Pastoral Commentary for Joshua 11-12
Author: Pastor Bob Nordlie
The kings of the north realized that the alliance of five kings had not been effective against God's chosen people, so the King of Hazor led a coalition of armies, "a great horde, in number like the sand that is on the seashore, with very many horses and chariots." The victory that God gave to Joshua and the Israelite armies was even greater than they had won in the south. God was with Joshua because "He left nothing undone of all that the Lord had commanded Moses." God hardened the hearts of these sin-hardened peoples so that they went against Israel and were consequently devoted to destruction. This was God's just judgment on them for their pagan revelry. Joshua then carefully enumerated the territory and kings that he conquered and vanquished as he led Israel in taking the Promised Land. This constituted a careful demonstration of how faithful God was to keep His promise to His chosen people. God had given them all the land He had promised to Abraham on both sides of the Jordan River. A list of 31 vanquished kings concludes Chapter 12. All of this took place in the short span of a few years following 40 years of wilderness wandering. These conquests represent the fulfillment of prophecy given to Abraham by God himself hundreds of years earlier when God said: "I will make you into a great nation" (Genesis 12:2). This, along with hundreds of other Biblical prophecies that have been fulfilled in the life of the nation of Israel and in the person of Jesus Christ, gives us great confidence as we wait patiently for Christ to return as He promised.