need to pass over Jordan by faith which was the same faith that necessary to cross the Red Sea. The same faith that brings the joy of sins forgiven is the same faith needed for full surrender to the LORD.
The Ark of the Covenant, carried by the priest would step into the water first. The ministers of God must believe that they can be free from the wanderings in the Wilderness of Sin. They must understand that Moses is dead, and Grace is alive.
The water of Jordan stopped flowing, and the priests that carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood firm on dry ground in the midst of Jordan and all the Israelites passed over on dry ground until all the people were passed clean over Jordan Josh. 3:17
How does this crossing the Jordan typify the second work of Grace? The waters of Jordan were to be divided and rendered harmless for the people, by the presence of the Ark. The Ark was the symbol of God's presence among the people it was at the Mercy Seat the golden covering of that Ark where the cherubim stretched forth their wings that God's presence was especially manifested there with the Shekinah or divine glory. It was then the presence of this Ark on the priest's shoulders in the midst of Jordan that rolled back its overflowing tide and made the depths a way for the ransomed of the Lord to pass over.
The Hebrew writer explains why it is essential to move on in our Christian experience. In the sixth chapter of Hebrew, we see that we should be finished with the introductory lessons about Christ. We need a new life by turning away from the evil that we did in the past by having faith in God. We were taught about baptisms, laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and the final judgment. Now it is time to move forward.
While wandering in the Wilderness of Sin, we learned the lessons of repentance, forgiveness, conviction, holiness, and righteousness along with service to God. Now it is time to put to practice the things we have learned. These lessons are now applied when we cross over to the Promise Land.
But wait, there are those who have learned the truth and have received the gift of God and shared in the Holy Spirit. They were blessed and saw the power of God. But they left it all behind. Some return to the Wilderness of Sin, because that cannot believe Moses is dead. Some return to Egypt because they fear the giants in the land and want the old life of bondage.
When Moses returned to Egypt, he was eighty years old. Joshua was forty years old when they left Egypt. He became the right hand of Moses during the forty years of wandering in the Wilderness of Sin. He would become the successor of Moses and would lead the Israelites into the Promise Land.
Joshua spent forty years in Egypt. He was present with of the rest of his nation in their sorrows; he was one with them in their afflictions; Joshua shared their labors in the brick-kilns of Egypt; in all their afflictions he was afflicted.
The study of Joshua would be incomplete without looking at the character of his life and his work. The Scriptures suggests that as the successor of Moses he was a type of our Lord and Savior, and the more we reflect upon the subject, the more striking this feature of his career appear.
First, let us look at his name. The original name of the -leader of the hosts of Israel, Hoshea, Salvation, was changed, to Jehoshua, or Joshua, '' God's Salvation," or "Jehovah the Savior'''' (Num. 13: 16, 14: 6, 30). In the Greek translation of the Bible, Joshua is always rendered by the word meaning Jesus, as its use in the New Testament.
Joshua was only human, but by the power of the LORD empowered the Israelites to defeat the nations of Canaan, and kept them from the countless dangers they faced. Joshua saved Israel, not by his power, but by trusting the LORD; he helped save his people; whereas Jesus Himself by His power, the power of God, shall save whosoever will. We may understand the interpretation of His Name to be God the Savior.
Joshua completed the work of Moses. Moses led Israel out of the bondage of Egypt, but left them in the Wilderness of Sin. Just as Jesus fulfilled the Law and completed the works of the Law. The Law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ, and by him, all that believe are Justified from all things, from which they could not be justified by the Law of Moses. Acts 13:39
Joshua was the great Antitype who begins his service at the banks of Jordan. His feet are dipped in the selfsame rushing stream in which Jesus was baptized. When Jesus came up from the water, the Spirit descends upon Him, and the Voice is heard, "Thou art My beloved Son, in Thee I am well-pleased."
At the Jordan River, Joshua said that twelve stones should be taken by twelve men chosen out of the people, to be a witness to the nation of their deliverance. So, after His baptism in Jordan, the second Joshua (Jesus) began to choose twelve Apostles, those foundation-stones in the Kingdom of God, whose names are on the twelve foundations of the wall of the holy city, the new Jerusalem.
Joshua led the people across the Jordan, and renewed the Covenant of Circumcision, and conquered for them their foes, Joshua assigns to them their inheritance but directs that they must fight for their possessions against the remnants of their enemies if they would maintain their conquest.
Jesus brings us into the Promise Land and renews the Covenant of Circumcision, not of the flesh but the heart. But he is a Jew, who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God. Rom.2:29
Jesus brings His people into the spiritual Canaan of His Church, calls upon them to fight. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Eph. 6:12
Before Joshua dies, he called all the tribes of Israel to meet together at Shechem. These were the older leaders, heads of the families, judges, and the officers of Israel. These men stood before God. He reminds them of how God called Abraham out of the land on the other side of the River. How God sent Moses and Aaron to Egypt. How the ten plagues came upon Egypt. How they wandered in the wilderness and how the armies of the Amorites were defeated. He reminded them how God brought them across the Jordan river and conquered the city of Jericho. He told them it was God who helped them defeat the enemies of Israel.
Joshua told them to throw away the false gods that their ancestors worshiped and serve only the Lord. He gave them a choice who they would serve. Serve the gods their ancestors worshiped or serve the Lord. The people answered, "We all see that we have chosen to serve the Lord."
Joshua in the 24th chapter told them to throw away the false gods that you have among you. Love the Lord, the God of Israel, with all your heart. The people agreed, and Joshua found a large stone to be the proof of this agreement. He put the stone under the oak tree near the Tabernacle. The stone was to be a reminder of the covenant made with the LORD and the people.
Jesus Christ has called each of us to hear what he has done for us; By His Holy Spirit, He has revealed what God has done, how we have been blessed, protected and secured by the Hand of God. He reminds us of the times we wandered in sin and how He defeated the enemies of our soul and brought us into the Land of Promise. Jesus Christ has been the Captain of our Salvation, and He has made a covenant with us never to leave us nor forsake us.
We do not need to continue in sin. The Captain of our Salvation has defeated the enemy of our soul. As John tells us, See, what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and so, we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God's children now; it does not yet appear what we shall be, but we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure.
Everyone who commits sin is guilty of lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. You know that he appeared to take away sins, and in him, there is no sin. No one who abides in him sins; no one who sins has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. He who does right is righteous, as he is righteous. He who commits sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. No one born of God commits sin; for God's nature abides in him, and he cannot sin because he is born of God. By this it may be seen who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not do right is not of God, nor he who does not love his brother. 1 John 3
If you have not accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior, TODAY is the day, NOW is the accepted time.