Then the men of the two tribes and a half answered: "The Lord, the only God, he knows that we have not built this altar for the offering of sacrifices. Let the Lord himself be our judge, that we have done no wrong. We have built this altar so that our children may see it, standing as it stands on your side of the river and not on our side: and then we can say to them, Let that altar remind you that we are all one people, we and the tribes on the other side of Jordan. This altar stands as a witness between us that we are all one people and worship the one Lord God of Israel." Then the princes of the nine tribes and a half were satisfied. They were pleased when they knew that it was an altar for witness and not for offerings. They named the altar Ed, a word which means witness. "For," they said, "it is a witness between us that the Lord is our God, the God of us all." Joshua was now a very old man, more than a hundred years old. He knew that he must soon die, and he wished to give to the people his last words. So he called the elders and rulers and judges of the tribes to meet him at Shechem, in the middle of the land and near his own home. When they were all together before him, Joshua reminded them of all that God had done for their fathers and for themselves. He told them the story of Abraham, how he left his home at Godís call; the story of Jacob and his family going down to Egypt; and how after many years the Lord had brought them out of that land; how the Lord had led them through the wilderness and had given them the land where they were now living at peace. Joshua then said: "You are living in cities that you did not build, and you are eating of vines and olive trees that you did not plant. It is the Lord who has given you all these things. Now, therefore, fear the Lord, and serve him with all your hearts. And if any of you have any other gods, such as Abrahamís father worshipped beyond the River, and as your fathers sometimes worshipped in Egypt, put them away, and serve the Lord only. And if you are not willing to serve the Lord, then choose this day whatever god you will serve; but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord."
Then the people answered Joshua: "We will not turn away from the Lord to serve other gods; for the Lord brought us out of Egypt where we were slaves; and the Lord drove out our enemies before us; and the Lord gave us this land. We will serve the Lord, for he is the God of Israel." "But," said Joshua, "you must remember that the Lord is very strict in his commands. He will be angry with you if you turn away from him after promising to serve him; and will punish you if you worship images, as the people do around you." And the people said, "We pledge ourselves to serve the Lord, and the Lord only." Then Joshua wrote down the peopleís promise in the book of the law, so that others might read it and remember it. And he set up a great stone under an oak tree in Shechem, and he said: "Let this stone stand as a witness between you and the Lord, that you have pledged yourselves to be faithful to him." Then Joshua sent the people away to their tribe lands, telling them not to forget the promise that they had made. After this Joshua died, at the age of a hundred and ten years. And as long as the people lived who remembered Joshua, the people of Israel continued serving the Lord.