Tonight we are continuing our study in the Book of Joshua.
Specifically we will be looking at chapter 6 which deals with the destruction
Joshua 6:1 Now Jericho was securely shut up because of the children of Israel; none went out, and none came in.
Chapter 6 starts out with
the people of
Joshua 6:2 And the
LORD said to Joshua: "See! I have given
God assure Joshua that
Joshua 6:3 "You shall march around the city, all you men of war; you shall go all around the city once. This you shall do six days.† 4 "And seven priests shall bear seven trumpets of rams' horns before the ark. But the seventh day you shall march around the city seven times, and the priests shall blow the trumpets.† 5 "It shall come to pass, when they make a long blast with the ram's horn, and when you hear the sound of the trumpet, that all the people shall shout with a great shout; then the wall of the city will fall down flat. And the people shall go up every man straight before him."
In these verses God is talk directly to Joshua explaining to him what he wants him to do and what the end result will be. Now just for a minute I want you to put yourself in Joshua place and just imagine that God has told what you must do. How would this make you feel? I can tell you I think I would have been a little confused. Notice God doesnít try to get Joshua to use some of the normal tactics of overcoming a fortified city like ramming the gate or building ladders to scale the wall. No he wants him to march around the city 1 time ever day for 6 days and then on the 7th to march around 7 times and blast the rams horn and have everyone shout. Think about how strange that must of sounded to Joshua. However, no matter how strange it was Joshua didnít question God and he obeyed. This is great lesson for every Christian to learn. There are some things in the Bible that God does not allow that we might not see any harm in or understand why he wants us to do things a certain way. Well, we need to be like Joshua and not question Godís commands even if we donít understand them fully. It important for us to understand that God has a reason for everything and we need to allow him to direct our steps. Rightly did Jeremiah say,
Jeremiah 10:23† O LORD, I know the way of man is not in himself; It is not in man who walks to direct his own steps.
Now let read how Joshua put Godís plan into action.
Joshua 6:6 Then Joshua the son of Nun called the priests and said to them, "Take up the ark of the covenant, and let seven priests bear seven trumpets of rams' horns before the ark of the LORD."† 7 And he said to the people, "Proceed, and march around the city, and let him who is armed advance before the ark of the LORD."† 8 So it was, when Joshua had spoken to the people, that the seven priests bearing the seven trumpets of rams' horns before the LORD advanced and blew the trumpets, and the ark of the covenant of the LORD followed them.† 9 The armed men went before the priests who blew the trumpets, and the rear guard came after the ark, while the priests continued blowing the trumpets. 10 Now Joshua had commanded the people, saying, "You shall not shout or make any noise with your voice, nor shall a word proceed out of your mouth, until the day I say to you, 'Shout!' Then you shall shout."
Just as the children of
In verse 11 Ė 14 tells us
that the children of
Joshua 6:15 But it came to pass on the seventh day that they rose early, about the dawning of the day, and marched around the city seven times in the same manner. On that day only they marched around the city seven times.
This 7th day
was a little bit different because they were to march around the city 7 times.
This tells us that this city was not all that big. In fact archeologist have
discovered what† they believe to be the
†16 And the seventh time it happened, when the priests blew the trumpets, that Joshua said to the people: "Shout, for the LORD has given you the city!† 17 "Now the city shall be doomed by the LORD to destruction, it and all who are in it. Only Rahab the harlot shall live, she and all who are with her in the house, because she hid the messengers that we sent.† 18 "And you, by all means abstain from the accursed things, lest you become accursed when you take of the accursed things, and make the camp of Israel a curse, and trouble it.† 19 "But all the silver and gold, and vessels of bronze and iron, are consecrated to the LORD; they shall come into the treasury of the LORD."† 20 So the people shouted when the priests blew the trumpets. And it happened when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat. Then the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city.
Just as God had promised
the walls of
We also learn from these
verses that the children of
Joshua 6:21 And they utterly destroyed all that was in the city, both man and woman, young and old, ox and sheep and donkey, with the edge of the sword.†
Every part of this wicked city was destroyed both human and animal.
Joshua 6:22 But
Joshua had said to the two men who had spied out the country, "Go into the
harlot's house, and from there bring out the woman and all that she has, as you
swore to her."† 23 And
the young men who had been spies went in and brought out Rahab, her father, her
mother, her brothers, and all that she had. So they brought out all her
relatives and left them outside the camp of
Rahab and her family† was spared and they burned the city of
Joshua 6:26 Then Joshua charged them at that time, saying, "Cursed be the man before the LORD who rises up and builds this city Jericho; he shall lay its foundation with his firstborn, and with his youngest he shall set up its gates."
Joshua puts† a curse up on this city and about 500 years latter we the curse come true.†
1 Kings In his days Hiel of
This King rebuilt
Joshua 6:27 So the LORD was with Joshua, and his fame spread throughout all the country.
No doubt people were talking a great deal about Joshua and how scared they were of him and they hoped he didnít come their way.
Now lets take a look at chapters 7 and 8 that show how sin can effect an entire congregation.
Joshua and the children
just did a great job of following Godís instructions so they could defeat
Joshua 7:1 But the children of Israel committed a trespass regarding the accursed things, for Achan the son of Carmi, the son of Zabdi, the son of Zerah (z Ė rah) of the tribe of Judah, took of the accursed things; so the anger of the LORD burned against the children of Israel.
One thing that always helps
me to remember someoneís name and what they did is if I can make it into some
kind of funny. When I think of Achan I picture him achan for the items he took
Joshua 7:2 Now Joshua sent men from Jericho to Ai, which is beside Beth Aven, on the east side of Bethel, and spoke to them, saying, "Go up and spy out the country." So the men went up and spied out Ai.† 3 And they returned to Joshua and said to him, "Do not let all the people go up, but let about two or three thousand men go up and attack Ai. Do not weary all the people there, for the people of Ai are few."† 4 So about three thousand men went up there from the people, but they fled before the men of Ai.† 5 And the men of Ai struck down about thirty-six men, for they chased them from before the gate as far as Shebarim, and struck them down on the descent; therefore the hearts of the people melted and became like water.†
You can see Joshuaís confidence in God when he only sent a small group of his men to take AI. However, because of Achanís sin the people of AI easily took care of these soldiers and even killed 36 of them.† There is nothing like a defeat that will cause men to lose their confidence. Now let look at Joshuaís response to this.
Joshua 7:6 Then
Joshua tore his clothes, and fell to the earth on his face before the ark of
the LORD until evening, he and the elders of
Here Joshua doesnít
understand what is going on. He probably felt like God had abandoned them. The
great confidence that he had was turned to mush. He even started thinking it
would have been better to have stayed on the other side of the
Joshua So the LORD said to Joshua:
"Get up! Why do you lie thus on your face?†
No Joshua finds out why they couldnít defeat AI and just how serious God takes sin. He basically tell Joshua until you take care of this sin in your camp I will not help you nor will I be with you. You see God always keeps his word and as long as his people obey his commands that he will fulfill his promises however when a person sins that separates you from God. This tells us that we need to take sin very seriously and take care of it quickly by repenting. Another thing we learn from this is God does not want sin in the camp and he doesnít want it in his church. Sometimes, people will know that someone is living in sin and that they may even be influencing others to sin however we let it continue and nothing is ever said to the person. While its easier to avoid dealing with this situation and we just tolerate God will not and he doesnít want us to either. We need to remember what Paul said, a little leaven leavens the whole lump.
In verse 16 -26 Achan confesses to sinning.
Joshua 7:21 "When I saw among the spoils a beautiful Babylonian garment, two hundred shekels of silver, and a wedge of gold weighing fifty shekels, I coveted them and took them. And there they are, hidden in the earth in the midst of my tent, with the silver under it."
He let the lust of his
eye get the better of him and because of his sin He and his family and all his
possession were destroyed. This would serve as example to rest of the children
Joshua 8:1 Now the
LORD said to Joshua: "Do not be afraid, nor be dismayed; take all the
people of war with you, and arise, go up to Ai. See, I have given into your
hand the king of Ai, his people, his city, and his land.† 2 "And you shall do to Ai and
its king as you did to
Again, we see God giving
AI as a gift to the children of
Joshua 8:28 So Joshua burned Ai and made it a heap forever, a desolation to this day.† 29 And the king of Ai he hanged on a tree until evening. And as soon as the sun was down, Joshua commanded that they should take his corpse down from the tree, cast it at the entrance of the gate of the city, and raise over it a great heap of stones that remains to this day.
So every person was destroyed in AI and another city was destroyed thanks to God being on their side. I want to finish this lesson tonight by reading the rest of chapter 8.
Joshua 8:30 Now
Joshua built an altar to the LORD God of Israel in Mount Ebal,† 31 as Moses the servant of the
LORD had commanded the children of Israel, as it is written in the Book of the
Law of Moses: "an altar of whole stones over which no man has wielded an
iron tool." And they offered on it burnt offerings to the LORD, and
sacrificed peace offerings.† 32
And there, in the presence of the children of