Joshua 17

* The lot of Manasseh. (1-6) The boundaries of Manasseh, The

Canaanites not driven out. (7-13) Joseph desires a larger

portion. (14-18)

1-6 Manasseh was but half of the tribe of Joseph, yet it was

divided into two parts. The daughters of Zelophehad now reaped

the benefit of their pious zeal and prudent forecast. Those who

take care in the wilderness of this world, to make sure to

themselves a place in the inheritance of the saints in light,

will have the comfort of it in the other world; while those who

neglect it now, will lose it for ever. Lord, teach us here to

believe and obey, and give us an inheritance among thy saints,

in glory everlasting.
7-13 There was great communication between Manasseh and

Ephraim. Though each tribe had its inheritance, yet they should

intermix one with another, to do good offices one to another, as

became those, who, though of different tribes, were all one

Israel, and were bound to love as brethren. But they suffered

the Canaanites to live among them, against the command of God,

to serve their own ends.
14-18 Joshua, as a public person, had no more regard to his own

tribe than to any other, but would govern without favour or

affection; wherein he has left a good example to all in public

trusts. Joshua tells them, that what was fallen to their share

would be a sufficient lot for them, if they would but work and

fight. Men excuse themselves from labour by any pretence; and

nothing serves the purpose better than having rich and powerful

relations, able to provide for them; and they are apt to desire

a partial and unfaithful disposal of what is intrusted to those

they think able to give such help. But there is more real

kindness in pointing out the advantages within reach, and in

encouraging men to make the best of them, than in granting

indulgences to sloth and extravagance. True religion gives no

countenance to these evils. The rule is, They shall not eat who

will not work; and many of our "cannots" are only the language

of idleness, which magnifies every difficulty and danger. This

is especially the case in our spiritual work and warfare.

Without Christ we can do nothing, but we are apt to sit still

and attempt nothing. if we belong to Him, he will stir us up to

our best endeavours, and to cry to him for help. Then our coast

will be enlarged, #1Ch 4:9,10|, and complainings silenced, or

rather, turned into joyful thanksgivings.

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