The Covenant renewed at Shechem
1 Joshua summoned all the tribes of Israel in Shechem, and assembled the elders, leaders, judges and secretaries. And together they presented themselves before God.
2 Addressing the people, Joshua said to them: “Yahweh, the God of Israel, commands me to say to you: Your ancestors lived beyond the Euphrates River—Terah the father of Abraham and Nahor—serving other gods. 3 But I brought Abraham your father from beyond the Euphrates and led him through the whole land of Canaan. Then I gave him a son Isaac, that he might have numerous descendants. 4 And to Isaac, I gave two sons: Esau and Jacob. Esau received the mountains of Seir as his inheritance, while Jacob and his sons went down to Egypt.
5 Then I sent Moses and Aaron to punish Egypt in the way that you know, that you might leave. 6 Then I brought your ancestors out of Egypt and you came to the sea. The Egyptians pursued you with chariots and horses as far as the Red Sea. 7 Then you cried to Yahweh, and he put immense darkness between you and the Egyptians. He made the sea go back on them and they were drowned. You have witnessed all the things he did in Egypt, and then you lived in the desert for a long time. 8 Then I brought you to the land of the Amorites who were on the east of the Jordan. You fought them but it was I who gave them into your hand; you destroyed them and you seized their lands.
9 Balak, the son of Zippor, king of Mo ab, declared war on Israel and commanded Balaam son of Beor to curse you. 10 But I would not listen to him, so Ba laam blessed you and I saved you from the hands of Balak.
11 Then you crossed the Jordan and came to Jericho. And the landlords of Jericho fought against you: the Amorites, Perizzites, Canaanites, Hittites, Girga shites, Hivites and Jebusites declared war on you, but I gave them to you. 12 The two Amo rite kings fled from you because of the swarm of hornets that attacked them and not because of your sword and bow. 13 I gave you lands which you have not tilled, cities which you did not build but in which you now live. I gave you vineyards and olive groves which you did not plant but from which you now eat.
14 So fear Yahweh, and be sincere and faithful in serving him. Set aside those gods your ancestors worshiped in Mesopotamia and Egypt. Serve only Yahweh. 15 But if you do not want to serve Yahweh, make known this very day whom you shall serve—whether they be the gods your ancestors served in Mesopo tamia or the gods of the Amorites who formerly occupied the land in which you now live. As for me, I and my household will serve Yahweh.”
16 The people answered: “May God not permit that we ever abandon Yahweh to serve other gods! 17 For it was he who brought us and our ancestors out of Egypt, the house of slavery. It was he who did those great wonders that we have seen; he protected us on the way and through all the land where we passed, 18 driving away before us all the nations especially the Amorites who lived in this land. So we shall also serve Yahweh: he is our God!”
19 Joshua asked the people: “Will you be able to serve Yahweh? He is a Holy God, a Jealous God who does not tolerate wickedness or faults. 20 If you abandon Yahweh to serve other gods, he will turn against you and just as he has done you so much good, so shall he punish you and destroy you.” 21 The people replied: “No, may it not be as you say. We will serve Yahweh.” 22 Joshua said: “You yourselves are witnesses that you have chosen Yah weh to serve him.” They answered: “We are witnesses.”
23 Joshua then said, “Remove now from your midst any other gods and serve Yahweh, the God of Israel, with all your heart.” 24 The people an swered: “We will serve Yahweh, our God, and obey his commands.”
25 On that day at Shechem, Jo shua made a covenant with the people and fixed laws and ordinances. 26 He also wrote down everything ex pressed in the book of the Law of God; he chose a great stone and put it under the oak tree in the sacred place of Yahweh. 27 Then Joshua said to the people: “This stone shall be a witness to all that Yahweh said to us, for it heard all these words. It shall be a witness against you, lest you deal falsely with Yahweh.”
28 Joshua immediately sent the people away and everyone returned to his land.
29 After all these deeds, Joshua, son of Nun and servant of Yahweh, died at the age of a hundred and ten. 30 They buried him in his land at Timnath-serah, in the hill country of Eph raim, to the north of Mount Gaash. 31 Israel served Yahweh throughout the whole life of Joshua and of the elders who outlived Joshua and who had witnessed all the wonders Yah weh did for Israel. 32 The Israelites brought from Egypt the bones of Joseph. They buried them at Shechem in a place in the field which Jacob bought from the children of Hamor, the father of Shechem, for a hundred pieces of money. This be came the possession of the children of Joseph.
33 Eleazar the son of Aaron also died and they buried him on the hill given to his son Phinehas on the mountains of Ephraim.