The concepts that are appealing to me is how God used several different people for his duties. The fact that he was still a loving God and did not hurt all of mankind.
I think this course reinforces the need to understand context and the Hebrew language. That knowledge in and of itself will allow anyone to support their faith in conversations asking about a cruel god and genocide in the Old Testament.
That war belongs to God and no matter what the size of the enemy is , God is able to bring victory
What came to mind when Dr. Hess was speaking about the demolishing of the forts at Jericho and Ai was the scripture in 2 Corinthians 10:4 (the pulling down of strongholds). In Jericho, there was a miraculous pulling down of the stronghold there. Those two forts are (or were) symbolic of the resistance and the rebellion against God and His plans. They had to be demolished so that Israel could move into their rightful places. Strongholds also speak of what occurs in men’s minds and spiritual warfare. Jericho and Ai may not have been large places, but they were significant enough that “spiritual weapons” had to be used to take the walls down.
I have a better understanding of the flood and of the settling of the Promised Land by Joshua. That in some cases when cities are mentioned, they may be forts and not cities like we know. I learned that genocide was not committed by Joshua.
I’ve learned more about the mercy and love of God and how he cares for His people, including us today.
Two things that I learned from this lesson is first of all the Israelites did not commit genocide as many misinterpret from reading the scriptures concerning the wars led by Joshua. Most noncombatants lived outside the cities which were not cities as we think of but more like forts. Second, the attacks on the cities mentioned by the professor were actually a defensive measure to ensure the survival of the people of Israel from being wiped out by these Pagan nations who were bent on destroying Israel.
tough question, hard for me to take these items that happened in ancient times, and then relate them to my current situation.
Both Egyptians and Canaanites survived the seven years of famine due to the role Joseph played in preparing for the anticipated famine in the preceding years of plenty. Yet the Israelites face the threat of genocide/extinction from both the Egyptians and the Canaanites who seem to have forgotten how they came to survive severe famine.
Humanity still seems bent on self-destruction. We continue to demand the choice to decide for ourselves what is right and what is wrong. We reject God and His rule over us. However, I need to remember that God has not abandoned us and He is still at work offering mercy and grace to those He created and loves.