Today we’re going to continue to discuss this cycle that we see over and over in Judges with the second step in the cycle.
Yesterday we discussed this fact, that the children of Israel had chosen to disobey God, which lead to all kinds of other sin. As a result of this, God would allow other nations to come in and oppress the children of Israel.
Check out these verses from Judges 2:1-4:
1 And 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.s2 And 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?3 Wherefore 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. 4 And 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.
The “angel of the Lord” in this passage is actually Old Testament language used to describe the second person of the Trinity, who we know is actually Jesus Christ. He tells them in this passage that because they haven’t completely obeyed his command to drive out the inhabitants, the inhabitants of the land would be a problem for them.
Notice he uses two words- “thorns” and “snares” (traps).
God loved the children of Israel. They were his chosen nation, and because He loved them, He disciplined them and held them to a higher standard.
It reminds me Hebrews 12:5-8:
And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?8 But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.
Life Step: Think about it…
As much as we don’t like to be punished or disciplined, it does communicate to us that God loves us.
No one really likes discipline, at least not at first. Why do you think that we make choices that we know will end in our discipline?
How should we respond to God’s discipline?