Drop files to upload.
Faithlife
Faithlife

Judges: Broken People — Faithful God: Same Old, Same Old

Judges: Broken People — Faithful God  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
0 ratings
· 4 views

The challenge of God’s people in all times is the realization that we are aliens and strangers in the world, abstaining from sinful desires, and living good lives among the pagans so that they may glorify God.

Notes & Transcripts
Text: Judges 3:1-31
Same Old, Same Old
Text: Judges
Theme: The challenge of God’s people in all times is the realization that we are aliens and strangers in the world, abstaining from sinful desires, and living good lives among the pagans so that they may glorify God.
Theme: The challenge of God’s people in all times is the realization that we are aliens and strangers in the world, abstaining from sinful desires, and living good lives among the pagans so that they may glorify God.
Date: 07/02/2017 File Name: Judges_05.wpd ID Number:
Date: 07/02/2017 File Name: Judges_05.wpd ID Number:
The Apostle Peter writes in his first epistle, “Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul. 12 Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.” (, NIV84).
The Apostle Peter writes in his first epistle, “Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul. 12 Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.” (, NIV84).
ADVERTISEMENT
The challenge of God’s people in all times, in all places, regardless of the culture is the realization that we are aliens and strangers in the world. As such God calls us to abstain from sinful desires. He encourages us to live good lives among the pagans so that we may glorify God. It’s something the Israelites consistently failed to do during the period of the Judges.
As we begin chapter three the recurring them that stands out is defined by the idiom, Same old, same old. We’ve probably all used the slang term which is short hand for Same old thing. It’s the equivalent of saying nothing new when asked by an friend, “How are things going?”
If, during the time of the Judges, God were to ask Israel, “How are things going?” their response would be, “Oh, you know, same old, same old: Rebellion, Rejection, Repentance, Restoration, and Rest.” This is the predictable pattern that Israel had fallen into.
Rebellion. Israel does evil in the sight of the Lord. They forget God and begin to serve idols.
• Rejection. God rejects Israel because of her sin, and allows calamity to strike His people by the oppression of foreign powers.
Rejection. God rejects Israel because of her sin, and allows calamity to strike His people by the oppression of foreign powers.
• Repentance. After a period of time, Israel cries ‘uncle’ and cries out for God to deliver them.
Repentance. After a period of time, Israel cries ‘uncle’ and cries out for God to deliver them.
• Restoration. God rises up a deliverer — referred to as ‘Judges’ — who, often against great odds, beat are repulse those who are afflicting God’s people.
Restoration. God rises up a deliverer — referred to as ‘Judges’ — who, often against great odds, beat are repulse those who are afflicting God’s people.
• Rest. After the enemy is defeated Israel has rest from her enemies for a period of time, only to once again forget who they are, and who their God is.
Rest. After the enemy is defeated Israel has rest from her enemies for a period of time, only to once again forget who they are, and who their God is.
And God comes again and asks, “How are things going?” and their response is, “Oh, you know, same old, same old: ” Yadda, yadda, yadda.”
1. Israel’s descent into sin and rebellion are described in vs. 1-6
“These are the nations the LORD left to test all those Israelites who had not experienced any of the wars in Canaan 2 (he did this only to teach warfare to the descendants of the Israelites who had not had previous battle experience): 3 the five rulers of the Philistines, all the Canaanites, the Sidonians, and the Hivites living in the Lebanon mountains from Mount Baal Hermon to Lebo Hamath. 4 They were left to test the Israelites to see whether they would obey the LORD’s commands, which he had given their forefathers through Moses. 5 The Israelites lived among the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. 6 They took their daughters in marriage and gave their own daughters to their sons, and served their gods.” (, NIV84)
2. the tribe of Judah was not able to hold on to the key Philistine cities they had taken, and as we saw in chapter 1, the other tribes failed to conquer the Canaanite nations
and as we saw in chapter 1, the other tribes failed to conquer the Canaanite nations
a. these surviving nations adopted a “good neighbor” policy toward Israel that eventually defeated Israel from within
eventually defeated Israel from within
3. sometimes Satan comes as a lion to devour, but often he comes as a serpent to deceive
deceive
a. in making friends with the people God had commanded them to drive out of the Promised Land Israel became a Compromised People
Promised Land Israel became a Compromised People
A. SPIRITUAL COMPROMISE IS ALWAYS DANGEROUS
1. Israel’s three big sins were Cohabitation, Intermarriage, and Apostasy
a. Cohabitation
1) instead of driving the Canaanites from the land as the Lord God had commanded, Israel shared it with them
commanded, Israel shared it with them
vs. 5 “The Israelites lived among the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites”
Hivites and Jebusites”
a) the five lords of the Philistines and the other tribes mentioned in this passage were enemies of the Israelites
were enemies of the Israelites
b) as we proceed through the Old Testament, these enemies will appear time and time again
and time again
c) they were indeed a thorn in the flesh of the nation Israel just as God said they would be
would be
2) the Canaanites were a sophisticated culture which must have been a temptation for a people who had been primarily nomadic
for a people who had been primarily nomadic
a) as the Canaanites and the Israelites began to live in closer contact with each other, Israel tended to absorb Canaanite culture with some Israelites even naming their children after the God Baal
other, Israel tended to absorb Canaanite culture with some Israelites even naming their children after the God Baal
b) even one of the judges, Gideon, was also known by the name Jerubbaal ("Let Baal Contend")
Baal Contend")
b. Intermarriage
1) instead of maintaining their own society, they intermarried with the Canaanites and adopted much of Canaanite culture
and adopted much of Canaanite culture
vs. 6 “They took their daughters in marriage and gave their own daughters to their sons ... “
sons ... “
c. Apostasy
1) instead of maintaining their own beliefs and worship of the Lord God alone, they adopted their religious beliefs and apostatized
adopted their religious beliefs and apostatized
2) many Israelites succumbed to the allurements of the fertility-laden rituals and practices of the Canaanite religion, partly because it was new and different from the worship of Yahweh, and, possibly because of a tendency of a rigorous faith and ethic to weaken under the influence of sexual attractions
practices of the Canaanite religion, partly because it was new and different from the worship of Yahweh, and, possibly because of a tendency of a rigorous faith and ethic to weaken under the influence of sexual attractions
2. the list of troublesome nations in vs. 3 and 5 are given to teach us about the extent of the challenge Israel is facing
2. the list of troublesome nations in vs. 3 and 5 are given to teach us about the
extent of the challenge Israel is facing
a. it’s not merely a regional problem, but a national problem
1) the Canaanites resided in the southeast area of the Promised Land, the Hivites in the northeast, the Sidonians in the northwest, and the Philistines in the southwest
in the northeast, the Sidonians in the northwest, and the Philistines in the southwest
B. SPIRITUAL COMPROMISE LEADS TO GOD’S DISCIPLINE
“They were left to test the Israelites to see whether they would obey the LORD’s commands, which he had given their forefathers through Moses.” (, NIV84)
1. Israel should have been a witness to the surviving pagan nations and sought to win them to faith in the true and living God, but they failed in that responsibility
them to faith in the true and living God, but they failed in that responsibility
2. when Israel obeyed the Lord, He blessed them richly; and both their conduct and God’s blessing were a testimony to their unbelieving neighbors
God’s blessing were a testimony to their unbelieving neighbors
a. the pagan people would say, “These Jews are different! The God they worship and serve is a great God!”
serve is a great God!”
b. but, alas, instead of trusting God to change their neighbors, the gods of their neighbors changed the Jews; and everything Moses warned them not to do, they did
neighbors changed the Jews; and everything Moses warned them not to do, they did
3. the Jews broke down the wall of separation between themselves and their godless neighbors, and the results were tragic
neighbors, and the results were tragic
a. except for the grace of God at work in the life of the nation the Israelites would have been complete absorbed into the culture of the her pagan neighbors
been complete absorbed into the culture of the her pagan neighbors
1. in rather quick succession, the third chapter of Judges lists three men who delivered Israel and brought peace to their people
Israel and brought peace to their people
A. THE DELIVERANCE OF OTHNIEL (3:7-11)
1. vs. 7 begins the sequence we are going to become very familiar with as we go through the Book of Judges
the Book of Judges
“The Israelites did evil in the eyes of the LORD; they forgot the LORD their God and served the Baals and the Asherahs. 8 The anger of the LORD burned against Israel so that he sold them into the hands of Cushan-Rishathaim king of Aram Naharaim, to whom the Israelites were subject for eight years.” (, NIV84)
a. all of the Elders who lived after Joshua have died, and the memory of God and His magnificent works on Israel’s behalf are fading
magnificent works on Israel’s behalf are fading
1) the result is a “forgetting of God” and any time a believer “forgets” about his or her God evil behavior is almost always the result
her God evil behavior is almost always the result
2) that evil is usually manifested in the worship of idols
ILLUS. The 16th century Protestant Reformer, John Calvin, wrote that “... the human mind is, so to speak, a perpetual forge of idols.”
mind is, so to speak, a perpetual forge of idols.”
b. is it any wonder that God became angry?
1) is it any wonder He humiliated Israel by using pagan nations to discipline His own people?
people?
2) if Israel was acting like the pagans, God had to treat them like pagans!
2. the result an eight-year occupation by Cushan-Risha-thaim
a. his identity has been lost to history, but his name means “Cushan of Double Wickedness” a nickname used perhaps to strike fear into his neighbors (kinda like “Ivan the Terrible”)
Wickedness” a nickname used perhaps to strike fear into his neighbors (kinda like “Ivan the Terrible”)
1) he was king of Aram Naharaim which means Aram of the two rivers, a reference to the Tigris and the Euphrates
to the Tigris and the Euphrates
2) this is a huge expanse of territory
b. this may well have been the most powerful military enemy named in the Book of Judges
Judges
3. when Israel finally “cries uncle” in vs. 9 God raised up Othniel son of Kenaz
a. we first met Othniel back in , and he is one of the few Judges of whom nothing negative is reported
whom nothing negative is reported
b. Othniel is Caleb’s nephew ...
1) remember Caleb? he was one of the two faithful spies who came back with the minority report
minority report
2) when eight spies said, “They people in the land are giants. We can’t do it.” Joshua and Caleb, on the other hand said, Caleb said, “Let’s go now and take possession of the land. We should be more than able to conquer it.”
Joshua and Caleb, on the other hand said, Caleb said, “Let’s go now and take possession of the land. We should be more than able to conquer it.”
4. God calls Othniel leadership, equips him with His Holy Spirit, and “ ... The LORD gave Cushan-Rishathaim king of Aram into the hands of Othniel, who overpowered him. 11 So the land had peace for forty years, until Othniel son of Kenaz died.” (, NIV84)
Cushan-Rishathaim king of Aram into the hands of Othniel, who overpowered him. 11 So the land had peace for forty years, until Othniel son of Kenaz died.” (, NIV84)
a. under Othniel’s leadership two generations of Israelites know peace and prosperity
b. but ... Again the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord ... same old, same old
B. THE DELIVERANCE OF EHUD (3:12-30)
1. this is one of the more gory stories of the Old Testament, but also one of the more interesting ones
interesting ones
a. it reads almost like a James Bond script
2. Eglon king of Moab rallies the Ammonites and Amalekites to his side seize The City of Palms — which is Jericho — and the surrounding area
Palms — which is Jericho — and the surrounding area
a. he subjects the Israelites for eighteen years
3. again, Israel "cries uncle" and God raises up Ehud
a. he is the son of Gera and of the tribe of Benjamin
b. we’re also told that he is left-handed, and it’s an important part of the story
1) the Hebrew text literally says that Ehud was hindered in the right hand
2) the term refers to a practice of binding or hindering the right hand of boys and thus forcing them to become ambidextrous and appears to be part of the military training that young Benjamite men were given
thus forcing them to become ambidextrous and appears to be part of the military
training that young Benjamite men were given
a) two other times in the Old Testament ( and ) we see this kind of training
we see this kind of training
c. in an era when all combat was hand-to-hand fighting, the warrior who could suddenly switch sword hands had a distinct advantage in a fight
suddenly switch sword hands had a distinct advantage in a fight
d. it also meant that his weapon would be belted on his right hip and not the normal left hip
left hip
4. Ehud is the one chosen to take the annual money tribute to Ehud, and Ehud turns it into an opportunity to assassinate Israel’s enemy — to strike the head of the snake
into an opportunity to assassinate Israel’s enemy — to strike the head of the snake
a. the story reads like a spy novel
1) he makes the money drop
2) he sends his companions to safety
3) he returns to the palace and smooths talks his way back into the presence of the king
king
4) because he is left handed, the guards check his left hip for a weapon, but not his right
right
5) Eglon, who morbidly obese, has his guards leave, perhaps expecting a further bribe, or perhaps even an Israelite defector
bribe, or perhaps even an Israelite defector
6) Ehud approaches the king, and tells him “I have a message from God for you,” ... he then pulls out his sword and plunges it into Eglon’s abdomen, disemboweling him, and then makes good his escape
he then pulls out his sword and plunges it into Eglon’s abdomen, disemboweling him, and then makes good his escape
“Ehud reached with his left hand, drew the sword from his right thigh and plunged it into the king’s belly. 22 Even the handle sank in after the blade, which came out his back. Ehud did not pull the sword out, and the fat closed in over it. 23 Then Ehud went out to the porch; he shut the doors of the upper room behind him and locked them.” (, NIV84)
a) you’re just not gonna find this story in a children’s bible!
7) Ejud then heads home, rallies the tribes, and takes control of the fords of the Jordan blocking the escape of the Moabite army, and 10,000 Moabite soldiers are killed
Jordan blocking the escape of the Moabite army, and 10,000 Moabite soldiers are killed
5. it’s such an overwhelming victory that Israel knows peace for four generations
“That day Moab was made subject to Israel, and the land had peace for eighty years.” (, NIV84)
C. THE DELIVERANCE OF SHAMGAR (3:31)
1. and finally there is Shamgar ... we’re told sooo much ‘bout the man
ILLUS. If the Judgship of Othniel can be compared to a wide-angle lens shot of Israel’s cycle of Rebellion, Rejection, Repentance, Restoration and Rest, and if Ehud’s Judgeship can be compared to a zoom lens shot, then Shamgar’s Judgeship is macroscopic lens offering a minute glimpse of the event. “After Ehud came Shamgar son of Anath, who struck down six hundred Philistines with an oxgoad. He too saved Israel.” (, NIV84)
cycle of Rebellion, Rejection, Repentance, Restoration and Rest, and if Ehud’s Judgeship can be compared to a zoom lens shot, then Shamgar’s Judgeship is macroscopic lens offering a minute glimpse of the event.
“After Ehud came Shamgar son of Anath, who struck down six hundred Philistines with an oxgoad. He too saved Israel.” (, NIV84)
a. we know next to nothing about this guy, nothing of his relationship with the Lord, and nothing about the duration of peace
and nothing about the duration of peace
b. all we know is that his weapon of choice is an oxgoad, and the He too saved Israel, and that he single-handedly slew six hundred Philistines
and that he singlehandedly slew six hundred Philistines
1) was it all at once in one great Jedi-type battle, or the hit-and-run tactics
1. The Lord Will Always Test Us for Obedience and Train Us in Spiritual Warfare
1. The Lord Will Always Test Us for Obedience and Train Us in Spiritual Warfare
“They were left to test the Israelites to see whether they would obey the LORD’s commands, which he had given their forefathers through Moses.” (, NIV84)
a. the Lord had left some of the Israelites’ enemies in the land in order to train them (v.
1) and to test them (v. 4)
b. life in Canaan was not going to be easy; battles would be fought and problems would persist
would persist
c. and God allowed them to face pressure from their enemies so that they would not grow feeble and complacent
grow feeble and complacent
ILLUS. There are times when God leaves things unresolved in our lives. A job rejection we did not expect, a conflict with a Christian who refuses to be reconciled with us, a situation in our church that we are not entirely happy with or a heartache in the family. God will not always keep our lives neat and tidy; he will do things we do not expect and take us into situations we may find difficult so that we depend on him and grow in our faith.
rejection we did not expect, a conflict with a Christian who refuses to be reconciled with us, a situation in our church that we are not entirely happy with or a heartache in the family. God will not always keep our lives neat and tidy; he will do things we do not expect and take us into situations we may find difficult so that we depend on him and grow in our faith.
2. We Need to Give God Outselves
a. this is the lesson of Othneil
1) Othneil is from a family noted for its faith and courage
b. we’re told of Othneil in vs. 10 that the Spirit of the Lord came upon him
1) never underestimate the good that one person can do who’s filled with the Spirit of God and obedient to the will of God
of God and obedient to the will of God
3. We Need to Give God Our Uniqueness
ILLUS. There's no denying it. Left-handers are the odd ones out in society. Yes, lefties make up about 10 percent of the population — but, frankly, it seems like society has forgotten about them. Just condsider all of the right-handed gadgets, awkwardly designed desks, and cooking tools that fit comfortably only in your right hand.
a. to be ambidextrous is really unique
b. use your uniqueness for God
4. We Need to Give God Our Tools
a. God has equipped every believer with tools — natural abilities and spiritual gifts that we are to use for him
we are to use for him
RELATED MEDIA
See the rest →
RELATED SERMONS
See the rest →