Highlights In Today's Reading:
More than 300 years had passed since Joshua led their forefathers to the promised land. By this time many of the people lived unrestrained lives guided by their own lusts and self-interest rather than God's Word.
When the promised land was distributed by Joshua, considerable territory was allotted to the tribe of Dan (Joshua 19: 40-46). But, submission and obedience to the will of God was missing. As a result, they did not succeed in defeating the inhabitants as God had commanded them to do. Because of their sins, God allowed the Amorites to force the children of Dan into the mountain and did not let them descend into the plains (Judges 1:34-35). God never allows us to be tempted above that ye are able (when our lives are in a right relationship with Him); but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it (I Corinthians 10:13).
The tribe of the Danites sought them an (another) inheritance to dwell in (Judges 18:1). There is no indication that the tribe of Dan prayed for forgiveness for their sins or for guidance to do the will of God. Instead of fighting for the territory which God had appointed, they chose to go north beyond the promised land. It was inhabited by a quiet, peaceful people whom they massacred indiscriminately — men, women, and children. If they had remained in the territory which God had appointed them to possess, they would have been close to those who worshiped the One True God. Instead, on the way to their new territory, five spies from their tribe barged into the house of idol-worshiping Micah, stole his gods, and bribed his priest to go with them to "serve" their religious desires (18:14-31).
Notice Micah's spiritual concern when "his gods" were stolen. Ye have taken away my gods which I made . . . and what have I more (left)? (18:24). When someone stole his god, he thought he had lost the most important thing in his life.
Micah illustrates a person who may be sincere but be sincerely wrong. This points out that whatever or whoever a person allows to be his supreme love becomes his god. It may be the loss of children, grandchildren, money, sports, hunting, or fishing, etc. Nothing on earth which can be stolen or destroyed can take the place of the True Eternal God as our supreme object of worship. If Christ is truly first in our lives, at our loss we can say: The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the Name of the Lord (Job 1:21).
Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils (I Timothy 4:1).
Thought for Today:
We know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).
In those days there was no King in Israel (Judges 18:1). Christ was the rejected King of Israel. Pilate saith unto them, Shall I crucify your King? The chief priests answered, We have no king but Caesar (John 19:15).
18:21 carriage =b> baggage; 19:17 wayfaring =b> traveling; 19:19 provender =b> fodder; 19:22 sons of Belial =b> evildoers, sons of hell (Deuteronomy 13:13), and sodomites, as in this situation; may know him =b> may have homosexual relations with him.
Pray for English International Shortwave Radio Broadcasts in memory of Henry Rogers • Country: Iran (66.2 million) in southwestern Asia • Major languages: Farsi and Turki • Hostile to all Christian activity • 87% Shi'a; 12% Sunni; .5% Baha'i; .4% Christian; .03% Jewish; .04% Parsi (Zoroastrian); .03% Other • Prayer Suggestion: Seek the Lord's teaching; grow and mature in your prayer life (Luke 11:1).
Optional Reading: John 20
Memory Verse for the Week: I Peter 1:22