Judges 9:1-6 – A Bad, Bad Man
1 And Abimelech the son of Jerubbaal went to Shechem unto his mother’s brethren, and communed with them, and with all the family of the house of his mother’s father, saying,
2 Speak, I pray you, in the ears of all the men of Shechem, Whether is better for you, either that all the sons of Jerubbaal, which are threescore and ten persons, reign over you, or that one reign over you? remember also that I am your bone and your flesh.
3 And his mother’s brethren spake of him in the ears of all the men of Shechem all these words: and their hearts inclined to follow Abimelech; for they said, He is our brother.
4 And they gave him threescore and ten pieces of silver out of the house of Baalberith, wherewith Abimelech hired vain and light persons, which followed him.
5 And he went unto his father’s house at Ophrah, and slew his brethren the sons of Jerubbaal, being threescore and ten persons, upon one stone: notwithstanding yet Jotham the youngest son of Jerubbaal was left; for he hid himself.
6 And all the men of Shechem gathered together, and all the house of Millo, and went, and made Abimelech king, by the plain of the pillar that was in Shechem.
Now we get to see the exploits of Gideon’s son, Abimelech. Abimelech, to put it simply, is a bad, bad man. We see he wanted one thing, and that was power. Although ambition is not a bad thing, when we let anything take control of our lives it becomes a bad thing. For Abimelech, he wanted nothing but the power and authority to be king. We see that he first went ahead and used his mother’s people to get enough money to hire some thugs. Then he goes and murders 68 of his brothers! Only Jotham was able to hide and obviously Abimelech was not killed because he was the one doing the killing! After Abimelech and his entourage murdered over five dozen people, he then accepts the crown as king, exactly what his father refused to accept.
Sometimes we fall into the same trap as Abimelech. Most likely not to the extent where we are going to murder our own brothers, but we sometimes put things before God like Abimelech did. For Abimelech, he put his ambition before God. For other people, maybe it is a job, or a boyfriend or girlfriend. Sometimes it’s a car or friends what we choose to prioritize before God. The key is making sure that God is first in our lives and letting him take care of the details.
Life Step: Think about it…
What kinds of things do we prioritize before God?
What ways can we make sure that we don’t put things before God?