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As I mentioned yesterday, I’m going to be working through the book of Joshua, using the chapter summary method developed by Dawson Troutman, founder of the Navigators. Essentially, his method has these parts:

  1. Big Idea–Main points
  2. Best Verses
  3. Bottom–line application
  4. Verses to Memorize
  5. Things that don’t make sense
  6. And one that I’m going to add: comments, commentary…

It’s a simple, but I have found effective tool. So, let’s dive into Joshua, chapter one.


  1. Big Ideas
    –Joshua takes over from Moses
    –God is fulfilling His promises that have their foundation and roots in promises he made to Abraham in Genesis 12
    –they are commanded to conqueror the land
    –be strong and courageous—mentioned four times
    –be obedient to the law
    –connection between obedience and success
    –people pledge to follow & obey Joshua, as they did Moses
  2. Best Verses
    2–Joshua takes over
    8–obedience to the law
    16–pledge of people to follow Joshua
    6, 7, 9 & 18—be strong and courageous
  3. Bottom–line application
    In difficult times, uncertain times, we are commanded to be strong & courageous because the battle is not ours, but is the Lords.
  4. Verses to memorize
    7—Only be strong and very courageous, being careful to do according to all the law that Moses my servant commanded you. Do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may have good success wherever you go.
    8—This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.
  5. Things that don’t make sense
    The swift judgment pronounced in verse 18—Whoever rebels against your commandment and disobeys your words, whatever you command him, shall be put to death—seems harsh in our day of grace and forgiveness. Still wrestling with this one.
  6. Thoughts
    When something is repeated in Scripture, God is usually trying to drive home a point—He certainly did so with “be strong and courageous.” It is reminiscent of Psalm 20:7—Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God. The battle belongs to the Lord, as David knew—the Lord saves not with sword and spear. For the battle is the Lord ‘s, and he will give you into our handas he went up against Goliath. It is also reminiscent of Ephesians 6:10–17, where we are admonished “to stand” or “to stand firm” four times.