The land given to ancient Israel was inhabited by Canaanites, a depraved people who practiced sexual immorality—including incest, sodomy, and bestiality—as well as ritual child sacrifice. (Leviticus 18:2-27) The book Archaeology and the Old Testament states that excavations “have uncovered piles of ashes and remains of infant skeletons in cemeteries around heathen altars, pointing to the widespread practice of [child sacrifice].”
The Canaanites would worship their gods through immoral indulgence and also sacrifice their firstborn to the same gods, says a Bible handbook. It adds: “Archaeologists who dig in the ruins of Canaanite cities wonder that God did not destroy them sooner than he did.”
God’s destruction of the Canaanites is a sober reminder for us today that he will not forever put up with evil perpetrated in his name. “[God] has set a day in which he purposes to judge the inhabited earth in righteousness,” says Acts 17:31.