Sin in the Camp
Song, a mighty Victory. Remember the latter part of chapter 6? God told the children of Israel to destroy everything within the city of Jericho. The only thing that they were to take was the gold and the silver but they're not. They were not to take that thing out of the golden the silver to them individually that was to go to the treasury of the house of the Lord. So remember that, God told them, don't take any of that is to go to the treasury of the house of the Lord, all the silver and the gold until you go to chapter six you think. Wow. All is well, everything's going great. And then we read chapter 7. So Joshua chapter 7 verse 1. It says, but the children of Israel committed a trespass regarding the accursed things for Aiken This enough, and it's none of that died. The son of Sarah of the tribe of Judah. Took of the accursed things, so the anger of the Lord burnt against the children of Israel. Not Joshua sent me in from Jericho to AI, which is beside Beth Haven on the east side of Bethel, and spoke to them saying, go up and spy out the country. So they, so the man went up and spot out a eye and then return 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 a. I do not worry about do not worry all the people there for the people of AI are few So about three thousand men, went up there from the people, but they fled before the men of AI in the men of AI struck down about thirty-six men for the taste them from before the gate so far as far as a share of them, and struck them down on The Descent there, for the hearts of the people melted, it became like water 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 Israel, and they put dust on their heads and Joshua said, I last Lord of God, why have you brought this people over the Jordan at all? To deliver us into the hand of the amorites to destroy us? Oh, that we would have been content and dwells on the other side of the Jordan. Oh Lord! What shall I say? When Israel turns its back before, it's in a me for the Canaanites and all them having the inhabitants of the land will hear it and and we'll surround us and cut off our name from the earth. Then what will you do for your great name? The Lord said to Joshua get up. Why do you lie? This on your face is real has sinned and they have also transgress my Covenant, which I commanded them for. They have even taken some of the accursed things and have both stolen and deceived. And they have also put it among her on stuff there for the children of Israel could not stand before their enemies, but turn their backs before their enemies, because they have become doomed to destruction, neither will I be with you anymore. Unless you destroy the accursed thing from among you, get up sanctify, the people and say, sanctify yourself or tomorrow because this says, the Lord of Israel, there is an accursed thing in your missed. So, Israel, you cannot stand before your enemies until you take away that first thing from among you. In the morning therefore you shall be brought according to your tribes and it shall be that the tribe which the Lord takes shall, according to families and the family which the Lord takes y'all come by households and the household was the Lord takes y'all come Man by man, then it shall be that he who is taken with the accursed thing shall be burned with fire. He and all that is he is because he has transgressed the Covenant of the Lord. And because he has done a disgraceful thing in his real. So Joshua Rose early in the morning and brought his real by the tribes by their tribes. And the tribe of Judah was taken. You brought the clan of Judah and he took the family of the Zaire. Hi. And he brought the family of the Tsar Heights Man by man and Zeb. I was taken that he brought his household Man. By man in Aiken, the son of karma, the son of The son of his era. Of the tribe of Judah was taken. Now, Josh was said to Akin my son, I beg you, give glory to the Lord God of Israel and make confession to him and tell me. Now what you have done do not hide it from me. An anchor in Aiken, answered Joshua and said, indeed, I have sinned against the Lord, God of Israel. This is what I have done. When I saw among the spoils a beautiful Babylonian garment two hundred shekels of silver in a wedge of Gold Wing fifty shekels, coveted them and took them and they are hidden in the earth in the midst of my tent with the silver under it, so Joshua sent Messengers and they ran to the tent and there it was hidden in his tent with the silver under it. And they took them from the midst of the 10th, brought them to Joshua and to all the children of Israel and lay them out before the Lord. The Joshua and all is real with them. Took Aiken the son of Sarah. The silver, the Garment, the wedge of gold. His son's, his daughters, his oxen, his donkeys, his sheep, his tent and all that he had. And they brought them to the valley of achor and Joshua said, why have you trouble us? The Lord will trouble you this day. So all is real stoned him with stones and they burn them with fire after they had stolen them with stones. Then they raised over him. A great heap of stones, still there to this day. So the Lord turn from the fierceness. So the lore Turner from the fierceness of his anger there, for the name of that place has been called the valley of achor to this day us, pray Our Father We thank you, Lord, for this gathering, this evening to come and to meditate upon your word. And to glean some Cruz lore from a very difficult chapter. As we read about a defeat, we read about Disobedience and we read about death, And father, I pray that we would see the spiritual applications. that are very evident evident in our text that father that's That we would take this to heart, that we would have a more reverence for you for your Holiness and your hatred toward the things that you hate. Father, help us to understand your righteousness and your reverence in your Holiness more.
We love you. We have all of these things of Christ name. Amen. well we see, first of all in we we read just in chapter 7 verses 2 and 3 of a painful defeat at painful to feed, but before the defeat And vs 2 and 3. We see that the children of Israel were a confident people. They're very confident. As a matter of fact, some of the spies came back at after they looked at the city of AI in the came back to Joshua and said, hey, we don't need the whole Army, we just need a few thousand men. We can, we can annihilate, the city of a I, and I, and so, there were, there were competent people. As I said, just a moment ago, Israel was still basking in the glow of the victory at Jericho, and they looked then at AI as an easy victory, that there be no problem for Israel and their great Army. but if you look closer at this, that they were a confident people, but their confidence was absolutely misplaced, right? The first three they feel like they just needed a few soldiers to secure a victory in little AI. But Israel did not realize it. But here's the thing. They were they were living through one of the most dangerous times of life. you see that the time just after a great spiritual victory, Is really a dangerous time. That is true of us individually. You might have just been in a Mountaintop experience individually. It is true of a church corporately. It is true. Even hear of a nation that after a time of great Victory, you are at a very vulnerable moment in your life. If you're not careful to suffer a great defeat because all too often we are so tempted to put our confidence into ourselves. And to put the confidence as to why we had this great spiritual Victory because it was something that we did or something that I did or something that a nation has done. But anytime we do that, we are doomed to fall. And it will be the Lord who causes us to fall that he might humble us back into reality, knowing that it is not us who it is, that we have the victory through. Jesus Christ is through the Lord. So Israel was a confident people. They were overly confident in themselves.
But we see also Israel, the cause of this overconfidence. They were a conquered people. Amber Sports house is so about 3,000 men. Went up there from the people but they fled before the men of AI. Response says in the men of AI struck down about thirty-six men. Now this had to be very devastating to the nation of Israel, right? I mean, they had just especially that just came off a mighty Victory from Jericho at Jericho. But if we look at this situation closer, We look at their action, just really easy to see that the children of Israel made a lot of key mistakes or a few key mistakes. Mistakes that I feel many of us are guilty of making or at least we're prone to make. First of all, the first mistake that we see her text. Is notice that Nowhere In this passage. Does it even hint that Joshua or the people of Israel sought the will of God for how to deal with the city of AI. They did not even pray about the matter. If they had, God would have revealed a problem before the people had died. And my, how many times are we guilty of jumping ahead of the Lord? And his will, when we automatically do things, Without first seeking the Lord. so you see this, it's so plain hear that that Joshua, the leader of Israel, the children of Israel, they go right into this battle without any talking to the Lord without any praying whatsoever. So that was the first mistake. The second mistake is seen and what is not there. And that is, they did not take the Ark of the Covenant into the battle. Remember Joshua chapter 6. The Ark of the Covenant was there. And the Ark of the Covenant is what it is. A, it is a symbol, it is a testament, it symbolize the presence and power of God. They had that there in chapter 6 at Jericho, but they go and fight this little city of AI without any prayer and they do. So, without even having the presence and power of God upon them,
So they went into the battle without the presence of power of God and us, they went into this battle in their own strength. And I failed miserably. Again, how prone we are how tempted we are to do things without any prayer whatsoever and us to do things in our own strength in our own Mike. and then when we do such things, we fail. So often. Notice also Israel was a confounded people. They were confounded notice again, verse five in the men of AI, struck down about thirty-six men. Play chase them before the gate as far as Chevy rim and struck them down on The Descent. I noticed this there for the hearts of the people melted and became like water. now, the comment there in verse 5 where says the hearts of the people melted and became like water is a very painful
Ironic Echo. Of rahab's comment that she made in 2:11 when, right? Rahab said our hearts melted and there was no Spirit left in any man because of you. And she had heard about the children of Israel and how that God brought them through the Jordan River through the Red Sea, just hearing that the people of Jericho, their hearts melted, And then also that same wording is used in chapter 5 of us. One, when the kings of the amorites in the Canaanites heard that the Lord had dried up the Waters of the Jordan for the people of Israel until they had crossed over that says this, their hearts melted. And there was no longer any spirit in them because of the people of Israel, And so now you get the chapter 7 and the shoe is on the other foot, is it is it not? Not now that the tide has turned now it is Israel's turn to feel this helplessness.
Now it is Israel whose Hearts have been melted. And they are acting now as if they are the Canaanites as if they are the Babylonians, as if they are the ones who know, not the god of Israel. I'll listen, there is not a Christian. There is not a safe person who has not been there. If you have been saved for very long,
When our Disobedience or unfaithfulness to God's word has brought about a total lack of confidence in our spiritual lives and our hearts have melted with fear.
Though, we are saved. And though, we are Christians and Us by victorious. People there are times in our lives that we just do not feel that's the case.
That was the way Israel was feeling here. They were the children of Israel. They were God's chosen people, but they sure didn't feel like it. and that's because of, seeing And disobedience. Noticed, secondly. You see a painful discovery. Painful Discovery. What does Joshua do? And here's the leader of Israel. He has just taken over.
As Moses has passed away. Well, he reacts in prayer we see this again in verse 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 Israel and they put dust on their heads and Joshua said, alas Lord, God, who brought this people over the Jordan at all. To deliver us into the hand of the amorites to destroy us. Oh, that we had been content and dwelt on the other side of the Jordan. Oh Lord. What shall I say? When Israel, turns its back before it's in Amis. For the Canaanites and all the inhabitants of the land would hear it and surround us and cut off our name from the earth. Then what will you do for your great name? And so, this tragedy here. Happens and Joshua finds himself. Before the Lord in prayer. Is prayers from a broken heart. Versus 6000 said he tore his clothes, which is a sign and ancient times of lamentation, he is lamenting, he is tearing his clothes. Much like Incredible Hulk or something like that, you know?
But there's also a hint of not only this broken heart, but because maybe his heart is so broken. There is also this hint of anger. There's also this handsome accusation against the Lord, as you see the question? Why? And then started blaming the Lord questions, the Lord's motives, he questions. The Lord's plans.
Now, understand that Josh would did the right thing with his despair. He took it to the Lord. He took it to the Lord, he didn't say the right words. He did not have the right diagnosis. But he began to open up the situation to the Lord and that was at that moment that things began to change.
So whatever our acts of fellows of a foolish Disobedience may have produced we need to tell God all about it. Now we may get it all wrong. Much like Joshua did, we may have the wrong diagnosis as Joshua did. But that does not matter tail God, anyway. Because listen, it was when Joshua laid it before the war and laid out his problem. That God then began to put things back in order, okay? Go to the Lord in prayer.
Receive then and vs15r through verses 10 through 15 how the in after Joshua lays it before the Lord in prayer. That Josh said that God, then reveals the problem. And then God, then gives the instructions as to how this problem is to be fixed. Now we won't read those verses but that's the versus that's happening there in 10 through 15 that leads us to a painful death, a painful death. And really this narrative hear this story these verses
We see the wages of sin. I really put on clear display for all to see as Romans 6:23 calluses. We notice, first of all and verses 16 through 18 that the center is discovered, the center is discover verse 16, towels is so Joshua Rose early in the morning, remember he's received then now the instructions as how to fix this issue. He rose up early in the morning and brought is Real by their tribes in the tribe of Judah was taken and brought the clan of Judah and he took the family of the Tsar Heights and he brought the family of the Tsar Heights Man by man and Zab. I was taken, then he brought the household, his household Man by man and aching. The son of Carmine, the son of that. The son of Zara All the tribe of Judah was taken. Now, we must understand that at the very beginning, the Lord here knows both the offense and he knows the offender. Okay. now, knowing that our Lord knew, Who committed this? The question is this, why does he not reveal the name to Joshua directly? Why does God give Josh with his long process that just kind of Narrows things down to Aiken. I think the answer lies in the fact that the whole nation, Is implicated in one man's sin, okay? And although Aiken and his family alone will bear the bear, the punishment, God deals with a whole nation. Since they are all the object of Love is anger, remember Joshua 7 verse 10, Laura was angered throughout all of Israel? And so, first of all, the 12 tribes are gathered together, all 12 Tribes of got them together. Since all have been infected by this sin of one man from the 12, the Lord narrows it down even more. The Lord takes the tribe of Judah. Then he narrows it down even more. It takes the clan of the Czar Heights, then the household of zebediah. And lastly, he narrows it down then to the man Aiken. Now, all of this is this is determined by lot. It is determined by division to indicate the supremacy, the saddest of the supremacy of the Lord's will and his Sovereign over ruling in all the Affairs of his people. In other words, the process does not depend upon human knowledge. That process is not depend upon human wisdom or but entirely on the authority of God. And so we cannot be engineered or contrived by Joshua or any other human being. So, just as at Jericho, so to it is true that God Alone is in Sovereign control. That's what he's showing here. He's showing the children of Israel that I am in control, even in your defeats. Even in your disobedience. I am God, I'm Yahweh. Isn't it wonderful to know that God is in control Even in our stupidity, right? Even when we're just Plum dumb, we make stupid mistakes yet. God can use those things and God is still in control. He is still Sovereign over those things and that's what God is showing the children of Israel here. Notice not only the center is discover, but notice the sin is discussed. Now that the season is out in the open, now it has to be what it has to be dealt with and it's very interesting to you. When you look at versus 19 through 20, you see a couple of ways that this seeing was dealt with number one, you see. It was dealt with compassionately. Compassion, you see compassion verse 19. Now, Joshua said the Aiken My son, I beg. You give glory to the Lord God of Israel and make him fashion to him. And tell me. Now what you have done do not hide this from me. so we see how personally, Howard Johnson was speaks to Aiken personally and even there's a hint of sympathy, right? There's a hint of Joshua being very sympathetic to a as a father is sympathetic to a son exhorting, akin to give glory and praise the Lord God of Israel. He saying yes Repent of it. One Rider said, this is this perhaps and an appeal. Even at this last fourth-quarter moment. Not only to confess his sin rather than deny it, but also to cast himself on God's mercy. I believe that's a great possibility here as to why Joshua showing so much sympathy to Aiken. Notice not on the compassion but notice and verse 20 through 21. We see the confession. And I can answer Joshua and said indeed, I have sinned against the Lord, God of Israel and this is what I have done. When I saw among the spoils a beautiful Babylonian garment two hundred shekels of silver and a wedge of Gold Wing fifty shekels. I coveted them and took them and they are hidden in the earth, in the midst of my tent with the silver under it. So I can hear he confessed his sin. He does so publicly. And what we find here, is this public confession is very important so that God's justice is glorified but also so that the whole nation is aware of what the scene was again, for the whole nation, had been infected by. It 36 men have lost their lives, very possible. That 36, fathers are no more 36 husband. Think about all the families that were affected by these 36 men, perishing. But noticing a Akins response that's giving him verses 20 through 21 is quite straightforward. I'll almost matter-of-fact and its wording it, but His confession is very instructive for us tonight. First of all, we noticed that his sin. Is against the Lord. He says that I sent. It is against Israel. You didn't say against Joshua, I sinned against the Lord.
So, he does not just say what he did. but he defines his actions as Sin and then he accepts Full responsibility for his actions. He says this is what I had done. This is what I did. You didn't blame.
His family. You didn't blame his circumstances to didn't blame society. It is hard to get people to take responsibility for anything today. It didn't I'll give it to a Kenny took responsibility.
Send against the Lord. He said, hey, this is what I did. My wife didn't talk me into this. My children didn't talk me into. This is something that I did. But notice a sequence of the verbs and verse 21. notice Aiken, it says that I saw, He solved his eyes. He coveted.
He took. It says I I saw a coveted. I took And then you have that phrase, they are hidden. All the spoils the silver and gold are hidden.
But here is exactly the same.
Way of Temptation and sin that we witnessed. In the Garden of Eden Garden of Eden win, even and Adam and Eve disobeyed. Listen to this Genesis 3:6. when the woman saw that the tree was a delight to the eyes, so she saw just like a consol And that the tree was to be desired. Now, she's coveted the tree to make one wise. She took of its fruit in 8. And she also gave some to her husband who was with her and he ate and the man and his wife, he hid themselves from the presence of the Lord. How mazing? That's the same order of Adam and Eve and Aiken, but also the Apostle, John mentions this and 1st John Chapter 2 level leave. It is Ray says love not the world. Neither the things that are in the world with any man who loves the world. The love of the father is not in him for all that is in the world is what the lust of the eyes, a lush, the Flesh and the pride of life. so what we see here is this covetousness is the root of the problem.
And reality. The eighth, commandment. That states out. Thou shalt not steal. That was broken by Aiken. the eighth commandment was broken by a can because he had already broken the tenth commandment Thou shalt not covet.
Before we throw Aiken under the bus, so to speak. We constantly constantly faced the same pressures day in Day Out.
What happens when God when God's command says no? And yet our heart says, but I want it.
Well, such desires are in direct conflict with God's law. And this is where the battle is joined against the world, and this is where the battle is joined against the Flesh and the devil every single day. It is what I see is what I desire that will determine then what I do. And where that is. Contrary to God revealed wheel and scripture the Aiken issue becomes our issue. So the question is, are we prepared to let God be God at this precise? Precise moment and point in our lives? Well, breaking the answer was no.
Breaking a Babylonian row. Breaking the silver and gold mattered more to him than the word of God, and the glory of God. These were the objects of his desire, the idols of his heart. Personal wealth. And these that are the things that he buried in his tent, he tried to run, but you cannot hide those things from God.
So I wonder tonight.
What Idols would God? Find buried deep within our heart.
Well, let's look at the center destroyed. The Center destroyed. It's very sad. Verse 22 tells us So Joshua sent his Messengers and they ran to the tent and there was and there it was hidden in his tent with silver under it. And they took them from the midst of the tent, brought them to Joshua and do all the children of Israel, lay them out before the Lord than Joshua and all Israel with him, took Aiken, the son of zorah, the silver, the Garment, the wedge of gold. His son's, his daughters, his oxen is donkeys, and sheep his tent and all that he had. And they brought them to the valley of achor and Joshua said, why are you troubled us? The Lord will trouble. You trouble you this day. So all Israel stoned him with stones and they burn them with fire after. They had Stone them with stones.
the stolen goods are Have we just read discovered an Aikens tent? His confession is verified and the judicial sentence is carried out on everything that Aiken has, starting with the silver, starting with a goal, but including his entire family, his sons, his daughters as livestock. All are devoted to destruction in the valley of achor that word, a core means trouble. The valley of trouble by stoning and burning. The travel agent has caused Israel is now visit upon him. And what happens here is that his lineages Line is now blotted out from Israel. It's almost as if that Aitken and his family, never existed.
Bloody what we see here. Is the terrifying consequences of sin.
And a great heap of stones is piled up over those who have been destroyed as a constant reminder as a constant Memorial to Israel of sins outcome.
We noticed a 26 that it was only then that the Lord turned his Fierce anger away from the children of Israel. Waze says 4:26. So the Lord turn from the fierceness of his anger. so, the message of the final paragraphs, Concerns. The ruthlessness with which season has to be rooted out and punished. The details. That we have just read our horrifying to us. On a human scale.
But they should be felt with more of a spiritual warning. And that is, we dare not make a god of our own image. We do not and we dare not downplay the Holiness of God.
now, the question is, Why did God destroy Akins entire family? Wanted to destroy his wife, his sons and his daughter smell. The Bible doesn't give us exact reasons as to why God destroy the entire family. Perhaps they can children have begun to exhibit their father's traits of covetousness and Disobedience and disrespect for God's command. But most likely they had actually helped Aiken, hide the stuff. And we're in fact, then accomplices to the crime.
But there is no way to know, all of God's reasons for what seems to be such a harsh punishment of achan in his family. He doesn't always explain his reasons to us, nor does he have to, he's gone. And the secret things, the Bible tells us belong to the Lord. But here's what we do know. Aiken was not a poor man. It was not a pauper. He was not poor, he had oxen, he had donkeys, he had sheep. It was not a poor man. Aiken was a greedy man, was not satisfied with what he already had and had received from the Lord. He was a greedy man in that poison of greed. Was his undoing. We also know that the guy that the gold and silver that Aiken coveted had a stronger pool on his Allegiance. Then his allegiance to God.
It had to be ruthlessly exterminator from Israel. Yeah, that is true of all human seeing for the wage. It pays is always death.
I listen if we're trouble by Akins death and the destruction of all that he had, we need to remember what our sin did to our Lord and savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. Peter says this, he himself bore our sins in his body on the tree that we might die to sin and live to righteousness by his wounds. You have been made healed. Do for us. The story of achan should end with a glory of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. All we have to do is travel back to Calvary and see the Spotless sinless. Son of God nailed to a Roman cross, because of our iniquities. dying in our place as our representative and substitute, so that we might not have to suffer the destruction of Aiken, what Aiken new, but instead be forgiven and restored, I'll listen if it depended upon our record. We deserve hell. But I'm thankful for Ephesians 2:4 says, but God being rich in Mercy because of the great love which he loved us. Even when we were dead and trespassed has made us alive together with Christ by Grace. You have been saved and raised up with him and seated us with him in the Heavenly places in Christ Jesus.
Hallelujah. What a savior.
Let us not forget. In this very difficult Narrative of this book. How God ruthlessly deals with sin. And how then we should deal ruthlessly with a sin that is in our life. Before we close. I want us to break quickly. Look at a contrast, that is just very Stark and amazing. When you look at these contrasts between Rahab and Aiken, Mary have is mentioned in Chapter 2. She was the Rahab. The Harlot that wants to look at a contract very quickly between Rahab in Aiken. Number one, Rahab was obviously a woman, making a man. Now that may not sound like a big deal to us today in the 21st century, but that was a very big deal in ancient Israel. Women were not worth less than second-class citizens. Rahab was a Canaanite. Aiken was a Hebrew.
He was a tribe of Judah.
Rahab with a prostitute. She was District reputable. Aiken was of the tribe of Judah. He was respected respectable. Jesus lineage is out of the tribe of Judah. Aiken are fuming Rahab her family and all that she owned survived her Nation perish for Aiken. He should have prospered but died. His family and all that he owned perished. Rahab hid. The spies from the King and hid the spies on the roof. Aiken.
His Nation. Prospered. He said the loot from God and Joshua hid the loot, or excuse me, a can hit the loot from God and Joshua and hid the loot under his tent. Rahab feared. The god of Israel Aiken did not fear the god of Israel. Rahab her house survived. While the city was burned cattle, sheep and donkeys are Jericho perished Aiken. Did not fear the god of Israel. He had seen not just heard the acts of God but disobeyed, his tent was burn. Cattle, sheep and donkeys, avakin perished. Rahab. She became like an Israelite and lived in his mention in the genealogies of Jesus. Aiken. He became like a Canaanite and died. As a Canaanite though he was of the tribe of Judah. The tribe of our savior. That our savior would emerge from aching with cutoff through death and as if he did not exist. So really, when you look at the contrast of that one, who was on the outside yet was grafted in by faith. But yet you have one. That is the on the inside yet was killed as though a person who was Not of the children of Israel is very interesting to contrast that and to look at that. So let's go quickly into our
prayer request time. Richard Hartley. Text me just before the service started and said that his mother has was diagnosed with cancer. right now, it is only that they know of in the lymph nodes, but further tests will be
Metalis tell them more so pray for Richard Hartley's mom.
Mary Drysdales niece Lisa, she does have cancer. So pray for Lisa Scanlon.