His book tells that story: entering the land (Chapters 1-5), conquering the land (Chapters 6-12), dividing the land (Chapters 13-21), and beginning life as a nation under God in the land (Chapters 22-24).
During this formative period in his life, he witnessed the hand of God moving through Moses to subdue Israel’s enemies.
Joshua then got a foretaste of what was to come in Canaan when Moses appointed him as general of the Hebrew army to battle the Amalekites (Exodus 17:8-16).
Such fortitude and obedience in the faith was surely shaped by the events of the Exodus and Joshua’s firsthand view of its leading man, Moses.
Joshua, born and raised in Egypt, was perhaps in his twenties when God mightily delivered the Hebrew people from slavery.
Abraham was called by God to live in the land of Canaan, but Joshua was called to Possess the land. Indeed, his obedience was so exemplary that, at the end of his life, he was granted the title “servant of the Lord” (), – an honor accorded only to a few in the history of Israel.
What’s more, his lifetime of leadership produced a legacy that lived on in the elders who followed him ().
Also, both were dependent on God for strategy, wisdom and power – Israel’s invasion of a spiritually dark land under Joshua’s leadership parallels Jesus sending His disciples into spiritual darkness to bring forth the light.
Joshua’s task was to drive out the inhabitants of Canaan and divide the land between the 12 tribes of Israel.
Knowing a ragtag “army” of slaves would be defeated on an even battlefield, Moses ascended a hill to pray for Joshua during the battle, with Aaron and Hur holding up Moses’ hands (Exodus 17:8-13), until victory was sure.
Then the Lord told Moses: write down the account of this battle and make sure it is written on Joshua’s heart (Exodus ).
At a time when the Holy Spirit did not yet constantly indwell the faithful, God identified Joshua as “a man in whom is the Spirit” (Num. Beyond the similarity of their names (“Jesus” is the Greek form of (“Joshua”), it is easy to see Joshua as a “type” of Jesus.
The primary parallel is that they were both called to announce and establish the kingdom of God through warfare – Joshua, a physical, geographical kingdom on earth, and Jesus, a spiritual kingdom without boundaries.