Read Judges 10:1-36
Tola judges Israel twenty-three years; Jair judges Israel; Jephthah chosen captain; his rash vow which cost him his only child; victory over Ammonites.
And Gilead's wife bare him sons; and his wife's sons grew up, and they thrust out Jephthah, and said unto him, Thou shalt not inherit in our father's house; for thou art the son of a strange woman (Judg. 11:2).
Jephthah was forced to leave Israel because he was an illegitimate child. He went to his mother's country in Syria where he lived for eighteen years. Although it looked as though everyone was against him, he did not allow self-pity or bitterness to rob him of the Lord's blessing. Of all the thousands of men in Israel, Jephthah was chosen to be a judge, and his name is included among the great heroes of faith along with Samuel and David (see Heb. 11:32).
Many people in Jephthah's circumstances of being rejected might have said, "If this is how they feel, let them fight their own battles." However, Romans 11:33 tells us that the ways of God are past finding out! Who would have thought that this exiled, illegitimate son would one day be the only man amoung the thousands of Israelites qualified to occupy the position of Judge in Israel?
We often do not understand the way God arranges circumstances, but He does. It is not necessary that we feel God in our circumstances, for even though we may not be conscious of His presence, He is there!
Christians often tend to rate their influence and effectiveness by how well people accept them. But God has not called us to be popular or successful; He has called us to remain faithful. Great victory lies in accepting all things from His hand.
And 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: That no flesh should glory in His presence (I Cor. 1:28-29).
Those who are used of God will experience many testings. This is how He prepares us for the work He called us to do.
Accept with gratitude all that comes into your life — through friend or enemy, failures or humiliations — as the Lord's way of drawing you closer to Himself.
But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you (I Pet. 5:10).
Thought for Today:
Man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart (I Sam. 16:7).
By Jephthah's only child as she wholly submitted to her father's will even as Jesus wholly submitted to His Father's will (Judg. 11:34-40). On the night He was betrayed, Jesus prayed: Not as I will, but as Thou wilt (Matt. 26:39).
10:8 vexed, afflicted, grievously oppressed; 10:14 cry unto, ask for help from; 11:2 strange, foreign; 11:3 vain, renegade; 11:23 dispossessed, driven out; 11:34 timbrels, tambourines; 11:35 opened my mouth, made a vow.
Pray for International Broadcasts in memory of Letha Hash • Staff: Ilene Wallace • Government Officials: Gov. Lincoln Davenport Chafee (RI), Rep. Nancy Pelosi (CA), and Rep. Jason Chaffetz (UT) • Country: Venezuela (23 million) on the northern coast of South America • Major languages: Spanish and Indian dialects • Religious freedom • 94% Roman Catholic; 1% Protestant; 1% Indian pagan religions • Prayer Suggestion: Pray without stopping (II Tim. 1:3).
Optional Reading: John 17
Memory Verse for the Week: Philippians 2:16