To Joshua, the Lord said, “I have given Jericho into your hand” (6:2). Surely, Jericho would fall to Israel, and the people would be able to move on into the land. Very familiar language, here. The Lord had said to Pharaoh that he would let the people go. He let the people go! God had said to Joshua that he would give the land to the people (ch. 1). It was theirs! Now, Jericho! Rahab was assured of deliverance from the destruction. Rahab and her family were saved (6:25)!
As Jericho was coming into their hands, God commanded the people, “Keep yourselves from the things devoted to destruction” (6:18). This was not a conquest to enrich the people. This was not a quest for gold and silver. God was fulfilling his promise to the people to give them a land; he was not acceding to any selfish desires for personal enrichment. “But the people of Israel broke faith in regard to the devoted things, for Achan the son of Carmi, son of Zabdi, son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, took some of the devoted things” (7:1). The story continues as Achan is found out and punished. But here’s the thing. Achan’s sin affected the whole nation with the resultant defeat at Ai. One man sinned, many suffered. There’s an important principle, here, that of corporate responsibility, that is, we're in this thing together. What one does, either good or bad, affects the entire group. It’s so, it’s just so! When I am wrong, my behavior hurts my church family. When I am faithful, my life is a blessing to my church family. Oh, that we all would wrestle strongly with this lesson and walk faithfully after our God to the blessing and strengthening of those whom we love.
Many battles yet to come, and the following chapters tell those stories. God promised to give the land to Israel. God was faithful to fulfill all his promises to his people.