8:2 And thou shalt do to Ai and her king as thou didst unto Jericho and her king: only the spoil thereof, and the cattle thereof, shall ye take for a prey unto yourselves: lay thee an ambush for the city a behind it.
(a) Meaning on the west side, as in (Joshua
8:4 And he commanded them,
saying, Behold, ye b shall lie in wait
against the city, [even] behind the city: go not very far from the city, but be
ye all ready:
(b) God would not destroy Ai by a miracle, as
Jericho, so that other nations would fear the power and policy of his people.
Joshua therefore sent them forth: and they went to lie in ambush, and abode
between Bethel and Ai, on the west side of Ai: but Joshua lodged that night c
among the people.
(c) With the rest of the army.
8:10 And Joshua rose up early in the morning, and d
numbered the people, and went up, he and the elders of Israel, before the people
(d) That is, viewed or mustered them and set them
8:12 And he took about five
thousand men, e and set them to lie in
ambush between Bethel and Ai, on the west side of the city.
(e) He sent these few, that the others who lay in
ambush might not be discovered.
8:13 And when they had set the people, [even] all
the host that [was] on the north of the city, and their liers in wait on the
west of the city, Joshua went that night into the f
midst of the valley.
(f) To the intent that they in the city more
easily discover his army.
8:15 And Joshua and all
Israel g made as if they were beaten
before them, and fled by the way of the wilderness.
(g) As they who pretended to flee for fear.
And the LORD said unto Joshua, h Stretch
out the spear that [is] in thy hand toward Ai; for I will give it into thine
hand. And Joshua stretched out the spear that [he had] in his hand toward the
(h) Or, lift up the banner to signify when they
should invade the city.
And the i other issued out of the city
against them; so they were in the midst of Israel, some on this side, and some
on that side: and they smote them, so that they let none of them remain or
(i) Who came out of the ambush.
8:24 And it came to pass,
when Israel had made an end of slaying all the inhabitants of Ai in the field,
in the wilderness wherein they chased them, and when they were all fallen on the
edge of the sword, until they were consumed, that all the Israelites returned
unto Ai, and k smote it with the edge of
(k) For the fire, which they had before set in
the city, was not to consume it, but to signify to Joshua that they had
And Joshua burnt Ai, and made it an heap for l
ever, [even] a desolation unto this day.
(l) That it could never be built again.
8:29 And the king of Ai he hanged on a tree until
eventide: and as soon as the sun was down, Joshua commanded m
that they should take his carcase down from the tree, and cast it at the
entering of the gate of the city, and raise thereon a great heap of stones,
[that remaineth] unto this day.
(m) According as it was commanded, (Deuteronomy
And he wrote there upon the stones a n
copy of the law of Moses, which he wrote in the presence of the children of
(n) Meaning, the ten commandments, which are the
sum of the whole Law.
There was not a word of all that Moses commanded, which Joshua read not before
all the congregation of Israel, with the o
women, and the little ones, and the strangers that were conversant among them.
(o) So neither young nor old, man nor woman, were
exempted from hearing the word of the Lord.