Friday, November 18, 2011

Deborah and Barak

Good morning sisters and brothers,
Deborah, the judge of Israel, encouraged Barak to lead the army of Israel against the the Canaanite King Jabin and his general, Sisera. Today we see that Barak agrees to go, but only if Deborah goes with him. Deborah seems disappointed in this response, maybe because Barak doesn't show enough trust in God. As we'll see, God does fight for Israel to save them. There are lots of place names here that can throw us off; some Bibles have maps in them, but in this case you can also just ignore them without missing too much. My suspicion is that some of these places won't even be on most maps of the Bible. Just enjoy the story as it unfolds. For those of us who are used to a more peaceful ethic, these violent passages can be challenging. I'm grateful that Jesus is the Prince of Peace, but also grateful that God can save the weak from more powerful enemies.

God bless,

Joshua 4:8-16
8Barak said to her, “If you will go with me, I will go; but if you will not go with me, I will not go.” 9And she said, “I will surely go with you; nevertheless, the road on which you are going will not lead to your glory, for the Lord will sell Sisera into the hand of a woman.” Then Deborah got up and went with Barak to Kedesh.

10Barak summoned Zebulun and Naphtali to Kedesh; and ten thousand warriors went up behind him; and Deborah went up with him. 11Now Heber the Kenite had separated from the other Kenites, that is, the descendants of Hobab the father-in-law of Moses, and had encamped as far away as Elon-bezaanannim, which is near Kedesh. 12When Sisera was told that Barak son of Abinoam had gone up to Mount Tabor, 13Sisera called out all his chariots, nine hundred chariots of iron, and all the troops who were with him, from Harosheth-ha-goiim to the Wadi Kishon.

14Then Deborah said to Barak, “Up! For this is the day on which the Lord has given Sisera into your hand. The Lord is indeed going out before you.” So Barak went down from Mount Tabor with ten thousand warriors following him. 15And the Lord threw Sisera and all his chariots and all his army into a panic before Barak; Sisera got down from his chariot and fled away on foot, 16while Barak pursued the chariots and the army to Harosheth-ha-goiim. All the army of Sisera fell by the sword; no one was left.

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