Commander of the Army of Jehovah
The Commander of the army of Jehovah
Joshua’s extraordinary meeting with God
Joshua was told by God that He would be with him, not fail him or forsake him. He was charged with taking the new promised land for Israel.
New King James Bible
Jos 1:1 Now after the death of Moses the servant of the LORD it came to pass, that the LORD spake unto Joshua the son of Nun, Moses’ minister, saying,
Jos 1:2 Moses my servant is dead; now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, thou, and all this people, unto the land which I do give to them, even to the children of Israel.
Jos 1:3 Every place that the sole of your foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you, as I said unto Moses.
Jos 1:4 From the wilderness and this Lebanon even unto the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and unto the great sea toward the going down of the sun, shall be your coast.
Jos 1:5 There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.
When Joshua was ready to attack Jericho, he encountered a man that suddenly appeared. Let’s see if we can agree as to who the man was.
Jos 5:13 And it happened, when Joshua was beside Jericho, he lifted up his eyes and looked. And, behold, there stood a Man in front of him with His sword drawn in His hand. And Joshua went to Him and said to Him, Are You for us, or for our foes?
Jos 5:14 And He said, No, but I have come as the Commander of the army of Jehovah. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth. And he worshiped and said to Him, What does my Lord say to His servant?
Jos 5:15 And the Commander of Jehovah’s army said to Joshua, Take your shoe off your foot, for the place on which you stand is holy. And Joshua did so.
Jos 6:1 And Jericho was completely shut up because of the sons of Israel. None went out and none came in.
Jos 6:2 And Jehovah said to Joshua, See, I have given Jericho into your hand, and its king, and the mighty men of war.
Jos 6:16 And it happened, at the seventh time, when the priest blew with the ram’s horns, Joshua said to the people, Shout! For Jehovah has given you the city!
Jos 6:27 And Jehovah was with Joshua. And his fame was in all the country.
King James Bible
Jos 5:13 And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and, behold, there stood a man over against him with his sword drawn in his hand: and Joshua went unto him, and said unto him, Art thou for us, or for our adversaries?
Jos 5:14 And he said, Nay; but as captain of the host of the LORD am I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my lord unto his servant?
Jos 5:15 And the captain of the LORD’S host said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy. And Joshua did so.
Jos 6:16 And it came to pass at the seventh time, when the priests blew with the trumpets, Joshua said unto the people, Shout; for the LORD hath given you the city.
Jos 6:27 So the LORD was with Joshua; and his fame was noised (told about) throughout all the country.
The facts are:
1. It was a physical man that Joshua could see standing in front of him.
2. The man had a drawn sword in his hand as though he had been or was going to be in battle.
3. The man identified himself as the Commander or Captain of God’s army (or heavenly host).
4. Joshua recognized that this man was greater than he, and he properly worshiped him and asked what were his orders to be carried out.
5. The man told him that the ground was holy that he stood on and therefore he should take his shoes off in respect. We would understand that the ground was Holy due to the presence of the man before Joshua.
6. The man identified himself as Jehovah (God)(Jos6:2) and told Joshua that Jericho had already been given into his hands as the people were trapped. This indicated that the drawn sword was now understood to mean that the man had already been in battle. From other scripture, we would know that God had been battling the spiritual powers and princes that had to be conquered prior to the battle’s final visible outcome.
Since, the man is now known as Jehovah God, we should know that God the Father and the Holy Spirit cannot be seen, thus this had to be Jesus who had prepared the way for Joshua to be victorious. God had promised this in the very beginning and was fulfilling His obligation.
In the end, Joshua correctly explained that God had given them the battle and thus should receive the glory for the victory. God continued to be with Joshua to give him further victories. We do not know if this means that Jesus physically continued with Joshua or was with him in Spirit. We also do not know if Joshua ever described his meeting with God to his men, but he knew of it and was reassured of God’s presence watching over him. So, Moses had his burning bush and mountain encounter with Jesus, but Joshua also was blessed with a personal meeting with Christ. Let it be remembered that God supported him, as promised, when needed. Joshua did not even have to ask for help for God had already promised it. It is not every day that God offers His army to a human, but God had a vested interest in encouraging Joshua and giving the land to Israel as He had promised. And, so shall the land remain Israel’s forever.