Promised Land at Joshua's time

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Large Map Land of Canaan during time of Joshua

God, before the children of Israel entered the Promised Land, commanded that they destroy from the region at least seven nations more powerful than they. These nations or peoples were the Hittites, Canaanites, Girgashites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites (Deuteronomy 7:1). God promised that he would deliver these peoples into the hands of Israel. The Eternal made it clear to his chosen people how they were to treat these pagan nations.

And the Lord your God shall deliver them up to you, you shall crush them, and utterly destroy them. You shall make no covenant with them nor show mercy to them. Nor shall you make marriages with them. You shall not give your daughter to his son, nor shall you take his daughter to your son . . .

But you shall deal with them in this way: you shall destroy their altars and smash in pieces their standing pillars, and cut to shards their groves and burn their graven images with fire (Deuteronomy 7:2 - 3, 5, HBFV)

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The Hittites were a people who came from a region known as Asia Minor. They were a major power and an empire at the time when Joshua led the Israelites into the land (1405 B.C.). They first appear in the Bible as those who sold Abraham some land in which he could bury his beloved wife Sarah (Genesis 23:3 - 4, 10 - 11, 19 - 20).

The Canaanites are descended from Canaan, who was the son of Ham (one of Noah's three sons). Very little is still known about the Girgashites.

The Amorites descended from Canaan (Genesis 10:15 - 16) and are known to have produced giant people (Deuteronomy 3:11, Amos 2:9). God commanded the Israelites to totally destroy these people in order to fully receive their inheritance in the land (Deuteronomy 20:16).

At the time of Moses, King Sihon and the Amorites lived just east of the Dead Sea and south of the river Jabbok. Sometime before Israel took possession of the land God promised them, they conquered the area previously populated by the Ammonites (Numbers 21:26).

The Israelites, under Moses, destroyed the tribe and took all of their cities which included Heshbon (Numbers 21:21 - 26). After their conquest nothing more of note is mentioned about the Amorites in the Bible.

The Perizzites were people who were scattered throughout the land. The Hivites were a people who ruled mostly around the area of Shechem. The Jebusites lived in and around the city of Jebus. After David became King he and all the Israelites fought the Jebusites, conquered them, and renamed Jebus to Jerusalem.

Though not specifically mentioned as a nation to conquer in Deuteronomy 7:1 - 2, the Israelites did battle the people of Bashan. The land of Bashan, at the time of Moses and Joshua, was ruled by King Og. The king was the last of the Rephaim or giants that lived east of the Jordan. He was so big that, conservatively, his bed was 13 1/2 feet long (4.1 meters) and 6 feet (1.8 meters) wide (Deuteronomy 3:11)!

After the Israelites defeated the Amorites, they battled Og and his people at Edrei. The king, his sons and all his people were completely destroyed and his land taken and given to some of the tribes of Israel (Numbers 21:32 - 35; Deuteronomy 3:10, 12; Joshua 13:11 - 12)

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