Joshua 16-17

Talks for Growing Christians

The Inheritance of Ephraim and Half the Tribe of Manasseh

Joshua 16-17

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Lesson Number 25

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. God is more pleased with territory gained than with tribute given.
  2. od is more pleased with faith walkers than with faith talkers.

Practical Application

  1. Will it be said in heaven that you could not or that you would not?
  2. The ball is in your court.


  1. Why wasn't there a tribe called Joseph?
  2. What did this have to do with Joseph's birthright?
  3. In whose territory was Shiloh located?
  4. Judah, for lack of faith could not drive out the Jebusites. What was Ephraim lacking ?
  5. Why did Zelophehad's daughters receive their father's inheritance?


  1. Joseph received his blessing in the land through his two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh.
  2. He received a double portion of the land, an aspect of his birthright.
  3. In Ephraim's territory. This is where the tabernacle would be located for more than 300 years to come.
  4. They had a lack of will.
  5. Because there were no sons, and the daughters asked for their father's inheritance and received it.


  1. God is more pleased with territory gained than with tribute given. Ephraim failed to drive out the enemy completely, but they did put them to work and made them pay tribute. However, this was not God's desire or design. Today, many Christians are motivated by the love of money. As a result there is money given to the work of the Lord, but the Lord is not their number one priority. How is it with you?
  2. The children of Joseph said that they were a great people. They were good faith talkers, like some Christians today. They wanted more territory, but they didn't want to work for it or fight for it. Could you be in that category?


  1. Will it be said in heaven that you could not or that you would not? The tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh failed to drive out the enemy, rather they chose to co-exist with them if they could get some benefit out of the relationship. Don't be a wordly Christian!
  2. Joshua challenged Ephraim and Manasseh to assume responsibility. Do you want blessing in your life? Do you want to become a more mature believer? Then be a spiritual great and work for what you want.

Key Verses

  • "Boundaries and land were given, but they did not drive out the Canaanites." (Joshua 16:10)
  • "The Manassites could not drive out the inhabitants...but they subjected the Canaanites to forced labor." (Joshua 17:12-13)
  • "The children of Joseph said to Joshua, 'Why have you given us only one lot and one share to inherit, since we are a great people?' 'If you are so great,' Joshua answered, then go up to the forest country and clear a place for yourself." (Joshua 17:14-15)

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