“When I saw among the spoil a beautiful cloak from Shinar, and 200 shekels of silver, and a bar of gold weighing 50 shekels, then I coveted them and took them. And see, they are hidden in the earth inside my tent, with the silver underneath.” (Joshua 7:21)

The sin of one man brings great effect upon the whole.  Joshua was praying and the Lord tells him, “Get up!”  There is sin in the camp and it must be dealt with.  The Lord will not protect Israel from their enemies, because someone has taken the devoted things and lied about it. 

The Lord will not accompany His people unless the issue is dealt with.  The sin of one man causes the entire nation to be gathered together and confronted in order that the sinner can be exposed.  When the sinner is exposed it cost him his life and the life of his sons and daughters.  Achan, his sons, and his daughters are stoned and burned with fire, because of his sinfulness.

How could Achan do such a wicked thing to his own family and to the nation of Israel?  How did he arrive at this point?  The text gives us four things that look exactly like the first sin of Adam and Eve.  First, Achan saw.  What did he see?  He saw a beautiful cloak, 200 shekels of silver, and a bar of gold.  It is certainly not a sin to see these things, but his sight affected his heart.  Second, Achan coveted. 

His vision caused him to desire/covet that which was forbidden to him.  The desire of his heart moved him to figure out how to obtain that which was not his.  Third, Achan took them.  The eyes affected the heart and the heart effected the actions.  Like unto Eve, she saw the fruit, desired the fruit, and took the fruit.  The desire that sin spawns in the hearts of men never gratifies to the degree that they falsely proclaim.  Lastly, Achan hid. 

He hid his sin in the earth where it could not be seen by the human eye.  However, everything is exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give an account.  Adam and Eve sowed leaves together to cover their sin and Achan dug a hole in the ground to cover his.  That which is hidden from man is never hidden from God.  As Moses said, “Be sure your sin will find you out.”

Dearly beloved, the deception of sin is still at work today.  The things you see will affect your heart and the desire of your heart will lead you to take that which is forbidden and then sin will motivate you to try to hide it.  I pray that you will pursue repentance daily in order that sin will not cause your downfall and the destruction of others.

J. Randall Easter, Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church of Briar, Azle, TX.
II Timothy 2:19
“He who sells cheapest shall have most customers; the devil knows that it is a cheap and easy doctrine which pleases the flesh, and he doubts not but he shall have customers enough.” (Thomas Watson)