The book of Judges – Not for the faint- hearted!
So, I’ve been reading the book of Judges and it really isn’t for the faint- hearted or maybe not something you read before eating! There’s gory bits and some pretty upsetting stuff really, but much we can learn from the goings on in Judges if you can stomach it!
In the last few days I’ve read about the Israelites and their disobedience and defeat. The Israelites didn’t drive out the people and their gods as instructed, so God pronounced that the God’s would become ‘traps’ to them. And that is exactly what happened. I read about more disobedience and more defeat. Then the Israelites called out to God for help and God sends a guy called Ehud. Gross alert – Ehud kills a really fat king – for full details see Judges 3:12-30. Anyway, this and the defeat of the Moabites brought peace to the Israelites for 80 years.
Again, the Israelites do evil, but after 20 years of oppression they call out to God and Deborah is on the scene as a leader and supports Barak into battle. There’s even a song of Deborah in chapter 5. And another women by the name of Jael is mentioned in this song. She only drove a tent peg into the commanding officer of the enemy’s army – Go Girl! For the gory details see Judges 4:16-24.
Gideon is well worth reading about in chapters 6, 7 and 8 and then Abimelek gets a chapter – not a nice man. Unbelievably, Abimelek kills his seventy brothers on one stone, quite awful, but one of his brothers escapes and lives and Abimelek gets his comeuppance. Here enters another brave women. No name is given to this women, but she dropped a millstone on Abimelek’s head – full details in chapter 9 verse 50 onwards.
Anyway, what on earth can we learn from these awful events – disobedience, defeat and death! Well we need to follow God’s instructions ourselves, the same rules apply. If we fail to follow our maker’s instructions, if we fail to do as God has told us we too will face defeat in life – we will fail to be our best, we will fail to defeat sin and as it says in Romans 6:23: ‘For the wages of sin is death..’ but the good news in Romans 6:23 is: ‘ ..but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.’
Thank you Jesus for saving us.
In Romans 7:7-25, Paul talks about doing what I don’t want to do and not doing what I do want to do – great passage on the law and sin and he ends with:
‘Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!
Amen to that!