ESV Ex 23:30 "Little by little I will drive them out from before you, until you have increased and possess the land. 31 And I will set your border from the Red Sea to the Sea of the Philistines, and from the wilderness to the Euphrates, for I will give the inhabitants of the land into your hand, and you shall drive them out before you. 32 You shall make no covenant with them and their gods. 33 They shall not dwell in your land, lest they make you sin against me; for if you serve their gods, it will surely be a snare to you.”Later, during that process, one group of Canaanites, the Gibeonites, deceived the leaders of the Israelites by coming into the Israelites' camp dressed in worn-out clothing, carrying old, dry, crumbly bread, patched sandals, etc, and claiming to be from a distant country (with whom the Israelites were allowed to make treaties).
The leaders bought into this deception, and made a treaty with the Gibeonites, in violation of God's instructions.
My friend Brad points out the real problem here: verse 14:
So the men took some of their provisions, but did not ask counsel from YHWH. 15 And Joshua made peace with them and made a covenant with them....Brad summarizes the lesson for us:
Always ask God before you do anything. And then listen.A wise man, my friend Brad.