Scriptural Vignette Cameo Study #16 / Part 2 - Don’t Be Lyin’ or Fakin’ or You’ll Be Cryin’ & Achan & Maybe Fryin' -’ Joshua 7 - The Rest of Joshua Chapter 7

Joshua 7

2And Joshua sent men from Jericho to Ai, which is beside Bethaven, on the east side of Bethel, and spake unto them, saying, “Go up and view the country”. And the men went up and viewed Ai.

#3405 Yer-iy-kho, most probably from #3394 yaw-ray-akh, “it’s moon, month”. The rainy / flood season of the Jordan River is in early spring, which may be around the time of the new moon closest to the spring equinox, which begins the Hebrew month Abib, the first month of the Sacred Calendar Year, 14 days before Passover (which occurred shortly after the Israelites crossed into the Promised Land to begin the Conquest, God parting the waters of the Jordan river, flooding out the Canaanite settlements north of the crossing point). Since so much in the region was dependent upon the waters of the Jordan, bringing down the nutrient rich waters from Mount Hermon — as the early spring rains melted the snow and ice of the 9,232 foot mountain bordering Lebanon and Syria — it would seem most natural for the town to have been named for the first month of the new year in which these waters bathed the fertile valley in which Jericho was situated.

Some claim that Jericho’s name means, “fragrant”, or in this case “a place of fragrance” and that is derived from the Hebrew #7306 ru-akh “to blow” [the same root as the words for wind, breath, spirit). The ancient city of Damascus (about 100 miles north of Jericho, also situated in the plains that are watered by Mount Hermon; though Damascus is northeast of Hermon) was famed for it’s fragrance. This, also, would be fitting, since God commanded Jericho to be offered up as a sacrifice to Him; which is why there were to be no spoils taken from battle and everything slain and utterly consumed by fire (because this was the Firstfruits of the Conquest). Sacrifices unto God are referred to in Scripture as a sweet savour.

[The word savour (scent, odor, smell) itself stems from the Hebrew verbal root, ruakh, and the word sweet #5207 niy-kho-akh derives from the same verbal root (#5117 nu-akh) as the name Noah, “rest”. Thus, Dr. Gordan H. Clark refers to sweet savor as a “smell of appeasement”; presumably, since the purpose was not for God’s Nostrils to be tantalized, but for the appeasment of the Divine Wrath, and God’s Judgment being able to rest, and we are then, by Christ’s Sacrifice, able to enter that Rest.]

#5857 Hai (ha-iy) / Ai (ah-iy) / Ayah / Ayath, meaning, “a ruin (as if overturned):—heap”. Bethel means “House of God” and Bethaven means, “House of Vanity (nothingness, evanescence)”. Bethel was first named Luz, which means, “almond”; which is the first tree to bloom in the spring, and thus, may share a similar purpose in it’s name as Jericho, as being tied to early spring and the beginning of the new year. Incidentally, Ai is always written with the definite article, but rarely properly translated, “ha Ai” or “the Ruin”.

[As I seem to be the only to have understood, as I have explained for a decade, the so-called Land of Canaan, was formly the Land of the Hebrews. The Canaanites moved in and mingled, learned and adopted the Hebrew language (which they corrupted into what came to be known as various Canaanite tongues; even as invaders do today) and eventually exterminated or absorbed the Hebrews; other Hebrews realizing, “there goes the neighborhood” and migrated away. This may have been the reason for the appearance of various “Greek” tribes, including the Phoenicians, who appeared around this time in history: sometime between Babel and the Call of Abraham (which was God’s first step in reclaiming the land). The ancient Greek language was Hebrew that developed into a separate, but related language, growing farther apart in time. Thus, since the land was originally the Land of the Hebrews, there is no reason to assume “pagan” fertility religion (as the Canaanites had) being the reason for the names of some towns, if such towns had been named by the former Hebrews before the Canaanite invasion. Thus, “you reap what you sow”, is one reason why God had the Israelites exterminate / drive out the Canaanites (their deeds having been the result of their irreformable, wicked nature / DNA). Place-named that had “Baal” as part of the name, would seem to point toward Canaanite origin; though, of course, some Hebrews may have defected from the true faith to paganism.]

Names of people and places in Scripture did not have to be established post-facto, since God is Omniscient and Omnipotent and ordains all and causes all to come to pass; even as an author writes a novel or drama, making reality what he wants it to be. Thus, God often had individuals or places named prophetically; even as God had Noah prophetically curse and name Canaan before he was even born (because Canaan was born of incest, Ham defiling his own mother).

Ironically, the Hebrew words rendered “go up” and “went up” are the root verbal of the word that we saw at the end of v.1 as trespass. Sometimes “go up” may refer to direction geographically northward, other times it may refer to direction in terms of altitude; but sometimes it may refer to action: “Arise from your inactivity and do this”.

3And they returned to Joshua, and said unto him, “Let not all the people go up; but let about two or three thousand men go up and smite Ai; and make not all the people to labour thither; for they are but few.”

Here we see the sad consequences of presuming to know the Lord’s Will without even asking Him: leaving Him entirely out of the decision making process. This was the fault of the spies who gave their advice; and it was the fault of Joshua and the elders for heeding it without consulting God Himself (which monumental error they also make 2 chapters later, in regard to the unlawful treaty made with the Hivite-Canaanites of Gibeon, who lied and claimed to be kindred from afar off). It is true that numbers are unimportant when God is concerned, as God demonstrated with Gideon’s army. However, numbers of the enemy at Ai were not the issue. The issue was that Joshua and the elders did not consult God, and that there was sin in the camp.

Again, humanists (including most “Christians”) may think that stealing a garment, and some gold and silver was not any big deal (that is, one requiring the death penalty of not only Achan, but his entire family — and all those “poor animals” that they owned) because they think of themselves as the center of the universe, and in doing so (whether they realize it or not, they) reject God. They may not consider it as rejecting God, but when you reject God’s Law, Word, Will, Mind, you reject God. Furthermore, by doing so, it is actually a challenge of against God Himself — an “in your face” challenge of His Godhood, if His puny creatures can take it upon themselves to do what they want, instead of what God commanded. This is what Heyleyl (improperly called “Lucifer”) did, which resulted in his being cast out of Heaven; and this is what Absalom did to his father David — in the sight of all Jerusalem, on the rooftop of the palace, defiling his father’s concubines, which essentially was an act of declaring his father dead and he inheriting all that his father owned (most importantly, the entire Kingdom). This is what “Christians” do when they take upon themselves to do what they think is best, rejecting what God commanded. Lame-brained “Christians” lament the fact that God does not speak, and thus claim that they can’t know His Will in specific situations — but that is no surpise when they would not obey even if God did speak; since they reject His Word and Will (His Law) in general.

4So there went up thither of the people about three thousand men: and they fled before the men of Ai.  5And the men of Ai smote of them about thirty and six men: for they chased them from before the gate even unto Shebarim, and smote them in the going down: wherefore the hearts of the people melted, and became as water.

3,000 men would be 250 from each tribe; and 36 killed would be 3 from each tribe. Sheh-baw-riym (#7671) means, “fractures” or “ruins”. Though a different word from Ai itself, it is clear that the two were related. It also parallels the fork in the road between obedience and victory / blessing, and disobedience and destruction / ruin. The hearts of the people liquified (#4549 maw-sahss) — which is what had happened to the hearts of all of the Canaanites west of the Jordan river all the way to the Sea, after they heard that God had stopped the waters of the Jordan and the Israelites passed over into the land, “neither was there spirit in them any more” (5:1). The Canaanites were halfway defeated merely by God’s people entering the land! THAT’s what happens when God is with you! God was with the people, because Joshua and the elders obeyed and commanded the people to sanctify themselves, and circumcise all the males who had not been circumcised, during the 40 years of wandering, as God had commanded. And upon obedience God declared, “This day have I rolled away the reproach of Egypt from off you” (v.9); and the place was thereafter called Gilgal #3537 / #1536 “a wheel” from #1556 gaw-lahl, “to roll”. Then, the Israelites kept Passover and Unleavened Bread and the manna, “bread from heaven” ceased to fall at that time — then, Joshua met Christ Yehoshua Himself, as the captain of the Lord’s host.
But here at Ai, after a victory over the first town (Jericho) in which the Israelite soldiers* did almost nothing and God caused the walls to fall flat, in a battle against a far-smaller town, the Israelites were trounced! HOW SAD that they forgot ALL their victories; the victories during the wilderness wanderings after being delivered from Egypt by a Mighty show of God’s power, and the miraculous victory over Jericho. Disobedience to God gives the Devil and the enemy the victory; and possibly the momentum for a long series of victory.

[* about 40,000 Israelite men participated in the battle against Jericho (4:13). This would be 3,333.333... (to infinity); which is an interesting numbers, since in Scripture the number 3 represents Divine Perfection. It also needs to be pointed out that Rahab was neither a Canaanite nor a harlot / prostitute. She was worked as innkeeper / manager of a general store. See my, S.T.E.C.: The Epistle of James, Chapter 2 [& many other Mini-Expositions: Epistles of Peter & John; Epistle of Paul to Ephesians & Galatians 3; Epistle of Paul to Israelites in Rome, Chap. 1 & 9; Revelation Chap. 3 (& Isaiah 22) 5, 7 (& Ezek. 48) 12, 17, 20, 21, 22; Summary Joshua 1-6.] Faith Without Works Is Dead...! - Was Rahab a “Harlot”...? Was Rahab a “Canaanite”...? and Was Rahab the Rachab in Christ’s Genealogy? detailed account of Jericho; intro. author of Epistle; apostles, 49 illusts., original charts; genealogy of Christ & disciples (Christ’s 1st & 2nd cousins); disciples, sealing of 12 tribes, gates of new Jerusalem, time-line from Jericho to building of Solomon’s Temple; & more. 522pp., pb., 25.00 + P&H.]

Later, in Judges 19-21 when all the other tribes had to go to war against Benjamin (for that tribe’s refusal to give up a handful of perverts, and resultantly the Tribe of Benjamin was nearly exterminated), in the first two skirmishes tens of thousands of the other tribes of Israel were killed, and the Tribe of Benjamin arose as the haughty victor (and a similar military maneuver was then put in place to draw the Benjamites out).* In that instance, the Israelites were crushed in their spirits, wondering whether they should even go to battle against their brethren, and they consulted the High Priest who consulted God; and then after the military victory they were also heart-broken when one whole tribe of Israel was nearly exterminated. Doing the right thing is not always easy; and it is very sad that those in the right often suffer greater emotional turmoil in victory than those in the wrong do in defeat. Regardless, Joshua and the elders then did what they should have done before going to battle against Ai.

[* See my S.T.E.Commentary: Genesis 31-37, 48, 49:5-7 & Judges 19-21—Culminating in Dinah’s Defilement with an Examination of the Near-Extermination of the Tribe of Benjamin (Including: Origins of Adamkind, most in-depth History of Jacob-Israel (Call of Abraham to Israel going into Egypt) detailed accounts of “call of Abraham,” rescue of Lot, flight of Lot from Sodom, sacrifice of Isaac, origin of Abraham, true location of Ur of Chaldees, detailed exegisis of Genesis 31-33 (history of Jacob from when he left father-in-law Laban, wrestling with angel, fearful reunion with Esau, relocation to Succoth, Shechem); 34 (Simeon & Levi’s massacre at Shechem); 35 (flight to Bethel, etc.); 48/49 (judgment on Simeon/Levi) exegeses also covering significant portions of Genesis 10, 11, 14, 18, 19, & many other passages); includes numerous charts; (+3 fold-out maps); illuminating study unlocks many mysteries of Scripture, ties together large segments of Israel’s history (& prophecy) resolution of chronological conundrums; detailed analysis of Nimrod/Tower of Babel, foundation of Ninevah, history/origins most all important peoples/empires of Bible (Akkad, Aramaeans, Assyrians, Babylonian, Canaanites, Chaldaeans, Edomites [“Esau-ology”], 9 tribes of Giants, Ishmaelites, Medes, Parthians, Persians, Philistines, Sumer, etc.); proof Simeon & Levi’s extermination of Shechem for kidnapping/raping sister Dinah not unusual (God ordered similar things, some are covered, including complete exegesis of grisly, odd history of Judges 19-21 with near-extermination of tribe of Benjamin). Extra-biblical sources consulted/explained. After reading this, you will understand, better than ever, early Adamite / Israelite history, racial identity of majority of nations / races in O.T., Bible prophecy, & God’s overall plan. Deepest study of many of these key Biblical stories ever written. Truly fascinating. 60 commentaries were consulted, + other books, deep exposition of historical & spiritual truths; 711pp., pb., 40.00 + P&H.]

6And Joshua rent his clothes, and fell to the earth upon his face before the Ark of the LORD until the eventide, he and the elders of Israel, and put dust upon their heads.  7And Joshua said, “Alas, O Lord GOD, wherefore hast Thou at all brought this people over Jordan, to deliver us into the hand of the Amorites, to destroy us? would to God we had been content, and dwelt on the other side Jordan!  8O Lord, what shall I say, when Israel turneth their backs before their enemies!  9For the Canaanites and all the inhabitants of the land shall hear of it, and shall environ [encircle, surround] us round [against], and cut off our name from the Earth: and what wilt Thou do unto Thy Great Name?”

In Joshua 8:25 we learn that the spies must have seriously underestimated the size of the city, or they seriously overestimated their own strength and ability, since 12,000 men and women (presumably, of all ages) of Ai were put to death, after Ai was defeated. From Joshua’s above prayer, it would seem that Ai was a city of the Amorites-Canaanites, who normally dwelt in the mountains (which is odd, as the Amorites had giant blood,* so why would they be afraid to dwell in the plains?).

[* Goliath was not a Philistine, but an Amorite-Canaanite, hired as a mercenary by the Philistines of Gath; Gath having been an Amorite town before the Philistines took it from them (the Amorites having taken it from the Hebrews before them).

Joshua’s prayer is similar to how Moses cried out to God when the people sinned with the golden calf (Exodus 32:10-14; Deuteronomy 10:10) and again when the people murmured and complained that they ate better back in Egypt as slaves (Numbers 11:10-15), and God declared His intentions to destroy them all; which was the means by which God solicited Moses’ entreaties and supplications to God to spare them.

10And the LORD said unto Joshua, “Get thee up; wherefore liest thou thus upon thy face?  11Israel hath sinned, and they have also transgressed My Covenant which I commanded them: for they have even taken of the accursed thing, and have also stolen, and dissembled also, and they have put it even among their own stuff”.

This is a different Hebrew word for get up, than we saw in previous verses. Here, it is #6965 qum (koom). God’s response does seem odd. Joshua does not know what is going on. He is seeking God sincerely, earnestly, and God — it would seem from a humanistic standpoint — insensitively ignores his entreaties and asks why he is laying on the ground, get up, Israel is guilty of a grave sin. The carnal mind rejects God as Authority, and views everything from its own jaded, self-exalted perspective. Of course, God is Omniscient and knows (and determines) all; therefore, he did not ask for His Own benefit. Any such question from God is for the benefit of the person whom God asks (or others listening). In this case, it would seem that Joshua is doing the only thing that he can do; the very thing that God requires; and it seems as if God ignores it, brushes it aside, even belittlingly. This would seem to serve as an exclamation point via such bluntless, inferring that there is something else that Joshua should be doing. But how could Joshua know that without entreating God and without God telling him? Regardless, God is Holy, Just, Right, Perfect, and Good in all that He does (not based upon sinful man’s twisted definitions of what those virtues are). Therefore, since God acted and spoke the way that He did, then He was right to do so; even if we can’t understand; even if we “feel” or think differently. In Chapter 10, “The Faithfulness of God”, in his book, The Attributes of God (1930),* Arthur W. Pink wrote:

[* “Critical Edition” with my detailed Preface, Biography, and Annotations, doubling the page count, 199pp., pb., 17.50 + P&H.]

“The Lord knows what is best for each of us, and one effect of resting on this truth will be the silencing of our petulant complainings. God is greatly honored when, under trial and chastening, we have good thoughts of Him, vindicate His wisdom and justice, and recognize His love in His very rebukes.”

Those who approach the passage — or any passage, or any situation in life — as if God is wrong, will receive nothing but similar rebuke. Then, when their lives fall apart and they, in complete ignorance and bewilderment, don’t know why, they will blame and falsely accuse God (of evil) even more. God will not be emotionally blackmailed. He will not be moved with compassion when His haughty creatures respond with blasphemy against Him, when reality does not turn out to be what they want it to be, after they have lived their entire lives in defiance of and rebellion to Him, expecting Him to conform to their minds. They leap off a roof and then curse God when it hurts when they hit the ground; thinking that God should change the laws of physics to accomodate what they want to do; and in their confused, perverse minds, they think that it is not their fault for jumping off the roof, but God’s fault that the ground hurts. Such individuals, as the old saying goes, will cut off their nose to spite their own face!

Like selfish, tiny-minded 5-year old children, they expect to be able to do whatever they like, without suffering any consequences. This is a form of psychosis. The carnal mind is self-glutting, and therefore, self-worshipping. This is demonstrated day in and day out in nearly every situation in life, though some are more easily recognizable than others. In essence, each individual expects the God of the Universe (if he even believes in the real God) to stop the Universe, and change reality to suit him — to make an exception for him, out of 7 billion individuals and hundreds of trillions of animals and insects, and mind-bogglingly more virus and bacteria, chemical elements, and all energy and matter. He expects God to change it all, and, in a sense, part the waters of reality, like the Red Sea, so that he can pass through. But God cannot change. His Mind, Will, Purpose, Plan, Will, Morality, Law, Reality does not change. Those who think that He does or should do not know God. They believe in a superstition (which, in essence, is confession of ignorance concering how reality works). The carnal mind is irrational, ego-centric, and hypocritical. It does not love truth or holiness or righteousness — but self. It hates the Law of the Harvest, and, at times, does all that it can to circumvent it (all the while complaining how “unfair” it is); while at the same time greedily demanding that the Law of the Harvest be honored when it suits him.

A simple example demonstrates this, not in actual reality, but in spirit and showing the state of the carnal mind. Imagine a man whose accountant tells him, “You have a $100,000 surplus in your bank account”. The man, ecstatic, does backflips down the hall and yells “Yahoo!” Now, imagine the same man if the accountant had told him, “You are $100,000 in debt”. Now the man’s appearance becomes sour and he madly retorts, “Mathematics is not fair. I hate mathematics! I don’t believe in mathematics!” Math is not to blame. Math and earning and spending in that individual’s life and bank account did not happen on their own. Sinful man who rejects reality / God’s Decrees imagines that life is a giant roulette wheel that should always land to his favor; while at the same time, irrationally, hypocritically, expecting reality to work when it is to his benefit. The carnal mind is psychotic. The only remedy is spiritual regenesis; and the spiritual crucifiction and execution of the old man is required. This requires the Agency of the Holy Spirit in Regeneration and the Word of God, and continual Reckoning (the mind of the regenerated believer aligning with spiritual reality):

“Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to Thy Word.” (Psalm 119:9)

“23And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; 24And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.” (Ephesians 4)

“And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Romans 12:2)

“1What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? 2God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? 3Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized* into Christ Jesus were baptized* into His Death? 4Therefore we are buried with Him by baptism* into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the Glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. 5For if we have been planted together in the likeness of His Death, we shall be also in the likeness of His Resurrection: 6Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. 7For he that is dead is freed from sin. 8Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him: 9Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over Him. 10For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God. 11Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Christ Jesus our Lord. 12Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. 13Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.” (Romans 6)

[* This refers to the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. Water baptism is a symbolic identification and outward profession of the unseen inward Baptism of the Holy Spirit.]

“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, Who loved me, and gave Himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20)

“3For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.” (Colossians 1:3)

“16This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. 17For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.... 19Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; [:] adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 21Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: [;] of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the Kingdom of God. 22But the Fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.* 24And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. 25If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.” (Galatians 5)

[* Which statement itself infers that there ARE laws against the lusts of the flesh, many of which were innumerated above; of which many of God’s individual commandments forbid. And since we are commanded to walk in the Spirit, so that we will not fufill the lusts of the flesh, where is it that those lusts of the flesh are forbidden...? — in the Law of God; which itself is evidence that the law was not abolished (even as Jesus and Paul declared that it was not abolished: God forbid! not one jot or tittle. Righteousness / salvation does not come from the Law. Again the act does not make the nature: The nature makes the act. Obedience to all that God commanded is evidence of regeneration (though, of course, it can be evidence of delusion, if the individual thinks that obedience / good works play any part in salvation. It is the by-product of salvation.]

God makes the rules. Those who recognize, submit to, and operate within them will be blessed. Those who don’t, suffer. Those who blame God for the suffering rather than seeking to understand their own sinfulness and repent, and instead blame God, shall suffer more and more.

This can be compared to many different areas of reality. I, personally, have never been able to do Rubic’s Cube — however, I really have never tried it since I was about 15 years old, and even then I never spent much time trying to solve it. Regardless, I don’t know if I would have any better success with it, were I to try it again. I know for certain that Rubic’s Cube has not changed. Whether my mind has changed or not, in a manner that will understand Rubic’s Cube or not, is an entirely different matter. However, the point at hand is my recognition of and submission to reality. Albert Einstein reportedly said, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.”* This is what sinful man (including most “Christians”) do — except that they expect God to change, and therefore, they expect God to cause the results to change; because carnal man irrationally, self-masochistically imagines himself to be god, the center of the universe, around which all energy and matter is supposed to revolve. The notion of submitting to God is not in the carnal mind’s nature, even as it is not in the nature of a cat to sprout wings and fly after a bird. Even if the carnal mind would go through the motions of prostrating itself on the floor (something that most “Christians” have never even thought about, let alone done) before the God of the Universe (and the professed LORD of most “Christians”) it is mere ritual that is of short duration and of no practical purpose. The individual would simply get up, brush himself off, and carry on “business as usual”. Never for a moment would he consider actual submission and obedience, as a slave to a master. The modern “Christian” has been emancipated from God!

[* But demonstrating his own ignorance, he also said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world”. That is a massive logical blunder the size of the Grand Canyon. What is imagination if it is not based on knowledge? upon facts? It is delusion. It is psychosis. It is insanity itself. This is far different than “thinking outside the box”.]

Again, notice the stark indictment that God makes in Joshua 7:11:

“Israel hath sinned, and they have also transgressed My Covenant which I commanded them: for they have even taken of the accursed thing, and have also stolen, and dissembled also, and they have put it even among their own stuff.”

How can this be? “...let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, ‘That Thou mightest be justified in Thy Sayings, and mightest overcome when Thou art judged’.” (Romans 3:4)

Achan’s family, whether they had planned on it or not, were post-facto accomplices in Achan’s theft from God.* The authority of a man over his wife and children is not absolute to the exclusion of God and His Law. When you obey the higher authority, you are not disobeying the lower authority; the lower authority itself is the one in disobedience if he has issued an order that contradicts what God commanded. A rocket bursting into space does not “violate” the Law of Gravity — it appeals to higher laws: lift, thrust, propulsion. Achan’s family should have encouraged him to go to Joshua and the elders, and confess his sin, and return the stolen booty, if not out of concern for his own life, then for that of his family members. They did not do so. They confederated with him and shared in his fate. Achan cannot claim that he did not know... for before Jericho, God had commanded, “And ye, in any wise keep yourselves from the accursed thing, lest ye make yourselves accursed, when ye take of the accursed thing, and make the camp of Israel a curse, and trouble it.” (Joshua 6:18) Thus, Achan knew (even if he did not fully understand how) that his theft would trouble the entire camp. This word trouble is actually related to Achan’s name, and is #5916 aw-kar, “to roil** water; figuratively to disturb or afflict:—trouble, stir”. Achan’s name is #5912 aw-kawn [from an unused root meaning “to trouble”], meaning, “troublesome”.

[* —and Achan knew it was theft. Before the battle at Jericho, Joshua had conveyed God’s Declaration that all living things were to be put to death and everything was to be burned with fire: “But all the silver, and gold, and vessels of brass and iron, are consecrated unto the LORD: they shall come into the Treasury of the LORD.” (Joshua 6:19) Certainly Achan explained to his wife and family why he was hiding the treasure in the ground within the tent, and that they were to tell no one.

** Roil, is like boil, except without the element of heat; like the water at the bottom of a waterfall, or within rapids or cataracts.]

But what about the other 36 Israelites who died in the battle against Ai...? Is God not allowed to kill two birds with one stone? Is God limited to having only one reason for anything that He does? Do you not wait to do something, sometimes, until numerous factors are the way that you want? —such as waiting to go to a specific store, farther out of your way, until you have several different errands to do in that general direction? Do you take the kitchen garbage can out after each individual item that is deposited therein, or do you wait until the bag is full? Tiny minds with big egoes and emotional immaturity imagine reality has to be the way they imagine that it should be; and only see things through their own corrupt, confused vision. After David sinned and numbered the people (which God Himself orchestrated, using a third party, Satan, to do the tempting, since God tempts no one directly with evil), God eventually determined that the Judgment would be that 70,000 Israelites would die in a plague (though most probably, it seems, God drew that full number short and ended the Judgment early due to David’s genuine repentance). God did not merely wack 70,000 innocent people. First of all, no one is “innocent”. NO one. God determined that certain Israelites deserved Judgment. God coördinated reality to coïncide with His Plan. He withheld His Judgment until the garbage was worth taking out all together. Maybe many of those who died had joined with Absalom in his rebellion against David? Maybe many were incorrigible idolators, fornicators, adulterers, etc. Futhermore, even if God took some of the righteous with the wicked, He had His Reasons as well as Perfect Right (since all souls are His; as are the cattle on a thousand hills, and the hills themselves, and the whole Earth and the heavens — and all energy and matter in the universe). Sometimes God ordains to harvest some of the righteous with the wicked, since all must eventually die; and in taking them early, God spares them certain future evils, and also lays up for them a crown of righteousness for their having died unjustly, though they had done nothing worthy of death; even dying for Righteousness’ sake; and thus, they inherit the blessing that will come with martyrdom (which, again, is a concept that goes countergrain to the carnal mind — mine included!).

[The STATE thinks that it owns all. The Communist State is the natural result of the carnal mind; the natural progression of evil. It is the mere overpowering of the less-dominant, weaker masses by the smaller coterie of stronger, more-dominant psychopaths. Democracy is outlawed by the US Constitution. Democracy is merely a stepping stone to communism; as I have taught for 32 years, in my books The Liberty Document (350pp., pb., 20.00 + P&H) and The Other Side (648pp., 6x9 pb., 32.50 + P&H), in which hardly anyone seems interested, because the majority (even of “Christians”) don’t want to do what is right: They want reality to “magically” change to suit them (and circumvent the Law of the Harvest that they deserve), without their doing anything. They think that they can claim “ignorance” (which they cannot, since ignorance itself, after a period of time, is a sin); and foolishly think that they are going to be “raptured out”, before things get bad (but they will not, because the rapture is false doctrine*). And thus, such deserve Judgment — so when it comes, embrace it! You wanted it! You did nothing to prevent it and everything that you could to earn it! God has tailor suited it for you!  Or “ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32).  Thomas Jefferson expressed, “If a nation expects to be ignorant and expects what never was and never will be.”

* —and again, as evidence of my indictment, they will not even study the issue to learn the truth. See my, The Futurist and Rapture Conspiracy: A Brief Exposé of the History of these Subversive Doctrines—and Their Biblical Refutation, 164pp., pb. illustrated, 14.00 + P&H.

History repeats itself. God said that because His people turned their backs on His Law, the only Standard of Morality, which never changes, in order to be friends of the world and embrace what He forbade, He said that He would send the worst of the heathen to dispossess us, make our highways desolate, rob us of our children, and that God would forget our children (no more children, no more us) since we forgot His Law. God is not the “Touched by an Angel” god of the Apostate Church (God loves you just the way you are, no need to change a thing)... He is not color blind or homo-embracing... He is Holy and Just and the perfect bookkeeper and demands all accounts to be reconciled to the penny. Jesus is not Saviour / Redeemer of those for whom He is not LORD. Your Lord is the one you unquestioningly obey. That rules out 99.9% of most “Christians”. It is not obedience if you “pick and choose” which commands you will “obey”. That is still doing what YOU want. Those truly regenerated know that they are bought with a price and they are not their own and obedience is their reasonable duty, not an option, if and when and how they feel like it. Every tree is known by its FRUIT.]


In the Apocryphal book of II Maccabees (12:40-45) is the interesting account of a battle against pagan nations in which Israelite men were slain. However, when the battle was over and the Israelites gathered the bodies of their slain, they discovered that under the garments of every man who was slain, there were amulets of pagan idols, which had been worn around the necks of the idolatrous Israelites. After this, Judas exhorted the people to put all sin away from them. “And they blessed the ways of Yahweh, the Righteous Judge who reveals the things that are hidden.”

[As I perceive it, amulets (at least one type) were a mini version of the full-sized idol that idolators worshipped. Since a person could not carry his full-sized god with him (especially if he could be put to death for his idolatry), he fashioned a mini-version that he could wear on a chain around his neck, hidden under his garment, and thus, in his superstitious mind, he imagined that his god was with him; as if the amulet was a receiver of power from the transmitter of the main idol back home in his secret shrine.]

Here, in the next verse in Joshua 7 we see the result of the sin of Israel. As the old saying goes, “a chain is only as strong as its weakest link”. If one link in the chain fails — everything fails. Again, this may seem unpleasant at times, but it is reality. Again, hypocritically, the carnal mind embraces the maxim when it is to to it’s advantage; and hates it, thinking it “unfair” when it is to it’s hurt. Imagine a tug boat pulling a cruise ship back from going over Niagara Falls; if one link of the chain breaks, the carnal mind thinks the “weak link in the chain” maxim to be “unfair”; but thinks that the very same maxim is “wonderful”, under different circumstances, such as the breaking of the weak link in the chain that is holding him captive, allowing his escape, before the kidnapper-terrorists return to torture and execute him.

12Therefore the children of Israel could not stand before their enemies, but turned their backs before their enemies, because they were accursed: neither will I be with you any more, except ye destroy the accursed from among you”.

Stand = “withstand”. 

Turned their backs = “fled in fear”.

This verse holds the key to unlocking many mysteries concerning all the evil that is destroying Christendom. However, the carnal mind rejects the only resolution to the problem — repenting before God, confession of sin (which entails actually knowing what sin is: defined by God’s unchanging Law), asking forgiveness, and arising and stopping doing what God forbade and starting doing what He commanded (without which there is no repentance, only pseudo-spiritual delusion). The carnal mind would rather suffer and die rather than repent and obey and be blessed. The carnal mind must be put to death — crucified with Christ; and the new man, the new mind regenerated / quickened by the Holy Spirit must arise and walk in the Spirit (in the direction in which the Holy Spirit is going), with the Mind of Christ (thinking that thoughts that Christ is thinking; not what the world and Apostate Church or self think). However, the carnal mind (including that of most “Christians”) wants the very opposite (an irrational fantasy), and in essence, throws a Halloween costume at God’s Feet and barks, “Here! Put this on!”, and expects the Holy, Perfect, Just, Righteous, Immutable God to conform to their sinful delusion.

13Up, sanctify the people, and say, ‘Sanctify yourselves against to morrow: for thus saith the LORD God of Israel, There is an accursed thing in the midst of thee, O Israel: Thou canst not stand before thine enemies, until ye take away the accursed thing from among you.  14In the morning therefore ye shall be brought according to your tribes: and it shall be, that the tribe which [that] the LORD taketh shall come according to the families thereof; and the family which [that] the LORD shall take shall come by households; and the household which [that] the LORD shall take shall come man by man.  15And it shall be, that he that is taken with the accursed thing shall be burnt with fire, he and all that he hath: because he hath transgressed the Covenant of the LORD, and because he hath wrought folly in Israel’.”

Up, again, is #6965 qum (koom). The Hebrew word #4279 maw-khar, is less definite that it is translated as, tomorrow; it is a term of deferment: “hereafter, from now, after this, going forward”. However, “against [that is, in preparation for] tomorrow” is a valid inference due to the “in the morning” of v.14. The importance of the revelation in v.12 was so profound that it is echoed again here in v.13. In v.13 accursed could equally be rendered “doomed, dedicated, devoted”. Taketh / taken here (#3920 law-kahd) infers, “selected by God”; but the literal meaning “taketh” is proper and it actually parallels the literal meaning of accursed / doomed (2764 khay-rem / kheh-rem), “to capture in a net”.
#3920 law-kahd, “to catch (in a net, trap or pit); generally to capture or occupy; also to choose (by lot); figuratively to cohere:— X at all, catch (self), be frozen, be holden, stick together, take”.

2764 khay-rem / kheh-rem, “physically (as shutting in) a net (either literally or figuratively); usually a doomed object; abstractly extermination:—(ac-)curse (-d, -d thing), dedicated thing, things which should have been utterly destroyed, (appointed to) utter destruction, devoted (thing), net”.

He hath wrought folly... Foolishness, in Scripture, is rarely an issue of deficient IQ or education. It is a moral indictment of wickedness and rebellion. Rebellious, wicked people are foolish. A rebellious / wicked act against God is a foolish act because all it can do is end in harsh Judgment.

More evidence that the carnal mind is irrational and self-masochistic. Here, Joshua gives advance warning of what shall be done to whomever had stolen any booty from Jericho, which belonged to the Lord (and it should be noted that those who do not tithe, as God commanded, do a similar thing; and God said that they rob Him; Malachi 3:8-11) — and yet Achan did not come forward on his own! Did he think that God was stupid? Did he think that there were other thieves of whom God was speaking, and that he himself would not be exposed? This is evidence why the wicked are not given a second chance; because even if they were so given, they would act no differently. This reveals a little-understood Biblical Truth (little understood because the majority of “Christians” are Arminianist humanists who deny all portions of the Word of God that they do not like): The Nature makes the act; not vice versa. An animal barking does not make it a dog. Because an animal is a dog, it barks. That is part of its nature. If the nature is not changed, the acts will be no different; so no one should expect any different results if God has not called from death unto life, regenerated, and indwelled one of His children by the Power of the Holy Spirit, imparting the Fruit-package of the Spirit, convicting the individual elect child of God of the reality of sin and his guiltiness of it.

Modern “Christians” act no differently than Achan, thinking that the Law of God does not apply to them, that God is blind, mindlessly, unconditionally “all-forgiving” (which He is not — He forgives those of His people who repent, turning from sin, and turning to obedience), thinking that God is blind or that He will not judge, or that His Judgment is just for “wicked” people like murderers, or in reality, they do not even believe that He exists at all (for if they did believe in the Biblical God they would not live in sin as they do, thinking it to be a “non-issue”). As Thomas Jefferson declared, “I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is Just and that His Justice cannot sleep forever”. Many “Christians” claim Jefferson was unconverted (which they cannot know, not knowing his mind), yet that declaration of Jefferson contains more truth than most “Christians” will speak in a lifetime. God does not demand perfection (in obedience or understanding of truth / doctrine; though false doctrine is a sin and no sin can be ignored); but He does demand that each does what he can, stumbling in the right direction. Those who skip in the opposite direction, away from God and obedience don’t know God or the Shepherd’s Voice. God provided the remedy for sin (first in the temporary atonement of blood sacrifices, then in Christ’s Sacrifice of Himself) — but without turning from sin and turning to obedience there is no repentance. Without repentance, there is no forgiveness. “For a just man falleth seven times, and [but] riseth up again” (Proverbs 24:16)

16So Joshua rose up early in the morning, and brought Israel by their tribes; and the Tribe of Judah was taken: 17And he brought the family of Judah; and he took the family of the Zarhites: and he brought the family of the Zarhites man by man; and Zabdi was taken: 18And he brought his household man by man; and Achan, the son of Carmi, the son of Zabdi, the son of Zerah, of the Tribe of Judah, was taken.

“ sure your sin will find you out.” (Numbers 32:23)

“...the curse causeless shall not come.” (Proverbs 26:2)

#5912 Achan (aw-kawn) means, “troublesome”. This is not mere coïncidence. God ordains and governs — He determines all.

Zarhites refers to the Zerah / Zarah branch of the Tribe of Judah; as v.18 shows.

19And Joshua said unto Achan, “My son, give, I pray thee, glory to the LORD God of Israel, and make confession unto Him; and tell me now what thou hast done; hide it not from me”.  20And Achan answered Joshua, and said, “Indeed I have sinned against the LORD God of Israel, and thus and thus have I done: 21When I saw among the spoils a goodly Babylonish garment, and two hundred shekels of silver, and a wedge of gold of fifty shekels weight, then I coveted them, and took them; and, behold, they are hid in the earth in the midst of my tent, and the silver under it”.

It seems odd that Joshua implores Achan to give “glory” to Yahweh. Glory may not be the best rendering of the Hebrew #3519 kaw-bode [from #3513 kaw-bahd / kaw-beyd, “to be heavy”], meaning, “weight; but only figuratively in a good sense, splendor or copiousness:—glorious (-ly), glory, honour (-able)”. However, whether Strong’s claim that #3519 kaw-bode can only mean weighty in a “good” sense, is not established; since the root verbal can mean weighty in a good or bad sense, as Strong himself records. “Reverence, gravity, seriousness, respect”, even “fear” may be more appropriate renderings.

The word for cloak (#155 ahd-deh-reth) is a feminine noun, which may or may not refer to a woman’s garment. The garment (robe / mantle / cloak) itself was worthless compared to the precious metals (maybe the garment was a gift for his wife?). This was a pretty good haul — around 80.4 oz. or $1,950 of silver, and 20.1 oz. or $43,215 of gold. This, sadly, was a huge temptation.

Some may think that the Israelites, who had escaped slavery in Egypt for 144* or so years (the amount of time from the death of Joseph to the Exodus) owned little more than the clothes on their backs and the sandals on their feet (which God, by miracle, preserved upon them all for 40 years of rough living!). However, God (by miracle) gave the Israelites favor in the eyes of their Egyptian neighbors, who “loaned” them any wealth they asked for, before the Israelites left Egypt. However, the entire nation of Egypt having been destroyed by God’s Judgments, the wealth of the Egyptians was useless to them, having also experienced the death of their firstborn males, they were probably eager to pay the Israelites to leave. So, the Israelites came out with great wealth — but still probably only a fraction of what they deserved for 144 years of slavery (as they had not been sold as slaves for their debt; they had not been taken as booty in war — they had been betrayed by their host nation, who had formerly treated them as honoured guests).

Furthermore, the Israelites engaged in numerous Pre-Conquest battles, during their 40 years of wandering, and each time victorious, they gathered the spoils of battle from their enemies who attacked them. Most of the nations that attacked them were Canaanite tribes; in addition to the Ammonites and Moabites, who were also Canaanites, but not patronymically. The incestuous sons-grandsons of Lot (unwittingly) by his daughters, Moab and Ben-Ammi, were pure Hebrews. It is certain that they married women take from the Canaanite peoples around them, and their descendants continued to marry Canaanites until they were of such numbers that they could marry exclusively among their own tribes. The Israelites also suffered at times at the hands of the Midianites (pure descendants of Abraham), but once the Midianites confederated with and began intermarrying with the Moabites, God forbade Midianites from ever again joining with His people; and they became eternal enemies.

[* See my, A Coordinated Chronological Table of the Patriarchs: From Adam to the 12 Tribes of Israel and the death of Moses... From Creation to the Exodus... [Covering 26 generations and 2,553 years of history, with around 3,000 co-ordinated dates.] — a 10-year project - 38” x 50” full-color wall chart showing all Patriarchs from Adam to Moses; how old each was at time of all other Patriarchs; age in relation to Flood, 2 Calls of Abraham, Tower of Babel, Sodom & Gomorrah, Exodus; dates in terms of age from Adam, and B.C. dates by 8 different methods / chronologists; incorporates 2 other small charts: calendar of events of the Flood & difference between Masoretic and Septuagint chronologies; clears up numerous chronological mysteries, 2 dozen pictures. Most-detailed, comprehensive work of this kind ever attempted. wealth of info. Invaluable to any Bible student, pastor, author, researcher. Easily see who was alive and when; in relation to everyone else & key events. 27.50 + 8.00 P&H in rolled tube.]

We are told that for the manufacture and establishing of the Tabernacle, shortly after leaving Egypt, the Israelites gave 29 talents, 730 shekels of gold and 100 talents, 1,775 shekels of silver, and 70 talents, 2,400 shekels of brass [more properly, bronze] (Exodus 38:24-29) — in addition to jewels, fabric, skins, olive oil and spices. They were no paupers (though, in their 40 years of wilderness wandering, their wealthy did them little good: there were no restaurants, Wal-marts, Home Depots, wagon dealers, etc.).

A shekel was roughly .4 oz. A talent was 3,000 shekels or 1,200 ounces (there being 12 Troy ounces in a pound*). Thus, a talent was 100 lbs.

[* Whether or not Troy ounces is intended, that is the value I shall use, which renders my figures a conservative estimation. If it was not Troy ounces, then the totals for the gold and silver would be 25% greater.]

Gold: 29 talents would be 2,900 lbs. or 3,480,000 Troy ounces. 730 shekels = 292. 3,480,000 + 292 = 3,480,292 ounces of gold @ the current average spot value of $2,150 / oz. = $7,482,627,800.

Silver: 100 talents, 1,775 shekels of silver = 10,000 lbs. + 710 oz. = 120,710 (Troy) oz. @ current price $24.50 / oz. = $2,957,395.

Bronze: 70 talents, 2,400 shekels of brass = 7,000 lbs. (avoirdupois, that is, 16 oz. per pound) + 960 oz. = 7,960 oz. with bronze at $2.45 / lb. or $.153125 / oz. (avoirdupois, that is, 16 oz. per pound) = $1,218.88

Scripture informs us that the amount of silver was given solely by 603,550 men of fighting age fit for battle, which was only half a shekel each (the very amount God required annually in the soldier’s ransom, for the maintenance of the Tabernacle and later Temple; Exodus 30:15). Currently, this would be about .2 oz. or $4.90.

It would have generally been the head of the house that was the “family banker”, and generally the Patriarch (oldest male) of each family, as all those aged 20 and older at the time of the Exodus (except Moses, Aaron, Joshua, and Caleb) died during the wilderness wandering. Thus, the oldest males would have been 60. That may seem old to us, but that was possibly still considered a man in his prime in those days. Moses lived to be 120, Joshua 110, and at the age of 84 Caleb was so full of vigor he asked for a certain mountain as his inheritance, and then set out to drive the giants out, leading his clan against the enemy in battle. In general, at this time in Israel’s history (the older Israelites having died in the wilderness for their lack of faith) the Patriarch also participated in battle, and would have been the money earner and banker for his immediate family (wives and children).

Exodus 35:22 informs us that both men and women gave the gold; therefore, excluding children (all those under the age of 20), the number of people who gave the gold we can possibly estimate at 3 times the number of fighting men, and thus, 1,810,650 individuals gave 1.92 oz. or $7,482,627,800 in gold, or $4,132.56 each (by average estimation; though each gave according to his ability and his heart).

The important “take away” here is to understand the possible wealth that each Israelite family had: Even if they gave a full tithe of their wealth, then, on average, each family may have had about $74,386 worth of gold (in addition to silver, jewels, etc.). Thus, while the average Israelite family was rather well to do (though pretty much being unable to spend it), an additional $45,165 (the value of that which Achan stole, not counting the garment) was still a significant temptation. However, what makes this theft even more reprehensible, is that Achan was the only man of war who actually stole, out of the 40,000 Israelite men who went to war against Jericho, once the walls fell — 39,999 men resisted the temptation (or to many, it was no temptation at all). Imagine all the Israelite men who had been tempted to take something, but who did not — imagine the shock to their minds of what could have been their fate, once Achan and his entire family were sentenced to death; and their gratitude (hopefully to God) that they did not give in to that temptation...!

Coveteousness (which the 10th Commandment forbids) leads to the violation of the other “9 Commandments”.*

[* The Ten Commandments are not merely 10 individual laws, but 10 Categories of Law under which the entire Law of God is organized. See my, Ten Commandments For Youth —For Everyone! For Youth and Young-minded* Adults - An Explanation of the Ten Commandments and A Memory System using Bible Numerics; c.440pp., 6.25 x 9.25, pb., 25.00 + P&H.]

As I explained under my commentary on v.1, Achan hid the stolen goods in the ground in the middle of the family tent. Of course, this is not “proof” that the other family members knew; but based upon God’s use of the plural pronouns, and the fact that God commanded his entire family to be executed with him — and knowing that God is Just, this is prima facia evidence that Achan’s wife and children indeed knew about it.

22So Joshua sent messengers, and they ran unto the tent; and, behold, it was hid in his tent, and the silver under it.  23And they took them out of the midst of the tent, and brought them unto Joshua, and unto all the children of Israel, and laid them out before the LORD.  24And Joshua, and all Israel with him, took Achan the son [great-grandson / descendant] of Zerah, and the silver, and the garment, and the wedge of gold, and his sons, and his daughters, and his oxen, and his asses, and his sheep, and his tent, and all that he had: and they brought them unto [what would be called] “the Valley of Achor”.  25And Joshua said, “Why hast thou troubled us? the LORD shall trouble thee this day’. And all Israel stoned him with stones, and burned them with fire, after they had stoned them with stones.  26And they raised over him a great heap of stones unto this day. So the LORD turned from the fierceness of His Anger. Wherefore the name of that place was called, “The Valley of Achor”, unto this day.

#5911 aw-kor (long o as in hope) “troubled”; which, of course, was named for him, and the word is related to #5912 Achan (aw-kawn) and the verbal from which they stem, #5916 aw-kar, “to roil water; figuratively to disturb or afflict:—trouble, stir”.

Though it is a sad event... humanists (God-haters) will side with sinful man over God. Sinful man’s mind is tiny, limited, and damaged, and man has neither the intellectual capacity, nor the legal standing to sit in Judgment of God — and additionally, sinful man has a few verses of information and stupidly thinks that he understands the whole situation; even though his first fatal error is not comprehending (or caring about) the Holiness of God.