How the Walls of Jericho Fell Down

After the spies came back to Joshua, the people moved their camp to the Jordan River. After three days there, their leaders went through the camp and told the people, "When you see the priest carrying the ark, you are to follow it but don't go near it; stay a thousand yards away."

Now it was the spring harvest time, and the Jordan River was flooding over its banks. But when the priests who were carrying the ark stepped into the river, water stopped flowing at a city upriver named Adam. From there on south the water flowed on down to the Dead Sea, leaving a dry river bed. So the people crossed the river on dry ground. And the soldiers from the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and Manasseh were the first to cross over. Joshua told the people, have twelve men, one from each tribe, and each pick up a large rock from the river bed and pile them up at our new camp. "He also had twelve rocks piled up in the middle of the river bed where the priests carrying the ark stood. He said, "These piles of rocks will remind the people what God did here forever." After all the people had crossed the river the priests carried the ark out and the water once again began to flow down it. And when the people in the land of Canaan heard how the Israelites had come into their land, they all became afraid of the Israelites.

Four days later it was time for the feast of Passover. When the people celebrated the feast, they ate grain they found growing in the fields. Then the manna that God had been feeding them with stopped coming. From then on they ate food that they found growing in the land.

One day while Joshua was standing near the city of Jericho, he saw a man with a sword in his hand. He asked the man, "Are you on our side or on our enemy's side?" "No," the man said, "it is as commander of the Lord's army that I have come." When Joshua realized that this was God in the form of a man, he fell down before him and worshiped him. God said take your sandals off you are on holy ground." So Joshua took his sandals off. And God told Joshua, this is how you will take the city of Jericho. Have your soldiers march around the city once, in two groups. After the first group have seven priests carry seven trumpets made out of ram's horns, they are to blow them, but the soldiers are not to say a word. Following them, have the Ark of the Covenant carried, and then have the second group of soldiers follow it. You are to have the soldiers march around the city like this once a day for six days. Then on the seventh day they are to march around it seven times. Then the priests must blow the trumpets and the people must shout and the walls will fall down. Then the soldiers should go straight into the city."

So Joshua told the people what God said, and they did it. For six days they marched around the city once each day. Then at daybreak on the seventh day they began marching around the city. This time they marched around it seven times. Then the priests blew the trumpets and the people shouted, and the city walls fell down. And the army attacked the city. Joshua told the two spies, "Go, save Rahab and the people gathered in her house because she hid you. "So they brought Rahab and her father, mother, brothers, and other relatives safely outside the camp. Now Joshua had told the soldiers, "Kill all the other people and animals in the city. Don't take anything for yourselves. The gold, silver, bronze and iron all belong to God. Put that in the Lord's treasury. And burn all the rest of the things in the city." So the army completely destroyed the city of Jericho.

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