As we move through these judges I want to see what we can learn from each and compare their story to Christ. As all of you know Christ is the better judge, but we have been given these examples to learn from. First I want you to keep in mind these are human, depraved, and selfish judges just like us but God chose them and used them to accomplish his will. Israel is in a clear state of disobedience but God graciously equips men and women to lead and temperarily smooth their suffering.
As we read I want you to be praying that God would open your eyes to his charater and also his unconditional love for his people. Sift through this book and save those peices of knowledge to build and empower you to serve with a true and obedient heart. Lets Serve God alone and stand upon his inerrant word as our sure foundation.
With that lets look at the scene found here in Judges chapter 2.
Before we can talk about Othniel (1st judge), the author finds great importance in describing the continious cycle the Israelites had fallen into. First we need to take note that God had given a command to drive out all the nations out of the promise land. Israel goes into the land but does not do as God commanded. You can see a progression as Israel disobeys: they don’t remove all their enimies, instead enslaving them (1:28) and then Dan is pushed to live in the moutains (v 35). Finally in chapter 2:11-23, Israel disobeyed and God allowed their enemies to enslave them. God never left his people; he was always working and always seeking restoration.
God’s hand in motion:
1. Delivered v14
2. Sold v14
3. Against them v15
4. Raised up v16
God’s character revealed:
1. Compassion v18
2. Anger v20
3. Covenant keeper v20
4. Patient 3:2
Why did God treat Israel the way he did? Was there a point? What kind of message was God trying to send? We understand from verses 20-22 that God is a covenant keeping God. He cannot lie because his character and word would become void. If he were to “give in” to his people they could no longer trust him. God also allowed Israel’s ememies to become a test on whether they would worship him or the pagan gods. This rebellion would reveal two things; God’s charater and man’s heart.
Israel is caught in a cycle of sin that seems to be on a continous loop. What does the cycle look like?
Israel sins — Israel is delivered to enemies — Israel cries out — Israel has a deliverer — Israel has rest — Israel sins
This cycle will become very familar to us as we progress.
God had given a simple command and enabled his people to be victorious but they turned their back on him. He grew them and strengthened them, even while they were in sin, so they could obey but their hearts were selfish. In their unrepentent state God delivered them out of slavery; does this sound familar?
Are you truely worshipping the one true God? Are you cultivating your comitted relationship with him? Are you faithful to him? God is a jealous God and will tare down any idol you may have in your heart! Don’t whallow in the same sin as the Israelites. Exam your heat.
Repent and turn to him even now!
With Great Love & Truth,