Israel's conquest of the mighty city of Jericho, covered in chapter 6, is an illustration of several practical spiritual truths. God's only requirement of the Israelites was that they wait, obey, and trust Him for the victory.
Chapter 7 records the disobedience of Achan. God told Joshua that the spoils of Jericho were consecrated to Him and were to be placed in His treasury. But Achan disobeyed God's instructions. He thought he could hide his sin. And because an "accursed thing" was in the camp, God could not dwell with His people. This caused their defeat at Ai. Achan's disobedience was discovered and exposed.
Now that the nation has been sanctified and Achan's sin judged, God can again lead His people to victory. Chapter 8 covers the destruction of Ai. The first defeat was used to good advantage, for now the people of Ai were confident they could overcome Israel again. Note also in this chapter that God allowed the people to take the cattle and the spoil from Ai. If Achan had only waited a few days he would have had all the wealth he could have carried!
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