Today’s Reading: Judges 9:22-11:28
Caley and I recently “redboxed” the movie Lincoln. A movie I had been dyeing to see since it came out in theaters. Even though I knew the story of Abraham Lincoln, and have since I was a kid, you can’t help but be inspired by his “rags to riches” story.
In today’s reading we learn about a guy named Jephthah. A true “rags to riches” story just like ole Abe. Things had been going good for Israel under the leadership of Tola and Jair, but the people didn’t take advantage of these years of prosperity and grow in their connection with God. After Jair died they fell back into idolatry and their old ways…
The essence of idolatry is enjoying God’s gifts but not being grateful to the Giver- Warren Wiersbe.
Previously God had given them victory over seven different nations but instead of thanking God they now worshipped seven different false God’s. They had turned their back on God and God was getting tired of it.
Them Jephthah enters the picture. Redemption is here. The son of a prostitute he was cast out by his family and community, but now both needed him. They had shamed him previously and now he offered them his services. As we read today…his focus throughout was in one place…God.
Judges 11:9 (NLT)
Jephthah said to the elders, “Let me get this straight. If I come with you and if the Lord gives me victory over the Ammonites, will you really make me ruler over all the people?”
He didn’t see the opportunity ahead as a political one but a chance to serve God.
Everything we experience in life is an opportunity for our faith to increase or decrease. The choice is ours. Will we trust God even when our own family and our own country throws us aside?
He wasn’t perfect and the judgement is still out in our journey through the Bible of whether or not he was a good ruler.
But from this snapshot of his life we see great faithfulness. He offered what we have to offer.
Any opportunity we have to trust God is one we must take…
We can walk in the footsteps of Jephthah.
Today is a day we get to serve God.
-Warren W. Wiersbe, The Bible Exposition Commentary, Joshua-Esther, (Colorado Springs, CO: David C. Cook Publishing, 2001).