Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Domino Effect

This week we continued the Courageous Leadership series by taking a look at Joshua 7 and the sin of Achan.  The week I was gone to National Youth Worker's Conference I had Sam Olsen fill in he spoke about the walls of Jericho coming down and the faith that was involved in that.  After the walls came down God commands them what to do in their conquest.  In Joshua 6:19 God commands them to collect the gold, silver, iron, and bronze for the treasury of the Lord.  In other words they are to not keep any of this for themselves, it is the Lord's.  But in Joshua 7:1 we see that Achan goes against this and keeps some for himself.  

In verses 2-5 Joshua sends spies in the Ai.  They come back with the report that they should be able to defeat Ai with about 3000 soldiers, so this is the amount that Joshua sends.  Well things did not turn out the best and the Israelites are defeated.  Thirty-six of their men are killed during this battle.  

We see in verses 6-9 that Joshua is extremely upset with the defeat and is mourning.  He cries out to God asking Him why this has happened and what he is supposed to do.  God tells Joshua in verses 10-15 that it is the sin that has caused their defeat.  God tells him that as long as the sin is still there that they will not win.  He then has Joshua gather the people so that he can find out who has sinned.

Verses 16-21 we see Achan admits that he has stolen items and buried them in his tent.  One thing we have to note is that Achan does not lie nor pass the blame.  He admits to what he has done.  However we see that there are consequences to sin and in verses 22-26 not only does he die, but his entire family dies.

This is a prime example of how our sin does not only effect us.  First of all the sin in Achan's life not only caused Israel's army to be defeated, but 36 men died.  The fact that these 36 men died did not end there.  How do you think their families were effected?  They were effected greatly!  Some people lost their fathers, some lost their best friends, some lost their brother.  These families had to deal with the loss of their loved one, and it was because of someone else's sin.

Not only did Achan's sin lead to his death, but also to his entire family's death.  The truth is our sin never only effects us.  It always effects other someway.  We may think hiding it or if it is something small then it will not effect anyone else but this is untrue.  Our sin is like a domino effect.  When you set up dominos and then tip the first one over it causes the entire line to fall down.  The domino at the end had nothing to do with the fall, but fell anyway.  You probably have been effected by someone else's sin at some point in your life.  I want to encourage you today to realize the seriousness of sin and to commit to not sin knowing that it will effect others.

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