Summary: Without God as King of one’s life, the result is moral corruption and spiritual bankruptcy.
IS IT RIGHT TO DO YOUR OWN THING"
JUDGES 17: 6, cf., 18: 1, 19: 1, 21: 25,
"In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes".
In the latter part of the book of Judges you will find this interesting statement, "In those days there was no king in Israel, but everyman did that which was right in his own eyes", (A. V.) The New International Version translates the same verse, "everyone did as he saw fit". (Judges 17: 6, 18: 1, 19: 1, 21: 25) Without much thought it came to me that the statement could also reflect upon our own society - everyone wants to do their own thing.
A close look at the period of the Judges reveals that because man did his own thing the outcome was low moral standards, a of debasing of religious conceptions and practices, and poor social structure. The commentator suggests that the disorders of the time resulted from an absence of a strong central authority - no king. A point that is laboured four times in the next few chapters.
It would seem that there is a problem when we act as we like or do as we want to do without regard to any reference point.
Obviously, Israel had put aside the principles that were so important to them in times gone by, - given to them in their Exodus experience.
Just looking at Micah from the reading we see he breaks several of those commands.
He is a thief, (v. 2)
He desired to make an idol, (v. 3)
He had his own shrine, (v. 5)
He installed his own son into the priestly office, (v. 5)
Micah had a total disregard for what was right! And he did know what was right because when a Levi came along seeking a living, (again because of the corruption that existed in the Israel society), he hires him to be his own personal priest. You will remember that the Levites were to act as the custodians of the tabernacle, particularly the duty of looking after the curtains, the tent and hangings. His own son sufficed till a genuine Levi came along, (v. 10).
Micah thought his own priest would give him access to God, (v. 13).
The whole picture is sad. No regard for God. No regard for his law. No regard for correct worship practices. No regard for other individuals. Just a big interest in SELF - "Everyone did as he saw fit".
No government to call him to account. No punishment was imposed on his crime.
As I reflect on this story and the plight of our nation today. I take the three requirements of a good society.
WE NEED GOD
WE NEED GOD’S RULES
WE NEED RIGHT WORSHIP - A RETURN TO THE CHURCH.
We do not need to be doing our own thing, but God’s will.
"The best thing I know in this world below
Is doing the will of God".
Paul warns us, "Do not be conformed any longer to the pattern of this world", (Romans 12 : 2).
Is God the focus of your life?
Do you obey his rules?
Do you worship him rightly?
It is God’s people who are seen in a poor light through compromise to be like the other nations around them. Do we want to be like others who do their own thing in our society?
Righteousness exalts a nation!