‘Protagonists’ in the Bible – Joshua

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After Moses died, Joshua was tasked with leading the Israelites into the Holy Land, and we learn that either God is really bad at picking people to help, or he just likes following maniacs.

God spoke to Joshua, and told him to lead the Israelites to the Holy Land, which was already inhabited by other people, but God won’t let that simple fact get in the way of his promise, so he orders the Israelites to kill everybody! Just like any moral, benevolent being is supposed to do!

Joshua sent out some spies, and led his people across Jordan, where God recycled one of his magic tricks by parting the water of the Jordan so that everybody could cross.

While God could have been doing so many other, more useful things, he decided that his time was best spent telling Joshua how to divide people up into groups to do different tasks. And of course, he didn’t let anybody forget about the circumcision deal he made with Abraham.

After that whole ordeal was over, God told Joshua to go on a marching parade around the city of Jericho. Joshua led his men around the city seven times – God’s favorite, magical number – and the walls of the city fell down. Those must’ve been some really shoddy walls.

As the moral, chosen people, the Israelites proceeded to murder everyone and burn the city to the ground. Get used to this – it’s a reoccurring trait of the Israelites.

Now, despite the fact that God was helping them, and if the Bible is true, that should have been blatantly obvious, the Israelites still broke one of God’s many covenants, so he sent 3000 of them to be killed by the Amorites.

Joshua stoned the guy who had broken God’s covenant, and all was well again. God helped the Israelites destroy another city, resulting in another mass-murder.

Some of the tribes wised up to this, so the Gibeonites pretended to have come from a distant land, and made a treaty with the Israelites. When Joshua found out about their trick, and that they were living close by, he was angry. But Joshua couldn’t kill them, because apparently God had chosen that day to suddenly be moral, and, while it was okay to kill and steal, breaking promises was just too evil.

So instead Joshua sentenced the Gibeonites to be slaves for the rest of their lives.

The Gibeonites were attacked by the Amorites, and Joshua went up to save them. Whilst this happened, God started by throwing rocks at them, and then proceeded to make the earth stop spinning. How this did not wipe out everything on the planet, nobody knows.

After Joshua brutally murdered the five Amorite kings, he led his army and killed everybody in several cities across the south.

The people of the land were getting tired of this, so they got together and formed an army that was ‘more numerous than the grains of sand on the seashore. Well, the total amount of sand on earth is estimated to be about 7.5*10^18, so about seven quintillion, five hundred quadrillion, or 7,500,000,000,000,000,000. Even if you subtract the sand in the deserts, and even the sand on the bottom of the ocean, and JUST use the sand on the shores, that’s still way more than possible.

Of course, despite all this, Joshua won, and killed everyone.

A few more people were casually wiped out, and then everyone took a break from the fighting.

Land was divided up between everyone over many, many chapters, and that’s about it for the book of Joshua. Joshua the person dies, and he is buried next to Joseph.

What have we learnt about Joshua? He’s a tyrant who likes committing mass murder. The Bible has such moral protagonists!

Image courtesy of Salvatore Vuono at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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