The Sin of Achan
Would you open your Bibles tonight to the Old Testament, the book of Joshua, chapter 7?
The book of Joshua is comparable to the New Testament book of Ephesians in that both books have to do with our inheritance in the Lord. Ephesians has to do with describing the inheritance that is ours through the Lord Jesus Christ; Joshua has to do with the people coming into their inheritance.
You remember that they have wandered in the wilderness for 40 years. I heard someone say the other day that they were just a step away from victory. Well, the Israelites were just a step away from victory, but they wandered for 40 years. You can be just a step away for 40 years. They wandered for 40 years in the wilderness in defeat, dismay and despair when just about a day's journey away was all God had promised them. They could not enter in because of their unbelief.
Finally, they learned their lesson as sometimes we do! God began to lead them into the promised land, and they met one victory after another. Of course, the most notable victory was the victory at Jericho. I think it would be good for us to read in verses 17, 18, and 19 of Joshua, chapter 6, because it is very important to understand this in order to understand Joshua, chapter 7. They are getting ready to go into Jericho; the Lord is going to be their defender; he is going to bring about the victory. But God has a few things he wants to say to them. Verses 17 and 18 say:
And the city shall be accursed, (That word accursed in the Hebrew means dedicated or devoted. Any thing that is devoted to the Lord is accursed to man if he touches it. Isn't it funny how we translate this word accursed? It is a curse. The ark of the covenant was where the glory of the Lord dwelt, but if you touched it, you would be cursed. You would die.) under the ban, even it, and all that are therein, to the LORD: only Rahab the harlot shall live, she and all that are with her ...
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