Judges

Since I was on vacation a few days, I was unable to type stuff up. I will just try to do a quick catch up of what we've read so far in Judges.

Judges 1-5

Judges is more than just about the judges who rose up in Israel. It's a book showing who the ultimate Judge is. It's God. He judges Israel for their sin, and then shows His judgement against the other nations. In all cases, God is the one in control and the actual Judge.

Judges 1 starts out great, but soon falls. But starting in verse 27, we start reading about how the tribes "did not drive out the people." And there begins their downfall. We are now beginning to see a pattern. When the Israelites disobey, bad things happen. Whey they repent, they are restored and God is on their side.

The final thing I want to mention is a little conversation between Barak and Deborah. Deborah has called Barak to command an army. Barak's reply is that he will only go if Deborah goes with him. This act of fear/worry cost him the main prize of the battle, Sisera. When God asks us to take part in something or to lead, what will OUR response be? Do we have the confidence in God?
 
Judges 6-7

In 6, we see a typical reaction to God's called. Gideon was called and replied with "How can I save Israel?" Moses said something similar. And we will see other prophets later on who do the same thing. But wow! Gideon is a great example of how it doesn't take anyone special or mighty to perform God things. The Lord replies to Gideon by saying, "I will be with you." The battle is the Lord's. He will fight for us.

Chapter 6 ends with the famous Gideon's fleece scene. You may have heard people use the phrase "throw out Gideon's fleece" or something like that. They are saying to put something out that will make God's calling obvious. Unfortunately, I think many people use this for the wrong reasons. It was used for Gideon in a particular instance. That does not mean we should always use it too. To me, it can be an indication of lack of faith. In the case of Gideon, I don't think it is lack of faith. In verse 34, the Spirit of the Lord had come upon Gideon. At this point, I think he knew without a doubt God was going to save. But this is pure speculation on my part. I did not see anything in regards to Gideon's faith in my reference books.

Joshua 7 is just amazing. God takes an army of 32,000 and dwindles them down to 300. The battle results are a clear indication God was the one fighting. With a mere 300 men, there was no way anyone could believe otherwise.

I think these passages are a great encouragement to us to know God can use ANY of us as He chooses. We just need to be willing. We read the other day of how Barak showed doubt and fear and so He lost out on being mightily used by God. Someone else was chosen instead. Nothing can stop God's will. If Gideon had said "No way", God would have chosen someone else.
 
Judges 8-12

The last two days', there have been 3 major players.

1) Gideon - Previously we read how he tore down his father's altar to Baal and the Asherah pole beside it.  His significant statement today is in 8:23.  Gideon says, "I will not rule over you, nor will my son rule over you.  The LORD will rule over you."  Gideon understood who the real leader of Israel was.  They did not need to set up some human figure.  Gideon, and we will see Samuel do the same thing later, considered anything else to be a replacement of God's rule.

2) Abimelech - Amazing how quickly things turn.  As Gideon had turned away from his father's belief, and placed God first, Gideon's son has now done the complete opposite to Gideon.  Abimelech has returned to Baal worship.  It makes me think of how important it is to teach our children the Truth and bring them up in a Godly home.  God has told us, even commanded us, to repeat the things God has accomplished to our children.

3) Jephthah - Here's a guy who was a bit too quick in his speech.  He vowed to sacrifice whatever came out of his house to meet him when he returned from battle.  Obviously the battle itself was minor, as it is given 2 small verses.  The vow, and Jephthah's foolishness is the key.  There are actually all sorts of interpretations of this scripture.  There is of course the literal, that he sacrificed his daughter.  Then there are some who think what it meant was he would never give his daughter away for marriage.  And there are still other variations.  I'm not pointing this out to be confusing, but to say, YES, this chapter can be a little confusing and sort of difficult to understand.  Personally, I go with the literal interpretation.  I think anything else is based on the thinking "No way could Jephthah have done that to his daughter.  There MUST be another explanation."
 
Judges 13-21

Samson - He was set apart from birth as a Nazirite. Remember what that was from Numbers 6? They vow to have no wine, and to have no razor used on their head. In case of Samson, his hair is very significant. Well, Samson betrays his vow, and the LORD departs from him, showing the true source of Samson's strength is from God.

Micah and the Levite - Micah is doing something very wrong. He is setting up his own little place of worship away from the main tabernacle. Thinking he will have an honest location, he decides to hire the Levite. Well, certainly just because there is a Levite there, can't make it a valid place of worship. And the Levite is simply interested in the material aspects of this transaction. Then the Danites came along and snagged the priest for themselves. They wanted him to give them a blessing for their upcoming conquest. But God had already given them an allotment. It was already guarenteed. The Israelites are degrading daily.

The whole story of the Levite and his concubine is totally disgusting. The Israelites have sunken to a new low. Even to the point of almost wiping out an entire tribe. What's happening? They are hardly acting like a family.

21:25 sums it all up. "Everyone did what was right in his own eyes." Hmmm, sounds like they had their own moral relativism. If they continue, something's gotta happen. We'll read about that in I Samuel. But next comes Ruth. Sort of a good pick me up from Judges.
 
Ohhh. I just looked over the next few day's reading and it turns out, we will start flipping all over the place, since we are doing chronological. Boy! Tomorrow's reading is only one Chapter, Ruth 1. Ruth is so short (4 Chapters) we could probably read the whole thing tomorrow. In fact, they must have messed up. That's the only reference to Ruth I can find on the webpage. So they MUST mean it to be Ruth 1-4.
 
O

(ohms)Lady Kajun

Guest
If you go to the calendar, you will find that it is supposed to be Ruth 1-4 today.  I believe you are right brother, it is just a typo.

Bible in a year

As a matter of fact, as I went back to the email to do my reading for today, I found that my email does say Ruth 1-4. Are you tired brother...LOL!!!
 
Hmmm, when I go to the chrono web page where it lists out EACH day, I only see Ruth 1. That's what I've been using to know what to read each day. Perhaps I should sign up for the daily e-mail.

[b said:
Quote[/b] ]Are you tired brother...LOL!!!
Hahahaha. Could be. I got up early on Saturday morning to go hiking with my men's accountibility group. Ugggh. That was STEEEEEP and I am VERY out of shape. I was wiped out.
 
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