Making Scripture Relevant to Modern Readers
In the first version of the book of Joshua, the kernel if you will, the Israelites barely make a dent in population density, since they conquer only two cities (Jericho and Ai), the real conquest begins only in the book of Judges and is gentler to the nations already inhabiting Canaan (i.e. not all of them are killed). Neither is the conquest a foregone conclusion since the Lordís participation in the actual fighting is a lot less emphasized. The story of conquest as we know it developed through the accretive additions of five authors to this kernel who had very different ideas than this first author.