Chapter 16- The boundaries of the land inherited by the tribe of Ephraim.
Verse 10, “And they did not drive out the Canaanites who dwelt in Gezer; but the Canaanites dwell among the Ephramites to this day and have become forced laborers.” Wonder why they didn’t follow God’s command to kill everyone, and why God didn’t do anything about it? Not that I’m complaining…I’m happy some people lived. Just curious why they are the exception.
Chapter 17- The land given to the tribe of Manasseh. The daughters of Zelophehad get their inheritance like Moses promised. The people of Manasseh complain that they didn’t get enough land for the size of their tribe.
I’ll refer you back to that map. Have a gander at how much land Manasseh got. With perhaps the exception of Judah, they had the largest portion of land. How many people could they possibly have had that that much land was insufficient? I think they were being greedy.
Also, they seem to have the same problem as the people of Ephraim, “Yet the children of Manasseh could not drive out the inhabitants of those cities, but the Canaanites were determined to dwell in that land. And it happened when the children of Israel grew strong, that they put the Canaanites to force labor, but did not utterly drive them out.” (12, 13) So either God chose not to keep His promise to drive out all the inhabitants of Canaan, or He was unable to. Either way, I’m not impressed with Yahweh the promise breaker.
Chapter 18- The seven other tribes send out surveyors to check out what land is left. They bring this information back to Joshua, who then casts lots for which tribe will get what land. The boundaries of the tribe of Benjamin are listed.
This is a rather dull read. And, the description in the Bible of Benjamin’s portion makes it sound a whole lot bigger than that map suggests. Although, honestly, I just kinda skimmed this chapter…