1. Structure and outline

The content of Joshua 11:16-23

Joshua 11:16–23 (ESV)

16 So Joshua took all that land, the hill country and all the Negeb and all the land of Goshen and the lowland and the Arabah and the hill country of Israel and its lowland

Joshua 11:16–23 is a general summary of the fighting that took place throughout the land of Canaan (not only in the north). In these verses we are presented with a picture emphasizing the complete defeat of the people of Canaan. In particular, Joshua’s leadership is highlighted since he is identified as the agent in almost all activities: the taking of the land (Joshua 11:16), the capture and killing of Canaanite kings (Joshua 11:17), the waging of war for a long time (Joshua 11:18), the destruction of the Anakim (Joshua 11:21), and the taking and distribution of the land (Joshua 11:23). This final section of chapter 11 contains historical narrative (written accounts of what the people did) as well as a theological interpretation explaining why these things happened (Joshua 11:20).1