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Saturday, February 22 2014
Judges 2: The Rise Of The Judges
"The LORD raised up judges, which delivered them out of the hand of those that spoiled them"
There have been a few relatively-brief times in the history of the Israelite nation when they were acceptably faithful and obedient to the LORD (Who was and is Jesus Christ - see Genesis 1: In The Beginning Was The Word and The Kingdom Of The LORD God). One was in the time of Joshua, when the Israelites first entered the Promised Land (see Israel In History and Prophecy: Joshua). Another was in the time of Ezra and Nehemiah, when the people of Judah returned from their Babylonian exile (see Israel In History and Prophecy: The Return Of Judah).
Jacob, who the LORD renamed as "Israel" (see Genesis 32: The Origin Of Israel) led the Israelites as a father because they were only a family during Jacob/Israel's lifetime (see Genesis 46: The First Census Of Israel). Four centuries later, Moses was the first to lead the Israelites as a nation (see Exodus 1: I Will There Make Of Thee A Great Nation and Numbers 1: The First Sinai Census). The adult generation that Moses led out of Egypt became liberal rebels soon afterward however (see Exodus 13: Liberation, Not Liberal-ation) - the reason that they were given to wander aimlessly in the Sinai until they all died off (see Deuteronomy 1: Why A Book Of Deuteronomy In The Bible? and Deuteronomy 2: The Israelite Wanderland). Joshua led the righteous next-generation Israelites across the Jordan River, but by the end of Joshua's life, the Israelites were drifting toward apostasy again.
"2:1 And an angel of the LORD came up from Gilgal to Bochim, and said, I made you to go up out of Egypt, and have brought you unto the land which I sware unto your fathers; and I said, I will never break my covenant with you. 2:2 And ye shall make no league with the inhabitants of this land; ye shall throw down their altars: but ye have not obeyed my voice: why have ye done this? 2:3 Wherefore I also said, I will not drive them out from before you; but they shall be as thorns in your sides, and their gods shall be a snare unto you.
The stark warning and reminder delivered that generation from the mistake that it was about to make. So it was that "the people served the LORD all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders that outlived Joshua, who had seen all the great works of the LORD, that he did for Israel."
"2:6 And when Joshua had let the people go, the children of Israel went every man unto his inheritance to possess the land. 2:7 And the people served the LORD all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders that outlived Joshua, who had seen all the great works of the LORD, that he did for Israel.
Throughout their history, the Israelites seemed to alternate a generation of strong, righteous people with a generation of self-destructive liberal fools, so after the passing of the generation of Joshua, "the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD, and served Baalim: And they forsook the LORD God of their fathers, which brought them out of the land of Egypt, and followed other gods, of the gods of the people that were round about them, and bowed themselves unto them, and provoked the LORD to anger." Their moral weakness was also a patriotic weakness whereby "they could not any longer stand before their enemies."
"2:10 And also all that generation were gathered unto their fathers: and there arose another generation after them, which knew not the LORD, nor yet the works which he had done for Israel. 2:11 And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD, and served Baalim: 2:12 And they forsook the LORD God of their fathers, which brought them out of the land of Egypt, and followed other gods, of the gods of the people that were round about them, and bowed themselves unto them, and provoked the LORD to anger. 2:13 And they forsook the LORD, and served Baal and Ashtaroth. 2:14 And the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel, and he delivered them into the hands of spoilers that spoiled them, and he sold them into the hands of their enemies round about, so that they could not any longer stand before their enemies. 2:15 Whithersoever they went out, the hand of the LORD was against them for evil, as the LORD had said, and as the LORD had sworn unto them: and they were greatly distressed." (Judges 2:10-15 KJV)
After a time of their self-imposed hard lessons, "the LORD raised up judges, which delivered them out of the hand of those that spoiled them." It would be a repeated cycle through the entire two-century era of the Judges.
"2:16 Nevertheless the LORD raised up judges, which delivered them out of the hand of those that spoiled them. 2:17 And yet they would not hearken unto their judges, but they went a whoring after other gods, and bowed themselves unto them: they turned quickly out of the way which their fathers walked in, obeying the commandments of the LORD; but they did not so. 2:18 And when the LORD raised them up judges, then the LORD was with the judge, and delivered them out of the hand of their enemies all the days of the judge: for it repented the LORD because of their groanings by reason of them that oppressed them and vexed them. 2:19 And it came to pass, when the judge was dead, that they returned, and corrupted themselves more than their fathers, in following other gods to serve them, and to bow down unto them; they ceased not from their own doings, nor from their stubborn way.
Fact Finder: Where was the era of the Judges located in the history of Israel? What did "judges" mean?
This Day In History, February 22
705: Empress Wu Zetian abdicated the throne of China, thereby restoring the Tang Dynasty (see also Gog and Magog).
896: Germanic King Arnulf was crowned Emperor by Pope Formosus, who later declared Lambert deposed (see also The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation).
1349: Jews were expelled from Zurich, Switzerland.
1370: Robert II succeeded his uncle, David II, as King of Scotland, beginning the Stuart dynasty.
1512: Italian explorer Amerigo Vespucci died at age 61. "America" (i.e. the continents of North America and South America where numerous American nations exist, from the northern border of Canada, to the southern tip of Argentina; in reality, no single nation is America - imagine if, for example, the people of Germany called themselves the Europeans, or if they claimed that Germany alone was Europe) was derived from his first name. See also Thanksgiving In History and Prophecy for the maps of the voyages of Christopher Columbus who actually only "discovered" the islands of the Caribbean Sea.
1630: Native Americans (who were called "Indians" by early European explorers who thought that they had arrived in India) introduced popcorn to British colonists in North America.
1632: Galileo's Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems was published. Galileo correctly believed that the Earth orbits the sun - which nearly got him executed by the Church of Rome that incorrectly taught that the sun orbits the Earth.
1797: The last invasion of Britain occurred when 1,500 French troops landed at Fishguard, in Wales.
1825: Britain and Russia established the Alaska-Canada boundary. The U.S. purchased Alaska from Russia in 1867.
1862: In Richmond, Virginia, Jefferson Davis was inaugurated as President of the breakaway "Confederate States of America."
1911: The Parliament of Canada voted to keep Canada as a member state within the union of the British Empire (later known as the British Commonwealth).
1913: Francisco Madero, revolutionary President of Mexico, was assassinated by the military, along with Vice-President Pino Suarez.
1958: Egypt and Syria joined to form the short-lived United Arab Republic (Bible prophecy does plainly describes a united Arab confederation, in the past, and in the yet future - see Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy).
1979: The Caribbean island of Saint Lucia gained full independence from Britain after 165 years. It became the 40th member state of the British Commonwealth.
1980: Israel introduced its new currency, the shekel. It replaced the Israeli pound (see also Israel In History and Prophecy: Israel Of Judah).
1984: The U.S. and Britain sent warships to the Persian Gulf in support of the Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein following an Iranian offensive against Iraq. At the time, Saddam Hussein was viewed as an ally of the western democracies, despite the atrocities and war crimes that he was committing then, no different than he was later when he had gone from being a pro-western "good dictator" to an anti-western "bad dictator."
1997: Scientists in Scotland announced that an adult sheep named Dolly had been successfully cloned.