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The effect on the people of this crossing of the Jordan is revealed in the words, "Their heart melted, neither was there any spirit in them any more." Therefore time must again be taken for matters distinctly of worship.
During the forty years in the wilderness the rite of circumcision evidently had been neglected. There could be no triumphal progress until this had been corrected. Moreover, the nation, so far as its men were concerned, was now becoming a nation of soldiers who were to conduct a campaign of judgment against the corrupt and depraved people. As there can be no doubt that the rite of circumcision was based on holiness and purity of physical life, we see the importance of its enforcement anew at-this juncture.
Following this the great Passover feast was solemnly kept and thus the people were reminded again of the nature of their national existence.
At this time there appeared to Joshua himself the Captain or Prince of the hosts of the Lord, and he was thus made to recognize that his authority and leadership depended on his submission and obedience.
Thus, in different ways before a blow was struck, leader and people were compelled to recognize their dependence on God and the fact that they were but instruments in His hand, moving forward for the accomplishment of His purpose.
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Morgan, G. Campbell. "Commentary on Joshua 5". "Morgan's Exposition on the Bible". https://studylight.org/
the Fourth Week after Epiphany