Key Verses: Judges 3:9, 15a
When the children of Israel cried out to the Lord, the Lord raised up a deliverer for the children of Israel, who delivered them: Othniel the son of Kenaz, Caleb’s younger brother….But when the children of Israel cried out to the Lord, the Lord raised up a deliverer for them: Ehud the son of Gera, the Benjamite, a left-handed man…
Every year Israelite parents were to bring their children to Mt. Gerizim (Shechem) and show them the stone of witness on which was written the summary of the commandments which Moses, and Joshua after him, had given in his final words to the people of God (Joshua 24:27). We can be confident that Caleb’s nephew, Othniel, the first Judge, saw that stone, and then Ehud, the next Judge, also got the message written on that stone. Today’s reading gives a graphic account of Ehud plunging a dagger into the fat belly of King Eglon of Moab as a judgment on his wickedness (Joshua 3:15-23). In Israel, there was always a remnant of the people who were faithful to the God of their fathers, but they may have been silent, not taking a public stand for righteousness. When they did stand up, God stood up for them. Our reading today lets us know that there were, in total, 26 years of serving foreign rulers and 120 years of freedom and prosperity.
Thank God that the Spirit of God is still calling brave and godly leaders. Let us rally around and support them as they lead us in evangelism and in strong growth of God’s people, the Church.
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
I join the Apostle Paul and ask You, Lord God, “May Israel be saved” (Romans 10:1). There is a modern remnant of those who seek to do Your will, and thousands of Israelis who believe in Jesus, Yeshua, as their Saviour and Lord. In these times when destruction looms over Israel, may the people cry out to You as they did in the times of Othniel and Ehud. In Yeshua’s Name I pray, Amen!
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
I’ve had the opportunity of spending much time in modern Israel. God’s purposes there are underway. Two former team members of Crossroads co-founded one of the churches in Jerusalem. Wayne and Ann Hilsden are in my prayers consistently. Their congregation, which they pastored for over 30 years, is strong (check it out here), as are many congregations in Israel.
Biblical names are common there, such as, Ehud Barak, former minister of Defense and a former Prime Minister of Israel.
I’ve entitled today’s reading after Eglon, King of Moab, who lived in a rebuilt Jericho, known as “The City of the Palms.” It’s a gruesome story, but that’s war. I’m interested in archaeology and Eglon’s palace has been found (here’s a link if interested – scroll down to find the section on “Judges” then the subtitle “Eglon’s Palace at Jericho”).
Also, I initiated the placing of a stone of witness at the Crossroads Centre in 1999. A link to a video of the stone’s dedication is here. I encourage the reading of the Scripture on its plaque (Jeremiah 6:16). May it serve God’s purpose as did the stone of witness in Joshua 24.
Yours in support of God’s leaders who serve God’s cause with boldness and wisdom,