Moses was dead. He had not been sick. In fact, he’d been spry - if not vibrant. There were those awakened early enough to watch the old man pass through the camp one last time, silently, solemnly, maybe even with a trace of sadness, making his way up the slopes of Nebo. The people had seen him ascend the misty heights many times before, but this time was different. They knew he would not return.  

An entire generation observed. None - save two - could recall Egypt. A vast multitude of young people… desert dwellers… the very oldest only just past fifty years of age, watched as their shepherd guide vanished into the haze beyond the camp. Weeping could be heard. Closure? No, not really. At least, not yet. How could he be gone just like that? But he was gone. 

Joshua stood. Many had heard his voice before, but not like today. There was an iron in his resolve, and an authority that none would dare question. “Get up. Break camp. It is time to cross the river.” Excitement spread through the camp like a wildfire in a hayfield. Although fear tried to grip the young nation as it had forty years prior, they shrugged it off. If Moses could climb the mountain, they could cross that river!