“And the men which were expressed by name rose up, and took the captives, and with the spoil clothed all that were naked among them, and arrayed them, and shod them, and gave them to eat and to drink, and anointed them, and carried all the feeble of them upon asses, and brought them to Jericho, the city of palm trees, to their brethren: then they returned to Samaria” (2 Chr. 28:15).

In 2 Chronicles, chapter 28, the Lord describes how the leaven of Ahaz spread to all Judah so the people of Judah spoiled their own wardrobe like the wicked northern nation of Israel.  It is a very short chapter with only twenty-seven verses.  We learn that Ahaz was a son of Jotham and the 11th king of Judah (2 Kings 15:38,16). He was an ungodly king who promoted the worship of Molech, with its pagan rites of human sacrifice (2 Chr. 28:1-4).  Judah worshipped molten images of Baalim and offered their own children as sacrifices to false gods in the valley of Hinnom.  What was God’s response?  He delivered them into the hands of the king of Syria, who “smote them” and carried the multitude away as captives to Damascus.

God also delivered them into the hands of the king of Israel, who slaughtered many.  The children of Israel carried away captive of their own brethren, 200,000 women, sons and daughters of the slaughtered men and took much spoil before they brought them to Samaria.  Amazing as it may seem, a prophet of the Lord was there whose name was Oded, who told them plainly that God had delivered Judah into their hands because He was angry with them; however, God’s wrath would be upon Israel if they did not let them go free.  Israel had purposed to keep the people of Judah for slaves, but Oded reminded them of their own wickedness and how they had better show mercy to Judah.

Certain of the leaders stood up against the Israelite army and warned them they also were in jeopardy of being punished the same way because of their own sins.  If they added this evil to their record, they surely would bring wrath from the Lord upon the entire nation.  With a complete change of heart, the army of Israel left the captives and the spoil in front of the princes and all the congregation of the Israelite people and went to correct this grievous error.  What did they do?  They took the spoil they had taken in battle and used it to clothe the captive women, children and old people and carry them back to their homes.  Who ever heard of such?  They took that same spoil, which their victorious army had brought away, to clothe, feed, shoe, and anoint, these distressed people, set the feeblest of them upon asses, and escort them safely to Jericho.

God had delivered Judah into the hands of their enemies because their king had made them to sin.  He humbled them and made them naked before the world so they could learn a lesson.  Then, as if nothing had been learned at all, Ahaz committed one more sin, which was to take gold and precious things from the house of the Lord to try to buy allegiance from Assyria, but Assyria did not help him when the enemy came to attack again.  At his death, Ahaz was buried without honor in Jerusalem. He was not thought worthy of a burial in the kings’ tombs (2 Chr. 28:27).   Surely Ahaz spoiled his own wardrobe and caused Judah to follow his evil example.

“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land” (2 Chr. 7:14).


  1. What was a major sign God gave to show Ahaz that he was displeased with him and Judah (2 Chr. 28:4-5)?
  2. What did Ahaz cause Judah to do in their worship (2 Chr. 28:2-3)?
  3. Of what did God’s prophet (Oded) remind the children of Israel when they took Judah captive (2 Chr. 28:9-11)?
  4. What New Testament principle do we see in this example (James 2:13)?
  5. Who were the main ones who listened to God’s warning (2 Chr. 28:12)?
  6. What did the Samaritans do to show they believed God’s warning (2 Chr. 28:15)?
  7. What does God require us to do today to our enemies? ( 5:44-45)
  8. What further sin did Ahaz commit to show he had faith in men but not in God (2 Chr. 28:19-25)?
  9. What did God do after Ahaz’ death to show He was angry with him? (2 Chr. 28:27)?
  10. RESEARCH QUESTION:  Using Naves’ Topical Bible at:


Look up the various accounts of times when spoil was taken.

  • From the scriptures given, list the things that were taken.
  • Explain how the spoil was divided between the ones who fought and the ones who did not (of the Israelites, including priests and Levites).
  • Finally, explain how some of it was dedicated to the Lord and by whom.

In some Bible dictionaries, the word spoil will have a cross reference to take you to the word booty.  Notice the definition of spoil/booty: plunder and spoils of war. Booty consisted of everything of value taken in battle-gold and silver, clothing, food, household items, weapons, implements of agriculture, camels, sheep, cattle, as well as men, women, and children to be used as slaves (Gen. 14:11-12; Jer. 49:32).

-Beth Johnson

COVETOUSNESS: Lesson 10-Achan

Lesson 10—Achan

The hope for the long anticipated Promised Land flowing with milk and honey was finally realized. Ending the forty year-long trek in the wilderness, the Israelites crossed the Jordan River and headed toward Jericho (Num 20:21-21:3). The bitter experience with Edom’s refusal to allow them passage through their borders was now behind them.

Moses and Aaron had been gathered to their people rather than enter with Israel into Canaan because of the incident at Meribah (Num. 20:10-11, 13). Aaron was stripped of his priestly garments and his son Eleazar took his place. Moses and Aaron died and God himself buried Moses (Deut. 34:5-6; Num. 20:25-28). “And Israel vowed a vow unto the Lord, and said, If thou wilt indeed deliver this people into my hand, then I will utterly destroy their cities” (Num. 21:2). God’s promise of victory over their enemies was conditional on keeping themselves from the accursed thing.

We remember the account of the men going to spy out the land and how Rahab hid them rather than betray God’s people to the enemy. Because of her faith in God they made a covenant to take her and her family out of Jericho before destroying it utterly (Josh. 2:18-20; 6:17). Before the battle, God had instructed the Israelites to march around the city once each day for six days and finally march around the city seven times on the seventh day before blowing the trumpets for battle (Josh. 6:3-20). Their obedience brought down the walls and every person and animal in Jericho was destroyed. The Israelites understood Jericho was to be burnt with fire.

If the story had ended as it began, there would have been no trouble to record, but of course Israel did not keep its part of the covenant. Joshua 7:1 records, “But the children of Israel committed a trespass in the accursed thing: for Achan, the son of Carmi, the son of Zabdi, the son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, took of the accursed thing: and the anger of the Lord was kindled against the children of Israel.” God had specifically warned all Israel: “And ye, in any wise keep yourselves from the accursed thing, lest ye make yourselves accursed, when ye take of the accursed thing, and make the camp of Israel a curse, and trouble it” (Josh 6:18).

Achan apparently had no faith in God’s warning. God testified that “Israel hath sinned, and they have also transgressed my covenant which I commanded them: for they have even taken of the accursed thing, and have also stolen, and dissembled also, and they have put it even among their own stuff (Joshua 7:11). Achan coveted the spoil after the battle of Jericho, when God had said explicitly that the silver and gold was His (Josh 6:19).

Nobody suspected anything was wrong until the battle at the city of Ai. Following that resounding defeat, they cast lots so see who among the people had sinned. When the lot finally fell on Achan, Joshua encouraged him to give God the glory by telling the truth. From his own mouth, Achan testified to what happened. “When I saw among the spoils a goodly Babylonish garment, and two hundred shekels of silver, and a wedge of gold of fifty shekels weight, then I coveted them, and took them; and, behold, they are hid in the earth in the midst of my tent, and the silver under it” (Joshua 7:21).
Achan’s name means trouble. The son of Carmi of the tribe of Judah, Achan unintentionally brought about the Israelites’ defeat at Ai (Josh 7:1, 18-24). He is called Achar in 1 Chr. 2:7, and described as the “troubler of Israel, who transgressed in the accursed thing.” What a shameful heritage to leave his family just because he did not overcome his greed for gain!


1. Why did Israel not have the victory at Ai when they first went to battle (Joshua 22:20)?

2. Were most of the Israelites faithful to God (Joshua 6:24)?

3. Have you heard the term, “sin in the camp?”

4. Did Achan know that the gold belonged to God (Joshua 6:19)?

5. Who did Achan really steal from?

6. How were the children of Israel able to identify who among them had sinned in the “cursed thing?” (Joshua 7:13, 15, 18).

7. When the lot fell on Achan, what did Joshua say to him (Joshua 7:19)?

8. How did Achan give glory to God in his confession (Joshua 7:20)?

9. Where had Achan hidden the stolen things (Joshua 7:22)?

10. As a result of Achan’s sin, what punishment was dealt to him and his family (Josh 7:24)?

11. Did Achan’s covetousness only affect his own soul? Who else was “troubled?”

12. How were Achan’s wife and children influenced to disobey God’s warning?

13. Why was it necessary to burn Achan’s family and all his possessions with fire (Josh 7:24; Josh 22:20)?

14. What was the ‘heritage’ that Achan’s family received?

15. Could Achan’s family have avoided being condemned with him by exposing his sin?