As the Israelites come to a pause in their fighting as they have taken over the Promised Land of Canaan, Joshua begins to divide up the land and give it to the individual tribes of Israel. Two of the tribes, the Reubenites and the Gadites, were given land on the eastern side of the Jordan River, yet their armies had crossed over and fought along with the rest of the Israelites so as to help their fellow Israelites conquer the people in Canaan.

In the end, each tribe was given an inheritance of land.

Now these are the areas the Israelites received as an inheritance in the land of Canaan, which Eleazar the priest, Joshua son of Nun and the heads of the tribal clans of Israel allotted to them.

Joshua 14:1

Here is an illustration of the land as it was divided up amongst the tribes:

As we often would reading through the Old Testament, we can think of the Promised Land given to the Israelites as both an historical act as well as an indication of things that will come in the future.

The Promised Land meant an inheritance and a place of rest for the Israelites. They had been under a hand of oppression as they were in slavery in Egypt. They had been working for the Egyptians, to build the kingdom of Egypt, but now they were entering a place of rest provided by God, a place that they no longer needed to work for others and the well-being of those others, but instead living within the land that God had given to them.

This is similar to the rest that God gives to us. As we leave the slavery of sin and our desire to be fed by the systems of the world, obeying what it has to say to us, we instead end up moving in the direction of freedom in Christ within the New Covenant that we have through Christ and his blood. In a similar way that the nation of Israel received a land flowing with milk and honey, a land of abundance and provision, we enter a life that we can live to the full in Christ. A life that is a complete blessing because we know him and we are in relationship with God. This is an outworking of the inheritance that we receive through Christ even today.

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