The Abrahamic Covenant in Joshua

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Question
Why were the promises of the Abrahamic covenant so important for Joshua and Israel as they secured the boundaries of their inheritance?
Answer
Back in the book of Genesis, God establishes a covenant relationship with Abraham, and he promised to Abraham four great blessings, the first one being that he would be the father of a great nation, that his descendants would number like the stars in the sky or the sand on the seashore. And in the book of Joshua, of course, we've seen that. We've seen it earlier, but God's people are numerous; they're a great nation. The second thing that he promised was a land for those people in which they could dwell, and of course in Joshua, in those particular chapters, we see them taking possession of the land and distributing it. So, there's another aspect of the Abrahamic covenant being fulfilled. A third promise there is that God will protect Abraham's descendants, that he will be their God, they will be his people, he'll be their shield and defender, and of course, everything we've read in the book of Joshua up to that point shows that God is the Lord of Hosts and is fighting with them and for them as they take possession of the land. And then, finally, there's that great promise to Abraham that out of that nation of whom he's a father, God will send forth a Messiah to redeem; he'll be a blessing to all nations… One of the clearest foreshadowings of Christ in all of the Old Testament is in the book of Joshua, in the person of Joshua, who leads God's people in a great deal of righteousness and faithfulness to God, trusting in him, and leading them in procession to take possession of that which is theirs according to God's grace.

Answer by Kevin Labby

Senior Pastor, Willow Creek Presbyterian Church, Winter Springs, FL