Judges 8:18-9:21 ~ Luke 23:44-24:12 ~ Psalm 99:1-9 ~ Proverbs 14:9-10
Today is April 18th. Welcome to the Daily Audio Bible. I’m Brian and it’s good to be here with you today, next step forward, kind of turning the corner toward the end of the week and we’ve been reading about this judge named Gideon in our Old Testament reading and we’ll pick up with his story today; Judges chapter 8, verse 18 through 9:21, and we’re reading from The Voice this week.
Let’s just do a really quick recap of where we’ve been in the Old Testament. It gets so easy to get disconnected from the story and then kind of feel lost.
So we get into Judges and hear of these people that rise up to lead God’s people for a period of time, usually their lifetime, but it kind of feels like they are popping up here and there and we’re kind of lost to the connection. Let’s just quick go back and remember this guy Abram.
Remember this guy Abram, way a long time ago, right after the New Year? Abram, who comes into a land that he didn’t know, following a God that he had just met? Everything started there. Abram becomes Abraham. He has a child of promise named Isaac. Isaac has a son named Jacob and I know I’m skipping some pieces, but he has a son named Jacob whose name becomes Israel and his children, Jacob’s children literally are the children of Israel because Jacob’s name is Israel. One of those children’s name is Joseph who ends up getting trafficked as a slave into Egypt. We followed that entire story and that is how the children of Israel got to Egypt.
Then God raised up Moses 400 years later to free this massive people from slavery in Egypt. Then we wandered around for 40 years. Then Moses died. Joshua became the leader of this people, the children of Israel, and they crossed the Jordan into the promised land. Everything was well and good. The land was granted out and divided up among the tribes during Joshua’s life. And then Joshua died, but those who were contemporary with Joshua kept everything moving in the right direction. But then everyone died. Everyone who had ever been in the wilderness wandering around, everyone who had been that first generation in the promised land, they are gone. So the people don’t have a leader. That is where these judges come in.
It was a time where there wasn’t a central figure, a Joshua, a Moses. Everybody was just kind of doing what they thought was right and it didn’t take long before the mixture began and people began to worship the God’s of the Canaanites or the Hittites or the Amorites. These people that are around, they began to fall in love and mix in other religious customs and it all kind of became this leaderless group of people. This is where the judges come in.
Every time we come to a judge, we’re moving another generation or two later in time, so we can go through the book of Judges not realizing that we’re moving through generations of people. Every time we come to a new judge, this is a different generation of people, and so we’re getting further and further removed from Joshua, from Moses, and we’re seeing what is happening to the people over time, over the generations.
So we get to somebody like Gideon and we’re several generations removed and the people have been in the land for a while. Everybody who is there has grown up there. It is all they have ever known. And then we hear the echoes of Moses’ warnings: “When you get there and everything is all good and you are at peace, that is where your real battle is going to be. That is when the seduction of the false gods that you will find yourselves worshipping, that is when that is going to challenge you.” And that is exactly what we’re seeing.
In the Gideon story we sort of see the texture of what is going on, regional power struggles for leadership and all of this. Gideon frees the people and actually rallies the people together in a unified mission and they want him to lead, but he doesn’t want to be their leader. But they do revere him and he’s kind of the unspoken leader, but he dies. Forty years later he dies. But he has a lot of kids. Seventy kids is a lot of kids, a LOT of kids, but one of them, Abimelech, kills all of his brothers in order to become leader, in order to use the family name to gain power and we see that the people just begin to slide backward until God brings up a new leader.
There is like this forward movement and then this retreat, this forward and retreat, this ebb and flow, this back and forth that is going on that so deeply resembles our own stories. God shows up, gives leadership, brings rescue, everything returns to normal, the slide backwards begins. We find that we’re not so different than these people of so long ago, not in our hearts. I think that is one of the most beautiful things about reading the Bible. It’s retelling the story of life on earth. It’s retelling our story. We find in the motivations of the people that we’re reading about the same things going on in our own lives. And then the Bible becomes less of a religious book and one of humanity and over and over and over again we get to see where the roads lead, which allows us to choose what road we’re going to walk on.
Then, of course, in Luke’s gospel we see where that road led Jesus and we see where that road led these same people. This story of Gideon that we’re reading, many, many, many, many, many generations later it’s these same people calling for Jesus’ execution, which we witnessed today from Luke’s gospel. And we’re reminded once again that God will not surrender his people to the darkness. He will not stop coming for us. He has always come for us and Jesus is the greatest rescue of the human race ever, the only one needed. And thank God.
Father, as we find our life in the stories in the scriptures and as we find the great rescue in your story, Jesus, we’re once again in awe. Your word speaks truth into our lives and then we can listen or we can ignore, but your word is kind enough to show us where either one of those places will lead us. So we choose to follow you and invite your Holy Spirit. Lead us into all truth. This is the promise and we believe this because it has been true in our lives. You lead into truth and that is what we want. You lead on the narrow path that leads to life. So come, Holy Spirit, we pray in the mighty name of Jesus that you would do exactly that, lead us into all truth, lead us on the narrow path that leads to life. We ask this in Jesus’ name, amen.
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And that’s it for today. I’m Brian. I love you and I’ll be waiting for you here tomorrow.
Community Prayer Requests and Praise Reports
Hi Dabbers. This is Victoria S. from Maryland and I’m calling in because I heard a message from Annette A. And Annette, when I hear your voice, it always brings a smile on my face, even when you and Biola were reporting live from the More Conference, that just brought such a big smile to my face. And I heard your prayer request and I heard your challenge about your son, Alex, and you made one important statement, that God had told you that he had plans for your son. So regardless of what is going on right now, stay focused on the promise that God has told you and not the process. Stay focused on the promise and not the process and what it comes to. I’ll stand in agreement with you, praying and praying for your son as he is going through this little setback. Be blessed and be encouraged, Annette. And remember, we win.
Good day Daily Audio Bible family. I feel a little funny constantly calling all the time, but prayer is all that I know and all that I know to do and I think that is a good thing. I’m going to push. I’m going to pray until something happens. I’m lifting up pastors. That is where my heart is right now. And pastor’s wives. I’m praying for you, praying for your finances. Pastors make so many financial sacrifices. My husband and my credit is just messed up because we had to take a lot of our own personal finances to put it back into the ministry. We came second. So I’m praying for your finances. I’m praying for pastors who are pulled by God’s heart to do his will, but you sometimes are alone. I’m praying for you. I’m lifting you up. I’m praying for your wives, the struggle sometimes to make ends meet. I’ve been there, not having enough food sometimes. So I’m just lifting up pastors. And I want you to please remember Pastor Gary in your prayers, that God will deliver him and set him free. Have a wonderful day everyone. God bless. Bye.
Good morning family. This is Rachel in Houston and my heart is troubled today. I’m behind on the Community Prayers. I’ve been listening to them and there is just so much turmoil in marriages across our family. It just breaks my heart. I’ve been really praying about marriages. I was having a conversation with a friend of mine who is actually going through a divorce and she said something and it has been on my heart and it keeps coming back and keeps coming back and I just feel like the Holy Spirit is telling me that there is somebody out here that needs to hear what she said. I probably won’t say it exactly the way she said it, but basically she said we have to forgive ourselves because Jesus would never condemn us for getting out of something that he never put us in in the first place. I don’t know who that is for, but just know that your spirit can be renewed and the troubles in your marriage, you can overcome those as long as you follow according to what Jesus wanted you to do, what God’s plan was for you. So thirst for his will and everything else will come into play. I don’t know who that is for, but I hope that helps someone. And I also wanted to give a shout-out to Jeff who is doing the trek across Spain. Our uncle…
Hi, this is Debbie from Sarasota. I was just at the More Gathering Conference which was just a blessing to be there. I’m calling for Matt. I heard that your brother and his wife are pregnant and that their baby may have some complications. Well, I’m going to pray for this baby as well as I would like everyone to pray for my daughter’s baby. She will be due in two months. Her baby was just diagnosed with cystic hygroma and they actually told her to have an abortion, but we did not do that. So for Matt’s future niece or nephew and for my granddaughter, complete healing and a miracle for our babies. And I know that there are a lot of women in there that have sons in jail as well as I do. I’m praying for you all and I’m praying for our sons. God bless everyone. Have a miracle day.
Hello Daily Audio Bible family. It’s April 26th. This is Stanley from Maryland. This is a specific call for Jeff from Virginia Tech. You prayed for the boldness and the wisdom to know how to effect change at your campus. Let me just say to you, brother, man, that is a very honorable, noble challenge, but we have a God who is able to do exceedingly and abundantly above all we ask or think and so I wanted to share with you, man, a prayer and I wanted to share with you these lyrics from Rend Collective and the name of the song is called Build Your Kingdom Here, so I’m just going to quote to you the chorus and I’m going to be done. It says build your kingdom here. Let the darkness fear. Show your mighty hand. Heal our streets and land. Set your church on fire. Win this nation back. Change the atmosphere. Build your kingdom here we pray. So I’ve been listening to this song for the past week and it has just blessed me so much and I pray this prayer and these lyrics for you and to know that God wants to build his kingdom and that if you constantly ask him and pray to him and seek him and trust in him, he will show you the pathway to go. Amen. Have a great rest of your day, man. Bye.
Hello Dabbers. This is the first time I’ve called in and I’ve been listening since the start of this year. I find it really difficult to call in and kept putting it off because I thought I was being selfish and that I could call in later. So anyone else who is considering calling in, it is so much better to tell yourself to call in now because otherwise it will never get done. Today I have a prayer request for my dad and granddad who aren’t Christian and don’t know God yet. I know God has the power to do anything, but I still doubt him sometimes. By listening to the DAB, I have learned how praying to God is so powerful because it is God’s power and love and it would be amazing if we could be united in faith and prayer to ask God to bring any non-Christian family members to God including my granddad whose called Frank and my dad who is called Trevor. Thank you everybody for being encouraging and encouraging each other to grow in faith and hope. Thank you. Bye,