1 The Lord is angry with Achan. 4 They of Ai put the Israelites to flight. 6 Joshua prayeth to the Lord. 16 Joshua inquireth out him that sinned, and stoneth him and all his.

But the children of Israel committed a trespass in the [a]excommunicate thing: for (A)Achan the son of Carmi, the son of Zabdi, the son of Zerah of the tribe of Judah, took of the excommunicate thing: wherefore the wrath of the Lord was kindled against the children of Israel.

And Joshua sent men from Jericho to [b]Ai, which is beside Beth Aven, on the East side of Bethel, and spake unto them, saying, Go up, and view the country. And the men went up and viewed Ai,

And returned to Joshua, and said unto him, Let not all the people go up, but let as it were two or three thousand men go up, and smite Ai, and make not all the people to labor thither, for they are few.

So there went up thither of the people about three thousand men, and they fled before the men of Ai.

And the [c]men of Ai smote of them upon a thirty and six men: for they chased them from before the gate unto Shebarim, and smote them in the going down: wherefore the hearts of the people melted away like water.

Then Joshua rent his clothes, and fell to the earth upon his face before the Ark of the Lord, until the eventide, he, and the Elders of Israel, and put dust upon their heads.

And Joshua said, Alas, O Lord God, wherefore hast thou brought this people over Jordan, to deliver us into the hand of the Amorites, and to destroy us? would God we had been content to dwell on the [d]other side Jordan.

Oh Lord what shall I say, when Israel turn their backs before their enemies?

For the Canaanites, and all the inhabitants of the land shall hear of it, and shall compass us, and destroy our name out of the earth: and what wilt thou do unto thy mighty [e]Name?

10 ¶ And the Lord said unto Joshua, Get thee up: wherefore liest thou thus upon thy face?

11 Israel hath sinned, and they have transgressed my covenant, which I commanded them: for they have even taken of the excommunicate thing, and have also stolen, and dissembled also, and have put it even with their own stuff.

12 Therefore the children of Israel cannot stand before their enemies: but have turned their backs before their enemies, because they be execrable: neither will I be with you anymore, except ye [f]destroy the excommunicate from among you.

13 Up therefore, sanctify the people, and say, Sanctify yourselves against tomorrow: for thus saith the Lord God of Israel, There is an execrable thing among you, O Israel, therefore ye cannot stand against your enemies, until ye have put the [g]execrable thing from among you.

14 In the morning therefore ye shall come according to your tribes, and the tribe which the Lord taketh, shall come according to the families: and the family which the Lord shall take, shall come by the households: and the household which the Lord shall take, shall come man by man.

15 And he that is [h]taken with the excommunicate thing, shall be burnt with fire, he, and all that he hath, because he hath transgressed the covenant of the Lord, and because he hath wrought folly in Israel.

16 ¶ So Joshua rose up early in the morning, and brought Israel by their tribes: and the tribe of Judah was taken.

17 And he brought the families of Judah, and took the family of the Zarhites, and he brought the family of the Zarhites, man by man, and Zabdi was taken.

18 And he brought his household, man by man, and Achan the son of Carmi, the son of Zabdi, the son of Zerah of the tribe of Judah was taken.

19 Then Joshua said unto Achan, My son, I beseech thee, give glory to the Lord God of Israel, and [i]make confession unto him, and show me now what thou hast done: hide it not from me.

20 And Achan answered Joshua, and said, Indeed I have sinned against the Lord God of Israel, and thus, and thus have I done.

21 I saw among the spoil a goodly [j]Babylonish garment, and two hundred shekels of silver, and a wedge of gold of fifty shekels weight, and I covered them, and took them: and behold, they lie hid in the earth in the midst of my tent, and the silver under it.

22 ¶ Then Joshua sent messengers, which ran unto the tent, and behold, it was hid in his tent, and the silver under it.

23 Therefore they took them out of the tent, and brought them unto Joshua, and unto all the children of Israel, and laid them before the Lord.

24 Then Joshua took Achan the [k]son of Zerah, and the silver, and the garment, and the [l]wedge of gold, and his [m]sons, and his daughters, and his oxen, and his asses, and his sheep, and his tent, and all that he had: and all Israel with him, brought them unto the valley of Achor.

25 And Joshua said, [n]In as much as thou hast troubled us, the Lord shall trouble thee this day: and all Israel threw stones at him, and burned them with fire, and stoned them with stones.

26 And they cast upon him a great heap of stones unto this day: and so the Lord turned from his fierce wrath: therefore he called the name of that place, The valley of Achor, unto this day.


  1. Joshua 7:1 In taking that which was commanded to be destroyed.
  2. Joshua 7:2 This was a city of the Amorites: for there was another so called among the Amorites, Jer. 49:3. The first Ai is called Aiath, Isa. 10:28.
  3. Joshua 7:5 God would by this overthrow make them more earnest to search out and punish the sin committed.
  4. Joshua 7:7 This infirmity of his faith showeth how we are inclined of nature to distrust.
  5. Joshua 7:9 When thine enemies shall blaspheme thee and say, that thou wast not able to defend us from them.
  6. Joshua 7:12 Then to suffer wickedness unpunished, is to refuse God willingly.
  7. Joshua 7:13 Meaning, the man that took of the thing forbidden.
  8. Joshua 7:15 That is found guilty, either by lots, or by the judgment of Urim, Num. 27:21.
  9. Joshua 7:19 By declaring truth: for God is glorified when the truth is confessed.
  10. Joshua 7:21 Such a rich garment as the states of Babylon did wear.
  11. Joshua 7:24 Or, nephew.
  12. Joshua 7:24 Some read a plate: others, a rod, and some a tongue.
  13. Joshua 7:24 This judgment only appertaineth to God, and to whom he will reveal it, to man he had commanded not to punish the child for the father’s fault, Deut. 24:16.
  14. Joshua 7:25 He declareth that this is God’s judgment because he had offended, and caused others to be slain.

Achan’s Sin

But the Israelites were unfaithful in regard to the devoted things[a];(A) Achan(B) son of Karmi, the son of Zimri,[b] the son of Zerah,(C) of the tribe of Judah,(D) took some of them. So the Lord’s anger burned(E) against Israel.(F)

Now Joshua sent men from Jericho to Ai,(G) which is near Beth Aven(H) to the east of Bethel,(I) and told them, “Go up and spy out(J) the region.” So the men went up and spied out Ai.

When they returned to Joshua, they said, “Not all the army will have to go up against Ai. Send two or three thousand men to take it and do not weary the whole army, for only a few people live there.” So about three thousand went up; but they were routed by the men of Ai,(K) who killed about thirty-six(L) of them. They chased the Israelites from the city gate as far as the stone quarries and struck them down on the slopes. At this the hearts of the people melted in fear(M) and became like water.

Then Joshua tore his clothes(N) and fell facedown(O) to the ground before the ark of the Lord, remaining there till evening.(P) The elders of Israel(Q) did the same, and sprinkled dust(R) on their heads. And Joshua said, “Alas, Sovereign Lord, why(S) did you ever bring this people across the Jordan to deliver us into the hands of the Amorites to destroy us?(T) If only we had been content to stay on the other side of the Jordan! Pardon your servant, Lord. What can I say, now that Israel has been routed by its enemies? The Canaanites and the other people of the country will hear about this and they will surround us and wipe out our name from the earth.(U) What then will you do for your own great name?(V)

10 The Lord said to Joshua, “Stand up! What are you doing down on your face? 11 Israel has sinned;(W) they have violated my covenant,(X) which I commanded them to keep. They have taken some of the devoted things; they have stolen, they have lied,(Y) they have put them with their own possessions.(Z) 12 That is why the Israelites cannot stand against their enemies;(AA) they turn their backs(AB) and run(AC) because they have been made liable to destruction.(AD) I will not be with you anymore(AE) unless you destroy whatever among you is devoted to destruction.

13 “Go, consecrate the people. Tell them, ‘Consecrate yourselves(AF) in preparation for tomorrow; for this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: There are devoted things among you, Israel. You cannot stand against your enemies until you remove them.

14 “‘In the morning, present(AG) yourselves tribe by tribe. The tribe the Lord chooses(AH) shall come forward clan by clan; the clan the Lord chooses shall come forward family by family; and the family the Lord chooses shall come forward man by man. 15 Whoever is caught with the devoted things(AI) shall be destroyed by fire,(AJ) along with all that belongs to him.(AK) He has violated the covenant(AL) of the Lord and has done an outrageous thing in Israel!’”(AM)

16 Early the next morning Joshua had Israel come forward by tribes, and Judah was chosen. 17 The clans of Judah came forward, and the Zerahites were chosen.(AN) He had the clan of the Zerahites come forward by families, and Zimri was chosen. 18 Joshua had his family come forward man by man, and Achan son of Karmi, the son of Zimri, the son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah,(AO) was chosen.(AP)

19 Then Joshua said to Achan, “My son, give glory(AQ) to the Lord, the God of Israel, and honor him. Tell(AR) me what you have done; do not hide it from me.”

20 Achan replied, “It is true! I have sinned against the Lord, the God of Israel. This is what I have done: 21 When I saw in the plunder(AS) a beautiful robe from Babylonia,[c] two hundred shekels[d] of silver and a bar of gold weighing fifty shekels,[e] I coveted(AT) them and took them. They are hidden in the ground inside my tent, with the silver underneath.”

22 So Joshua sent messengers, and they ran to the tent, and there it was, hidden in his tent, with the silver underneath. 23 They took the things from the tent, brought them to Joshua and all the Israelites and spread them out before the Lord.

24 Then Joshua, together with all Israel, took Achan son of Zerah, the silver, the robe, the gold bar, his sons(AU) and daughters, his cattle, donkeys and sheep, his tent and all that he had, to the Valley of Achor.(AV) 25 Joshua said, “Why have you brought this trouble(AW) on us? The Lord will bring trouble on you today.”

Then all Israel stoned him,(AX) and after they had stoned the rest, they burned them.(AY) 26 Over Achan they heaped(AZ) up a large pile of rocks, which remains to this day.(BA) Then the Lord turned from his fierce anger.(BB) Therefore that place has been called the Valley of Achor[f](BC) ever since.


  1. Joshua 7:1 The Hebrew term refers to the irrevocable giving over of things or persons to the Lord, often by totally destroying them; also in verses 11, 12, 13 and 15.
  2. Joshua 7:1 See Septuagint and 1 Chron. 2:6; Hebrew Zabdi; also in verses 17 and 18.
  3. Joshua 7:21 Hebrew Shinar
  4. Joshua 7:21 That is, about 5 pounds or about 2.3 kilograms
  5. Joshua 7:21 That is, about 1 1/4 pounds or about 575 grams
  6. Joshua 7:26 Achor means trouble.

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