INTERNET BIBLE STUDIES
Hebrew History Part 9
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Contact: David Parham 940-322-4343
We continue our studies this week as we study "Judges and Oppressing Nations of Israel"
Last week we studied about how the Judges came to rule in the nation of Israel. This week we will look at those judges and the nations that oppressed the people during those times.
I. The oppressing Nations and Deliverance
Judg 3:7 And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD, and forgat the LORD their God, and served Baalim and the groves.
Judg 3:8 Therefore the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel, and he sold them into the hand of Chushanrishathaim king of Mesopotamia: and the children of Israel served Chushanrishathaim eight years.
Judg 3:9 And when the children of Israel cried unto the LORD, the LORD raised up a deliverer to the children of Israel, who delivered them, even Othniel the son of Kenaz, Caleb's younger brother.
Judg 3:10 And the spirit of the LORD came upon him, and he judged Israel, and went out to war: and the LORD delivered Chushanrishathaim king of Mesopotamia into his hand; and his hand prevailed against Chushanrishathaim.
Judg 3:11 And the land had rest forty years. And Othniel the son of Kenaz died.
The first nation that oppressed Israel was Mesopotamia. They were constantly be attacked by the Mesopotamians for about 8 years. Otheniel, the son of Kenaz, which was Calebs younger brother, was the one that delivered the people. We see verse 10 that the Spirit of the Lord came upon him and he went out to war. God delivered Chushanrishathaim king of Mesopotamia into his hand. After this, the land had rest for 40 years. It is a wonderful thing when we can dwell in peace. God promises that when our ways please him, he will make even our enemies to be at peace with us.
Prov 16:7 When a man's ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him.
Wednesday night, we heard Brother Odis Medley speak of how that we will never fear men when we truly see God for who He is and realize that all things are in control. Nothing happens in our lives without the knowledge of God. All things that happen may not seem joyous at the time, but God can take of the worst of situations and turn that into good for us. When we see accurately, trust a truly sovereign God by faith, we will not fear what man can do to us.
Deu 31:6 Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.
Mat 10:28 And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
II. The Second oppressing nation was Moab, the deliver, Ehud
Judg 3:12 And the children of Israel did evil again in the sight of the LORD: and the LORD strengthened Eglon the king of Moab against Israel, because they had done evil in the sight of the LORD.
Judg 3:13 And he gathered unto him the children of Ammon and Amalek, and went and smote Israel, and possessed the city of palm trees.
Judg 3:14 So the children of Israel served Eglon the king of Moab eighteen years.
Judg 3:15 But when the children of Israel cried unto the LORD, the LORD raised them up a deliverer, Ehud the son of Gera, a Benjamite, a man lefthanded: and by him the children of Israel sent a present unto Eglon the king of Moab.
Judg 3:16 But Ehud made him a dagger which had two edges, of a cubit length; and he did gird it under his raiment upon his right thigh.
Judg 3:17 And he brought the present unto Eglon king of Moab: and Eglon was a very fat man.
Judg 3:18 And when he had made an end to offer the present, he sent away the people that bare the present.
Judg 3:19 But he himself turned again from the quarries that were by Gilgal, and said, I have a secret errand unto thee, O king: who said, Keep silence. And all that stood by him went out from him.
Judg 3:20 And Ehud came unto him; and he was sitting in a summer parlour, which he had for himself alone. And Ehud said, I have a message from God unto thee. And he arose out of his seat.
Judg 3:21 And Ehud put forth his left hand, and took the dagger from his right thigh, and thrust it into his belly:
Judg 3:22 And the haft also went in after the blade; and the fat closed upon the blade, so that he could not draw the dagger out of his belly; and the dirt came out.
Judg 3:23 Then Ehud went forth through the porch, and shut the doors of the parlour upon him, and locked them.
Judg 3:24 When he was gone out, his servants came; and when they saw that, behold, the doors of the parlour were locked, they said, Surely he covereth his feet in his summer chamber.
Judg 3:25 And they tarried till they were ashamed: and, behold, he opened not the doors of the parlour; therefore they took a key, and opened them: and, behold, their lord was fallen down dead on the earth.
Judg 3:26 And Ehud escaped while they tarried, and passed beyond the quarries, and escaped unto Seirath.
Judg 3:27 And it came to pass, when he was come, that he blew a trumpet in the mountain of Ephraim, and the children of Israel went down with him from the mount, and he before them.
Judg 3:28 And he said unto them, Follow after me: for the LORD hath delivered your enemies the Moabites into your hand. And they went down after him, and took the fords of Jordan toward Moab, and suffered not a man to pass over.
Judg 3:29 And they slew of Moab at that time about ten thousand men, all lusty, and all men of valour; and there escaped not a man.
Judg 3:30 So Moab was subdued that day under the hand of Israel. And the land had rest fourscore years.
We see in verse 12 that the people turn from God and do evil in his sight. We talked about how that sin has a price last week in our study. Someone always has to pay for sin. In regards to salvation, either we will accept Jesus Forgiveness, or we will pay the price in the flames of Hell. In our day to day walk, even if we are saved, we lose our fellowship with the Father. You know that if your child does wrong, you are greatly disappointed and may not be in the same relationship as before. But that young man is still your son, or the girl is still your daughter. They dont drop out of the family for doing wrong, they just lose that perfect relationship from child to parent. We too lose that relationship and bond we have with our heavenly Father when we willfully sin. The joy and peace and fruits of the spirit mentioned in Galatians Chapter 5 begin to be lost the longer we remain out of fellowship.
We see in verse 13 that the children of Ammon, the descendants of Lots younger daughter) and Amalek helped Eglon, King of Moab to defeat Israel. Amalek was the son of Eliphaz by his concubine Timnah making him the grandson of Esau.
In verse 14, we see the Israelites served Eglon, the king of Moab for 18 years before Ehud was raised up as the deliver. After 18 years of oppression, Ehud, who was from the tribe of Benjamin was raised up by God to be their deliverer. We see that after delivering the present, Ehud gained a private audience with Eglon and told him he had a message from God . (verse 20) He took the dagger in his left hand and thrust it into the belly of the heavy King Eglon and locked him in the parlor to die. Lots of people who have not read Gods Word, especially the Old Testament, have no idea of the violence this nation faced. It was a hard time, but praise God we have a new and better dispensation of time. In the Old Testament, they lived in the Dispensation of the Law. We today, live in the Dispensation of Grace. Thank God we have been freed from the intense penalties of the Law by Jesus Christ. If we go out and pick up sticks on the Sabbath day, today we will not be stoned to death. Failure to follow Gods law in the Old Testament times brought bitter judgment that was quick. After Ehud delivered the nation, they had rest this time for 80 years.
III. The Third Oppressing Nation was Philistia and they were delivered by Shamgar.
Judg 3:31 And after him was Shamgar the son of Anath, which slew of the Philistines six hundred men with an ox goad: and he also delivered Israel.
Nothing is indicated about the oppression, nor any details given about Shamgars origin or background. We do see that he killed 600 Philistines with an ox goad; and delivered Israel. Apparently the Philistines penetrated into the territory of Israel and Shamgar delivered them. I thought about here we have someone who is not well known, but God uses him in a great way. There are always lots of folks behind the scene that make things happen in Gods work. There is only one pastor, but many who work to make the church function properly as a body. And most of the time, you never hear those names mentioned. But God knows your work and will reward you. When there was Elijah, there was Elisha working hard in the background. He is a good example of a man who worked and toiled and couldnt seem to do things right. He was always doing the menial things and Elijah would step on the scene and do great things. But who was left with a double portion of the spirit when Elijah was taken out. Paul had a special little know friend that ministered unto him.
Phil 2:25 Yet I supposed it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, and companion in labour, and fellowsoldier, but your messenger, and he that ministered to my wants.
Much of the work that goes on in Christian circles are done by those who have little recognition from man, but in Gods eyes, they are very, very special.
IV. The fourth oppressing nation was Canaan. The deliverers were Deborah and Barak.
Judg 4:1 And the children of Israel again did evil in the sight of the LORD, when Ehud was dead.
Judg 4:2 And the LORD sold them into the hand of Jabin king of Canaan, that reigned in Hazor; the captain of whose host was Sisera, which dwelt in Harosheth of the Gentiles.
Judg 4:3 And the children of Israel cried unto the LORD: for he had nine hundred chariots of iron; and twenty years he mightily oppressed the children of Israel.
Judg 4:4 And Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lapidoth, she judged Israel at that time.
Judg 4:5 And she dwelt under the palm tree of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in mount Ephraim: and the children of Israel came up to her for judgment.
Judg 4:6 And she sent and called Barak the son of Abinoam out of Kedeshnaphtali, and said unto him, Hath not the LORD God of Israel commanded, saying, Go and draw toward mount Tabor, and take with thee ten thousand men of the children of Naphtali and of the children of Zebulun?
Judg 4:7 And I will draw unto thee to the river Kishon Sisera, the captain of Jabin's army, with his chariots and his multitude; and I will deliver him into thine hand.
Judg 4:8 And Barak said unto her, If thou wilt go with me, then I will go: but if thou wilt not go with me, then I will not go.
Judg 4:9 And she said, I will surely go with thee: notwithstanding the journey that thou takest shall not be for thine honour; for the LORD shall sell Sisera into the hand of a woman. And Deborah arose, and went with Barak to Kedesh.
Judg 4:10 And Barak called Zebulun and Naphtali to Kedesh; and he went up with ten thousand men at his feet: and Deborah went up with him.
Judg 4:11 Now Heber the Kenite, which was of the children of Hobab the father in law of Moses, had severed himself from the Kenites, and pitched his tent unto the plain of Zaanaim, which is by Kedesh.
Judg 4:12 And they showed Sisera that Barak the son of Abinoam was gone up to mount Tabor.
Judg 4:13 And Sisera gathered together all his chariots, even nine hundred chariots of iron, and all the people that were with him, from Harosheth of the Gentiles unto the river of Kishon.
Judg 4:14 And Deborah said unto Barak, Up; for this is the day in which the LORD hath delivered Sisera into thine hand: is not the LORD gone out before thee? So Barak went down from mount Tabor, and ten thousand men after him.
Judg 4:15 And the LORD discomfited Sisera, and all his chariots, and all his host, with the edge of the sword before Barak; so that Sisera lighted down off his chariot, and fled away on his feet.
Judg 4:16 But Barak pursued after the chariots, and after the host, unto Harosheth of the Gentiles: and all the host of Sisera fell upon the edge of the sword; and there was not a man left.
Judg 4:17 Howbeit Sisera fled away on his feet to the tent of Jael the wife of Heber the Kenite: for there was peace between Jabin the king of Hazor and the house of Heber the Kenite.
Judg 4:18 And Jael went out to meet Sisera, and said unto him, Turn in, my lord, turn in to me; fear not. And when he had turned in unto her into the tent, she covered him with a mantle.
Judg 4:19 And he said unto her, Give me, I pray thee, a little water to drink; for I am thirsty. And she opened a bottle of milk, and gave him drink, and covered him.
Judg 4:20 Again he said unto her, Stand in the door of the tent, and it shall be, when any man doth come and inquire of thee, and say, Is there any man here? that thou shalt say, No.
Judg 4:21 Then Jael Heber's wife took a nail of the tent, and took an hammer in her hand, and went softly unto him, and smote the nail into his temples, and fastened it into the ground: for he was fast asleep and weary. So he died.
Judg 4:22 And, behold, as Barak pursued Sisera, Jael came out to meet him, and said unto him, Come, and I will show thee the man whom thou seekest. And when he came into her tent, behold, Sisera lay dead, and the nail was in his temples.
Judg 4:23 So God subdued on that day Jabin the king of Canaan before the children of Israel.
Judg 4:24 And the hand of the children of Israel prospered, and prevailed against Jabin the king of Canaan, until they had destroyed Jabin king of Canaan.
Judg 5:1 Then sang Deborah and Barak the son of Abinoam on that day, saying,
Judg 5:2 Praise ye the LORD for the avenging of Israel, when the people willingly offered themselves.
Once again, the people repeated their vicious cycle of doing evil before the Lord. We are truly creatures that repeat cycles and habits over and over. Oh for the Grace to make all of those habits and cycles to be things of good, and never evil like Israel did in those days.
Jabin, the king of Canaan, was allowed to oppress Israel for 20 years. You would think after all of the other oppressions, that the people would learn from their mistakes and not make the same ones again. But I look at my own life, and I tend to make the same mistakes again and again. I had a pastor one time give me a really good book named the "University of Hard Knocks." In the book, the author told of how many people are smart enough that when they get knocked down, they learn and dont do the same stupid thing again. However, the elite and intelligent, the large mass of society, dont learn by one hard knock. They have to get knocked down over and over again until it finally sinks in. God help us to learn by each hard knock. These examples of Israel are here to teach us how to trust and obey God. When they did, they were greatly blessed with the close presence and protecting hand of God. But when they went their own way, God withdrew and allowed them to be taken under oppression by these heathen people.
1 Cor 10:1 Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea;
1 Cor 10:2 And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea;
1 Cor 10:3 And did all eat the same spiritual meat;
1 Cor 10:4 And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.
1 Cor 10:5 But with many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness.
1 Cor 10:6 Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted.
These were our examples that we might not have to make all the mistakes on our own. Believe me, we will make enough without doing the same evil that Israel performed.
In verse 2 of Chapter 4 of Judges, we see that Sisera was captain of Jabins army. In the battle at the river of Kishon, Sisera escaped to the tent of Jael, the wife of Heber, because there was peace between Jabin and Heber. God is honored when we can get along in peace with our fellow man.
2 Cor 13:11 Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.
Rom 12:18 If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.
We see that Jael, Hebers wife, took a hammer and nail and drove it through the temple of Sisera and killed him. (verse 21) We marvel at the horrible acts we read about in our nation, but there were some pretty horrible things done during this time period. Men have been evil forever, and things will constantly be bad until Jesus comes and sets up his earthly kingdom for a 1,000 years after the Great Tribulation period.
In verse 14, we see Barak went down from Mt. Tabor with 10,000 men and smote the Canaanites after their chariots were troubled with a heavy rain.
Judg 5:20 They fought from heaven; the stars in their courses fought against Sisera.
Judg 5:21 The river of Kishon swept them away, that ancient river, the river Kishon. O my soul, thou hast trodden down strength.
Battles are certainly easier to fight when God is on your side. We have a guarantee that we will win the battle if the battle is truly the Lords. I learned early in school to always get on the side with the best player, and most of the time you would win when you played sports. Things are still pretty much that way, and if you want to be on the winning side, get on Gods side. We may lose a battle here and there, but the war has already been won. We have a distinct advantage because we can already read the outcome of the whole matter in Revelation. Satan does not have much longer to control things, and he is unleashing his fury in these last days.
Barak was from the tribe of Naphtali. He would not go to battle without the presence of Deborah. (verse 8)
While that may have worked well for him, you and I had best not go to battle unless God is going with us. After this deliverance, the land had rest for 40 years. Note any patterns here?
Judg 6:1 And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD: and the LORD delivered them into the hand of Midian seven years.
Judg 6:2 And the hand of Midian prevailed against Israel: and because of the Midianites the children of Israel made them the dens which are in the mountains, and caves, and strong holds.
Judg 6:3 And so it was, when Israel had sown, that the Midianites came up, and the Amalekites, and the children of the east, even they came up against them;
Judg 6:4 And they encamped against them, and destroyed the increase of the earth, till thou come unto Gaza, and left no sustenance for Israel, neither sheep, nor ox, nor ass.
Judg 6:5 For they came up with their cattle and their tents, and they came as grasshoppers for multitude; for both they and their camels were without number: and they entered into the land to destroy it.
Judg 6:6 And Israel was greatly impoverished because of the Midianites; and the children of Israel cried unto the LORD.
Judg 6:7 And it came to pass, when the children of Israel cried unto the LORD because of the Midianites,
Judg 6:8 That the LORD sent a prophet unto the children of Israel, which said unto them, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I brought you up from Egypt, and brought you forth out of the house of bondage;
Judg 6:9 And I delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians, and out of the hand of all that oppressed you, and drave them out from before you, and gave you their land;
Judg 6:10 And I said unto you, I am the LORD your God; fear not the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but ye have not obeyed my voice.
Judg 6:11 And there came an angel of the LORD, and sat under an oak which was in Ophrah, that pertained unto Joash the Abiezrite: and his son Gideon threshed wheat by the winepress, to hide it from the Midianites.
Judg 6:12 And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him, and said unto him, The LORD is with thee, thou mighty man of valour.
God had a high opinion of Gideon, and this is one of my favorite stories in the Old Testament. There is a real lesson in this story. We need to know that the battle is Gods, not ours. With just a handful, not thousands, Gideon delivered the nation. Little with God is great measure, but much without God will soon pass away. We see the repeating pattern of doing evil before God in verse 1 of chapter 6. This is the fourth apostasy and servitude. Midian was the oppressing nation that they served for 7 years.
Because of the Midianites the children of Israel made them caves and strongholds in the mountains to seek safety when the people came against them. Israel was invaded by hostile nomads riding camel. They were known as Midianites, Amalekites, and sons of the east. They would come in and seize the crops and take the livestock. In verses 7-10, we see that the children of Israel cried out to God, and he sent a prophet unto them and told them how He had delivered them from Egypt and brought them into Canaan. He told how they were to not fear the gods of the land. He would be their God, and charged them for failing to obey His voice.
In Judges 6:11, at a village called Ophrah, Gideon was busy thrashing grain for his father when the commission came to him from God.
Judg 6:25 And it came to pass the same night, that the LORD said unto him, Take thy father's young bullock, even the second bullock of seven years old, and throw down the altar of Baal that thy father hath, and cut down the grove that is by it:
Judg 6:26 And build an altar unto the LORD thy God upon the top of this rock, in the ordered place, and take the second bullock, and offer a burnt sacrifice with the wood of the grove which thou shalt cut down.
Judg 6:27 Then Gideon took ten men of his servants, and did as the LORD had said unto him: and so it was, because he feared his father's household, and the men of the city, that he could not do it by day, that he did it by night.
Note how that Gideon did as God told him. This is the trademark of all great men of God. They are the ones that God uses in a great way. Those that argue and do things their own way dont accomplish much and face many heartaches. But a man or woman wholly given to God who is in tune with the Spirit, will do great things. They understand that they are the branches, but the source is from the vine, Jesus Christ.
Gideon did as the Lord commanded, took 10 men and went by night and destroyed the altar of Baal in his fathers estate.
For his bold deed, Gideon was name Jerubbaal, meaning, let Baal contend against him.
Judg 6:32 Therefore on that day he called him Jerubbaal, saying, Let Baal plead against him, because he hath thrown down his altar.
Notice how that Spirit of the Lord came upon Gideon.
Judg 6:34 But the spirit of the LORD came upon Gideon, and he blew a trumpet; and Abiezer was gathered after him.
Gideons army consisted of 32,000 gathered from Manasseh, Asher, Zebulum, and Naphthali. God told Gideon to leave all of those that were fearful and afraid behind. 22,000 of those with him turned back leaving just 10,000 to go up to battle.
Judg 7:2 And the LORD said unto Gideon, The people that are with thee are too many for me to give the Midianites into their hands, lest Israel vaunt themselves against me, saying, Mine own hand hath saved me.
Judg 7:3 Now therefore go to, proclaim in the ears of the people, saying, Whosoever is fearful and afraid, let him return and depart early from mount Gilead. And there returned of the people twenty and two thousand; and there remained ten thousand.
Once again, God cut the numbers down, this time to just 300.
Judg 7:4 And the LORD said unto Gideon, The people are yet too many; bring them down unto the water, and I will try them for thee there: and it shall be, that of whom I say unto thee, This shall go with thee, the same shall go with thee; and of whomsoever I say unto thee, This shall not go with thee, the same shall not go.
Judg 7:5 So he brought down the people unto the water: and the LORD said unto Gideon, Every one that lappeth of the water with his tongue, as a dog lappeth, him shalt thou set by himself; likewise every one that boweth down upon his knees to drink.
Judg 7:6 And the number of them that lapped, putting their hand to their mouth, were three hundred men: but all the rest of the people bowed down upon their knees to drink water.
By those 300 men, the Midianites were defeated. The battle was clearly Gods, not the power of men.
We see in Judges 8:27 that Gideon made an ephod and put it in his city and it became a snare unto Gideon and his house.
Judg 8:27 And Gideon made an ephod thereof, and put it in his city, even in Ophrah: and all Israel went thither a whoring after it: which thing became a snare unto Gideon, and to his house.
This should be a lesson to us, that even if the Spirit of the Lord is upon us, unless we stay close and keep our eyes on God, we can come from a great victory and turn around and face defeat in our personal lives.
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