Study Guide

Book of Joshua Chapter 8

Chapter 8

An Ai For An Eye

  • The Israelites prepare for a rematch with Ai.
  • God tells Joshua to take all the booty. By booty, we're obviously referring to Ai's treasures. Duh.
  • God decides that this time the herem will allow for some booty to be kept. Whatever you say, God.
  • The Israelites plan to ambush the city from behind, kind of like that time Han Solo and the Ewoks tried to ambush the Empire on Endor.
  • The king of Ai and all his warriors come out to meet the Israelites in battle.
  • Remembering the last time they met, the men of Ai and their king rush out and chase the Israelites, leaving Ai virtually unprotected.
  • Obviously, the king of Ai never read Sun Tzu's The Art of War.
  • God tells Joshua to stretch out his sword arm toward arm, much like Moses stretches out his staff in Exodus 14:15-16.
  • At this point, the Israelites stop running and turn around and charge.
  • The soldiers of Ai see their city burning and the other half of the Israelite army charging toward them.
  • To Ai, this is like being caught in the trash compactor on the Death Star.
  • Yes, we know we made two Star Wars references in one chapter summary, but you know what? We don't care. Because Star Wars.
  • The Israelites kill 12,000 men and women and hang the king of Ai outside the city ruins as a warning to not mess with the best.
  • Joshua then builds an altar to God on Mount Ebal just as it was instructed to Moses in Deuteronomy 27:4-7.
  • Joshua, just to be more like Moses, writes a copy of the Law of Moses on stones and reads it to everyone.

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