Places Not Conquered
27 But Manasseh did not take possession of Beth-shean and its villages, or Taanach and its villages, or the inhabitants of Dor and its villages, or the inhabitants of Ibleam and its villages, or the inhabitants of Megiddo and its villages; so the Canaanites persisted in living in that land. 28 It came about when Israel became strong, that they put the Canaanites to forced labor, but they did not drive them out completely.
29 Ephraim did not drive out the Canaanites who were living in Gezer; so the Canaanites lived in Gezer among them.
30 Zebulun did not drive out the inhabitants of Kitron, or the inhabitants of [o]Nahalol; so the Canaanites lived among them and became subject to forced labor.
31 Asher did not drive out the inhabitants of Acco, or the inhabitants of Sidon, or of Ahlab, or of Achzib, or of Helbah, or of Aphik, or of Rehob. 32 So the Asherites lived among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land; for they did not drive them out.
33 Naphtali did not drive out the inhabitants of Beth-shemesh, or the inhabitants of Beth-anath, but lived among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land; and the inhabitants of Beth-shemesh and Beth-anath became forced labor for them.
34 Then the Amorites [p]forced the sons of Dan into the hill country, for they did not allow them to come down to the valley; 35 yet the Amorites persisted in [q]living in Mount Heres, in Aijalon and in Shaalbim; but when the [r]power of the house of Joseph [s]grew strong, they became forced labor. 36 The border of the Amorites ran from the ascent of Akrabbim, from Sela and upward.
This last account reads like a tale of “We forgot God was on our side and couldn’t do what He asked us to…” God told the Israelites to wipe out the inhabitants of the land. One major reason was that they would be a stumbling block to us.
But perhaps that’s what He intended, for of course God knew they wouldn’t actually destroy all the Canaanites. And unlike the decrees of Islam, where people are to be converted or killed, God doesn’t intend for us to go around killing off worldly people because they might be a stumbling block.
The trappings of this materialistic world will be a stumbling block, but God wants us to know that He is bigger, and if we will put our trust in Him, we have the power to overcome the world, because Jesus overcame the world already.