Summary: The Idsraelites were commanded to destroy take over the Promised Land without compromise!
About 3 years ago, we studied the Book of Joshua; you can check those messages in sermoncentral.com; it is wonderful to note that we have had almost 77000 views of those messages from all over the world!
Remember that Joshua took the Israelites to the Land God Promised the Israelites. We will now study the Book of Judges following that Book of Joshua; please open your Bibles there….. Read along with me Chapter 1….. again let us read it as words coming directly from our God, for the Bible is the spoken word of our Creator God!
I intentionally added for our study Judges 2:1-2……..
And so, we will note some good things which God’s Chosen People did, but like all people The Israelites also sinned against God! We will note in Judges that the Israelites followed God but with compromises which led to lost blessings!
In Judges 1:1: What was the right thing that the Israelites did??
v1…… The Israelites did the right thing by praying to God for a new leader!
And their hearts must have been sincere in their prayer because in..
v2: God answered their prayers!
Now, what can we can note from v3-4??
1. The Tribe of Judah obeyed God and took the lead!
2. The Men fought but God gave the victory!
3. Men of Judah were “wise” to ask for help and both parties agreed for mutual support!
But then again, was it really a wise thing that Judah did??
God never told Judah to ask for help, but they did.
4. Judah asked for help indicating they did not fully trust God’s power! Could an Almighty God win a battle over 10000 with even just one person? God can win any batlle by Himself alone!
Judah did not have to ask for help for God was with them! Having help is good but, Judah should have prayed to God before making that seemingly wise decision!
Prayer, talking to God about everything, is a key to a godly life!
Now according to v5-7, why did the Israelites cut off AdoniBezek’s thumbs and big toes??
AdonidBezek made slaves of other kings by cutting their thumbs and big toes!
v5-7: The cruel king got a “taste of his own bad medicine” and that king finally realized it!
What can be wrong about what the Israelites did with that king??
God never told the Israelites to cut the thumbs and big toes of AdoniBezek; they did it by copying what that cruel king did; We can note here that Judah did what the “world” did! Man’s way better than God’s way?
v8-11: Judah continued to win battles for the Lord! Why? - because God promised victory and it happened!
Now, we could spend time in discussing the relationship between Caleb, his daughter and son-in-law in v12-15. I struggled a bit in understanding why the story of Caleb and his daughter is in this chapter until I noted,
God introduced Othniel here then continued with Israelites conquering the Promised Land.
v16: a possibility of the Israelites intermingling with non-Israelites
v17-36: the Israelites won victories for the Lord BUT also lost as the made compromises
• in v19 they had the fear of iron chariots
• in v23-26 they compromised with a non-Hebrew
• in v27 Manasseh feared the Canaanites
• in v28-36 Israel lived with the Canaanites
There are 3 Biblical Principles we need to note and apply for our lives today because God is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow!
1. Whether we don’t know the next step or already thought of the next step, always pray to God with a sincere heart! Remember the 7 Ps for life??
7 Ps for life – Pray, Plan (according to God’s Word), Pray, Prioritize, Pray, Proceed (according to God’s Word), then Praise!
2. Be careful of copying what the world did or does or depend on our own wisdom! Keep in mind 1 Corinthians 3:19a…. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness in God’s sight.
God’s Wisdom, His Words, will always prevail! Why not live with god’s word alone?
In the middle of the battles, we noted the story of Caleb and his daughter marrying Othniel who later was called to be the 1st Judge of Israel! Here’s what came to mind; Things can happen in our lives that sometimes we can’t understand why! My niece 27 years old was married for only 12 days last July when she was taken by the Lord to heaven, and we all wondered why!
3. Do not be surprised or discouraged when things happen we don’t fully understand! God’s ways are not man’s ways! Study God’s Word for answers and fully trust God.