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Notwithstanding the people had so rebelled, God was with them in all their wanderinga; He gave them water to drink, in the desert of Zin; when they murmured, Moses and Aaron struck the rock, and water came out abundantly, and they all drank, and their beasts also.
It was at this place that the Lord made known to Moses and Aaron that it was his will they should not enter the promised land; and when they came to Mount Hor, Aaron went up and died, and there Moses stripped his garments from him and put them upon Eleazar, his son, who was priest in his stead.
And God gave Israel strength, and they fought against the Amorites, overcame them, and rested in the plains of Moab. Now Balak, king of the Moabites, was much alarmed at the sight of so many people around him, and he sent elders with offers of very great reward unto Balaam, if he would come and curse this people. Balaam told the messengers to wait until the morning, that he might know whether the Lord would permit him to go or not; but God told Balaam he should not curse Israel, for they were blessed. Then Balak sent again inany great men, and higher rewards, to induce him to come; and he consented; for God told him, if the men came again, to go, but only to speak what He should command him.
Then Balaam saddled his ass, took two servants, and set out with the princes of Moab; but an angel of the Lord stood in his way, in a narrow path, where there was not room to turn aside: although Balaam did not see him, his ass did, and refused to go on; upon which Balaam beat her very cruelly, when the Lord caused the dumb animal to open her mouth, and complain to her master for thus treating ber. Then the Lord opened the eyes
of Balaam, and he saw the angel of the Lord, with his sword drawn, standing in the way, and he bowed before him, and fell on his face. The angel was displeased with him, and told him, that had it not been for the ass, he would have been slain. Then Balaam owned that he had sinned, and offered to go back again, but the Lord said, “Go with the men; only the word that I shall speak unto thee, that shalt thou speak.” When Balaam came in siglit of the tents of Israel, instead of curses, which Balak had hoped for, out of his mouth came blessings; for he said, “how shall I curse
those whoni the Lord hath not cursed ?" and he blessed them three times.
This, and many more miracles, did God work for his chosen, yet ungrateful, people, until the forty years of their wandlering were ended; when Moses, having faithfully delivered to his people the whole law of God, went to the top of Mount Pisgah, was favored with a sight of the promised land, and, leaving Joshua to command the people, died, being one hundred and twenty years old, yet his eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated.
After the death of Moses, their new leader led the people over the river Jordan: He who had so miraculously made for them a dry path through the Red Sea, also caused the waters of this river to divide when the priests stepped in: they thus safely entered into the promised land. Then Joshua, at the command of the Lord, caused twelve stones to be dug from the bottom of Jordan, and set up at this place, as a memorial unto the children of Israel, for ever. A memorial is any thing which serves to remind us of a particular event,--thus the Israelites, whenever they looked upon these stones, were to remember, with gratitude, that God who had helped them in all their troubles, and who still continued to make their path plain be fore them.
After they had eaten the corn and wine of this fruitful land, their daily supply of manna ceased: they had many difficulties to meet with before they could expect to find rest after their long journey, or comfortable homes for themselves and their families; but their heavenly Father fought for them, and made hard things easy; proving that He was indeed able
and willing to work miracles on their behalf.
While they were encamped before Jericho, He caused the walls of that city to fall down flat to the ground, that they might go in and possess it; and whilst they were fighting for the men of Gibeon, God caused the sun to stand still, and the moon to be stayed in her course, by which the day was lengthened until the victory was obtained. You may read this for yourselves in the book of Joshua, and you may there find how the land was divided among the ten tribes.
When Joshua had lived many years, and served the Lord his God, he assembled the tribes of Shechem, where he set before them the mercies of the Almighty from the time of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, until that present day: he reminded the people of God's gracious promises to Abraham, which had been fulfilled; he called to their remembrance the wonders which He had worked in the land of Egypt, and the many instances in which He had appeared, as their preserver, during their eventful journey; he then called upon them to fear the Lord, and serve Him in sincerity(18) and truth, to put away their false gods, and to serve Him alone: he told them whichever side they might choose, he and his house would serve the Lord. The people then owned the Lord for their God, and acknowledged that He had brought them up from the land of Egypt, and done great signs in their sight.