Summary: DAKHEEL; the sacred duty of protection

Judges 4 (NASB)

4 The sons of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord, after Ehud died. 2 The Lord sold them into the hand of Jabin king of Canaan; and the commander of his army was Sisera. 3 The sons of Israel cried to the Lord; for he had nine hundred iron chariots, and he oppressed the sons of Israel severely for twenty years.

4 Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lappidoth, was judging Israel at that time. 5 She used to sit under the palm tree of Deborah; and Israel came to her for judgment. 6 She summoned Barak, and said, “Behold, the Lord, the God of Israel, has commanded, ‘Go and march to Mount Tabor, and take with you ten thousand men from the sons of Naphtali and from the sons of Zebulun. 7 I will draw out to you Sisera, the commander of Jabin’s army, with his chariots and his many troops to the river Kishon, and I will give him into your hand.’” 8 Then Barak said to her, “If you will go with me, then I will go; but if you will not go with me, I will not go.” 9 She said, “I will surely go with you; nevertheless, the honor shall not be yours on the journey that you are about to take, for the Lord will sell Sisera into the hands of a woman.”

14 Deborah said to Barak, “Arise! For this is the day in which the Lord has given Sisera into your hands.” 15 The Lord routed Sisera and all his chariots and all his army with the edge of the sword before Barak; and Sisera alighted from his chariot and fled away on foot. 16 But Barak pursued the chariots and the army, and all the army of Sisera fell by the edge of the sword; not even one was left.

17 Sisera fled to the tent of Jael the wife of Heber the Kenite, for there was peace between Jabin the king of Hazor and the house of Heber the Kenite. 18 Jael went out to Sisera, and said to him, “Turn aside, my master! Do not be afraid.” And he turned aside to her into the tent, and she covered him with a rug.19 He said to her, “Please give me a little water to drink, for I am thirsty.” So she opened a bottle of milk and gave him a drink; then she covered him. 20 He said to her, “Stand in the doorway of the tent, and it shall be if anyone comes and inquires of you, and says, ‘Is there anyone here?’ that you shall say, ‘No.’” 21 But Jael, Heber’s wife, took a tent peg and seized a hammer in her hand, and went secretly to him and drove the peg into his temple, and it went through into the ground; for he was sound asleep and exhausted. So he died.

Murder They Wrote

Jael and the Nail

Three days must have elapsed since the battle before it would be possible for Sisera to cross on foot the swollen river Kishon in search for safety among the allied tribes of Bedouins. A poor Bedouin tribe would have bene left by Jabin to its natural independence; tribute can only be secured from FELLAHÎN - settled tribes.

This peace enabled Sisera to boldly appeal to these nomads for DAKHEEL; the sacred duty of protection.

Israel's Temporary Influences And Permanent Tendency



1. personal influence is short lived

2. moral effect of a material advantage is also short lived

3. Spiritual power vindicates itself amid weakness

(1) God does not leave his people without a witness.

(2) This witness reveals strength in weakness.

Jael tells a Fib (or two)

Turn in to me. Without Jael's special invitation Sisera would not have ventured to violate every law of Oriental propriety by entering the privileged sanctuary of the harem.

Fear not. Treachery is common among Bedouin tribes so her words promised protection.

5 Lessons from Jael

1. Act on the opportunities God puts in front of you.

2. Use the tools you've been given.

We can trust God to give us competence.

3. Some things are more important than following rules.

4. Our highest motive should be honoring God.

5. Jael's is a metaphor for how we should fight spiritual battles.

Winning the Battle Against Sin - Jael had her priorities straight.

We need to prioritize God's heavenly rules over our earthly religious rules, His voice over what we think is right. We need to prioritize His glory and His competence over our own.

ILLUS: Israelite Women names - BEE - like the Greek Melissa. The names of Jewish women were often derived from natural objects, as Rachel, “a lamb,” Tamar,”a palm,”. It has been sometimes regarded as a title given to her as a prophetess, just as the priestesses of Delphi were called Bees; and priests were called by the title Malebee. But the fact that Rachel’s nurse (Genesis 35:8) had the same name is against this supposition, though Josephus accepts it. She had, as Cornelius à Lapide quaintly says, “A STING FOR FOES, AND HONEY FOR FRIENDS.”

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