Divisions in the old testament were standardized in the early 10th century by the Ben Asher family, and a Jewish rabbi named Nathan is credited with dividing the Hebrew Old Testament into verses in 1448 A.D. It is said that the goal of this verse is that while the prophesied fall of the city will come to sea, it will also be salvation for those who deserve it. This particular verse begins the description of how Joshua represented Israel in Shechem to renew his covenant with God. And that makes sense because that's a big part of what they mean and it's part of the original context of the story in which these verses appear.
Looking at these cases helps us discern how the biblical authors understood the original verses and God's character. This verse describes some of the pilgrimage festivals that faithful followers should attend and gives some details on how to maintain the orderly flow in the temple. In future discussions, the group will discuss elements of God's character, including his anger. So, yes, pray and pay attention to the length of the verses, and meditate on how they impact the way we understand the truth of the story.
Next week, we will continue to look at these verses and delve into the backstory, the context of when this statement was first proclaimed. Using some advanced capabilities of BibleWorks 10 and Excel, I discovered today that the ten* longest verses (by word count) in the Bible† are all in the Old Testament.