With most of the land conquered behind them, Israel moved their religious center from Gilgal to Shiloh. The tent of meeting was part of the tabernacle and was where God lived among His people (Exodus 25:8).
The family of Samuel, a great priest and prophet, often traveled to Shiloh, and Samuel was taken there when he was a small boy (1 Samuel 1:3, 22). The tabernacle remained in Shiloh about 300 years.
Verse 2 – Seven of the tribes of Israel had not been assigned their land yet. They gathered at Shiloh and Joshua cast lots to determine which areas would be given to them. God would make the choice, not Joshua or any other man. By this time, the Canaanites were in most places. They were weakened and were no longer a threat.
Verses 3-6 – Joshua asked the people why they were putting off possessing the land. Why do we put off doing tasks that we know are according to the purpose God has given us? Sometimes we think the task is too difficult or boring or maybe because we can’t see the end result. We just don’t do it. But, continuing to not do it shows a lack of discipline and in some cases out right disobedience. Procrastination is not our friend.
Verse 8 – The Urim and Thummim (Leviticus 8:8) may have been used. No matter what process Joshua used, this process removed human choice from the decision – making process and allowed God to match tribes and land as He saw fit.
Verse 11 – The tribe of Benjamin was given a narrow strip of land that served as a buffer zone between Judah and Ephraim, the two tribes that would later dominate the land.
Verse 16 – The valley of Ben Hinnom became associated with the worship of Molech (the Ammonite god) in Jeremiah’s time. These rites involved the sacrifice of children. Later the valley was used for burning garbage and the corpses of criminals and animals. Thus, the name became a synonym for hell.