Joshua 19:24-39 (NIV) 24 The fifth lot came out for the tribe of Asher, clan by clan. 25 Their territory included: Helkath, Hali, Beten, Acshaph, 26 Allammelech, Amad and Mishal. On the west the boundary touched Carmel and Shihor Libnath. 27 It then turned east toward Beth Dagon, touched Zebulun and the Valley of Iphtah El, and went north to Beth Emek and Neiel, passing Cabul on the left. 28 It went to Abdon, Rehob, Hammon and Kanah, as far as Greater Sidon. 29 The boundary then turned back toward Ramah and went to the fortified city of Tyre, turned toward Hosah and came out at the sea in the region of Aczib, 30 Ummah, Aphek and Rehob. There were twenty-two towns and their villages. 31 These towns and their villages were the inheritance of the tribe of Asher, clan by clan.
On verses 24-31: These verses describe the territory given to the tribe of Asher. Asher’s long territory ran along the coastline of the Mediterranean Sea.
32 The sixth lot came out for Naphtali, clan by clan: 33 Their boundary went from Heleph and the large tree in Zaanannim, passing Adami Nekeb and Jabneel to Lakkum and ending at the Jordan. 34 The boundary ran west through Aznoth Tabor and came out at Hukkok. It touched Zebulun on the south, Asher on the west and the Jordan on the east. 35 The fortified cities were Ziddim, Zer, Hammath, Rakkath, Kinnereth, 36 Adamah, Ramah, Hazor, 37 Kedesh, Edrei, En Hazor, 38 Iron, Migdal El, Horem, Beth Anath and Beth Shemesh. There were nineteen towns and their villages. 39 These towns and their villages were the inheritance of the tribe of Naphtali, clan by clan.
On verses 32-39: These verses describe the territory given to the tribe of Naphtali. The prophet Isaiah would later prophesy about the land of Naphtali (as well as the land of Zebulun), writing in Isaiah 9:1-2:
1 Nevertheless, there will be no more gloom for those who were in distress. In the past he humbled the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the future he will honor Galilee of the Gentiles, by the way of the sea, along the Jordan– 2 The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.
Isaiah’s prophetic words about how a light would dawn on the land of Naphtali would be fulfilled centuries later when Jesus Christ would spend significant time by the Sea of Galilee in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali (see Matthew 4:12-16).
What can we learn from this? Maybe you feel that you’re in distress, living in darkness, near the shadow of death. You need to know that just as Jesus Christ came and gave hope to the people of Naphtali, so Jesus is here to give you a hope that is greater than your circumstances, to shine a greater light in your darkest night. Just as Naphtali received the greatest honour by having access to the presence of Jesus Christ, so you and I have been given the greatest honour, that we can access and touch the Lord Jesus.
So look to Him. Trust in Him. Hope in Jesus today.
Heavenly Father, thank You that no matter what kind of distress, darkness or death I may experience, I have hope in Jesus Christ. Jesus is my great light. Help me please to hang onto Jesus and find that through Him I can overcome the situation I am facing today. In Jesus’ name, AMEN!