THE SIN THAT COULD NOT BE HID

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    [Joshua:7:1-26]; [Joshua:8:1-35].

    Lesson No.: 
    52
    Class: 
    Elementary
    Memory Verse: 

    “The love of money is the root of all evil”  (I Timothy 6:10).

    Notes: 

    The Fallen Walls
    The people did just as Joshua had told them -– how they should march around the city, blow the trumpets, and when to shout. The walls fell down and the people went into the city. Men have dug down into the earth and have found that the walls had fallen flat. The people must have walked over them into the city.

    The marching or the trumpets or the shouting could not cause the walls to fall down; but because the people obeyed God He made them fall. It was not hard for God to make them fall when the people did as He had told them to do. It is always best to obey God.

    The house of Rahab was not destroyed. She had been kind to God’s people and now God protected her and her family.

    The Warning
    Joshua knew that it would be hard for the people not to carry away some of the things they would find in the city, and he warned them that they should not take anything but the silver, the gold, and the vessels of brass and iron that could be placed in the Lord’s treasury. God knows all about us and He is always faithful to warn us of every danger that may come in our way. We are happy if we pay attention to that warning.

    The Disappointment
    After they had taken the city of Jericho they had to go on farther into the land. There was another city for them to take. It was not such a big city as the one they had taken, but Joshua sent men up to see how many soldiers would be needed for the battle. The men came back and said it was just a small place and not hard to take and that about two or three thousand men would be enough. That was a small army, they thought. They expected God to be with them and help them as He had at Jericho.

    But Joshua and the soldiers were very much surprised and disappointed when Joshua’s men had to run away from the soldiers in that city. So Joshua prayed and asked God why He had not helped them. Joshua said he did not know what he would do if God did not help him. Joshua did not think he was strong enough and great enough to get along without God’s help. The Bible tells us that without God we can do nothing.

    Sin in the Camp
    Then God told Joshua that because someone in the camp had disobeyed Him and had stolen things and hid them, God could not help them in the battle. God said that Joshua must find the man who had sinned, and punish him.

    Man after man was brought to Joshua, but were not found guilty. Then a man named Achan was brought. God must have told Joshua that this was the wicked man, for Joshua asked him to tell what he had done. Achan admitted that he had sinned and stolen a garment, some money, and some gold. It has been said that the gold was worth about N150.00 or more. It is as wicked to steal a small thing as to steal a big thing. It is sin to steal. God saw the sin in Achan’s heart. Achan did not think anyone saw him when he took the things, but God sees everything we do. We cannot hide from God.

    The Punishment
    God told Joshua that Achan should be punished for his wicked act. Joshua took the garment, the money, and the gold, and destroyed it all. Then Achan and his family were punished. God had to teach all the people that it was a terrible and a dangerous thing to disobey Him. The wicked man not only brought trouble upon himself, but made his family suffer also. That is the way sin works. When a person sins he nearly always causes others to sin. Sometimes, too, parents are made to suffer very much because of the wrong things their children do.

    We see that when the people obeyed God they won the battle, but when there was disobedience they lost the battle. From this we may learn that it is good to know what God wants us to do, and then do it because we love Him and want to please Him in every way and have His love and great help at all times.

    Questions: 

    1. Why were the Israelites overcome by their enemies? [Joshua:7:13].
    2. How did Joshua find out who had sinned? [Joshua:7:16-18].
    3. What did Joshua say to Achan? [Joshua:7:19].
    4. What had Achan done that was wrong? [Joshua:7:21].
    5. What does the Lord say about coveting? [Exodus:20:17].