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The Sin of Achan

INTRODUCTION: The victory at Jericho was sweet, but the tears of joy soon turned to tears of regret. Trials and temptations most often come on the heels of victory. The victory at Jericho will now be overshadowed by the loss against a much weaker foe in the people at Ai.

    1. The Trespass Achan took of the accursed thing.
      1. The Offender
        1. Achan, the son of Carmi
          1. Achan is called by the name Achar in 1 Chronicles 2:7.
          2. The name Achar means troubler (1 Chronicles 2:7).
          3. This explains the naming of the valley (Joshua 7:26).
      2. The son of Zabdi
      3. The son of Zerah
        1. Zerah was the son of Judah and Tamar (1 Chronicles 2:4).
        2. Tamar was the daughter-in-law of Judah (1 Chronicles 2:4).
      4. Of the tribe of Judah
    2. The Repercussion The anger of the Lord was kindled.
  2. ISRAEL FALLS BEFORE AI (Joshua 7:2-5)
    1. Spies Sent to Ai (Joshua 7:2-3)
      1. Joshua sent spies to view the land at Ai (Joshua 7:2).
      2. The spies return with news of certain victory (Joshua 7:3).
        1. They do not recommend sending all the people.
        2. They suggest somewhere around 2,000 or 3,000 men go up to fight.
        3. The people of Ai are but a few.
    2. The Battle Ensues (Joshua 7:4-5).
      1. Joshua plays it safe and sends 3,000 (Joshua 7:4).
      2. The Israelites are defeated (Joshua 7:4-5).
        1. The 3,000 fled before the men of Ai (Joshua 7:4).
        2. Thirty-six men were killed in the battle (Joshua 7:5).
        3. The men of Ai chased the Israelites out of town (Joshua 7:5).
        4. The heart of the Israelites melted (Joshua 7:5).
  3. JOSHUA CRIES UNTO THE LORD (Joshua 7:6-9)
    1. Joshua Mourns before the Lord (Joshua 7:6).
      1. He rent his clothes.
      2. He and the elders fell to the earth before the ark of the Lord.
      3. He and the elders put dust upon their heads.
    2. Joshua Questions the Lord (Joshua 7:7-9).
      1. Why? (Joshua 7:7)
        1. Why did you bring us over to deliver us unto the Amorites?
        2. Why werent we content to stay on the other side of Jordan?
      2. What do I say? (Joshua 7:8)
      3. What about our enemies? (Joshua 7:9)
        1. The enemies will hear of this.
        2. They will cut off our name from the earth.
          1. The word environ is made up of en and viron
            1. The prefix en means in.
            2. The word viron means to circle.
          2. The Lord provides support for this definition by using the words us round after the word environ.
        3. What will happen to the Lords great name?
    1. The Lord Questions Joshua (Joshua 7:10).
    2. The Lord Informs Joshua (Joshua 7:11-12).
      1. Israel transgressed the Lords covenant (Joshua 7:11).
      2. Therefore the people could not stand before their enemies (Joshua 7:12).
      3. The Lord will not be with them unless they destroy the accursed thing (Joshua 7:12).
    3. The Lord Instructs Joshua (Joshua 7:13-15).
      1. Joshua is to sanctify the people (Joshua 7:13).
      2. A trial will be held in the morning (Joshua 7:14-15).
        1. The people will be brought before the Lord according to their tribes (Joshua 7:14).
        2. The tribe will be narrowed to families (Joshua 7:14).
        3. The family will be narrowed to households (Joshua 7:14).
        4. The household will be narrowed to men (Joshua 7:14).
        5. The guilty will be judged (Joshua 7:15).
    1. The Tribe of Judah Is Taken (Joshua 7:16).
    2. The Household Is Identified (Joshua 7:17).
      1. The family of the Zarhites is taken.
      2. The household of Zabdi is taken.
    3. Achan Is Taken (Joshua 7:18).
    1. Joshua Calls for a Confession from Achan (Joshua 7:19).
      1. Joshua calls for Achan to give God glory.
      2. Joshua calls for confession.
    2. Achan Confesses (Joshua 7:20-21).
      1. Achan admits to sinning (Joshua 7:20).
      2. Achan provides the details of his sin (Joshua 7:21).
      3. Achan tells the whereabouts of the stolen goods (Joshua 7:21).
    3. Achans Tent Is Searched (Joshua 7:22-23).
      1. Joshua sends messengers to search the tent of Achan (Joshua 7:22).
      2. The things that had been covered were manifest before all (Joshua 7:23).
  7. ACHAN IS PUNISHED FOR HIS SIN (Joshua 7:24-26)
    1. Achan Is Brought to the Valley of Achor (Joshua 7:24).
    2. Achan Is Executed for His Crime (Joshua 7:25-26).
      1. Joshua condemns Achan for his trouble (Joshua 7:25).
      2. Achan and his family are stoned and burnt (Joshua 7:25).
      3. A great heap of stones were raised over Achan (Joshua 7:26).
      4. The Lords anger turned from the people (Joshua 7:26).

CONCLUSION: Sin is a horrible cancer. The lusts of one man led to a defeat in battle, the loss of innocent lives, and the discouragement of an entire nation. Surely the Lord was correct when He said, ”Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people.” (Proverbs 14:34)