24 Then Joshua gathered all the tribes of Israel to Shechem, and summoned the elders of Israel and their heads, their judges, and their officers; they presented themselves before God.
2 Joshua said to all the people, Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, Your fathers dwelt in olden times beyond the Euphrates River, including Terah the father of Abraham and Nahor, and they served other gods.
3 And I took your father Abraham from beyond the Euphrates River and led him through all the land of Canaan and multiplied his offspring. I gave him Isaac,
4 And I gave to Isaac Jacob and Esau. And I gave to Esau the hill country of Seir to possess, but Jacob and his children went down to Egypt.
5 I sent Moses and Aaron, and I plagued Egypt with what I did in the midst of it; and afterward I brought you out.
6 I brought your fathers out of Egypt, and you came to the sea; and the Egyptians pursued your fathers with chariots and horsemen to the Red Sea.
7 When they cried to the Lord, He put darkness between you and the Egyptians, and brought the sea upon them and covered them; and your eyes saw what I did in Egypt. And you lived in the wilderness a long time [forty years].(A)
8 I brought you into the land of the Amorites who lived on the other side of the Jordan; they fought with you, and I gave them into your hand, and you possessed their land, and I destroyed them before you.
9 Then Balak son of Zippor, king of Moab, arose and warred against Israel, and sent and called Balaam son of Beor to curse you.
10 But I would not listen to Balaam; therefore he blessed you; so I delivered you out of Balak’s hand.(B)
11 You went over the Jordan and came to Jericho; and the men of Jericho fought against you, as did the Amorites, Perizzites, Canaanites, Hittites, Girgashites, Hivites, and Jebusites, and I gave them into your hands.
13 I have given you a land for which you did not labor and cities you did not build, and you dwell in them; you eat from vineyards and olive yards you did not plant.
14 Now therefore, [reverently] fear the Lord and serve Him in sincerity and in truth; put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the [Euphrates] River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord.
15 And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell; but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.
16 The people answered, Far be it from us to forsake the Lord to serve other gods;
17 For it is the Lord our God Who brought us and our fathers up out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage, Who did those great signs in our sight and preserved us in all the way that we went and among all the peoples through whom we passed.
18 And the Lord drove out before us all the people, the Amorites who dwelt in the land. Therefore we also will serve the Lord, for He is our God.
19 And Joshua said to the people, You cannot serve the Lord, for He is a holy God; He is a jealous God. He will not forgive your transgressions or your sins.
20 If you forsake the Lord and [b]serve strange gods, then He will turn and do you harm and consume you, after having done you good.
21 And the people said to Joshua, No; but we will serve the Lord.
22 Then Joshua said to the people, You are witnesses against yourselves that you have chosen the Lord, to serve Him. And they said, We are witnesses.
23 Then put away, said he, the foreign gods that are among you and incline your hearts to the Lord, the God of Israel.
24 The people said to Joshua, The Lord our God we will serve; His voice we will obey.
25 So Joshua made a covenant with the people that day, and made statutes and ordinances for them at Shechem.
26 And Joshua wrote these words in the Book of the Law of God; and he took a great stone and set it up there under an oak that was in [the court of] the sanctuary of the Lord.
27 And Joshua said to all the people, See, this stone shall be a witness against us, for it has heard all the words the Lord spoke to us; so it shall be a witness against you, lest [afterward] you lie (pretend) and deny your God.
28 So Joshua sent the people away, every man to his inheritance.
29 After this, Joshua son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died, being 110 years old.
30 They buried him at the edge of his inheritance in Timnath-serah in the hill country of Ephraim, on the north side of the hill of Gaash.
31 Israel served the Lord all the days of Joshua and of the elders who outlived Joshua and had known all the works the Lord had done for Israel.
32 And the bones of Joseph, which the Israelites brought up out of Egypt, they buried in Shechem in the portion of ground Jacob bought from the sons of Hamor, the father of Shechem, for 100 pieces of money; and it became the inheritance of the Josephites.
33 And Eleazar son of Aaron died; and they buried him at Gibeah [on the hill] of Phinehas his son, which was given him in the hill country of Ephraim.
- Joshua 24:12 See footnote on Deut. 7:20.
- Joshua 24:20 Anything which we keep in our hearts in the place which God ought to have is an idol, whether it be an image of wood or stone or gold, or whether it be money, or desire for fame, or love of pleasure, or some secret sin which we will not give up. If God does not really occupy the highest place in our hearts, controlling all, something else does, and that something else is an idol (J. R. Miller, Devotional Hours with the Bible).
- Joshua 24:7 : Josh. 5:6.
- Joshua 24:10 : Deut. 23:5.
- Joshua 24:12 : Exod. 23:27, 28; Deut. 2:25; 7:20.