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Bible Commentaries

Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible
Joshua 2



Verses 1-24

II. Two Hebrew Spies Visit Jericho and Evade Capture.—The narrative is inconsistent with Joshua 1:11, "Within three days ye are to pass over Jordan." The events in ch. 2 must have taken longer than three days, for Joshua 2:22 tells us that the spies abode three days in the mountains; and with one day to go and another to return, five days at least would be required. This is an indication that Joshua 2 and Joshua 1 are from different sources. And perhaps Joshua 2 itself is composite. The narrative reads consistently if Joshua 2:15-17 is omitted, for we can hardly think of the conversation being continued between Rahab at the window and the spies on the ground outside the wall.

1. Shittim: Numbers 25:1.

Joshua 2:6. Cf. 2 Samuel 17:18-20.

Joshua 2:10 f. belongs to the Deuteronomist. The passage is an interesting example of how the Biblical writers ascribe to ancient characters their own ideas. Rahab is made a pure monotheist at a time when we know that the Hebrews themselves were only monolatrous. The great example of this method of writing history is found in the Books of Chronicles, where the writer carries back to David's time the later ecclesiastical usages; but no greater anachronism can be found than the one here, where a Canaanitish heathen is made to utter a monotheism worthy of Amos. The words put into Rahab's mouth, "Yahweh is God in heaven above and on the earth beneath," are an exact repetition of Deuteronomy 4:39.

Joshua 2:15. Cf. 1 Samuel 19:12, Acts 9:25, 2 Corinthians 11:33.


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Bibliography Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on Joshua 2:4". "Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". 1919.

Lectionary Calendar
Thursday, November 26th, 2020
the Week of Christ the King / Proper 29 / Ordinary 34
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