It’s been an interesting journey – learning about people wandering with Moses – fighting enemies and settling down with Joshua into new lands – and now we see some of the broken people being broken again – going back to worshiping the other gods that don’t care and can only ensnare… It is a prophetic look at today – the distractions lead us astray. BACK TO THE DESERT! Well, not wandering around the dry desert like Moses, but the desert of dryness from not actively looking for God’s watering…
Not everyone goes whole hog down the wrong path, but WOW when they do, God watches them and gets REAL, He says I won’t remove all the snares if you aren’t going to listen to Me. God gives good things and He can take them away too. We do need to see where we can pull closer, be more careful with our steps. And we need to not lead others astray. We DO need to shine His Light, especially in the darkened places. We have OPPORTUNITY all around. Like a desert spring about to sprout we know Who’s Hope to shout about.
In moving from Joshua to Judges, in Old Testament readings, we see the tribes of Israelites either made it to good lands where they defeated enemies with God’s Hand, or we see some co-living with enemies, or we see some lose their reverence to God as they did not know how He helped bring them originally to the Promised Land. (See Judges 2)
The lost folks continually turning their backs to Him is where the Lord got angry, but the Lord kept raising up new leaders, now called Judges, to move them forward. When the “Judge” was around there was more peace and praise of the Lord – when the Judge died – war and worse came back… Chaos…
Judges included Othniel, Ehud, Shamgar, Deborah (YAY Deborah!), Gideon, Abimelek, Tola, Jair, Jephthah, Ibzan, Elon, Abdon, Samson, Eli, Samual, Saul and that lead us to the time of King David… Judges were “simply” people appointed by God to lead the people to worship and trust and love God.
Deborah was a prophet leader who told Barak, a warrior, to follow God, and that God already has the plan and the war won, Barak really just had to follow the laid out path.. “because of the course you are taking, the honor will not be yours, for the Lord will deliver [Siseria]… …Then Deborah said to Barak, “Go! This is the day the Lord has given Sisera into your hands. Has not the Lord gone ahead of you?”
Has not the Lord gone ahead of you? – WOW does that sound familiar?YES… The Lord HAS gone ahead of us too… Can we be Deborah’s calling out to the world – telling them to just keep on the path?!!! Are we the next crop of leaders He is raising!?! Has He not already gone ahead of us? We know this – we know He has.
We ARE the mini-deborah judges of this time – leaders of families and friends who need to see His Light. Sometimes we will wait in a desert season, then a new spring will arise. Often that new spring is for us to help dig. I can not help but think not just of Deborah the Judge, who said – it is already won for you – keep moving forward, but also of my favorite spiritual movie, Song of Bernadette, where she dug a spring that the Lord told her thru a vision to dig. She had such faith that thousands then millions came to show their faith too that God was with her and with them. The healing waters of Lourdes may really be the healing springs of hope. Hope springs eternal…
If you have been blessed, especially knowing the Lord Jesus, knowing His Hope, knowing His eternity, please shine His LIGHT.
This Christmas – remember Whom God has sent – willingly entering the world to be our leader – leaving the world to give us the Holy Spirit as our leader – being with us ALL THE TIME. Jesus is the season as well as the reason for the season. He is the spring, the eternal light, and the hope.
Keep digging for Spring.
Joshua son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died at the age of a hundred and ten. And they buried him in the land of his inheritance, at Timnath Heres in the hill country of Ephraim, north of Mount Gaash. After that whole generation had been gathered to their ancestors, another generation grew up who knew neither the Lord nor what he had done for Israel. Then the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord and served the Baals. They forsook the Lord, the God of their ancestors, who had brought them out of Egypt. They followed and worshiped various gods of the peoples around them. They aroused the Lord’s anger because they forsook him and served Baal and the Ashtoreths. In his anger against Israel the Lord gave them into the hands of raiders who plundered them. He sold them into the hands of their enemies all around, whom they were no longer able to resist. Whenever Israel went out to fight, the hand of the Lord was against them to defeat them, just as he had sworn to them. They were in great distress.
Then the Lord raised up judges, who saved them out of the hands of these raiders. Yet they would not listen to their judges but prostituted themselves to other gods and worshiped them. They quickly turned from the ways of their ancestors, who had been obedient to the Lord’s commands. Whenever the Lord raised up a judge for them, he was with the judge and saved them out of the hands of their enemies as long as the judge lived; for the Lord relented because of their groaning under those who oppressed and afflicted them. But when the judge died, the people returned to ways even more corrupt than those of their ancestors, following other gods and serving and worshiping them. They refused to give up their evil practices and stubborn ways.
Judges 4 about Deborah:https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Judges+4&version=NIV