The kings of the Amorites reject God. This is what is at the heart of this history. They know what God is doing, yet war against His purposes. Joshua protects the people of Gibeon. This is the character of that greater Joshua, our Jesus!
Wow. This is an explosive chapter in Israel’s history. Here is the complete destruction of many kings and cities and people by Joshua and Israel’s hand.
It’s interesting to note that the Gibeonites were marked as a strong people, greater than Ai, warriors (v2). And yet they bowed before the Lord.
And it’s on them that the kings seek to attack, probably a sound strategy of war – attack the weaker partner (although they were not weak). Perhaps they wanted revenge on a perceived betrayal, Gibeon submitting under the Lord.
But they are now protected by God, and it does not go well for them.
We see a great battle, a great defeat, supernatural occurence and then following the cleanup – complete destruction of all the kings, their people and the cities (v28-39).
However, verse 14 draws attention like a moth to a flame, “There has been no day like it before or since, when the LORD heeded the voice of a man, for the LORD fought for Israel.”
There was another day, greater still, no other day like it before or since. The day that God heeded the self-inflicted-brokenness of man, and won the big war, against sin and death.
On that day God did heed His Son’s voice, “It is finished” was the cry. And it was.
Praise God for His great and powerful saving work in Jesus that we see on the cruel and ugly cross.