Illustrations of New Testament Truth
Dr. Joe Temple

Review

Open your Bibles, please, to the book of Judges, that portion of the Word of God which we are studying together. Since this is only the second lesson in the book, we want to review a little of what we said to you in our last lesson. One thing that we want to get firmly fixed in our minds is the title of the book and the reason for the title. The title in our English text is, “The Book of Judges.” The reason for that is that this book is really the history of the lives of the men who were raised up to be judges in Israel. But the word “judges” comes from the Hebrew word shaphat , which is translated not only by the word “judge,” but by the words “deliverer” and “defender;” and that is exactly what these men were. They were raised up to deliver the children of Israel. God sent them into captivity because of apostasy. They were raised up to defend the nation of Israel when the neighbors on either side were ready to invade them.

When we think about the book of Judges, let's fix in our minds that we are not talking about a group of men who sit on a bench as judges do today and dispense justice, although they did do that, but we are thinking about men who were used of God to deliver the children of Israel when they were in real trouble.

The author of a book is always of interest to us, and we have pointed out to you that the author of the book of Judges is anonymous as far as any evidence in the Word of God is concerned, because there is no evidence that would guarantee to us certain knowledge as to who the author was, but we mentioned to you that the Babylonian Talmud suggests that Samuel was the author of the book of Judges. And when we have anything extra scriptural–that is, it is not in the Word of God–we recognize that it is not inspired, therefore we would not be dogmatic about any assertion related to such literature, but light can be thrown on the Word of God through it. It could be that Samuel was the author of the book of Judges, but I want to emphasize to you always when we are studying any particular portion of the Word of God that the important thing is that the Holy Spirit is the author; and whether Samuel was the author or someone else of human nature, it makes no real difference.

Another thing that we learned about the book of Judges was the theme verse. The theme verse is found in two locations. It's found in chapter 17 of the book of Judges, verse 6, and chapter 21 of the book of Judges, verse 25, and they read practically the same.

Judges 17

6In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes.

This is a perfect characterization of the days of which we will be studying here in the book of Judges–no king in Israel, and every man doing what was right in his own eyes. This does not seem like too strange a verse to us now in this particular age in which we are living because we are seeing quite a bit of anarchy in our own generation. We recognize when people do that which is right in their own eyes, then nothing is left but anarchy. Men have to live by rules; they have to live by laws or anarchy is a result.

We told you there were two key phrases in the book of Judges which the Holy Spirit used as outlines for the divisions within the book itself. One of those key phrases, found seven times over, is, “and the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord.” Every time that you see that phrase, you see the children of Israel being sent into captivity because they did evil in the sight of the Lord. If you follow that phrase through the book of Judges, you will find the exact place of division which the Holy Spirit was pleased to use to indicate where the natural divisions actually come.

The second key phrase in the book would be the sequel to one such as that. That is, “when the children of Israel cried unto the Lord.” When they did evil in the sight of the Lord, He sent them into captivity. In the midst of that captivity, after He had chastened them sorely and they cried unto the Lord, then He raised up judges who took over and led them out of the captivity in which they were. He delivered them in the sense of the meaning of the word “judge” and defended them in the particular trial in which they found themselves. Judges did not appoint themselves. The people did not elect them. God called them into service. We listed for you these various judges who did serve. We will be looking at their individual lives and what they did as time goes along.

Having presented to you this material up to this point, we think it wise to suggest to you the outline that we gave to you in our last lesson on the book of Judges and which we examined in detail. We said the book of Judges fell into three divisions. We used words beginning with the same letter for the sake of alliteration as an aid to our memory.

The approach to the book of Judges is found in chapter 1, verse 1, through chapter 3, verse 4. You might want to call this the background of the book. We are calling it “The Approach to the Book.” Then the second portion of the book of Judges begins with verse 5 of chapter 3 and continues through verse 31 of chapter 16. As you can see, it represents the major portion of the book of Judges. This is dealing with the apostasies, all of them introduced with the key phrase we mentioned a moment ago, “Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord.” The third section of the book of Judges we have labeled the appendix; and as we mentioned in our last lesson, an appendix of this type is not something to be removed, but something to pay very close attention to. It is added to the book not as an afterthought, but it is added to the book in order to emphasize a certain truth, taken out of it's chronological order and placed where it was in order that the final summation might be driven home to readers of the book. So we find the appendix beginning with verse 1 of chapter 17 and going through verse 25 of chapter 21.

We suggested to you also that the book of Ruth might be included in this appendix. It is not included in our King James version, but in some of the ancient manuscripts the book of Ruth is included as part of the book of Judges. The reason for that is that the book of Ruth has it's time period in this era known as “the Judges.”

Having presented to you these technical facts concerning the book of Judges, which will become more familiar to us as we go along in our discussion, we want to recognize what we always like to recognize when it comes time to study an Old Testament book because oftentimes the only way Old Testament books are presented for study is from a historical or biographical standpoint. For example, in the book of Judges, if you were studying this in the average college course, you would be told to memorize the key phrases. You would be told to memorize the names of the judges. You would be told to memorize the various apostasies into which the nation of Israel entered, and that would be information. That would help you find your way through the book of Judges, but of what value, actually, to you would it be? I think you would be quick to agree that it would be of very little or no value.

Examples of Truth

That is one of the sad things about Bible teaching in many colleges and Bible Institutes. It is a mere matter of accumulation of facts without application of truths. So today we want to review–not because we looked at it in our last lesson, but because we look at it every time we have an Old Testament study–with you two verses in the New Testament which indicate to us why we should be studying the Old Testament. The first one you find in I Corinthians, chapter 10, verse 11. You might mark it in your Bibles so that you will be familiar with it, because you will find people today telling you that the Old Testament has no particular application for this day in which we live and that our studying of the Old Testament really represents a waste of time. In chapter 10 of the Corinthian letter, there is a record of how the children of Israel dealt with God and God dealt with them in Old Testament times. In verse 11, these words are written:

I Corinthians 10

11Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples [more properly ”types” is the word] : and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.

Notice this verse carefully: “All these things happened unto them for examples to us.” You see, the things that happened unto them could have been forgotten, but the Holy Spirit of God was pleased to record them and preserve them so that we might have them to study. We should find in these Old Testament books examples of truth.

For Our Admonition

Not only should we find examples of truth, but we should recognize that they are written for our admonition, our exhortation, our provoking. They should provoke us to serious thought in relation to our own individual lives. As we have suggested to you before, we would remind you that they are particularly significant if I am right in believing that we are living in the end of the age, because you will notice the last statement in verse 11: “Upon whom the ends of the world are come.” The word for “world” here does not refer to the earth and the sky. The word is kosmos , which refers to age, system, which indicates that we are coming to the end of the age someday. Now the people that are coming to the end of the age are the people that should be particularly interested in these Old Testament books.

In verse 12 you find the word “wherefore,” and whenever you find the word “wherefore,” as we have often suggested to you, you should ask the question, “Whyfore?” You find in verse 12:

I Corinthians 10

12Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.

Why? Because we are going to be studying about a group of people who stood and who stood firm, but who failed. If we in this age feel that we are standing in the sense that we have arrived, then we need to take heed of ourselves, because we are on the verge of falling.

Turn back, please, to the book of Romans and notice Romans, chapter 15, which is another reason we spend time studying these Old Testament Scriptures. Romans, chapter 15, verse 4:

Romans 15

4For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, [the book of Judges was written aforetime. It was written for our learning, and why?] that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.

This is a bit more encouraging verse than was I Corinthians, chapter 10, verse 11, because there we were warned that we might very easily fall if we are not careful. Here we are told to be encouraged when we read these things that were written aforetime that we, through these passages of Scripture, might have hope.

One thing that will bring to us this hope is the realization, as we shall see, of the faithfulness of God in the light of the failure of men. This is the reason we study these Old Testament passages of Scripture.

I want to share with you in a very general way some of the illustrations of New Testament truths that we are going to find in the book of Judges. I want to share these with you so that you can be watching for them as you read in the book of Judges, and I hope that you will do that. I hope that you will be studying the book of Judges from week to week, so that you will be familiar with the material that we present, and so that the Holy Spirit might bring to your mind something that He has not been pleased to bring to our mind, that we might convey it to you.

Importance of Spirit Control

The first New Testament truth that I find emphasized in the book of Judges is recorded in Ephesians, chapter 5, verse 18:

Ephesians 5

18And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;

We are going to find in the book of Judges the importance of being filled with the Spirit remembering that we use the word “filled” in the sense of “controlled”–of being controlled by the Holy Spirit. The moment that I say that, if you are thinking, you probably are wondering why I even make a statement like that in view of the fact that the Holy Spirit in Old Testament days never indwelt anyone, never came to abide in anyone's life as the Holy Spirit abides in the lives of believers in this Christian dispensation. Even though this is true, the Holy Spirit did come upon individuals for the purpose of controlling them, and anytime that there was any need for the control of the Holy Spirit in their lives, the Holy Spirit was available for that control.

We are going to see in the book of Judges men who walked under the control of the Holy Spirit, and we are going to see other men who walked not under the control of the Holy Spirit, but walked under their own momentum and their own power.

Evidence of Carnality

That brings us to another New Testament truth which is very closely related which is brought to your attention in Galatians, chapter 5, verse 16, where we read:

Galatians 5

16This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.

We are going to find men in the book of Judges who began in the Spirit and who ended in the flesh. This is a sad commentary, but it is true. Perhaps you would like to go back to the book of Judges and notice a very concrete illustration of what I am talking about because the book of Judges begins with a question and ends with a question. The book of Judges begins with a question that indicates that the individuals concerned were interested in the direction of the Holy Spirit. Notice in Judges, chapter 1, verse 1:

Judges 1

1Now after the death of Joshua it came to pass, that the children of Israel asked the LORD, saying, Who shall go up for us against the Canaanites first, to fight against them?

They could have gone up against the Canaanites without seeking the direction of the Holy Spirit of God, but they wanted to know what God's will was and what God's purpose was and so they said, “Who, Lord, do you want to go up against the Canaanites for us, the children of Israel?” God made the selection. They were glad to follow His suggestion, but when you come to the end of the book of Judges–that is, in the appendix of the book of Judges–you find the children of Israel asking another question. That question was, “Who shall go up for us against the Benjamites?” The Benjamites were members of the tribe of Benjamin. These people who started out so beautifully seeking the direction of the Lord–walking in the Spirit–ended in a rather sad condition–walking in the flesh. You will find that when there are divisions among Christian people, it is never an indication that the Holy Spirit has control. It is always and ever an indication of carnality.

Turn in your Bibles, please, to I Corinthians, chapter 3, verses 1-3, and notice what the Apostle has to say about this subject:

I Corinthians 3

1And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.
2I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able.
3For ye are yet carnal: [listen closely. Why were they carnal, or why did he know that they were carnal?] for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?

A more accurate translation of that last phrase might be “and walk as ordinary men.” The evidence of your carnality is your division and your envy. The same truth is brought to your attention in a more personal way in John's epistle. You might like to turn over there, because where you might not be able to see the evidence to which we refer in a corporate way, you might be able to see in an individual way in the third epistle of John. John was ready to come and visit. He wrote often and wanted his message to get through, but in III John, you find John saying, in verses 9-11:

III John

9I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not.
10Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth them out of the church.
11Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God.

In many assemblies are some Diotrephes who love to have the preeminence. Did you notice the emphasis which is placed upon the Scripture? If they can't have the preeminence, they will not let anybody do anything to receive any kind of notice at all. This is carnality, and we are going to notice among the Israelites, during this period of time when every man did that which was right in his own eyes, that Galatians, chapter 5, verse 16, was very evident. Sometimes they walked at the direction of the Spirit; sometimes they walked at the direction of the flesh.

You might like to go back to the Galatian letter and notice another reference that we suggest to you which will help you to understand some of the things that we are going to find in the book of Judges. In Galatians, chapter 6, verse 8:

Galatians 6

8For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.

You are going to find some excellent illustrations in the book of Judges of what it means to “sow to the flesh,” and in sowing to the flesh, to reap corruption. One of the most interesting examples that you are going to find to this sort of thing is in the life of Samson.

The Faithfulness of God

To offset the rather unpleasant things I have been speaking about up to this moment, I suggest that you turn with me to Paul's second letter to Timothy, because we are going to have, throughout the entire book, marvelous illustrations of this verse. II Timothy, chapter 2, verse 13:

II Timothy 2

13If we believe not, yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself.

If we are unbelieving, He abideth faithful, for He cannot deny himself. We are going to find against the backdrop of the faithlessness of Israel a marvelous illustration of the faithfulness of God. Oh, how faithful God is going to be presented in the book of Judges, perhaps more faithful than in any other one book in the Bible, and perhaps the reason for it is the faithlessness of the people with whom He deals.

I never think of the book of Judges without being reminded of the many illustrations we will find therein of the truth that is presented in I Corinthians, chapter l, verses 26-28:

I Corinthians 1

26For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:
27But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;
28And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:

There is no better illustration in the Word of God of the fact that God chooses weak things, meek things, despised things, to accomplish His divine purposes. Now if you were going to deal with some enemies and you were going to raise up a leader to lead the people concerned against such enemies, I wonder what kind of person you would choose, and I wonder how you would equip him to do the job that you had outlined for him. I am quite sure that most of us would be human enough to think that we should choose some well-known person, some person who was influential in everything that he was about to do; and we would certainly equip him with the latest forms and methods of equipment.

I want you to notice just one illustration out of the book of Judges. God chose a man by the name of Ehud, of whom no one had ever heard before. The weapon He gave him was the jawbone of an ass, and He said, “You take this jawbone of an ass, and you go out against the enemy and you win the victory.” You know, he did just that. Surely no one could say other than that God won the victory through a weak and despised thing.

Incomplete Obedience of the Israelites

Go back to the book of Judges. As I have reminded you, these are illustrations of what we will find within the book itself. Now to prepare our hearts for the actual study of the book, I think it is necessary for us to notice the first division which I suggested to you earlier in our discussion, the division that I call “the approach.” It's found in the first two chapters and through verse 4 of chapter 3, the portion you might want to call the background–the approach to the study of the book of Judges. How was it that the book of Judges records the history of the people of whom it was said, “Every man did that which was right in his own eyes?” I think the answer can be found in one simple statement which we are going to find in this chapter, “methods of incomplete obedience,” for the one thing that laid the groundwork for what you find in the book of Judges was incomplete obedience on the part of the Israelites.

When God issues an order, He expects it to be obeyed fully and completely. He doesn't expect anyone to do with it as they will do with it. But there are methods of getting around God's commandments. There are methods of getting around God's orders. I have been pleased to refer to them as “methods of incomplete obedience” as they are found in our approach to the book of Judges.

Partial Reliance On God's Power

The first thing that I would like to call to your attention is partial reliance on God, a partial reliance on God and His power. Look with me at verse 1 of this first chapter:

Judges 1

1Now after the death of Joshua it came to pass, that the children of Israel asked the LORD, saying, Who shall go up for us against the Canaanites first, to fight against them?

You see, there was no question in their minds that they should do battle against the Canaanites. That was God's will, but they wanted someone to do the job, and they did not know which tribe God would have do it, because the implication of the latter part of the book of Joshua and the book of Judges is that the whole nation did not have to do this mopping-up operation; only one certain tribe did. “Who shall go?” God gave the answer in verse 2:

Judges 1

2And the LORD said, Judah shall go up:…

Now notice what God said to Judah:

Judges 1

2…behold, I have delivered the land into his hand.

God said, “I have tied up the whole land of Canaan in one bundle and laid it on your doorstep, Judah. All you need to do is to go ahead and take it.” How wonderful it would have been if Judah had relied solely on the Lord, and wouldn't it be wonderful if we would likewise learn to rely solely on the Lord? But we find it difficult to do, don't we? God gives us something that we ought to do. He gives us every assurance in the world that He is going to give us the victory in the doing, and we find it difficult to obey. What do we do? Well, we do just like Judah did. If you will look there at verse 3:

Judges 1

3And Judah said unto Simeon his brother, Come up with me into my lot, that we may fight against the Canaanites; and I likewise will go with thee into thy lot. So Simeon went with him.

Do you see what was happening? Judah was substituting his plan for God's plan. He was only partially relying on God. He said, “God, I will go if Simeon be allowed to go with me. I cannot go just by myself. And after I have won the battle with Simeon's help, then I will help Simeon with his battles.” If you followed the context through, you would find that God could well have answered, “But that is not what I said. There will be no need for Simeon to fight a battle if you go claim what I have already delivered unto you.” The reason, Beloved, that some of us have work to do is because those whom God has called have not done the work that they were called to do. They only partially relied on God, not completely and fully.

Deliberate Disregard of God's Commands

Develop that thought in your mind–the importance of relying fully on the Lord, and I suggest to you there was another reason that their obedience was incomplete. We might term it deliberate disregard of His commands, for where Judah only partially relied upon God, the other tribes deliberately disregarded His commands. And if you look farther down in the chapter, you will find one tribe after another saying that they were not interested in doing what God would have them to do. If you will look down, for example, to verse 21:

Judges 1

21And the children of Benjamin did not drive out the Jebusites that inhabited Jerusalem; but the Jebusites dwell with the children of Benjamin in Jerusalem unto this day.

Here is a simple statement. “They didn't do it.” God said to do it, but they didn't do it. If you are thinking, and even perusing the chapter, you may be a bit puzzled. You may say, “But don't you think that God was somewhat pleased with Judah's procedure? After all, they did win victory.” Yes, they did, but do you know they won a victory that anybody could have won? The fact that you apparently see blessing in the life of an individual is no certain sign that that is omniscience acting, that that is omnipotence, for that very same thing could well be done by many people without the power of the Spirit of God. Sometimes, for example, people base their evaluation of success on numbers, and they will say, concerning certain individuals, “God must be with Him. Look at the crowds of people that go to hear him.” Well, anybody with the same organization as such individuals could speak to such crowds, for developments are such that they are able to bring out crowds. This doesn't mean that God isn't blessing. We are simply saying that it is not a sure sign of omnipotence in performance. If you will glance down at the verse 19, you will see what I am talking about, because there you read:

Judges 1

19And the LORD was with Judah; and he drave out the inhabitants of the mountain; [that sounds wonderful, but now notice the rest of the verse] but could not drive out the inhabitants of the valley, because they had chariots of iron.

This age of judges is comparable to the iron age of which you read about in your history books, and these Amalekites had developed iron to the extent that their chariots had iron wheels and were sheathed with iron shields, and when the Israelites came up against the ordinary, they were absolutely helpless.

Surely you would not dare to say to me that the victories which they won in these other places in which God said He gave them the victory, you would not dare to say that God was not a match for these chariots of iron. The only conclusion to which we can come is that when men partially disobey God, partially rely on God, they will have a measure of victory; but when the real test comes, failure will be the order of the day.

A Convenient Compromise

Not only was there a partial reliance of God, not only was there a deliberate disregard of His command, there was a convenient compromise on the part of these Israelites in relation to the Canaanites. You remember, God's command was, “Drive them out; utterly slay.” But the compromises? Look down in verse 30:

Judges 1

30Neither did Zebulun drive out the inhabitants of Kitron, nor the inhabitants of Nahalol; but the Canaanites dwelt among them, and became tributaries.
31Neither did Asher drive out the inhabitants of Accho, nor the inhabitants of Zidon, nor of Ahlab, nor of Achzib, nor of Helbah, nor of Aphik, nor of Rehob:
32But the Asherites dwelt among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land: for they did not drive them out.
33Neither did Naphtali drive out the inhabitants of Bethshemesh, nor the inhabitants of Bethanath; but he dwelt among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land: nevertheless the inhabitants of Bethshemesh and of Bethanath became tributaries unto them.

There you have the story. The nation of Israel gave lodging to these people whom we are going to learn later were going to be a thorn in their side because of their partial disobedience.

Requited Judgment

There is another lesson in this first chapter that I would like for us to notice. You know, one of the criticisms of Old Testament books is what people refer to as God's murderous attitude, the cruelty of God in the Old Testament. It was a Methodist bishop who said that he did not want the God of the Old Testament for his God, because the God of the Old Testament was a dirty bully. He didn't want to serve any God like that. It is an interesting thing to notice in the first chapter of the book of Judges, the very people who lived in that day felt that they got their just desserts, for there is a lesson in this first chapter that I am going to refer to as “requited judgment.” The reason that I refer to it as “requited judgment,” is because of what comes to my mind from what the Lord Jesus Christ himself had to say in relation to the matter of judgment. In Matthew, chapter 7, verses 1 and 2, the Lord Jesus Christ said:

Matthew 7

1Judge not, that ye be not judged.
2For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.

That is, you will be judged with the same kind of judgment.

The wise man in the book of Proverbs expresses it in a different way. He said to be careful about digging a pit for another man because you may fall into the same pit.

The book of Esther expresses it still another way. “Be careful how well you build the gallows.” Haman, remember, went to a great deal of trouble to build a good set of gallows upon which he expected to hang Mordecai, but Haman hung on those gallows before God was through. Be careful how you judge, for with what judgment you judge, it shall be meted to you again.

Look at verse 5 of chapter 1, and notice the words:

Judges 1

5And they found Adonibezek in Bezek: [Adonibezek is the king's name. It simply means ”Master” or ”Lord” of the village of Bezek] and they fought against him, and they slew the Canaanites and the Perizzites.
6But Adonibezek fled; and they pursued after him, and caught him, [now notice carefully] and cut off his thumbs and his great toes.

Now think about that. They cut off both his thumbs and both of his great big toes. Why did they do that? Well, the very practical reason for doing it was it was the custom in that day. It ruined you for any kind of service in the army; it ruined you for any kind of military service. Now, how did Adonibezek feel about this? Did he feel that God was a dirty bully? Did he feel that these Jews were unrighteous in what they were doing? Look at verse 7:

Judges 1

7And Adonibezek said, Threescore and ten kings, having their thumbs and their great toes cut off, gathered their meat under my table: as I have done, so God hath requited me. And they brought him to Jerusalem, and there he died.

He said, “I got what was coming to me. I did this very same thing to eighty kings, so why shouldn't it be done to me?” Even kings had more insight into justice than the Methodist Bishop did. God is not a dirty bully.

The Law of First Mention

Notice one other thing related to the approach to the book of Judges. I have labeled it “the Law of First Mention.” This is a law that I have spoken about to you before, and you need to become familiar with it in your study of the Word of God. That is that the way you find something mentioned the first time specifically, indicates what is going to happen or what that particular thing is going to represent throughout all the Word of God. The first mention of Jerusalem, other than the fact that Adonibezek was taken there, here in verse 8 in chapter 1 of the book of Judges is an illustration of the law of first mention.

Judges 1

8Now the children of Judah had fought against Jerusalem, and had taken it, and smitten it with the edge of the sword, and set the city on fire.

This has been the history of Jerusalem from that day to this. Many hundreds of times–one man said seventeen hundred times–the city of Jerusalem has been taken and smitten and set on fire. What we find is a law of first mention here in Judges, chapter 1, verse 8. It describes what we will see about Jerusalem throughout the Word of God in it's final judgment from God himself.

Result of Incomplete Obedience

I would like for you to look with me at the first section of chapter 2 of the book of Judges to enable us to understand our approach to the book because the latter part of this chapter is a survey, along with the first five verses of chapter 3 of the rest of the book. I only have time to call to your attention the story found in the first five verses of chapter 2.

Judges 2

1And an angel of the LORD came up from Gilgal to Bochim, and said, I made you to go up out of Egypt, and have brought you unto the land which I sware unto your fathers; and I said, I will never break my covenant with you.
2And ye shall make no league with the inhabitants of this land; ye shall throw down their altars: but ye have not obeyed my voice: why have ye done this?
3Wherefore I also said, I will not drive them out from before you; but they shall be as thorns in your sides, and their gods shall be a snare unto you.
4And it came to pass, when the angel of the LORD spake these words unto all the children of Israel, that the people lifted up their voice, and wept.
5And they called the name of that place Bochim: and they sacrificed there unto the LORD.

The angel of the Lord is the Lord Jesus Christ. Gilgal was where Israel's reproach was rolled away and where they ought to have gone to worship. But He came to commune with them. If you will look up at verse 5, you will see that they themselves called this place where He brought them the message “Bochim,” because “Bochim” means “weapers.” And what was the message the Lord Jesus Christ brought to them? “You have disobeyed what I asked you to do.” In verse 3:

Judges 2

3Wherefore I also said, I will not drive them out from before you; but they shall be as thorns in your sides, and their gods shall be a snare unto you.

“They that sow to the flesh, shall of the flesh reap corruption.” This is what the whole book of Judges is about. If they had driven out all these Canaanites, there would have been no book of Judges.


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