Tag Archives: humility

Judgments and Judges

Then the Lord raised up judges who saved them out of the hands of these raiders….But when the judge died, the people returned to ways even more corrupt than those of their fathers….                              Judges 2:16, 19

During the days between Joshua and the kings of Israel, law and order were at low ebb, and “every man did that which was right in his own eyes.”  In such a situation God raised up men that were known as judges, whom we would think of as vigilantes, or defenders of justice and the oppressed.  Some of the more famous of these fifteen men were Gideon, Jephthah, Samson, and Samuel.  All of us remember well the exciting feats that some of these men performed.

But the important thing in Judges is not the stories we were told about these heroes in Sunday school.  The important lesson of this book of the Bible is the recurring fact, repeated over and over, that when the people repented and lived in righteousness, they prospered; the minute they forgot about God, trouble ensued.  In dreadful monotony we read again and again that there was peace in the land for about a generation and then followed war, oppression, devastation, and trouble.

One cannot read the book of Judges without being struck by God’s endless patience and forbearance.  Time after time He would hear His people’s cry for help, and as soon as He put them on their feet they would forget Him again.  It makes one think of the lines in Lamentations, “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love. For he does not willingly bring affliction…”  (3:22, 23, 32)

Judges is a picture of almost every nation, with a war in every generation.  What a shame that we have to learn humility and dependence the hard way!


We Are Saints

He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified.      Hebrews 10:14

It is impossible to make progress in the Christian race unless a person realizes that he or she is a saint in Christ.  Can you imagine cheerleaders encouraging a team yelling, “Let’s go, losers”?

Possibly we get the wrong impression of ourselves because many of the songs we sing in worship services emphasize human sin.  For many of us, worship can become a time of telling God how good He is and how bad we are.  Hebrews 10:14 however, tells us that Christians have been made holy.  In 1 Corinthians 6, Paul lists many types of sinners and then says: “Such were some of you.  But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God” (v. 11). We must be careful not to overlook Gods work of grace by calling attention to our sins all of the time.

Failing to recognize God’s complete salvation may also cause Christians to offend and confuse prospective converts.  What appeal does becoming a Christian have if a person doesn’t change or show any joy?

Perhaps we should address each other as “saints.”  Then, however, people would say we were being presumptuous and proud.  On the other hand, we must not take pride in humility.  Let us never call unclean what the Lord our God has hallowed.