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It does initially to us seem pretty harsh that the Lord would say, "Okay, because you took a robe and some silver and some gold, I'm now going to kill you and all of your family." But we were told in Joshua that this was the one time the Lord asked them, all of the things, it's called, they were under the ban. They were all to be devoted to the Lord.
Really what we see Achan doing is, he put his belief in these possessions, rather than his belief in the Lord. You know, the sad thing about Achan, not only did he miss out on life and his family all died with him, in every city afterwards, the Lord let them keep every bit of plunder that they got. If he had trusted the Lord with all of his heart, he would have had the blessing, but we often miss the blessing because we try to secure it in our own strength.
Really, the punishment that fell on Achan is the punishment that falls on anyone that's outside of Christ. When we are outside of him, that is the right punishment we deserve. The fact that all of us aren't immediately taken out and stoned is His grace. From the moment of Adam, truthfully, we've all been living in the grace that a Redeemer would come. And so the reality is while this punishment seems harsh, it's the one we all deserve, and sometimes we just, we don't really want it to be that harsh for someone else because then it might be that harsh for us. But the only thing protecting us from that same punishment is Christ and the fact that all the scars fell on Him, so we can avoid that same punishment.