Hey-o! Want to read what I've been up to for the past two days? Go here.
1 But the Israelites acted unfaithfully in regard to the devoted things; Achan son of Carmi, the son of Zimri, the son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, took some of them. So the LORD's anger burned against Israel.
Man. Do those people ever listen?!?! Apparently not. God told them to not take anything, and they apparently did. Woaaah.
2 Now Joshua sent men from Jericho to Ai, which is near Beth Aven to the east of Bethel, and told them, "Go up and spy out the region." So the men went up and spied out Ai.
3 When they returned to Joshua, they said, "Not all the people will have to go up against Ai. Send two or three thousand men to take it and do not weary all the people, for only a few men are there." 4 So about three thousand men went up; but they were routed by the men of Ai, 5 who killed about thirty-six of them. They chased the Israelites from the city gate as far as the stone quarries and struck them down on the slopes. At this the hearts of the people melted and became like water.
Eek. Things aren't goin' so well for the Israelites.
Joshua told a few guys to go spy out Ai. So they did. And when the came back Joshua told them to take 2,000-3,000 guys up because it would be an easy win.
So the 3,000 guys go up and they get cut off. And about 36 of their guys got killed. And the Ai people chased the Israelites away from the city gates. And then the people started getting scared.
6 Then Joshua tore his clothes and fell facedown to the ground before the ark of the LORD, remaining there till evening. The elders of Israel did the same, and sprinkled dust on their heads. 7 And Joshua said, "Ah, Sovereign LORD, why did you ever bring this people across the Jordan to deliver us into the hands of the Amorites to destroy us? If only we had been content to stay on the other side of the Jordan! 8 O Lord, what can I say, now that Israel has been routed by its enemies? 9 The Canaanites and the other people of the country will hear about this and they will surround us and wipe out our name from the earth. What then will you do for your own great name?"
Joshua was upset. He tore his clothes. The elders did the same. And Joshua cried out to God. (Do we earnestly cry out to God?)
He asked God why he would bring them across the Jordan to be destroyed. Joshua was confused because he didn't know that some of the people had taken stuff.
He was asking God if he was just going to let the Israelites be wiped out.
Then he questioned God's abilities. Kinda. "What then will you do for your own great name?"
10 The LORD said to Joshua, "Stand up! What are you doing down on your face? 11 Israel has sinned; they have violated my covenant, which I commanded them to keep. They have taken some of the devoted things; they have stolen, they have lied, they have put them with their own possessions. 12 That is why the Israelites cannot stand against their enemies; they turn their backs and run because they have been made liable to destruction. I will not be with you anymore unless you destroy whatever among you is devoted to destruction.
God told Joshua to GET UP. Stop bein' on yo' face. Take some action, boy!
(That was my ghetto version of God. Yeah, it didn't work. I know.)
God informed Joshua that some of the people had sinned and had taken stuff from Jericho, which they weren't supposed to do.
And that, my dear readers, is why the Israelites couldn't win their battles.
And then God told them something very important: "I will not be with you anymore unless you destroy whatever among you is devoted to destruction."
Woaaaaaaaaaaaah. Rewind. Get rid of that stuff, stat. Kay? Yeah.
13 "Go, consecrate the people. Tell them, 'Consecrate yourselves in preparation for tomorrow; for this is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: That which is devoted is among you, O Israel. You cannot stand against your enemies until you remove it.
God told Joshua to tell the people to make themselves clean because they were going to get rid of that stuff! Because they couldn't win anything unless it was destroyed. Not even a game of solitaire. Hah. (I think I'm sooooo funny! It must be late...)
14 " 'In the morning, present yourselves tribe by tribe. The tribe that the LORD takes shall come forward clan by clan; the clan that the LORD takes shall come forward family by family; and the family that the LORD takes shall come forward man by man. 15 He who is caught with the devoted things shall be destroyed by fire, along with all that belongs to him. He has violated the covenant of the LORD and has done a disgraceful thing in Israel!' " 16 Early the next morning Joshua had Israel come forward by tribes, and Judah was taken. 17 The clans of Judah came forward, and he took the Zerahites. He had the clan of the Zerahites come forward by families, and Zimri was taken. 18 Joshua had his family come forward man by man, and Achan son of Carmi, the son of Zimri, the son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, was taken.
God told the Israelites to go up tribe by tribe. And God was going to 'take' a clan. And the clan that he took was going to have each man come forward one by one. And the one who had the things that were devoted was going to be killed. Brutal, but it was the law. And he sinned against God. (We sin against God all the time (unfortunately). Why don't we realize that our punishment for every single little tiny sin we commit should be death? Because it should be.)
The next morning, Joshua had the tribes come up. Judah was chosen. Then the clans. The Zerahites were chosen. Then the families came up. Zimiri was chosen. Then each man came up. And Achan sone of Carmi was chosen. *gulp*
19 Then Joshua said to Achan, "My son, give glory to the LORD, the God of Israel, and give him the praise. Tell me what you have done; do not hide it from me."
20 Achan replied, "It is true! I have sinned against the LORD, the God of Israel. This is what I have done: 21 When I saw in the plunder a beautiful robe from Babylonia, two hundred shekels of silver and a wedge of gold weighing fifty shekels, I coveted them and took them. They are hidden in the ground inside my tent, with the silver underneath."
Joshua told him to fess up and to not hide anything. Achan told him that he had coveted the treasure in Jericho and had taken some. He told him where it was hidden.
22 So Joshua sent messengers, and they ran to the tent, and there it was, hidden in his tent, with the silver underneath. 23They took the things from the tent, brought them to Joshua and all the Israelites and spread them out before the LORD.
Joshua sent messengers to the tent and they found the treasure/money. They took everything and brought it to Joshua and the rest of the Israelites. And they spread it out in front of God.
24 Then Joshua, together with all Israel, took Achan son of Zerah, the silver, the robe, the gold wedge, his sons and daughters, his cattle, donkeys and sheep, his tent and all that he had, to the Valley of Achor. 25 Joshua said, "Why have you brought this trouble on us? The LORD will bring trouble on you today."
Then all Israel stoned him, and after they had stoned the rest, they burned them. 26 Over Achan they heaped up a large pile of rocks, which remains to this day. Then the LORD turned from his fierce anger. Therefore that place has been called the Valley of Achor ever since.
Joshua and all of Israel took Achan, the stuff, his children, his cattle, his donkeys, his sheep, his tent-EVERYTHING HE HAD- and took it to the Valley of Achor.
Joshua asked him why he had done this thing. Why he had brought trouble on all of Israel. So they stoned him and his children and his cattle. And then burned them. And then put a pile of rocks on them.
Brutal, man. Makes me not want to live then... Hah.
I guess that's it. G'night!
I'll be back tomorrow with stories of maneuverability and driving and babysitting. Probably. These might be my last words. =P
I gotta go to bed........