From Mount Nebo to Jericho: Part 2 

Presentation from the Middle-East 

Joshua 6.11–14 

Don Ruhl • Savage Street, Grants Pass, Oregon • September 1, In the year of our Lord Christ, 2019 


  1. Israel at Jericho 
    1. Joshua 5 shows Israel having crossed the Jordan, then camping:

      10 Now the children of Israel camped in Gilgal, and kept the Passover on the fourteenth day of the month at twilight on the plains of Jericho. 11 And they ate of the produce of the land on the day after the Passover, unleavened bread and parched grain, on the very same day. 12 Then the manna ceased on the day after they had eaten the produce of the land; and the children of Israel no longer had manna, but they ate the food of the land of Canaan that year.

      – Joshua 5.10–12
    2. Joshua had an interesting encounter with the Commander of the Lord’s army:

      13 And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted his eyes and looked, and behold, a Man stood opposite him with His sword drawn in His hand. And Joshua went to Him and said to Him, “Are You for us or for our adversaries?” 14 So He said, “No, but as Commander of the army of the LORD I have now come.” And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and worshiped, and said to Him, “What does my Lord say to His servant?” 15 Then the Commander of the LORD’S army said to Joshua, “Take your sandal off your foot, for the place where you stand is holy.” And Joshua did so.

      – Joshua 5.13–15
    3. Jericho was closed up because of Israel.

      1 Now Jericho was securely shut up because of the children of Israel; none went out, and none came in.

      – Joshua 6.1
      1. Then the Lord gave Joshua instructions for taking down Jericho’s defenses:

        3 “You shall march around the city, all you men of war; you shall go all around the city once. This you shall do six days. 4 And seven priests shall bear seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark. But the seventh day you shall march around the city seven times, and the priests shall blow the trumpets. 5 It shall come to pass, when they make a long blast with the ram’s horn, and when you hear the sound of the trumpet, that all the people shall shout with a great shout; then the wall of the city will fall down flat. And the people shall go up every man straight before him.”

        – Joshua 6.3–5
      2. And so they did:

        12 And Joshua rose early in the morning, and the priests took up the ark of the LORD. 13 Then seven priests bearing seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark of the LORD went on continually and blew with the trumpets. And the armed men went before them. But the rear guard came after the ark of the LORD, while the priests continued blowing the trumpets. 14 And the second day they marched around the city once and returned to the camp. So they did six days.

        – Joshua 6.12–14
      3. It happened just as the Lord said that it would:

        20 So the people shouted when the priests blew the trumpets. And it happened when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat. Then the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city.

        – Joshua 6.20
    4. Then Joshua put a curse upon the building of the foundation and the gates.

      26 Then Joshua charged them at that time, saying, “Cursed be the man before the LORD who rises up and builds this city Jericho; he shall lay its foundation with his firstborn, and with his youngest he shall set up its gates.”

      – Joshua 6.26
      1. I remember reading that years ago and 
      2. I remembered it as I did my Bible reading. 
        1. Would God record the fulfillment of this double curse? 
        2. Then as I reading in First Kings, suddenly there was the fulfillment:

          29 In the thirty-eighth year of Asa king of Judah, Ahab the son of Omri became king over Israel; and Ahab the son of Omri reigned over Israel in Samaria twenty-two years. 30 Now Ahab the son of Omri did evil in the sight of the LORD, more than all who were before him. 31 And it came to pass, as though it had been a trivial thing for him to walk in the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, that he took as wife Jezebel the daughter of Ethbaal, king of the Sidonians; and he went and served Baal and worshiped him. 32 Then he set up an altar for Baal in the temple of Baal, which he had built in Samaria. 33 And Ahab made a wooden image. Ahab did more to provoke the LORD God of Israel to anger than all the kings of Israel who were before him. 34 In his days Hiel of Bethel built Jericho. He laid its foundation with Abiram his firstborn, and with his youngest son Segub he set up its gates, according to the word of the LORD, which He had spoken through Joshua the son of Nun.

          – 1 Kings 16.29–34
  2. A Surprise 
    1. My sermon “Archaeology: The Dead Speaks)” 
      1. The director of my school, Hugh Shira, 
        1. assigned me a topic for our annual lectureship 
        2. that my school used to have, 
          1. comprised of students and 
          2. a guest speaker who was well-known. 
      2. Because of the title, I wanted to make a connection with the Bible. 
        1. I found several passages of Scripture 
        2. that in my mind show the legitimacy of archaeology. 
      3. Here are examples of what I spoke on. 
        1. Notice that what I did is 
        2. I found passages that said something still remained 
          1. “to this day,” or similar phrase, 
          2. showing that at least up to the day of the writer, 
            1. that objective was still located where the Bible said that is was. 
            2. Then I came across something unusual. 
    2. First, The Pillar of Rachel’s Grave

      20 And Jacob set a pillar on her grave, which is the pillar of Rachel’s grave to this day.

      Genesis 35.20
      1. Moses verified that over 400 years later, 
        1. this pillar still existed. 
        2. People could go to it and see the truth of which he spoke. 
      2. First Samuel 10 shows it continued to exist in Samuel’s day,

        2 “When you have departed from me today, you will find two men by Rachel’s tomb in the territory of Benjamin at Zelzah…”

        – 1 Samuel 10.2
        1. From the death of Rachel to the time of Samuel is about 900 years! 
        2. This confirmed their history. 
    3. Joshua 4 refers to stones his readers could identify with, for 
      1. any Israelite or any foreigner could go to the spot and 
      2. see these stones, and know the veracity of the history behind them,

        9 Then Joshua set up twelve stones in the midst of the Jordan, in the place where the feet of the priests who bore the ark of the covenant stood; and they are there to this day.

        – Joshua 4.9
    4. Joshua 7 is a similar passage,

      26 Then they raised over him a great heap of stones, still there to this day. So the LORD turned from the fierceness of His anger. Therefore the name of that place has been called the Valley of Achor to this day.

      – Joshua 7.26
      1. Some Israelite kid would ask: Why was that valley named Achor and 
      2. what was the meaning of a large pile of stones there? 
        1. Joshua fills in the history of these archaeological sites, 
        2. just as we might do today, whether we go 
          1. from the Bible to archaeology or 
          2. from archaeology to the Bible! 
      3. The next chapter shows still something else similar 
        1. that was associated with Ai, 
        2. the place where Israel initially lost a battle because of Achan’s sin.

          28 So Joshua burned Ai and made it a heap forever, a desolation to this day. 29 And the king of Ai he hanged on a tree until evening. And as soon as the sun was down, Joshua commanded that they should take his corpse down from the tree, cast it at the entrance of the gate of the city, and raise over it a great heap of stones that remains to this day.

          – Joshua 8.28–29
          1. Why was the place that formerly supported Ai, desolate? 
          2. Why was there a large, very large, pile of stones there? 
            1. Joshua 8 shows what happened there, and 
            2. the archaeological site confirms the truth of Joshua 8. 
    5. Judges 6 has the same kind of information,

      24 So Gideon built an altar there to the LORD, and called it The–LORD–Is–Peace. To this day it is still in Ophrah of the Abiezrites.

      – Judge 6.24
    6. First Samuel 6 presents another historical/archaeological bit of information. 
      1. The Philistines had captured the Ark of the Testimony, but 
      2. it did not belong to them, so 
        1. God cursed them, and 
        2. they concluded that they needed to send it back to Israel, 
          1. along with some gold presents that represented their lords and cities. 
          2. Then the writer said this,

            18 …even as far as the large stone of Abel on which they set the ark of the LORD, which stone remains to this day in the field of Joshua of Beth Shemesh.

            – 1 Samuel 6.18
            1. I want to find that stone. 
            2. Perhaps someday the Lord will give me another opportunity. 
    7. Second Samuel 18 says that Absalom had set up a pillar,

      18 Now Absalom in his lifetime had taken and set up a pillar for himself, which is in the King’s Valley. For he said, “I have no son to keep my name in remembrance.” He called the pillar after his own name. And to this day it is called Absalom’s Monument.

      – 2 Samuel 18.18
    8. Second Kings 2 presents something the author could substantiate,

      19 Then the men of the city said to Elisha, “Please notice, the situation of this city is pleasant, as my lord sees; but the water is bad, and the ground barren.” 20 And he said, “Bring me a new bowl, and put salt in it.” So they brought it to him. 21 Then he went out to the source of the water, and cast in the salt there, and said, “Thus says the LORD: ‘I have healed this water; from it there shall be no more death or barrenness.’” 22 So the water remains healed to this day, according to the word of Elisha which he spoke.

      – 2 Kings 2.19–22
      1. That was Jericho! 
      2. This happened at Jericho! 
        1. Here is what I believed in 1981 and 
        2. here is what I still believe in 2019. 
          1. In the other cases, we are talking about an archaeological piece. 
          2. But in this case, we are talking about 
            1. God using the prophet Elisha 
            2. to heal deadly waters. 
              1. If the Lord healed those waters, 
              2. should they not still be healed today? 
          3. Notice what I said back then:

            “We can taste of these waters and see the truthfulness of the Bible.”
            1. Never did I think that the God of heaven 
            2. would one day take me to the land of Israel, and 
              1. allow me to see those waters and 
              2. to taste of those waters. 


  1. Everything this Book says is true. 
    1. Everything thing that is capable of being confirmed by archaeology is true. 
    2. Therefore, everything address historically is true. 
      1. What it says about the things that we can see is true. 
      2. Therefore, what it says about the things that we cannot see is true. 
  2. There is a God in heaven. 
    1. He sent His Son Jesus Christ to die for your sins, because 
    2. there is a heaven and a hell.