1 Chronicles 2:7
“The son of Carmi was Achar, the troubler of Israel, who transgressed in the accursed thing.”
Since the opening chapters of 1 Chronicles are designed to give us an accurate genealogical account of Israel, very little commentary is given. When that pattern is broken, our attention should be grabbed. In the case of Achar, we find a brief reference to his story alongside his name. Achar, or Achan, lived during the conquest of Canaan. He was among those men who followed Joshua across the Jordan, into the promised land. His situation gave him opportunity to be heroic, until greed got a hold of him.
Achan’s story is recoded in Joshua 7, and goes something like this. After Israel’s victory over Jericho, Joshua explained that all the spoils of war belonged to the Lord, and forbade the people from taking anything. Achan however, saw a beautiful garment and a handful of precious coins, and ignoring the word of God, he took them to his tent. Because these things were forbidden, he had to hide them from his friends and neighbors. It was not until God shed light on the situation, that anyone knew of Achan’s sin. The story ends with his sin costing him, the nation, and his family dearly.
His story reminds us of several things. First, we must allow the word of God, not our own desires, to determine what is good and bad, or right and wrong. Second, a little personal sin can have a very big impact upon ourself and others. Third, there are no actual secret sins; all things are done openly before the Lord. and if we do not expose them to ourselves and make the appropriate changes, God will reveal them. For the sake of the whole congregation of Israel, God took a strong stance against Achan’s behavior. It is not that He did not love Achan or his family, but that this one man’s action were weakening the entire nation.
There are many things worth being remembered for, but giving into personal lust and negatively impacting your family, friends, and church, are not one of them. If you are struggling with a secret sin, take the time to make it known. You do not have to publish it for all to read. However, the Bible tells us to first confess it to God, then to confess it to a trustworthy fellow Christian, who will pray for you and keep you accountable. Achan could have saved his life, and that of his family, had he only confessed his sin.