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Beginning our sermon series on the Book of Judges

Greetings, beloved church. It’s school holidays, so a sizeable number of our church family will be away, but probably a sizeable number of visitors will also be in town holidaying. If that describes you—then ‘welcome.’ We hope you to stay around after the Service for some morning tea, a cuppa and a chat.

Today, we begin our series on the Book of Judges. Judges is a book about heroes—12 men and women who delivered Israel from its oppressors. As the book’s introduction in my Bible states: “These judges were not perfect; in fact, they included an assassin, a sexually promiscuous man (who was also incredibly strong), and a person who broke all the laws of hospitality. But they were submissive to God, and God used them.”

The Book of Judges covers the period between the era of Moses and Joshua (both strong, godly leaders) and the era of the first kings of Israel (Saul and David)—a period of more than 300 years when there was a leadership vacuum—a dark time in Israel’s history that records Israel’s first civil war—a time when there were very few good and godly leaders worthy to look up to or emulate. Thus, the key verse in the Book of Judges is this: “In those days Israel had no king, so the people did whatever seemed right in their own eyes” (17:6; 21:25). (Is that any different to the world we live in today!?)

Judges is also a book about sin and its consequences. The book shows us that God’s judgement against sin is certain, but also that His forgiveness of sin and the restoration to a relationship with Him are just as certain for those who repent and turn back to Him. When sin takes a foothold in people’s lives, there is a rapid decline in the quality of their lives, and that truth applies equally whether it is individual sin or corporate sin in view—and both are on display in the Book of Judges.

So, the true Hero in Judges (and the Bible as a whole) is God. Every time Israel became captives to something because of sin and cried out for help, God would come to their rescue … through a Judge that He would raise up to lead the people back to Him and His ways. God is always faithful and good, even when we are not.

Ultimately, God would send a different type of Deliverer who would rescue us once-and-for-all. His name is Jesus the Messiah. He is a true Hero and the only One who has ever lived on this planet that is worthy of our trust and allegiance—the only One worthy to look up to and emulate. God bless.

Pastor Rob

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