Joshua 6:20-21 20 So the people shouted, and the trumpets were blown. As soon as the people heard the sound of the trumpet, the people shouted a great shout, and the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they captured the city. 21 Then they devoted all in the city to destruction, both men and women, young and old, oxen, sheep, and donkeys, with the edge of the sword.
Joshua 7:25-26 25 And Joshua said, “Why did you bring trouble on us? The Lord brings trouble on you today.” And all Israel stoned him with stones. They burned them with fire and stoned them with stones. 26 And they raised over him a great heap of stones that remains to this day. Then the Lord turned from his burning anger. Therefore, to this day the name of that place is called the Valley of Achor.
Joshua 8:21-25 21 And when Joshua and all Israel saw that the ambush had captured the city, and that the smoke of the city went up, then they turned back and struck down the men of Ai. 22 And the others came out from the city against them, so they were in the midst of Israel, some on this side, and some on that side. And Israel struck them down, until there was left none that survived or escaped. 24 When Israel had finished killing all the inhabitants of Ai in the open wilderness where they pursued them, and all of them to the very last had fallen by the edge of the sword, all Israel returned to Ai and struck it down with the edge of the sword. 25 And all who fell that day, both men and women, were 12,000, all the people of Ai.
Joshua 11:12, 14-15 12 And all the cities of those kings, and all their kings, Joshua captured, and struck them with the edge of the sword, devoting them to destruction, just as Moses the servant of the Lord had commanded. 14 And all the spoil of these cities and the livestock, the people of Israel took for their plunder. But every person they struck with the edge of the sword until they had destroyed them, and they did not leave any who breathed. 15 Just as the Lord had commanded Moses his servant, so Moses commanded Joshua, and so Joshua did. He left nothing undone of all that the Lord had commanded Moses. • God’s command to Moses on conquering cities. Cf. Deuteronomy 7:1-5; 20:16-18
We can be assured that God is just, whether we understand it or not.
Job 1:21 And he said, “Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.”
• This is a specific judgement on a morally degraded people. Cf. Genesis 15:16; Deuteronomy 9:4; 18:9-12
God’s retribution is not impulsive and illogical on these pagan cities. He is perfect in justice, love, and anger.
• God has a mission to rescue a sinful people, but God warns they would be corrupted by the Canaanites. They weren’t fully destroyed, and what God said would happen, happened. Cf. Deuteronomy 7:4; Leviticus 18:24-25, 27-28
The book of Judges reveals the results. Those few who were spared sinfully influenced Israel, just as God predicted they would.
• We are all sinners deserving death. Cf. Luke 10:12; 12:5; 13:1-9; 17:29-32; Hebrews 10:26-31 God commanded them all to be put to death is because they were all, every man, woman and child of them, sinners. And the wages of sin is death.
God judged His own people harsher than anyone else. Which is worse because they knew the One true God. God uses the pagan nations to bring judgement on Israel. Cf. Joshua 7
Joshua 6:25 But Rahab the prostitute and her father's household and all who belonged to her, Joshua saved alive. And she has lived in Israel to this day, because she hid the messengers whom Joshua sent to spy out Jericho. Cf. Romans 5:6-9
Remember Rehab – shows God’s grace for those that by faith follow – foreshadowing of God’s justice and free gift.