Read Judges 1:1
Joshua and the elders die. The Israelites lived in the mountains because the Canaanites in the valleys would attack them with chariots of iron. The Israelites sin by being friendly with the Canaanites and they also stopped serving God (Judg. 2:10-11).
The Book of Judges gives the history of the Israelites for about 300 to 450 years after the death of Joshua. Under Joshua's leadership at the waters of Merom, the Israelites had defeated the Canaanite . . . (who were) as the sand upon the sea shore in multitude, with horses and chariots very many (Josh. 11:3-5). Yet, there arose another generation . . . which knew not the Lord. . . . and served Baalim: And they forsook the Lord (Judg. 2:10-12). Canaanite is a general name given to all the kingdoms that existed in the promised land.
The tribe of Judah was the first to go up against the Canaanites and for a time the men of Judah walked by faith and conquered. The Israelites failed to fully possess the whole land because they proved they were unfaithful to God. In addition, some of the tribes lost the victories they had won and were again enslaved by the surrounding heathen nations. At the root of every failure is a lack of obedience to the Word of God.
The Book of Judges illustrates what happens to many Christians, as well as the church, with its loss of holiness and members. It is also an illustration for believers to hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering (Heb. 10:23).
It seems strange that at the sight of the iron chariots the tribe of Judah would not trust the Lord to give them victory over the Canaanites. God had said: When thou goest out to battle against thine enemies, and seest horses, and chariots, and a people more than thou, be not afraid of them: for the Lord thy God is with thee, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt (Deut. 20:1).
What a lesson this is to the Christian! When they forsook the Lord, they gave up their faith. Note the failures in the other tribes that followed the example of Judah who forsook the One True God. They are a reminder of how easy it is to become distracted with personal interests that occupy the time that should be given to the Lord. Without realizing it, some today have created another god and use the Lord's Day and His tithe to enjoy their new god of leisure or entertainment. As a warning, let us remember Israel's failure: The children of Israel dwelt among the Canaanites . . . and served their gods. . . . and forgot the Lord (Judg. 3:5-7).
Thought for Today:
Call unto Me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not (Jer. 33:3).
As the Angel of the Lord who is understood to be Jesus Himself, for He speaks as God Himself (I made you . . . and have brought you . . . I sware . . . I said, I will . . . My Covenant) (Judg. 2:1-4). Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am (John 8:58).
1:7 meat under my table leftover food; requited repaid; 1:20 expelled thence drove out, defeated; 1:23 descry spy out; 1:27 would dwell determined to remain; 1:30 tributaries forced laborers; 2:12 bowed themselves unto worshiped; 2:16 spoiled plundered; 2:17 went a whoring after other gods were unfaithful to the One True God; 2:18 repented thrieved, showed compassion; 2:19 corrupted themselves became more sinful; 2:22 prove test.
Pray for International Broadcasts in honor of Bonnie Wilhite • Government Officials: Sen. Orrin Hatch (UT) and Rep. Pete Sessions (TX) • Staff: Jannah Kennon • Country: Azerbaijan (7.7 million) southern Transcaucasia between Europe and Asia • Major languages: Azeri and Russian • Religious freedom • 65% Shi'a Muslim; 30% Sunni Muslim; 2% Russian Orthodox; 2% Armenian Apostolic; 1% Jewish • Prayer Suggestion: Give thanks to the Lord for all things (Eph. 5:19-20).
Optional Reading: John 13:1
Memory Verse for the Week: 1 Peter 1:8