Summary: We serve a God who is so generous and always provides more than we deserve.

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The story is told that one day a beggar by the roadside asked for alms from Alexander the Great as he passed by. The man was poor and wretched and had no claim upon the ruler, no right even to lift a solicitous hand. Yet the Emperor threw him several gold coins. A courtier was astonished at his generosity and commented, “Sir, copper coins would adequately meet a beggar’s need. Why give him gold?” Alexander responded in royal fashion, “Copper coins would suit the beggar’s need, but gold coins suit Alexander’s giving.” (Source unknown)

God had already given the eastern bank of Jordan to the two and one-half tribes. In this chapter He shows Moses the boundaries of the remainder of Canaan to be distributed among the nine and one-half tribes. The land was given by God; no tribe was to claim its own land. The southern border stretched from the southern tip of the Dead Sea to the Mediterranean Sea (vv. 3-5). The western border (v. 6) was the coastline of the Mediterranean Sea. The northern border (vv. 7-9) included the area of Mount Hermon. The eastern border (v. 10) is the Jordan Valley from the Sea of Galilee to the Dead Sea. The size of the land portrays God’s generosity. He always gives us more than we could ever ask or think.

The land was to be divided by the casting of lots, as supervised by fourteen appointed individuals (vv, 16-29). God Himself chose the committee which was to function here. In addition to Eleazar the priest and Joshua, one prince from every tribe was named. In God’s plan for dividing the land he explained what to do. No plan is complete until each job is assigned and everyone understands his or her responsibilities. When you have a job to do, determine what must be done, give clear instructions, and put people in charge of each part.


We serve a God who is so generous and always provides more than we deserve. That is so true of my life beginning with the country and family that I was born into, with the wonderful wife He has given me and the healthy and Christ honoring children he placed in our family. Just as in the illustration, copper coins would have been more than adequate but He has provided the gold.

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