August 23, 2020

Do not fear, the Sovereign LORD is building his kingdom

Passage: Joshua 11:1-15; 2 Corinthians 5:6-10
Service Type:

Theme: The Sovereign LORD is building his kingdom; do not fear, live in the light of God’s promises

Why was Hazor burned?
Hazor was a large city, the most influential in all of Canaan. On a site of 200 acres, scholars estimate that it had a population of roughly 30-40,000 people. Together with Jericho and Ai, Hazor was the only other city burned in the book of Joshua (6:24; 8:19,28). We know from Deuteronomy 6:10-11 that the other cities were left intact so that they could be inhabited by the Israelites (Deuteronomy 6:10-11). Presumably, Hazor was burnt because it was the king from that city who led the northern armies in their attempt to destroy God's people and therefore his city was destroyed in a more comprehensive manner.

Why were Israel commanded to hamstring the horses and burn the chariots?
Hamstringing involved cutting the connecting tendon in the hind leg of the horse thereby disabling its running ability. Israel would thus not be able to use the horses for themselves neither would their enemies be able to use them. Hamstringing was an exception to the general treatment of animals in Israel, wild and domestic animals were to be treated with care reflecting a theology of creation and covenant with all creatures (Genesis 9:12; Deuteronomy 5:14; 25:4). By burning the chariots (which were made of wood), the temptation for Israel to use them is removed. They were to trust in the LORD to fight for them and protect them, not in military armaments (Psalm 20:7).