Journey Through the Bible Part 7: The Book of Judges

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Journey Through the Bible Part 7: The Book of Judges

  1. 1. Journey Through the Bible Part 7 The Book of Judges Bible Readings: Judges 2:6-23 (Page 170) Luke 13:22-30 (Page 738) Date 1
  2. 2. The downward spiral of Judges ✤ 300 years From Joshua to Samuel the prophet. ✤ Rebellion ✤ Repression ✤ Repentance ✤ Restoration 2
  3. 3. The downward spiral of Judges ✤ Rebellion “The Israelites did evil in the sight of the Lord.” ✤ Repression “God delivered (or sold) them into the hand of . . .” ✤ Repentance “Then they cried out to the Lord.” ✤ Restoration “And the land had peace for xx years.” 3
  4. 4. The downward spiral of Judges ✤ The cumulative effect of repeated rebellion against God. ✤ The restoration point is lower each time. ✤ Sin leaves its mark which only righteous living can erase. 4
  5. 5. The downward spiral of Judges Two pictures of spiritual and moral corruption. ✤ Judges 17-18 Micah employs a Levite to be a priest to his household idols. ✤ Judges 19-21 The city of Gibeah is as evil as the city of Sodom. ✤ The people became like the depraved gods they worshipped. 5
  6. 6. The Judges ✤ The Judges were primarily military leaders. ✤ The Israelite situation after the conquest. ✤ Failed to conquer all that God had instructed. ✤ Surrounded by hostile kingdoms. ✤ Their enemies were greater in number and technologically more advanced - iron weapons. 6
  7. 7. The Judges Gideon ✤ Gideon raised an army of 32,000 ✤ “The Lord said to Gideon, “You have too many men for Me to deliver Midian into their hands. In order that Israel may not boast against Me that her own strength has saved her,” (Judges 7:2, NIV84) ✤ 22,000 released because they were frightened. ✤ 300 chosen by the way they drank. 7
  8. 8. The Judges Gideon ✤ The Lord spread panic among the Midian army who ran away. ✤ Gideon becomes the saviour of Israel but afterwards makes an idol to worship. ✤ “Gideon made the gold into an ephod, which he placed in Ophrah, his town. All Israel prostituted themselves by worshiping it there, and it became a snare to Gideon and his family.” (Judges 8:27, NIV84) 8
  9. 9. The Judges Deborah ✤ 12 judges, one is a woman, Deborah. ✤ Deborah was a prophetess and leader in patriarchal society. ✤ One of the few godly judges. 9
  10. 10. The Principal Judges ✤ Deborah - prophetess ✤ Gideon - idolatry ✤ Abimelech (Gideon’s son) worst character on the book. ✤ Jephthah - son of a prostitute who killed his own daughter. ✤ Samson - violent, self willed, womaniser. 10
  11. 11. Judges Samson ✤ Samson was a Nazirite from birth. ✤ Nazirite - dedicated to God, never cut the hair, never drinks wine. ✤ “The angel of the Lord appeared to her and said, “You are sterile and childless, but you are going to conceive and have a son. Now see to it that you drink no wine or other fermented drink and that you do not eat anything unclean, because you will conceive and give birth to a son. No razor may be used on his head, because the boy is to be a Nazirite, set apart to God from birth, and he will begin the deliverance of Israel from the hands of the Philistines.” (Judges 13:3–5, NIV84) 11
  12. 12. Judges Samson ✤ Samson was to be a deliverer of Israel. ✤ His life was a picture of Israel. ✤ His mission was ruined by his head strong self will and carnal nature. ✤ When his hair was cut his dedication to God was broken. The Holy Spirit no longer gave him supernatural strength. 12
  13. 13. Judges Samson ✤ “So he told her everything. “No razor has ever been used on my head,” he said, “because I have been a Nazirite set apart to God since birth. If my head were shaved, my strength would leave me, and I would become as weak as any other man.” (Judges 16:17, NIV84) 13
  14. 14. Judges Samson ✤ Samson strength was not natural. ✤ Samson looked normal. ✤ His enemies could not understand where his strength came from. ✤ Samson was a picture of Israel; small weak dependent on the power of the Lord to defeat its enemies. 14
  15. 15. Judges Samson ✤ “The Spirit of the Lord came upon him. . . “ ✤ Samson’s immorality caused his complete downfall exactly mirroring Israel’s downfall. ✤ “Yet they would not listen to their judges but prostituted themselves to other gods and worshipped them. Unlike their fathers, they quickly turned from the way in which their fathers had walked, the way of obedience to the Lord’s commands.” (Judges 2:17, NIV84) 15
  16. 16. Judges Samson ✤ “But my people would not listen to me; Israel would not submit to me. So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts to follow their own devices. “If my people would but listen to me, if Israel would follow my ways, how quickly would I subdue their enemies and turn my hand against their foes! Those who hate the Lord would cringe before him, and their punishment would last forever. But you would be fed with the finest of wheat; with honey from the rock I would satisfy you.” (Psalm 81:11–16, NIV84) 16
  17. 17. The Failure to Listen and Obey ✤ When we fail to listen we miss out on what God has prepared for us. ✤ The tragedy of self-willed action is the loss of what might have been if only we had stopped to listen. ✤ Failing to listen and obey was the underlying cause of all the sin and suffering recorded in Judges. 17
  18. 18. The Failure to Listen and Obey ✤ God will let you go ahead and do things your own way and in your own strength but you will miss out on much of what God planned for you. ✤ If we do things God’s way He will get the glory. 18

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