I just read Joshua 7. Israel was defeated at Ai because they were “doomed for destruction” (v12). Doomed because one person chose to defy God by taking and hoarding something that was forbidden. Before the destruction of Jericho the instructions were clear: “And you, by all means abstain from the accursed things, lest you become accursed when you take of the accursed things and make the camp of Israel a curse, and trouble it.” (6:18) Achan saw something that he just couldn’t refuse (7:20-21) and the result of this one man’s lack of control and disobedience brought doom and destruction to an entire nation of God.Stunning. One man’s sin. One nation cursed.As stunning as this one story about this one man might be – it’s not unusual. This is the story of God.From Adam to Achan to Ananias (Acts 5) we see that a love for this world is a serious matter to a God who blesses and provides and saves. I’ve asked before, “but why such a destructive consequence for just one man’s weakness?”. And in that question I expose my backwards perspective. It’s not a “weakness”, it’s sin. And it’s one man’s sin against a one, true and holy God that has chosen a people to be ONE with HIM. The slightest stain, mark, disunity in the cause is serious enough for Him to act. The One True God desires for His people to be holy surrendered to Him. It’s not just a weak moment, but a heart that defies God. Not weakness, but sin.Acknowledging and/or learning this about our God can be quite frightening. Honestly, I want to defend Achan’s humanity because I find myself identifying with him more than I care to admit. So, where’s the hope for me or my church that is FILLED with “Achan-like” attitudes? I find great pleasure in reflecting on this great truth and promise:
” …For if many died through one man’s trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many. And the free gift is not like the result of that one man’s sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brought justification. For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.
Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous. Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Romans 5:12-21 ESV)
Oh, that I would heed the commands of my Lord, my God. That i would not allow my flesh/body to master me causing me to love this world more than I love God. I pray for God’s help to walk and live in His presence (where there’s pleasure forever more and fullness of joy Ps.16:11) by the righteousness of Christ Jesus, who saved me and was a propitiation for my greed, lust, lies, coveting, pride, and faithlessness.
Thanks be to Christ my King who defeated the flesh and has raised my soul up with him for His glory and my greater joy.