Monday, July 23, 2007

Achan, his family and his animals, stoned and burned

Joshua 7:19-26 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."

Achan replied, "It is true! I have sinned against the LORD, the God of Israel. This is what I have done: 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."

So Joshua sent messengers, and they ran to the tent, and there it was, hidden in his tent, with the silver underneath. They took the things from the tent, brought them to Joshua and all the Israelites and spread them out before the LORD.

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. 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. 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.


I continue to be a amazed as to how much God is like a man and subject to the same emotions as man. In this story, Achan took some of the loot that normally goes into the "treasury of the LORD's house" for himself. God gets angry so he allows 36 Israelites to be killed in the next battle. To appease God, the perpetrator and his entire family were stoned and burned.


Anonymous said...

Ahhh, the Word of God. What a refreshing breath of life. NOT! I love the verses that you post every day. They make me realize how messed up religion is, and how glad I am to have escaped it. Who needs it? It's nothing but a cancer in the world that fuels bigotry and murder.

Keep on doing the Lord's work! I can't wait to hear who else Jehovah has slaughtered!


tiny tim said...

Er, what's wrong with these verses? Today, governments kill bad people all the time. How is this any worse?

Anonymous said...

Paul, the way you dishonor the Lord truly amazes me. I can't imagine how someone who once worshipped and prayed to the Lord of the universe could turn around and mock Him like you do on a daily basis.

I hope and pray that you turn from this path you have chosen. It is truly hardbreaking to see how satan has corrupted your heart.

And I can't imagine the emptiness that must fill your soul each night when you close your eyes and think about the God you no longer can turn to and believe in.

....and yet, He still loves you. Your apostasy drives me closer and closer to Him. It makes me realize just how precious and sacred our Lord truly is.

I can't imagine the living hell you have created for yourself and your family.

Anonymous said...

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Achan, his family, and animals were executed unjustly for judgment against his breach of the eighth commandment; "You shall not steal" (Exod. 20:15 NRSV). What is so hypocritical was the executioners own breach of the sixth commandment; "You shall not murder" (Exod. 20:13 NRSV). Why was Achan held to standards that the other Israelites were not, other than the obvious reason that the judge was unjust? Throughout my reading of the OT I can't remember one incident where the sixth commandment is even brought up as being breached by one person. I guess killing was acceptable in a kill or be killed world, but steeling was not to be tolerated.

Anonymous said...

As a Christian (God forgive my unfaithfulness), I have been struggling with the account of Achan's sin for some time. I have read all the commentaries. I have reflected on it. I don't have a good answer. Here is the best I can do. The account must be read on two levels: First, the literal level. Israel was express told NOT to take any devout things when Jericho was conquered; those things belonged to God. Achan disobeyed. He confessed and was forgiven, but sin has consequences, and he suffered those consequences. (It was NOT murder. Those in authority can inflict capital punishment in order to preserve order in society. See Romans 13. The second level sees sin as the fundamental issue for man before a holy God. God is NOT the problem when bad things happen. Rather, sin is the problem. And it must be dealt with severly. Sin deserves death. Praise God that sin was dealt with once for all by the death of Jesus Christ on the cross. Our sin is forgiven and eternal life is ours. Believe it.

Anonymous said...

whateva soldier. who says my sin should mean i should die. i do exactly what i was made to do. my personality has been formed from a combination of the conditions of my upbringing (which I could not choose) and the body/brain which i inherited. all my "free" choices come from my personality and the conditions of my life...
basically God made us faulty. tells us that we are faulty and can never be made right while on earth. then some lucky ones (who he's given the opportunity to) make the right "choices" and go to heaven. the rest burn.
God loves us? Fat chance. At least not any all-powerful God. maybe theres some little mangy retard god-child which got to create humanity... OR theres no such thing as a big creator who we've never seen, heard etc., who has everything we could ever want if only we followed some old book written by human beings which tells us about him, in a very cryptic, open (multi-interpretable) way.

humanity has to walk its way (not knowing which direction to go) with badly made feet, across a tightrope to heaven, while blindfolded.
God is a joker.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, your wrong when you say Achan and his entire family got stoned and burned

Actually, in Hebrew the text indicates Achan ONLY was stoned, and his property burned.

His family was neither stoned nor burned. In fact they testified against him.

Try learning Hebrew and how to read the Bible in its context.

Jon said...

With respect to being created as we are and therefore having no free will, I am curious: Can you then abstain yourself from all moral consequences? If someone were to rape another person, are you comfortable with asserting that it is purely down to the rapist's environmental factors and the way they are wired? I would say that these things do affect us and people struggle with different things. But there is always a choice to be made and fleeing from any consequences of our actions because of the aforementioned factors is short-sighted and the ramifications of such a statement are ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

Jon: Hoping you'll see this since your post wasn't too long ago.

I think it's a matter of context, really. Belief is much different from a willful act. My experiences and fundamental nature have lead me to a point where I am literally unable to believe in a god like the one in the bible. This was not my choice, and in fact it caused me quite a personal crisis at first.

Another angle: Do you think insane people choose to be insane? Do you think they are responsible to the sane for the decisions they make based on their insane logic?

This is not to say there is no such thing as personal responsibility. If you are capable of trying to be good then you should definitely do so. One should never be held responsible for not doing something he was incapable of doing in the first place.

It's certainly not a black and white issue, and I certainly don't look at it that way.

Anonymous said...

This is the danger of religion. That people can no longer think for themselves. Could you pick up and throw 20, 25 ,30 stones at a human being? How about a child, until they die? Think aout that Mr. Christian. What kind of person can do that and what does it say about your ”loving god”

Mark said...

Where is the blog about all the falsehoods of snuffaluffagus...oh wait, there isnt one because no body waists their time on something untrue. They do it on theings they knowmin their heart are true. I wish the truth did not pain you so much, and that you could let faith blossom.