Joshua 8 & 9

Most of this chapter is a record of the ultimate victory at Ai.

Chapter 7 is the record of the defeat at Ai and the exposure of the sin of Achan, then his death by stoning.

Now before we go on let me remind you of a great truth uncovered in this experience

1. The defeat at Ai.

Ai was less formidable than Jericho.

7:3—“Let not all the people go up, but let about two of three thousand men go up.” The plan, purpose and will of God was not taken into consideration, and they were routed by the enemy.

2. To recover from this humiliation was costly.

    a. There was the judgment of sin: Achan’s death.

    b. Then there was the recognition of the will of God.

    c. There was a willingness to comply with the will of God. In other words, they were willing to obey. Obedience is better than sacrifice.

    d. Every able man was flung into the battle to implement God’s plan.

This was the cost of victory. As it was then, so it is today.

The recovery of lost ground is one of the most difficult tasks that a Christian can have. No sooner had they recovered and Ai lay burned just like Jericho, did God take them to Mount Ebal. There Joshua built an altar to worship. There the law was read to them. His divine principles by which they might possess the land. Describe the valley.

The reading was also an insurance against a similar disaster in the future.

As Christians, we need to be reminded of what the Word of God teaches. Worship of God is the most important function in a believer’s life.

We ought to read it:

    1 Timothy 4:13—“Give diligence to reading.”

    2 Timothy 2:15—“Study to be approved of God.”

    Psalm 119:11—“Thy word have I hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against thee.”

9:1-3—Enemy reaction.

They gathered themselves together to fight with Joshua and with Israel, with one accord.”

Wherever there is a work of God there will be devilish opposition. The opposition of Canaan was accomplished by a series of battles. There were always enemies, constant opposition. As it was then, so it is today.

Let me remind you at this point that Satan attacks in one of two characters:

1. A roaring lion—1 Peter 5:8.

2. An angel of light—2 Corinthians 11:14.

Satan is a master strategist and he can outmaneuver any of us.

The coming of the Gibeonites: v. 3-13. Describe these men.

When dealing with them the Israelites did not ask counsel of the Lord—v. 14.

v. 15—Joshua made peace and a league with them.

v. 16—This was a great mistake.

Because of the covenant which they had made they could not kill them.

v. 22-27—Joshua made them cutters of wood and drawers of water.

The Gibeonites brought only trouble to Israel. In the next chapter they are plunged into trouble because of them.

2 Samuel 21:1-14—Saul had slain some of the Gibeonites. The result was a famine for 3 years.

Some ways Satan has tried to hinder God’s people:

1. Opposition by ridicule.

2. Opposition by discouraged brethren.

3. Opposition by greedy brethren.

4. Opposition by craft.

5. Opposition by threat.