As previously discussed, the good land was not gained by a single individual, but by a corporate people whom God raised up for the fulfillment of His purpose (link to post). In this post we will go on to see that God’s people were not formed into a leaderless army. Rather, they were led into the good land by Joshua, who had stood strongly for God’s purpose since the Israelites’ exodus from Egypt (Num. 14:6; Josh. 1:1-9). In leading the people into the good land, Joshua was a type of Christ as the Captain of our salvation who is leading us into Himself as the reality of the good land (link to post).
After Moses died, Joshua was chosen by Jehovah to be His representative in leading His people into the good land (Josh. 1:1-9). After crossing the river Jordan and beginning to partake of the riches of the good land, the children of Israel needed to go on to actually possess the land, not just enjoy its produce. At such a juncture Christ appeared to Joshua as the Captain of Jehovah’s army (Josh. 5:13-15). Joshua, the visible captain of Jehovah’s army, cooperated with the invisible Captain to lead God’s people to victoriously possess the good land.
In the New Testament, particularly in the book of Hebrews, we see that Jesus Christ is our real Joshua who is leading us into the good land as our rest (Heb. 4:8-9). To begin with, the name Jesus is the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew name Joshua, which means Jehovah the Savior, or the salvation of Jehovah. Hebrews 2:10 reveals the Lord as the Author of our salvation who is leading us into glory. In this verse, the word Author also means Captain, Inaugurator, Leader, or Pioneer. Hebrews 6:20 goes on to declare that Jesus is our Forerunner. Furthermore, Hebrews 12:2 says, “Looking away unto Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down on the right hand of the throne of God.” These verses reveal that our Lord Jesus Christ, having experienced the suffering of death, entering into resurrection, and ascending to the throne of God, is now our Captain of salvation leading us into glory. As followers of our Captain, we have become partners of Christ, sharing with Him in what He has attained and obtained (Heb. 3:14). In this way, we will enter into His rest and be brought into His glory (Heb. 4:8-9, 2:10).
It is marvelous that Joshua saw the vision of the Captain of Jehovah’s army after the people of God had entered the good land and were about to possess it. Today Christ is our real Joshua, our Captain of salvation, and we are His partners to take and possess the good land for the fulfillment of God’s purpose.
(Most references in the Further Reading can also be viewed on www.ministrybooks.org.)