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Matthew Henry's Commentary – Chapter 3
Chapter 3

This chapter, and that which follows it, give us the history of Israel’s passing through Jordan into Canaan, and a very memorable history it is. Long afterwards, they are told to remember what God did for them between Shittim (whence they decamped, Josh. 3:1) and Gilgal, where they next pitched, Josh. 4:19; Mic. 6:5; that they might know the righteousness of the Lord. By Joshua’s order they marched up to the river’s side, (Josh. 3:1), and then almighty power led them through it. They passed through the Red Sea unexpectedly, and in their flight by night, but they have notice some time before of their passing through Jordan, and their expectations raised. I. The people are directed to follow the ark, Josh. 3:2-4. II. They are commanded to sanctify themselves, Josh. 3:5. III. The priests with the ark are ordered to lead the van, Josh. 3:6. IV. Joshua is magnified and made commander in chief, Josh. 3:7, 8. V. Public notice is given of what God is about to do for them, Josh. 3:9-13. IV. The thing is done, Jordan is divided, and Israel brought safely through it, Josh. 3:14-17. This was the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes.