'Spy' in the Bible
So they gave the Israelites a bad report about the land which they had spied out, saying, “The land through which we went, in spying it out, is a land that devours its inhabitants. And all the people that we saw in it are men of great stature.
It shall be a tassel for you to look at and remember all the commandments of the Lord, to do them, so that you do not follow after [the desires of] your own heart and eyes, [desires] after which you used to follow and play the prostitute,
Now Moses sent men to spy out Jazer, and they overthrew its villages and dispossessed the Amorites who were there.
So Joshua spared Rahab the prostitute, with her father’s household and everything that she had; and she has lived among Israel to this day, because she hid the messengers (scouts) whom Joshua sent to spy out Jericho.
Now Joshua sent men from Jericho to Ai, which is near Beth-aven, east of Bethel, and said to them, “Go up and spy out the land.” So the men went up and spied out Ai.
The house of Joseph spied out Bethel (now the name of the city was formerly Luz).
So the sons of Dan sent from the total number of their [extended] family five brave men from Zorah and Eshtaol, to scout the land and to explore it; and they said to them, “Go, explore the land.” They came to the hill country of Ephraim, to the house of Micah, and lodged there.
Then the five men who had gone to scout the country of Laish said to their relatives, “Do you know that there are in these houses an ephod, teraphim, an image [of silver-plated wood], and a cast image [of solid silver]? Now therefore, consider what you should do.”
Now the five men who had gone to scout the land went up and entered the house and took the image [of silver-plated wood], the ephod, the teraphim, and the cast image [of solid silver], while the priest stood by the entrance of the gate with the six hundred men armed with weapons of war.
But the princes of the Ammonites [were suspicious and] said to Hanun their lord, “Do you think that David is honoring your father because he has sent comforters to you? Has David not sent his servants to you in order to search the city, to spy it out and overthrow it?”
But the leaders of the Ammonites said to Hanun, “Do you think that David has sent people to console and comfort you because he honors your father? Have his servants not come to you to search and to overthrow and to spy out the land?”
My concern was because of the false brothers [those people masquerading as Christians] who had been secretly smuggled in [to the community of believers]. They had slipped in to spy on the freedom which we have in Christ Jesus, in order to bring us back into bondage [under the Law of Moses].