Joshua was born and spent his early life in slavery in Egypt which he exited when aged over 20 years old, under Moses’ leadership.
He led Israel’s wilderness battle, against Amalek, Exodus 17.
Acted as Moses’ minister, when Moses ascended Sinai to receive the law, Exodus 24:13.
Represented Ephraim, as one of the 12, when sent to spy out Canaan, Numbers 13:8. Joshua and Caleb (representing Judah), reported back that Israel could take the land in contradiction to the other 10 spies who persuaded the rest of the Israelites that the task was impossible. Israel were cursed with a 40 year wandering in the wilderness while that generation died out with the exception of Caleb and Joshua, who were rewarded with a promise of outliving the nomadic wilderness existence and entry into an inheritance, Numbers 32:11-12.
Joshua with Eleazar the priest, led in describing the tribal inheritance boundaries, Numbers 34:17.
Moses was instructed that his leadership successor would be Joshua, Deuteronomy 1:38, and he handed over responsibility to him with relevant advice, Deuteronomy 31:14, 23.
Joshua took the Israelites into the land of Canaan, and led them in their defeat of existing inhabitants, and organised the tribal distribution on the West of the River Jordan.
The taking of the inheritance can be viewed as a campaign consisting of 4 parts.
- Prior to Moses death, there was an East bank of Jordan campaign, against Sihon king of the Amorites and Og King of Bashan, yielding the territories of Gilead and Bashan into Israel’s hands. (Numbers 21:21-25, 33-35; Deuteronomy 2:26-37 and Deuteronomy 3:1-11).
- Central campaign against Jericho and Ai (Joshua 6-8). As a result of this campaign, Gibeon; fearing their future, by use of subterfuge attained a permanent peace treaty agreement with Israel, (Joshua 9).
- As a result of the Gibeon peace treaty, 5 local Amorite kings of; Jerusalem, Hebron, Jarmuth, Lachish and Eglon united against Gibeon. This led to a southern campaign when Israel rose to defend Gibeon and took the cities of these 5 Amorite kings, (Joshua 10).
- Jabin king of Hazor in the North assembled the surrounding forces but failed to repel Israel, who conquered the major northern cities which became part of the land divided between the 12 tribes of Israel, (Joshua 11).
Joshua 12, provides a summary of the extent of the land taken by Israel in the above 4 campaigns on both the East and West sides of Jordan