“Delivering the land into your hand”
Judges chapter one verses 3-19 contains the description of the conquest of the promise land beginning in the southern region of the country. This section reads like a military report and just states the facts with no additional commentary leaving only hard to pronounce names and battles in places we have never heard of. The first thing this section teaches the believer is that: Owning the land and possessing the land is two different things! If you don’t posses what you own, then you will never be able to enjoy it. The enemy was entrenched in the land and as we have just read in verse 6 Adoni–Bezek had a toe hold on the land, and his thumb on the folks.
In verses 2-3 God said for Judah to go up and that He would deliver the land into his hand yet the first thing that Judah says is to his brother Simeon, “Come up with me”. Interesting; Judah’s name means “praise” and Simeon’s name means “hearing and obeying”. I think God gives us insight in the name of these two boys as it relates to possessing our inheritance in Christ:
- First, if you are going to be successful in rooting out the enemy in your life, then you are going to have to be a worshipper of God. At the end of David’s life, he understood that his greatest strength was not being king of Israel, or a warrior who had slain giants. No, he calls himself in 2 Samuel 23:1 the “sweet psalmist of Israel”.
- Second, those that are worshippers are going to need to “hear and obey”. Worship is not a passive thing, its offence folks! Worship is how we root out those pesky things in our lives which requires us to “hear and obey”.
In verses 4-6 we are told a little more about Adoni–Bezek that when the Israelites captured him they incapacitated him by cutting off his thumbs and big toes as he boasted that he had done towards 70 others. This fellow not only defeated people militarily; he humiliated them personally causing them to eat scraps under his table without thumbs. The men of Judah were under command to not mutilate the flesh but rather to put it to death! Yet in disobedience they cut off his thumbs and big toes. It’s true that without those appendages a person wouldn’t be able to run very fast or grab swords very easily. But friends, there is a great lesson here for us: A mutilated flesh is less than what it once was but is still breathing. Paul didn’t say of his old nature to rendered it “less affective”, he said we were to “reckoned it dead in Christ.” Finally, we are told in verses 7-8 that Jerusalem fell to Judah as it had been occupied for a time as Adoni-Bezek who was taken there and later died there. Later on it fell back to the Jebusites and David re-conquered the city some 400 years later (2 Sam. 5:7). Though the Israelites conquered the city in verse 8, we are told in verse 21 that they gave the city to the tribe of Benjamin who didn’t root out the Jebusites and instead just dwelt with them. Friends here is yet a final lesson: “To enjoy the blessings of God in our life we can’t dwell with the flesh”. “Benjamin” means “son of my right hand” and the Jebusites got their name from their ancestor “Jebus” which means “treading underfoot”. If you live by faith you will be the “son of His right hand”, living courageously. Ah but if you allow the Jebusites to dwell with you they will continue to “step on you” and keep you from all that God has for you!
This has been Pastor Dale, Blessings!