After a great leader of many years must step down from his position what happens to the leadership and to the people?
Joshua had great victory with the Israelites in conquering large amounts of the Promised Land. But after he died the twelve tribes had to seek God without him and conquer the rest of the land. According to Judges 1, only a few of the tribes had victory. Out of the twelve tribes Judah, Simeon and some of the descendants of Joseph were successful. The rest of the Israelites failed or are not mentioned in trying to take over the land. God was testing them to see how they much they would trust Him without Joshua leading. For the most part, they did not so God sent an angel to them to tell them He would no longer drive out the people in the land.
Judges 2 ~
1The angel of the Lord went up from Gilgal to Bokim and said to the Israelites, “I brought you out of Egypt into this land that I swore to give your ancestors, and I said I would never break my covenant with you. 2 For your part, you were not to make any covenants with the people living in this land; instead, you were to destroy their altars. But you disobeyed my command. Why did you do this? 3 So now I declare that I will no longer drive out the people living in your land. They will be thorns in your sides,[a] and their gods will be a constant temptation to you.”
4 When the angel of the Lord finished speaking to all the Israelites, the people wept loudly. 5 So they called the place Bokim (which means “weeping”), and they offered sacrifices there to the Lord.
6 After Joshua sent the people away, each of the tribes left to take possession of the land allotted to them.7 And the Israelites served the Lordthroughout the lifetime of Joshua and the leaders who outlived him—those who had seen all the great things the Lord had done for Israel.
8 Joshua son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died at the age of 110. 9 They buried him in the land he had been allocated, at Timnath-serah[b] in the hill country of Ephraim, north of Mount Gaash.