HomeDevotionalsAchan’s sin and the judgment and grace of God


Achan’s sin and the judgment and grace of God — 10 Comments

  1. I see 1 John 1 :9 has been mentioned in connection with confession of sin. This is correct for the unbeliever at the time on salvation but not for the believer.

    This is write up I posted on another blog.

    1 John 1:9 has become the Christian’s bar of soap but very few have actually studied the verses before and after (as we should always do) to put the verse into context as well as who was the writer writing to and what was the background.

    If you apply the antithesis rule to the verse, you will see it is obviously not for Christians. If we DO NOT confess our sins, He is NOT faithful and just to FORGIVE our sins and to CLEANSE us from all UNRIGHTEOUSNESS”. All our sins HAVE been forgiven past, present and future. As Christians we cannot ask Jesus Christ to do something He has ALREADY done. Read Hebrews.

    John was writing a letter to the elders/pastors who had mixed congregations of saved and lost. There were Gnostics who believed that Jesus hadn’t come in the flesh and that they were without sin – John was correcting them – 1 John 1:1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; then he explained in 1 John 1:8 about their wrong belief of having no sin… If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth (Jesus) is not in us. He then explained in 1 John 1:9 how to get saved. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

    John writes in 1 John 4:2-3 about the Gnostics… 2. Hereby know you the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: 3. And every spirit that confesses not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof you have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.

    We often hear terms like, parental, positional, experiential, familial or judicial, when discussing forgiveness and breaking of fellowship with God when we sin. This is a man made teaching and is nowhere to be found in Scripture. 1 Cor. 1:9 (fancy that) says we have been brought into fellowship with God through Jesus Christ. We are brought into fellowship when we get saved – never to be broken. Salvation = fellowship and vice versa. You cannot lose fellowship – in order to do that you would have to become “unsaved” which is impossible.

    Of course a Christian must acknowledge when he has sinned and agree with God that his actions are wrong but nowhere in Scripture is the believer told to confess his sins to God for forgiveness of sins or to restore fellowship. How can we, by our actions make ourselves more acceptable to God? That’s works. We didn’t WORK to get our salvation and we can’t WORK to keep it.

    Hebrews 10:17… “And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more”. If God remembers our sins no more, how can we confess our sins to Him. This Scripture also proves the wrong teaching of the Holy Spirit convicts Christians of their sins. How can He when He remembers them no more? John 16:8 And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:9 Of sin, because they believe not on me;10 Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more;11 Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.
    The Holy Spirit convicts Christians of their righteousness – pointing out that they are righteous – no “finger wagging” or condemnation.
    The teaching that 1 John 1:9 is for Christians, keeps Christians in a state of confusion and does not allow them to enter into the rest.
    What do they do about the sins they have forgotten about and don’t confess? If they go to bed and die, how can they go to heaven as God will not allow sin in heaven? They live in a constant state of worry – I used to do that. I would start my prayer time with “Lord, please forgive me of the sins I’ve committed knowingly and unknowingly.” That’s just not Scriptural. The Lord HAS forgiven our sins. Thinking like this is not believing in the finished work of the cross.

    What I have found when sharing this with Christians is that they put forward all sorts of arguments/points, none of which are based on Scripture and reduce God to a human level with statements like…….”It’s like when a son sins against his father – the relationship hasn’t been affected but the fellowship has”. 1 Cor 1:9 takes care of this thinking.

    I hope this will help some Christians out there like it helped me.

    In Him,

    Norman Silva.

    • i”m not sure I understand your point. It’s hard to imagine that any scripture in the New Testament does not apply to Christians! I have not studied formal logic. The antithesis to 1 John 1:9 is absurd, as you point out. But does that falsify the verse or interpretation of the verse?

      It’s certainly true that salvation comes as a gift by grace and not as a result of doing works of the law. No one earns salvation. But are you saying that praying for forgiveness is a work? It’s part of the prayer that Jesus himself taught!

    • If we cannot lose our salvation why then did Paul say Walk out your salvation with fear and trembling.

      And why did he say I pummel my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others I myself will not be cast away

    • Thanks for your comment. I didn’t actually call Achan a type of Christ. I do know that the only people the Old Testament who can be called a type of Christ are sinners. As far as calling the significance of Achan’s death a foreshadowing of the significance of Jesus’ death, I don’t see that as pushing the interpretation too far at all. It’s not like I’m equating them. The grace shown to and through Achan is a glimmer of the same grace shown through Jesus in all its full glory.

  2. I am concerned by the information potraid in this document as fact when most of it is infact the writers own opinion which can not be qualified what so ever by the content of joshua 7 or any other material used as reference. While it is true that there is obviously serious lessons to be learnt by us as Christian from this scripture there is no where where it says that the rest of the israelites where punished for their own sin not achan’s sin. There is no where where it points out that the other israelite where also covertous or that they did this or that to anger god. On the contrary the scripture categorically points out that god’s anger was kindled because of achan’s action.

    • Achan’s sin was overt. Of course Scripture would specify that God acted against Israel because of it. Covetousness is a covert, hidden sin that people cannot notice. Why should Scripture point out covert sins? As I said, if we know our own hearts, we should recognize opportunity for covert sin when we see it.

      If you want a scriptural basis for seeing that others besides Achan were covetous, look at how Jesus expanded on the Ten Commandments. Lust is the moral equivalent of adultery. Anger of a sort is the moral equivalent of murder. Why on the same principle would covetousness not be the moral equivalent of stealing?

      I do not say that the rest of the Israelites were punished for their own sin. I say that it was just for God to punish them for Achan’s sin. I say it’s by grace that he commanded execution only for the one man who acted on covetousness and overtly stole.

  3. Sir, I differ with you when you say that God received Aachan in heaven as a consequence of his confession. I believe that there is a thin line between confession and repentance. Confessing is not repentance. The Word of God tells us to repent. Let’s hypothetically assume that a convict is brought to the Court of Justice for a murder accusation. The judge asks the convict if he has committed the murder. The Convict says ‘ Nothing ‘. The judge gives him opportunity here to accept his crime, but the convict chooses to remain silent. Then the court orders an enquiry. After the inquiry the judge again asks the convict if he has committed murder and this time the convict confesses. Do you think this is repentance. This confession is basically the outcome of the fear of punishment and not repentance. Hence, I feel Achan was never received by God in heaven and there is no biblical support to this version either.

    • You may be right–or wrong. Neither of us is the judge. We cannot know the state of anyone’s heart. All we can do is make inferences from available evidence.

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