Summary: God uses the ordinary to do the extraordinary.
Book of Judges
Rev. Brian Bill
A couple weeks ago I was asked if I’d be willing to come to Champion Fitness to have my picture taken with some other people who work out there. I’ve been going to Champion for over seven years and I thought that they must have noticed what great shape I was in and wanted me to be the poster boy for bulk and brawn. When I arrived for my photo shoot, I joined about six other people, most of whom were older than me. We posed on the treadmills, then with some free weights. I was feeling pretty good about this until I heard someone mention that they wanted pictures of “middle-age” people. I guess that included me.
Towards the end of the time I posed like I was spotting for a guy on the bench press when I noticed a muscular-looking man throwing some weights around with ease. I turned to the person in charge and asked why they weren’t using him and she said, “We just wanted average and ordinary people for this photo shoot.” And then it hit me. They weren’t looking for a weightlifting champ; they just wanted pictures of an ordinary, average middle-aged guy…and I qualified.
As we finish up our study in the Old Testament book of Judges, that’s exactly the kind of pictures that God puts on display. We could say it this way: God uses the ordinary to do the extraordinary.
Last week we learned how to break the cycle of sin by looking at the mistakes made in the Book of Judges as everyone “did as they saw fit.” This morning I’d like to show you a photo gallery of ordinary and average people who accomplished some pretty extraordinary things. We’re going to go pretty fast so get ready to do some heavy lifting. My prayer is that you’ll see yourself in at least one of these leaders and that you’ll be encouraged to allow God to do the extraordinary in your ordinary life. If you’d like to go deeper in the Book of Judges, we have studied three of these judges in past years. You can access these sermon manuscripts online:
Deborah:(http://www.pontiacbible.org/sermons/models_of_mentoring.php?id=C0_534_103); Gideon: (http://www.pontiacbible.org/sermons/keep_story_alive.php?id=C0_216_64);
1. Othniel (good family). The first judge that God raises up is Othniel, who was Caleb’s nephew (Judges 3:9). He had a positive pedigree and no doubt benefited from having a good family but the key to his life is found in verse 10: “The Spirit of the Lord came upon him…” Under his leadership the land had peace for forty years. Some of you come from a great family. You’ve never really doubted your faith and you’re serving the Lord right now. I’m sure you already know that you have a unique heritage due to the godly influence of your parents. Othniel also demonstrates the importance of serving the Lord in the later years of life, as he was older than middle-age. Even though he was from a good family, he was still pretty average himself. God uses the ordinary to do the extraordinary.