Israel had spiraled so deeply into idolatry that they no longer knew how to worship You correctly. They disregarded Your Law. Jephthah sacrificed his daughter as a burnt offering. He murdered his daughter. He claimed this murder was an offering for You! Samson ignored the godly counsel of his parents and joined himself to idolatrous people. He was full of hatred and was murderous.
May we see the wickedness of our own hearts reflected in these chapters. We are not better than Jephthah or Samson. We still sin. Apart from Your grace and Word, we will misunderstand You and Your desires. We will wrongly think that You are like one of us. We will wrongly worship You, which will not be worship at all.
May we be warned of the dangers of mixing the world’s ways with Your ways. May we be warned of the dangers of the traditions of men and false teaching. May we, by Your grace, embrace Your truth by faith and forsake our wrong views and sinful actions.
We praise You for your sovereignty! You are not defeated by the wickedness of men. Wicked men cannot overthrow Your plan. You bring the wicked to ruin. You accomplish Your plan, even through wicked men. You accomplished salvation through evil men crucifying Your Son. They gathered against Jesus and crucified Him, which is what Your hand predetermined to take place.
As we see the wickedness of our age, may we grow in confidence as we read Your Word. May our confidence in Your character and plan increase. No matter the evil of our day, You reign and will not be defeated! You will provide for Your people and see us safely home!
Amen (Judges 10-15; Psalm 50:12; Proverbs 21:12; Luke 24:5-8; Acts 4:27-28; Romans 8:28-39)
A very helpful guide for seeing the big picture of Judges is the Bible Project’s video and poster for the book of Judges (both found here). You can find other resources at their website: www.bibleproject.com
Unless otherwise noted Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.