In this book and those that follow to the end of Esther, we have the history of the Jewish nation. These books, to the end of the second book of Kings, the Jewish writers call, the first book of the prophets: as being wrote by prophets, men divinely inspired. Indeed it is probable they were collections of the authentic records of the nation, which some of the prophets were divinely directed and assisted to put together. It seems the substance of the several histories was written under divine direction, when the events had just happened, and long after put into the form wherein they stand now, perhaps all by the same hand. In the five books of Moses we had a full account of the rise and constitution of the Old Testament church, the miracles by which it was built up, and the laws and ordinances by which it was to be governed. And any nation that had statutes and judgments so righteous, one would think, should have been very holy. But alas! a great part of the history is a representation of their sins and miseries. For the law made nothing perfect; that was to be done by the bringing in of the better hope. The book of Joshua, if not written by him, was at least collected out of his journals or memoirs. It contains the history of Israel under the command of Joshua: how he presided over them,
In their entrance into Canaan, chap. 1 - 5.
In their conquest of Canaan, chap. 6 - 12.
In the distribution of the land among the tribes of Israel, chap. 13 - 21.
In the establishment of religion among them, chap. 21 - 24.
In all which he was a great example of wisdom, courage, fidelity and piety. And in this history we may see,
Much of God and his providence; his power in the kingdom of nature; his justice in punishing the Canaanites; his faithfulness to his covenant with the patriarchs; his kindness to his people:
Much of Christ and his grace: Joshua being in many respects an eminent type of him.