Read Judges 18 -- 19
In Today's Reading:
Danites force Micah's Levite to be their priest, attack Laish, then occupy it; a concubine is victimized
Israel continued to ignore God's Word. Consequently, we read: In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes (Judges 17:6; 21:25; compare 18:1; 19:1). This means they did whatever seemed most gratifying.
To illustrate the deplorable moral condition that existed at that time, a Levite, representing spiritual leadership, and his concubine are introduced We are disappointed to read of his relationship with a concubine (Leviticus 21:7). In God's plan, a priest or Levite was to take a (Israelite) wife in her virginity (21:13); there was no provision made for a priest to marry a concubine (not an Israelite) concubine who played the whore against him, and went away from him to her father's house to Bethlehem-judah (Judges 19:2). But, after four . . . months, the Levite decided that he wanted her back, so he went to her father's house. When the father of the damsel (young woman) saw him, he rejoiced to meet him (19:2-3).
When the Levite decided to return home several days later, it was too late to complete their journey before nightfall, so they stopped in Gibeah (19:14). An old man offered them hospitality in his house, which they accepted. The men of the city . . . sons of Belial, beset the house round about, and beat at the door, and spoke to the master of the house . . . saying, Bring forth the man that came into your house, that we may know him. We are shocked to read that the old man said to these evil men: Do not this folly Behold, here is my daughter a maiden, and his concubine (to rape) (19:22-24). Every decision that was made was in violation of the Word of God.
The vileness of the sin of homosexuality is confirmed in the New Testament where we read: For this cause God gave them up to vile affections (degrading passions): for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence (penalty) of their error which was meet (fitting) (Romans 1:26-27).
18:21 carriage = baggage; 19:17 wayfaring = traveling; 19:19 provender = fodder; 19:22 sons of Belial = evildoers, sons of hell (Deuteronomy 13:13), and sodomites, as in this situation; may know him = may have homosexual relations with him.
In those days there was no king in Israel (Judges 18:1). Christ was the rejected King of Israel. Pilate says to them, Shall I crucify your King? The chief priests answered, We have no king but Caesar (John 19:15).
Country: Tajikistan (6 million) southeast central Asia · Major languages: Tajik and Russian · Almost entirely Muslim · 82% Muslim; 4% Russian Orthodox · Prayer Suggestion: Pray that God will teach you His ways and transform your life by His Word (Isaiah 2:3).
Optional Reading: John 20
Memory Verse for the Week: John 3:18