Consequences of one man’s sin

“Israel has sinned and broken my covenant! They have stolen some of the things that I commanded must be set apart for me. And they have not only stolen them but have lied about it and hidden the things among their own belongings. That is why the Israelites are running from their enemies in defeat. For now Israel itself has been set apart for destruction. I will not remain with you any longer unless you destroy the things among you that were set apart for destruction.” Joshua 7:11-12 NLT

Sin restricts God’s presence

The defeat at Ai was far more ridiculous than the military strategy employed to conquer Jericho. After the fall of the Jericho wall the Israelites were in a hurry to conquer the next town Ai. There was no instruction from the Lord on how to go about with the attack. God was obviously silent and was holding Himself from helping them. Yet, in their own enthusiasm they concluded that it was like a child’s play and needed just a couple of them. But the result was disastrous. Joshua was instructed to practice the presence of God in their fight against the enemy. He was reminded about the need for obedience and holiness within the community for a continuous experience of the presence of God. Sin was to be taken seriously and never to be over looked, no matter how insignificant and harmless it may appear to be.

Sin must be dealt with before God’s power can be experienced

The entire community had to bear the brunt of one man’s sin. Achan and his family along with all their belongings had to be removed to cleanse the community. This is seemingly harsh as it was practiced during the Old Testament days. We must get rid of things in our lives, habits or lifestyle or temperaments or anger or whatever, that are displeasing to God. Thank God that we have a substitute in Jesus who bore it on His body and died for us. Now we can confess our sins and repent in obedience to experience the power of God’s living presence.

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