Joshua 21

Talks for Growing Christians

The Cities Given to the Levites

Joshua 21

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Lesson Number 29

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. God provides Levites for His people.
  2. God provides His people for the Levites.

Practical Application

  1. Remember, rest land is not vacation land.


  1. Name the three groups of Levites.
  2. How many cities were given to the Levites in all?
  3. Why didn't the Levites receive territory in Israel?
  4. What territory was Simeon given?
  5. What special role was given to the Levites and why?
  6. Who were the official interpreters and scribes of the law?
  7. Why were the Levites situated throughout the land in the forty-eight cities, and not just around Jerusalem and the temple?


  1. Koathites, Gersonites, and Merarites
  2. Forty-eight
  3. Because of their participation with Simeon in leading the unholy slaughter of the Jeshonites.
  4. Only cities scattered throughout Judah's territory.
  5. They were servants of the Lord because they stood with Moses at the tragic event of the gold calf. See Exodus 32:26.
  6. The Levites.
  7. So they could teach the word of God to all the people. No Israelite lived more than ten miles from a Levitical city. Anyone who had questions about the law and the word of God could have easy access to speak to a Levite.


  1. God provided the Levites as servants and teachers of the word for His people. Today, God continues to provide for His people. See Ephesians 4:11-12. Recall servants of the Lord who have taught and ministered the word of God to you over the years.
  2. The tribes of Israel gave up forty-eight of their cities for the Levites, as well as the surrounding pasture lands and suburbs. The Levites were provided for by God's people both in this way and they were supported by their tithes. Can you relate this to today? See Galatians 6:6 and 1 Corinthians 9:13-14. How have you shown your appreciation for the Lord's servants who have ministered to you through the years?
  3. Read Nehemiah 13:10-12. During the closing days of the Old Testament period portions were not given by the people, so the Lord's servants had to go back to secular employment, and the work of the Lord suffered. Do you know of a case of this today? Do you at least tithe? If you are serving the Lord full time, remember that the Levites tithed, too. See Numbers 18:26.


  1. The tribes got bogged down, failing to fully possess all the land that God had given them. Are you possessing all the spiritual land of blessing that the Lord has given to you? See Matthew 11:28-29 and 1 Corinthians 15:58.

Key Verses

  • "The Israelites gave to the Levites from their own inheritance, at the commandment of the Lord, cities and common lands." (Joshua 21:3)
  • "Not one of all the Lord's good promises to the house of Israel failed; every one was fulfilled." (Joshua 21:45)

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