God's Command to Kill the Canaanites

How could God command Joshua to commit genocide?

High Definition Video Standard Definition Video

(Right click this link to download video.)


The New Testament reminds us that, as New Testament believers, there is a horrible judgment that's going to take place in the future that involves God judging all the peoples of the earth. In language, this is very reminiscent of the book of Joshua. God is going to judge eternally those who do not accept the Lord Jesus Christ. But, as believers, we're also told that our struggle is not against flesh and blood. It is not a physical battle; it is a spiritual battle. And so, in Ephesians 6, we have the whole armor of God to do spiritual tasks such as taking the gospel to other nations. Our feet are shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace. We also have 2 Corinthians that tells us that the weapons of our warfare are not carnal; they're not physical. They are spiritual, to the pulling down of strongholds, and in the context those strongholds are those teachings that run counter to the teachings of the word of God so that the proper proclamation of the Word of God and our own personal piety are the spiritual warfare in which we're to engage in the New Testament era.

Answer by Dr. Chip McDaniel

Dr. Ferris “Chip” McDaniel is Professor of Old Testament and Hebrew at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.