Joshua 22:6
So Joshua blessed them, and sent them away: and they went to their tents.
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22:1-9 Joshua dismisses the tribes with good counsel. Those who have the commandment have it in vain, unless they do the commandment; and it will not be done aright unless we take diligent heed. In particular to love the Lord our God, as the best of beings, and the best of friends; and as far as that principle rules in the heart, there will be constant care and endeavour to walk in his ways, even those that are narrow and up-hill. In every instance to keep his commandments. At all times, and in all conditions, with purpose of heart to cleave unto the Lord, and to serve him and his kingdom among men, with all our heart, and with all our soul. This good counsel is given to all; may God give us grace to take it!The events of this chap. are no doubt recorded in their proper historical order. The auxiliary forces of the trans-Jordanic tribes were not sent away immediately after the campaigns against the Canaanites were over. They set forth from Shiloh, Joshua 22:9, to which place the sanctuary had been removed Joshua 18:1 after the conquest and the settlement of the children of Judah and of Joseph in their possessions, and after the appointment of the Levitical cities. 4-7. get you unto your tents—that is, home; for their families had been left in fortified towns (Nu 32:17). No text from Poole on this verse. So Joshua blessed them, and sent them away,.... Dismissed them from his presence with a blessing, in order to go to their own country; this he did by wishing them well, praying to God for a blessing on them, their persons, and families, who had been so useful in assisting their brethren to get possession of the land of Canaan. Some think this blessing includes gifts and presents he bestowed on them:

and they went unto their tents; here the word means their military tents in the camp of Israel, to which they returned, in order to take with them their goods, their substance and riches, their part of the spoil of the enemy, which of right belonged to them.

So Joshua {d} blessed them, and sent them away: and they went unto their tents.

(d) He commended them to God, and prayed for them.

6. So Joshua blessed them] Comp. (a) the blessing of the workers of the Tabernacle (Exodus 39:43), and (b) the blessing of Caleb by Joshua (Joshua 14:13).Verse 6. - To their tents. It would seem that, during the whole of these "many days," the conquered cities had remained tenantless, waiting for the return of the warriors from their long expedition. "Those that were first in the assignment of the land were last in the enjoyment of it; so 'the last shall be first and the first last,' that there may be something of equality" (Matthew Henry). The first part of the quotation is due to Bishop Hall, who also says, "If heaven be never so sweet to us, yet may wee not runne from this earthen warfare till our great Captaine shall please to discharge us." Of all the good words which the Lord had spoken to the house of Israel not one had fallen, i.e., remained unfulfilled (Numbers 6:12); all had come to pass (vid., Joshua 23:14). הטּוב כּל־הדּבר relates to the gracious promises of God with regard to the peaceful possession of Canaan, which formed the basis of all the salvation promised to Israel, and the pledge of the fulfilment of all the further promises of God. Notwithstanding the fact that many a tract of country still remained in the hands of the Canaanites, the promise that the land of Canaan should be given to the house of Israel for a possession had been fulfilled; for God had not promised the immediate and total destruction of the Canaanites, but only their gradual extermination (Exodus 23:29-30; Deuteronomy 7:22). And even though the Israelites never came into undisputed possession of the whole of the promised land, to the full extent of the boundaries laid down in Numbers 34:1-12, never conquering Tyre and Sidon for example, the promises of God were no more broken on that account than they were through the circumstance, that after the death of Joshua and the elders his contemporaries, Israel was sometimes hard pressed by the Canaanites; since the complete fulfilment of this promise was inseparably connected with the fidelity of Israel to the Lord.

(Note: With reference to this apparent discrepancy between the promises of God and the actual results, Calvin observes, that "in order to remove every appearance of discrepancy, it is right to distinguish well between the clear, unwavering, and certain fidelity of God in the fulfilment of His promises, and the weakness and indolence of the people, which caused the blessings of God to slip from their hands. Whatever war the people undertook, in whatever direction they carried their standards, there was victory ready to their hand; nor was there anything to retard or prevent the extermination of all their enemies except their own slothfulness. Consequently, although they did not destroy them all, so as to empty the land for their own possession, the truth of God stood out as distinctly as if they had; for there would have been no difficulty in their accomplishment of all that remained to be done, if they had only been disposed to grasp the victories that were ready to their hand.")

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