One of the remarkable things about the stories in the Book of Judges that we’ve been studying in this months “By Faith” series, is how very diverse the stories are. Gideon was a reluctant hero, recruited by an angel to use asymmetrical warfare tactics to defeat an overwhelming enemy. Samson was a one man army with a terrible temper (and a weakness for hot and hostile Philistine women). Barak was recruited for battle by Deborah, a woman who managed to shatter the glass ceiling and become a Judge over Israel at a time when women were regarded mostly as property. This Sunday we’ll be exploring the story of Jephthah, a powerful outlaw who was pressed into duty (and the leadership of his people) because of his violent reputation.
The book of Judges in the Old Testament is fascinating. Every story is different. Every character is unique. But, there is ONE theme that runs throughout the historical record of the early nation of Israel…and that theme is a big part or your life story and mine as well. Each story is about people who need to be rescued, and each story begins precisely the same. Here’s this week’s opening lines:
Again the Israelites did evil in the Lord’s sight… (Judges 10:6a)
Over and over.
Every story begins the same.
And, each time they found themselves in misery and bondage, they cried out to God to rescue them -again. I am SO thankful for the mercy of God. I am eternally grateful that instead of giving up on rescuing sinful, disobedient people, he sent one more ultimate rescue mission. Instead of giving up on sinful people who ignored angels, prophets, and heroes, he sent his Son- Jesus. And, even though we misused and even murdered HIM, he still chose to permanently rescue those who would believe and follow from their sins.
Thank you God for rescuing me from my sin.