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Sunday, November 25, 2018

Inspired by . . . God has no grandchildren

The cold, icy tendrils of air swoop down from the north leaching the color from my garden, blackening and curling leaves. Soon the wind will follow, sending the leaves hurtling through the air and leaving branches bare.  Like skeletons exposed.

It is a bit like reading about Israel's descent into disobedience.

The book of Judges can be tedious reading and often confusing at times. But there are valuable lessons to be gleaned from studying the text and none more important than what we learn in the first two chapters.

At the beginning of Judges, we find that Joshua has died leaving the tribes of Israel to complete their conquest of Canaan on their own. Yet, they were not alone. God was with them and He gives them specific instructions. He calls Judah first. However, instead of relying solely on God to deliver the enemy into their hands as He has promised, Judah immediately turns to their kinsman, the Simeonites for help. 

The arm of flesh will always fail where the hand of God beckons us forward in faith.[click to tweet]

The rest of chapter one lists the failures of the tribes to drive out their enemies from the land God wished them to conquer.

We often think we are getting away with our evil because God is so patient with us. 

We're not.
Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. (Gal 6:7)

The disobedience of Israel's founding fathers opened the door to a future of calamity. God keeps His word. Both the blessings and the curses.

At first glance, it may appear that the failure to drive out the enemy from the land was Israel's biggest mistake. It wasn't. Verse 10 in chapter 2 reveals their greatest failure.
When all that generation had been gathered to their fathers, another generation arose after them who did not know the Lord nor the work which He had done for Israel. (Judges 2:10)

Despite God's warning in Deuteronomy 10, the parents failed to communicate to their children the power and work of God. Rarely does a powerful work of God move into the next generation. Each person must have their own relationship with God.

Without this personal relationship, Israel quickly descended into chaos. Each person doing what was right in their own eyes. 

We see the tragic, ping-pong effect, Israel's sin results in enslavement and they cry out to God for help.

We see sorrow but not repentance. Sorrow for the consequences of their actions but no repentance for the actions themselves.

This may not seem like a relevant subject to discuss as we approach the season of Advent. Yet what better time of year to fulfill the edict of Deuteronomy 6:7 and 11:19?
And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.  (Deu 6:6-7)
The holiday season often provides an opportunity to slow down and gather with family and loved ones. Why not share how the Lord has worked or is working, in your life?

Be a light in the darkness, pointing the way to the Person of Jesus Christ. It may save a life or even a future generation.


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If you read something here that inspired you, I’d love to hear about it. Please know I appreciate every comment! Thanks so much for stopping by! Blessings, June