The book of Judges makes me sad. True, it is a collection of stories depicting the fallen nature of the human species: True, the naked sorrow of a backslidden nation is sobering at best: True, meditation and personal application encourages Godly obedience; nevertheless, the book of Judges makes me sad.

Overall, we Christians seek relationship with the Invisible. ‘Oh, that I might know him’ rings the call from Job through Revelation. Story after story, verse upon verse the preserved Word from On High invades our reality and demands our attention.

How could a father kill his only child because she ran from his home to meet him in victory? Because of a VOW to the Invisible? Yes. Moreover, where was mercy? And how does one group of brothers actually kill 42,000 kinsmen? Where was forgiveness? And why would a good man, full of the power from the Invisible, actually lay in the lap of a demon lady and reveal secrets? What was he thinking?

Mercy, forgiveness and a sound mind come later; even now for us. Yet, it says surely ‘it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the Living God.’ (Hebrews 10:31)
Therefore, the book of Judges serves as a contrast and a warning. Pondering its content also helps us know the manner of the God of the land. Romans 11:22 is a focal point for our deeper relationship with this Invisible One…’Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.’ Yikes!

The Book of Judges, though it is a sad read; nevertheless, serves us well as we grow in Grace and as we draw closer to really knowing Him in the fellowship of his suffering. Consider the following:

Look at Judges 10:16 ‘…and his soul was grieved for the misery of Israel.’ In the previous verses he is reproving them for their continual rejection of him and turns his back on them almost stomping his invisible foot in anger. Then his love breaks through and the actual Soul of God is grieved for their misery. He calls back a rejected Jephthah, son of a harlot, to deliver his people. When we consider this, we know him better. He accents his own rejection by choosing a fellow reject as a deliverer.

Since we are made in His image, quiet contemplation of His ways affords us closer intimacy with this Invisible One. In the book of Mark (The Gospel in a hurry it has been called) look at verse 12 of chapter 8. ‘And he sighed deeply in his spirit…’ Have we ever sighed like that? Has our absolute frustration and bewilderment at the foolishness of a person or situation brought forth a spirit-sigh from the depth of our being? Surely.

And a study of the events following this ‘sigh,’ depict a frustrated and short-tempered human as he reproves his disciples in the close quarters of a ship (Mark 8:13-21). Even when confronted with a common healing of the blind, he needs to gather his own wits so to speak and heal him TWICE away from the others. We learn more about His nature when we meditate on these stories and therefore our prayers can be more personal. His disgust with the religious leaders seeking a sign from him lived on in his spirit for some time. Could we say he even ‘had an attitude?’ Six days later, (Mark 9:2) he seeks comfort from Elijah and Moses on the mount. It is not easy to get over frustration, even for God.

Concluding, therefore, it is true the book of Judges makes me sad. Furthermore, the book of Judges makes Him sad. In the New Testament we are afforded insight into more of His nature as event after event, letter after letter, verse by verse opens our understanding and pulls us closer to his Heart. Let us meditate, ponder, slow down and consider… I seek to know the Invisible One better as we all do, and it is my prayer that this little expose will do just that.

Marthalee is a writer, teacher, Grandma and friend. Any wisdom or insight shared on this blog or in her books is credited to Jesus and the life experience He allows. Do enjoy these humble offerings, and may your time on Earth be blessed and enriched. God is Love. Share it and Him at every open door.

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