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Achin' for a Breakin'

Words of Faith Final

Achin' for a Breakin'

Words of Faith 9-3-2020

Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2020

Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL

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Joshua 7

    But the Israelites acted unfaithfully in regard to the devoted things; Achan son of Carmi, the son of Zimri, the son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, took some of them. So the Lord's anger burned against Israel.

    [2] Now Joshua sent men from Jericho to Ai, which is near Beth Aven to the east of Bethel, and told them, "Go up and spy out the region." So the men went up and spied out Ai.

    [3] When they returned to Joshua, they said, "Not all the people will have to go up against Ai. Send two or three thousand men to take it and do not weary all the people, for only a few men are there." [4] So about three thousand men went up; but they were routed by the men of Ai, [5] who killed about thirty-six 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 and became like water.


        Israel was just coming off a win.  That can be a dangerous thing.  The battle at Jericho was a dramatic victory, and the word was spreading. Fear was going before the Israelites into the land. The possibility of a military defeat was the furthest thing from the Israelites' minds. Yet, they were headed for their first defeat.

       The truth is that God's people are never more vulnerable, never in greater danger, than right after they have won a great victory.  In their great confidence, the scouts recommended that only a small force of men was needed to go into battle at Ai. 

       Three thousand troops went up and were quickly routed by the enemy at Ai.  Though relatively few actually died in the battle, they were humiliated. They were chased away from the city gates of Ai.  The hearts of the people melted and became like water.  It was a devastating defeat.

       What happened?  Why this defeat?  Two things are immediately obvious.

        First was disobedience.  One man had put the entire nation at risk.  Others may have collaborated in that they may have known about Achan's sin.  The Lord viewed Israel as a whole.  The sin of one man cost the lives of 36 men. We could say he was "Achan for a breakin’."  But the breaking would come to the whole nation.

        The second was pride.  After the great defeat of Jericho, the spies considered the forces of Israel to be invincible. The problem was that Israel did not win the victory at Jericho, the Lord did!  Today we would say they were "cocky."  They had taken on a prideful arrogance that now endangered them.  There was not even a moment of prayer in preparation for this battle!  This crowd was "cruisin' for a bruisin'."

         Here we see a sure-fire recipe for defeat.  We cannot go into battle and expect the Lord to be with us if there is deliberate disobedience.  If we are disobedient regarding the instruction and directives of the Lord, we cannot expect that He will be with us.  In fact, He will likely allow defeat to break us away from our sin.

          In such a manner as this, we are "achin' for a breakin'," too!  We cannot expect the Lord to be with us in battle if we do not acknowledge Him.  If we march ahead in arrogant pride, we are "cruisin' for a bruisin'."  The Lord will do whatever it takes to bring us into a right relationship with Him.

         How is your battle plan?  Have you suffered some defeats?  A good question to ask is whether you are disobedient in some area.  Are you disobedient concerning some specific directive that the Lord has put before you?  Are you disobedient in the area of sexual purity?  Are you disobedient concerning returning the tithe (a tenth) to the Lord's house (Malachi 3:10-11)?  And what about prideful arrogance?  Have you claimed for yourself the honor that should be ascribed only to the Lord?  Have you moved ahead without consulting the Lord?


         Lord God, search me through and through.  Reveal to me any area in which I have been disobedient.  Show me where I need to repent and go your way.  Guide me as I follow You in humility.  I give You all praise, honor, and glory.  In Jesus' name.  


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© Jeffrey D. Hoy 2005, 2020

Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy - Faith Fellowship Church (EFCA)       

2820 Business Center Blvd.

Melbourne, Florida 32940 (321)-259-7200

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The Words of Faith devotion is published five days a week by E-mail excluding Federal holidays. Please feel free to forward this devotion to a friend who might be blessed by this devotion. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is quoted from the New International Version (R) of The Holy Bible. Copyright (c) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. Words of Faith (c) 1997, 2010 Jeffrey D. Hoy. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to forward this copyrighted material or use portions of it with appropriate notation of the source for non-profit purposes.