Today’s Tasting: Judges 1-2: Following the death of Joshua, Judah was appointed to lead the Israelites in battle against the Canaanites. God’s instruction was to destroy all the people groups who occupied Canaan. However, as was typical of the Israelites, they didn’t quite follow God’s instructions. They only partially destroyed the Canaanites, allowing some of them to remain. As a result, the generations that followed turned back to the old ways of worshiping other gods and living sinful lives.
The Book of Judges covers a period of 400 years during which God appointed a succession of judges to turn the people back to Him and deliver them from their enemies. Each time, as long as the judge lived, the Israelites stayed on the right path. However, with the passing of each judge they went back to their old ways.
Today’s Nourishment: How many times do we, like the Israelites, follow God’s instructions only partially? How often have you known the right choice or correct path, yet given into the temptation to do something else?
We often forget that we are tempted just like the Israelites were. We may not worship idols in the form of statues of false gods, but we do get tempted to follow modern-day idols. For example, putting our jobs before God or our families, or placing more value in our “stuff” than in our friends and neighbors. Has Sunday become more about laundry, shopping, and football than God, family, and rest?
Sometimes it is hard to relate the Old Testament teachings to our modern world but I encourage you to take a close look at your own life—your own priorities—and ask yourself whether you are acting as the Israelites did? If you are, ask God for forgiveness and guidance.
As we have blogged our way through the Bible and followed the Israelites on their journey, we have seen again and again that God’s patience is infinite. We are blessed to be part of the new covenant where our sins are forgiven because of the ultimate sacrifice Jesus made on our behalf. Through Him we have been given something the Israelites did not have at that time, a direct connection to God and all the grace and love that comes to us unconditionally.
“For I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more” (Hebrews 8:13).
If you’ve never dedicated your life to following the Lord Jesus Christ, you can do so now, simply by asking in prayer:
Heavenly Father, thank You for the gift of Your Son, Jesus Christ. I believe He died on the cross to cancel my sin debt, and rose again from the dead to give me eternal life with You. Please forgive me of my sins and show me how to live in a way that pleases You. Amen.
If you prayed that prayer and meant it with all your heart, please let us know so we can celebrate with you and help you to understand what to do next!
Tomorrow’s Delight: Judges 3–5