Saturday, March 19, 2011

Smudges In Judges

Graphic from:
From Joshua to Judges, Israel changed its heart like Anakin Skywalker turned to Darth Vader.  Joshua was a book of victory and success (Joshua 1:8), Judges records the repeated moral failure of Israel and subsequent defeats.  Joshua was a book of faith where Israel proclaimed:  “The Lord our God we will serve, and his voice we will obey.”  Israel's heart turned from God when it was said of them: "Everyone did what was right in his own eyes" (Judges 21:25b). 

Spiritual Vision
Earthly emphasis
Fidelity to the Lord
Apostasy from the Lord
Sense of unity
Declension, anarchy
Sin judged
Sin lightly regarded
                  (From Merrill Unger’s The New Unger’s Bible Handbook, Moody Press, 1984, p. 129)

The 7th book of the Bible covers the period between Joshua and the Kings.

God would raise up Jedi-like Judges to deliver the people who continually fell into sin, fell into subjection to pagan nations, repented before God then delivered by a judge.

The Cycle In Judges:
1. Sin – idolatry, intermarriage
    · “so the children of Israel did evil in the eyes of the Lord”
     · “they forgot the Lord their God, and served the Baals and                 Asherahs” 
2. Subjection – God judges Israel’s sin by putting them under subjection to the people they were suppose to subdue
     · “the anger of the Lord was hot against Israel, and He sold them into the hand of __ for __ years” 
3. Supplication – realizing they need God’s help
     · “when the children of Israel cried out to the Lord”
4. Salvation – in response to Israel’s prayer, God sends a deliverer 

Judges In Rhyme:

Ch 1a     Judah and Simeon went to clear their Canaanite foes; when they caught King Adoni-Bezek they cut off his big thumbs and toes.
Ch 1b     When it came to driving out the enemies, they didn’t get the job done.  They didn’t trust in the power of God so they were on the run.
Ch 2a     God’s command to serve God alone should have been taken by Israel as vital, but after Joshua had died, they followed many a Canaanite idol.
Ch 2b     So Israel didn’t heed the Lord, in disobedience they would fail, they followed after pagan gods like Ashtoreth and Baal.
Ch 2c     The cycle of sin and servitude brought Israel into a downward spiral, but when repentant, God sent a judge to rescue them before it went viral.
Ch 3a     Following the gods of Mesopotamia brought slavery then repeal, upon their repentant heart, God send them first Othniel.
Ch 3b     Israel was overtaken by big King Eglon of Moab, when Ehud gave him a left-hand stab he got enveloped by flab.
Ch 3c     Then Israel was captured by Philistines who really hated God, God responded by sending Shamgar who will slay 600 with a cattle prod.
Ch 4a     Israel was captured by Sisera and his 900 iron chariots, Barak begged for Deborah to join him to take care of it.
Ch 4b     As Sisera faced defeat he went to Jael’s house to vent, when he rested she stabbed his temple with a peg of a tent.
Ch 5  God, as usual, would make things right after Israel would go wrong.  Deborah commemorated this event by writing God a song.
Ch 6a     Israel again did evil and fell to Midian, God would send a deliverer, a judge named Gideon.
Ch 6b     Gideon was conscientious and did not want to falter, in his dependence upon God He built the Lord an altar.
Ch 6c     When clearing out the Promised Land, no idol was to leave a trail, that’s why Gideon would tear down the altar built for Baal.
Ch 6d     Gideon would second-guess if God would use him to bring peace, so Gideon asked God for a sign twice by laying out the fleece.
Ch 7a     When God is fighting for you, you don’t need an army of large size, Gideon went from 32k to 10k then to 300 for a surprise.
Ch 7b     To select the top 300, who would Gideon tap?  When thirsty men reached water, Gideon took those who would lap.
Ch 7c     How could 300 men take on a larger army, one would have to figure?  Armed with trumpets, torches and pitchers, God made Israel seem bigger.
Ch 8a     Israel wanted Gideon to rule but he, and he made a golden ephod, but as usual Israel would fail and turned their back on God.
Ch 8b     Gideon died with a big family and at a ripe, old age.  But Israel would sin again and go right back in the cage.
Ch 9a     Abimilech wanted to be judge with no competition from others.  So he kills all 70 of his potentially competing brothers.
Ch 9b     In his desperation, his brothers he got rid, except for the youngest Dothan just because he hid.
Ch 9c     When attacking Thebez, to the tower the enemy fled, when Abimilech got there he got a millstone dropped on his head.
Ch 10     Tola served for 23 years keeping Israel fair.  Then the next 22 years Israel was judged by Jair.
Ch 11a   Jephthah’s illegitimate birth would, by his family, make him rejected.  But when Israel got in trouble again, Jephthah was selected.
Ch 11b   In dispute for Israel was the land of Gilead, he told the Ammonites for 300 years the land Israel has had.
Ch 11c   Jephthah made a foolish vow: first greeter would be sacrifice.  But it was Jephthah’s daughter who would end up to pay the price.
Ch 12a   Ephraim challenged Jephthah in a jealous battle of pride, Gilead defeated them and 42,000 died.
Ch 12b   When Ephraimites escaped, it would be to their detriment.  Israel asked them to say “Shibboleth” to see if they had a speech impediment.
Ch 12c   Then came the rule of Ibzan then followed by Elon.  Then a man with 40 sons ruled, his name was Abdon.
Ch 13     Manoah and wife were barren, but to their delight, God would give them a unique son, Samson the Nazirite.
Ch 14a   When it came to animals, Samson was quite strong.  But when it came to women, Samson got it wrong.
Ch 14b   At his wedding to the Philistine, he wasn’t serenaded by a fiddle, instead he challenged the Philistine guess to answer his fateful riddle.
Ch 15a   Samson wanted to be with his wife, her father put up a fight.  Samson responded by torching the Philistines by setting 300 foxes alight.
Ch 15b   Samson was arrested and got tied up in flax.  Then God empowered him to kill a thousand men using a jawbone for his whacks.
Ch 16a   While Samson was in Gaza, the people took no pity.  No problem, though, for Samson, he would go tear down the city.
Ch 16b   Delilah would entice him so his secret he would share, after fooling her twice about his strength, he told her it was his hair.
Ch 16c   Delilah sold him out and much to his surprise, the Philistines would catch him and then take out his eyes.
Ch 16d   Samson, in humiliation, was displayed just like a clown.  He asked the Lord for super strength and took the Phillies down.

Ch 17         Micah stole from his mother and saw his wealth increased, he was a major idolater with his own Levite priest.
Ch 18     Corruption ran deep in Israel as evidenced by Dan, they stole from Micah and trusted his idols so they can get their land.
Ch 19     A concubine was wooed by a priest, but was victimized in Gibeah then ended up 12 piece.
Ch 20     Israel wanted justice, but in Benjamin the criminals store, this would be a major conflict in Israel’s civil war.
Ch 21a   Benjamin lost 25,000 lives, Israel helped them by giving them wives.
21:25     Israel turned from God as they would idolize, that’s when everyone did what was right in their own eyes.

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