Summary: Every family, organization and movement struggles with the problem of internal divisions. Many internal conflicts result from a struggle over control. If everyone learns to give the Lord control for whatever they are responsible for, many internal divisio
Every family, organization and movement struggles with the problem of internal divisions. Many internal conflicts result from a struggle over control. If everyone learns to give the Lord control for whatever they are responsible for, many internal divisions can be minimized. In Judges 9, we are given an example of Israel’s internal divisions and all the errors to avoid.
1. Since Israel did not choose the Lord as their Master they unwisely chose Abimelech as their king. They based their decision on family loyalties, insider deals, and crony values rather than on the truth of God. Whenever people chose a leader, they should base their decision on Godly criteria. (Judges 8:33-9:6) Every leader should be chosen on the basis of prayer, study of the scriptures, Godly counsel, wise assessment of the needs of each situation and the leading of the Holy Spirit’s teaching.
Application: Without the Lord’s leading there will always be internal divisions.
2. Israel chose to select a leader who would dance to the tune of ungodly advisers. As soon as Abimelech became king, he used 70 piece of silver gotten from the temple of Baal. He used the money to hire reckless adventurers who became his followers and lackies.
3. Abimelech was chosen for political rather than for spiritual motivations.
Application: Whenever a leader is chosen because of his political skills, he will fail unless He possesses Godly characteristics.
4. Abimelech was raised when Gideon had become prideful and taken many wives, riches and kingly privileges for himself. Abimelech allowed himself to fall under the influence of this ungodly example.
5. Abimelech saw no vital fruit from his father’s faith. He fell into the worship, service and practices of pagan neighbors. He saw nothing wrong with a life direct by worldly thinking. Abimelech even promoted the causes of worldly activities and philosophies.
6. Abimelech also picked up the tendency of his father to rule in the place of God. Many spiritual leaders get so wrapped in serving God that they try to play the role of God in ruling over people.
7. The Israelites were so perverse, distorted and twisted in their perspectives on truth that they crowned Abimelech as king rather than discipling him.
8. Abimelech is a picture of every person’s carnal desires that want to rule over people with worldly means. The Lord has assured us that He is the ruler of all the earth and He will not share His glory with anyone.
9. Abimelech killed 69 of his half brothers on a rock near their home allowing no one to escape.
Application: Evil always reveals itself for what is really is. Do not think you can hide secret sins.
10. Abimelech was disqualified and removed from office by the Lord. Do not think that God will stand idly by watching His church crumble. He will replace leaders who will not do His will.
11. Abimelech received the full measure of God’s vengeance. Do not think that you can take vengeance into your own hands with wayward leaders. The Lord is the best one to deal with people who leave the paths of righteousness.
12. God repaid the wickedness that Abimelech had done to his father by murdering his seventy brothers. God also made the men of Shechem pay for all their wickedness.
Application: Be not deceived, God is not mocked. Whatever a man sows that will he also reap – whether good or bad." (Gal. 6:6)