Trek Through Judges
Scripture reading for April 2nd: Judges 21, Ruth 1-2, Luke 22
Key Scriptures: Luke 22:26-30 “”But not so with you. Rather let the greatest among you become as the youngest, and the leader as one who serves. For who is the greater, one who reclines at table or one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at table? But I am among you as the one who serves. “You are those who have stayed with Me in my trials, and I assign to you, as My Father assigned to Me, a kingdom, that you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.””
Jesus encouraged His followers to lead by serving others, as He had done for them. Their reward for servitude would be a kingdom! They would recline at His table and sit on thrones! Ruth, a Gentile, clung to Naomi, a Jew, and served her. Her reward was the eternal kingdom!
Ruth 1:16-17 “But Ruth said, “Do not urge me to leave you or to return from following you. For where you go I will go, and where you lodge I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord do so to me and more also if anything but death parts me from you.”
Prayer: Lord, thank You for Your encouragement and promise of the kingdom! I cling to You today and always! Amen.
Scripture reading for March 30th: Judges 17-20, Luke 21
Key Scriptures: Luke 21:33-36 “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away. But watch yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a trap. For it will come upon all who dwell on the face of the whole earth. But stay awake at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.”
Jesus told His disciples that prayer and watchfulness were necessities to survive the testing that would come upon the earth before His coming again. God’s people must live by faith in every Word He has said!
Judges 17:5-6 “And the man Micah had a shrine, and he made an ephod and household gods, and ordained one of his sons, who became his priest. In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in his own eyes.”
Prayer: Lord, forgive me for doing my own thing. Help me to live in faith by Your Word. Amen.
Scripture reading for March 29th: Judges 13-16, Luke 20
Key Scriptures: Judges 13:17-20 “And Manoah said to the angel of the Lord, “What is your name, so that, when your words come true, we may honor you?” And the angel of the Lord said to him, “Why do you ask my name, seeing it is wonderful?” So Manoah took the young goat with the grain offering, and offered it on the rock to the Lord, to the One who works wonders, and Manoah and his wife were watching. And when the flame went up toward heaven from the altar, the angel of the Lord went up in the flame of the altar.”
God appeared to a childless couple and told them that they would have a son who would deliver Israel. He gave them instructions that this child be raised as a Nazarite from conception. This is a type of Jesus Christ, from Nazareth who was set apart to God from before the world began!
Luke 20:24-26 “”Show Me a denarius. Whose likeness and inscription does it have?” They said, “Caesar’s.” He said to them, “Then render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’;s, and to God the things that are God’s.” And they were not able in the presence of the people to catch Him in what He said,. . .”
Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for Your wisdom, “Wonderful” Name and works of wonder! We give you praise and honor! Amen!
Scripture reading for March 26th: Judges 2-4, Luke 17
Key Scriptures: Luke 17:24-27 “For as lighting flashes and lights up the sky from one side to the other, so will the Son of Man be in His day. But first He must suffer many things and be rejected by this generation. Just as it was in the days of Noah, so will it be in the days of the Son of Man. They were eating and drinking and marrying and being given in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all.”
Jesus plainly taught His disciples about the time of His return to earth. It would be a time when many had fallen away and rejected the Son of Man. They lived naturally for the desires of their flesh, but were ripe for destruction as in the days of Noah. The book of Judges tells how God allowed free will and consequences, teaching them to live by faith in His Word.
Judges 2:11-13 “And the people of Israel did what was evil in the sight of the Lord and served the Baals. And they abandoned the Lord, the God of their fathers, who had brought them out of the land of Egypt. They went after other gods, from among the gods of the peoples who were around them, and bowed down to them.”
Prayer: Lord Jesus, guide me in Your way today that I might be ready for Your sudden and glorious return. Amen.
Scripture reading for March 23rd: Joshua 22-24, Judges 1, Luke 16
Key Scriptures: Luke 16:10-13 “One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much. If then you have not been faithful in the unrighteous wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches? And if you have not been faithful in that which is another’s, who will give you that which is your own? No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.”
Jesus warned his disciples about the danger of compromise. To be faithful servants of God requires a single focus. You cannot serve God and place something else in His place, vying for your affection. It is impossible!
Joshua 24:14-15 “”Now therefore fear the Lord and serve Him in sincerity and in faithfulness. Put away the gods that your fathers served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord. And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you well. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.””
Prayer: Lord, I choose again today to serve You Alone, to devote my life to You and love You. Amen.
Scripture reading for March 13th: Judges 18-21
Key Scriptures: Judges 18:18-20 “When these men went into Micah’s house and took the carved image, the ephod, the other household gods and the cast idol, the priest and said to them, “What are you doing?” The answered him, “Be Quiet! Don’t say a word. Come with us, and be our father and priest. Isn’t it better that you serve a tribe and clan in Israel as priest rather than just one man’s household?” Then the priest was glad. He took the ephod, the other household gods and the carved image and went along with the people.”
The tribe of Dan had turned to idolatry and a form of religion. They had no King or did not remember the Lord and His Word. This story tells of an idolatrous family and tribe whose priest served for dishonest gain!
Thankful for godly leadership: God commands leaders to live godly examples and not work for money but for Him! “Surely you remember, brothers, our toil and hardship; we worked night and day in order not to be a burden to anyone while we preached the gospel of God to you. You are witnesses, and so is God, of how holy, righteous and blameless we were among you who believed.” (1st Thessalonians 22:9-10)
Scripture reading for March 10th: Judges 13-17
Key Scriptures: Judges 13:3-5 “The angel of the Lord appeared to her and said, “You are sterile and childless, but you are going to conceive and have a son. Now see to it that you drink no wine or other fermented drink and that you do not eat anything unclean, because you will conceive and give birth to a son. No razor may be used on his head, because the boy is to be a Nazirite, set apart to God from birth, and He will begin the deliverance of Israel from the hands of the Philistines.””
God sent an angelic messenger to an Israelite woman and her husband to prepare them to give birth to a son who would begin to deliver Israel. She was barren but God would bring this blessed son who would be set apart from conception to serve God’s purposes!
Rejoice in angelic messengers: God uses angels to deliver special announcements to His people. “But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to give him the name John. He will be a joy and a delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, for He will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even from birth.” (Luke 1:13-15)
Scripture reading for March 9th: Judges 9-12
Key Scriptures: Judges 9:22-24 “After Abimelech had governed Israel three years, God sent an evil spirit between Abimelech and the citizens of Shechem, who acted treacherously against Abimelech. God did this in order that the crime against Jerub-Baal’s (Gideon) seventy sons, the shedding of their blood, might be avenged on their brother Abimelech and on the citizens of Shechem who had helped him murder his brothers.”
God is just. A man will reap what he has sowed. Abimelech, the son of a Gideon and a prostitute from Shechem, wanted power and authority. He used intimidation to gain power and murdered all but one of his half-brothers. God allowed an evil spirit to bring about justice on these rebellious people.
Rejoice in God’s justice: Under the New Covenant, Christ offers forgiveness to repentant sinners and commands His people to allow Him to bring justice! “Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.” (Romans 12:17-19)
Scripture reading for March 8th: Judges 4-8
Key Scriptures: Judges 6:14-16 “The Lord turned to him (Gideon) and said, “Go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian’s hand. Am I not sending you?” “But Lord,” Gideon asked, “how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.” The Lord Answered, “I will be with you and you will strike down all the Midianites together.”
Gideon was approached by the Lord to deliver His people from the oppression of the Midianites. He looked at his own strength and family resources and asked God how this could ever happen since he was so weak. But God promised His presence would make all the difference!
Rejoice in weakness: God chooses weak people to do supernatural things. He asks for faith and obedience! “But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.” . . . “That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2nd Corinthians 12:8-10)
Scripture reading for March 7th: Joshua 23-24, Judges 1-3
Key Scriptures: Joshua 23:11,14-15 “So be very careful to love the Lord your God. . . . Now I am about to go the way of all the earth. You know with all your heart and soul that not one of all the good promises the Lord your God gave you has failed. Every promise has been fulfilled; not one has failed. But just as every good promise of the Lord your God has come true, so the Lord will bring on you all the evil He has threatened, until He has destroyed you from this good land He has given you.”
Joshua was soon to depart from God’s people on earth. He called them again into a love relationship with God. This love was demonstrated by faith in God’s unchanging Word. All the promises of God are true–‘good’ ones and ‘bad’ ones! The choice would be up to them!
Rejoicing in God’s Promises: Through Christ Jesus, all God’s good promises are ours. Through loving God and obeying our Lord we escape the judgment promised His adversaries! “For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached among you by me and Silas and Timothy, was not “Yes” and “No,” but in Him it has always been “Yes.” For no matter how many promises God has made, the are “Yes” in Christ.” 2nd Corinthians 1:19-20