•  3 min. read  •  grade level: 8
How different to Achsah was her distant cousin Achan. Both were of the tribe of Judah, both were brought up in the wilderness, both crossed the Jordan and entered the land of Canaan, at the same time. Although only a young man, (his grandfather could not have been more than sixty), yet his heart was set —not on the springs and valleys of Carman —but, on a goodly Babylonian garment, and a wedge of gold. (Josh. 7:22And Joshua sent men from Jericho to Ai, which is beside Beth-aven, on the east side of Beth-el, and spake unto them, saying, Go up and view the country. And the men went up and viewed Ai. (Joshua 7:2)).
What a solemn warning is wrapped up in this first public sin of Israel! How strange that Babylon should be involved! It was the very city that in the end brought ruin and desolation to the land of Judah. The Babylonian garment was to wear. It would be much more stylish, I suppose, than the garments of Canaan: and he had been wearing wilderness garments all his life; garments handed down, probably, from his father and grandfather, those wonderful garments that waxed not old; even we ourselves do not always value things handed-down, be they ever so good, and Achan had no heart to value such clothes, he wanted Babylonian garments.
But there was not only the Babylonian garment, there was also the wedge of gold, and two hundred shekels of silver. And, sad to say, there is that in our hearts and there is that in the hearts of your children, that will turn to gold and silver and to a Babylonian garment; a garment after the fashion of the world; and how terrible are some of the Babylonian garments we see today; may the Lord keep your darlings from ever coveting such as these.
May we see to it, that the souls of our children come first, and let gold come last, in our reckoning and trafficking. What sort of examples are we setting to our children? Remember they read us like a book! Do they see that our hearts are set on the springs of Canaan, or on the garments of Babylon? In our traffic, our business, our occupation every day, do they see Gold, or Souls of Men heading the list?
I suppose the very fact that Achan’s father and grandfather are so clearly pointed out, and identified with him in a sense, would give us a hint that the responsibility for his sin went back even to them.