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A Handbook on the Book of Joshua

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Overview

What if you were responsible for translating God's Word into a language that never had a Bible before? Can you imagine the burden you would feel to do a good job?

God takes His Word pretty seriously, and you would certainly do everything in your power to make sure that you were not putting words into God's mouth, but that you were providing a text that clearly communicated God's Word as closely to the original as possible.

This challenge to understand the heart of the original Scriptures, in order to put the original text into a new language, was the impetus for the United Bible Societies to create handbooks for Bible translators working on this very thing. The United Bible Societies' Handbook Series is a comprehensive verse-by-verse guide to understanding exactly what is being communicated by the author in the original Scriptures.

  • Exegetical, historical, cultural, and linguistic information on the original text
  • Verse-by-verse guides
  • An essential tool for Bible translators

Top Highlights

“The story of the fall of Jericho to the Israelites emphasizes that it was not military might that defeated the enemy but the Lord’s power; he is in absolute control of the events, and as long as his people follow his commands they will prosper and succeed.” (Page 68)

“The book of Joshua divides naturally into two parts of approximately equal length. The first twelve chapters narrate the conquest of Canaan, while the last twelve chapters are concerned primarily with the division of the land.” (Page 3)

“Verse 4 in Hebrew gives first the instruction for the people to stay a certain distance away from the Covenant Box, after which comes the explanation of why they were to follow the Box. For clarity and ease of understanding, tev and rsv have reversed the order. The priests carrying the Covenant Box would lead the way, and the people were to follow at a distance of 2,000 cubits, about 3,000 feet (a little more than half a mile) or 914 meters (almost one kilometer). This care was needed because of the holiness of the Box; it was dangerous for ordinary people to be exposed to its holiness (see 2 Sam 6:6–7).” (Page 38)

“Actually both verbs, ‘obey’ and ‘do,’ carry the same force in Hebrew, and the combination of the two verbs serves to make the command more emphatic.” (Page 15)

“‘Remember that I am the LORD your God, and I have commanded you to be determined and confident! So do not be afraid or discouraged, for I am with you wherever you go.’ Or, ‘Remember that I the LORD your God have commanded you to be determined and confident! I will be with you wherever you go, so do not be afraid or discouraged.’” (Page 16)

  • Title: A Handbook on the Book of Joshua
  • Authors: Robert G. Bratcher and Barclay M. Newman
  • Series: The United Bible Societies' Handbook Series (UBSHS)
  • Publisher: United Bible Societies
  • Pages: 336

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