66 in 52 Challenge, Bekah's Heart, Devotional

Reflections on Judges – Not My Generation!

For me, the entire book of Judges can be summed up in this verse found early on in the book:

“After that generation died, another generation grew up who did not acknowledge the Lord or remember the mighty things he had done for Israel.” Judges 2:10

I find it hard to even describe my thoughts and feelings as I read this verse, because I feel like we’re living somewhere in the middle of it today. I look at my generation (as well as the one after us) and I sadly see these two things true of us as a generation:

  • We don’t know or acknowledge the Lord.
  • We don’t remember the things He has done for us.

Of course, there are exceptions (I certainly hope I am one of them!) but as a generation, we don’t know God.

Then, to go on and read the rest of this book with that in mind, fear starts to creep in a bit. With these two things defining their generation suddenly things like murder, idolatry, rape, deception flood the story line. When we don’t know God and don’t remember what He has done, life gets pretty overwhelming pretty quick.

The repeating cycle in Judges continues today individually as well as generationally: we follow God for a while, then we don’t. We walk our own way until our lives get so horrible we can’t take it anymore and then we cry out for help. Of course, God, in His never-ending love and mercy, rescues us and sets us on the right path again. But, after a while, we forget again and turn our own way.

I’m sick of the cycle and I guess I don’t want to be part of a generation defined by our wandering. But even worse than that, I don’t want to be the generation the first part of the verse mentioned. It’s easy to skim over, but I think the reason the next generation didn’t know God or remember what He had done for Israel, was because the generation before them didn’t tell them.

If the generation after me doesn’t know God, that’s not on them. That’s MY generation’s fault. How can they “remember” the mighty works of God if they’ve never heard them? How can they know and acknowledge God if they’ve never been taught?

Oh, I see so much of God’s grace in the book of Judges, but I also feel some conviction. I sense the Holy Spirit motivating me to not only be part of a generation that knows and remembers Him, but that makes sure the next generation has that opportunity as well. I want to be part of a time in history where, thousands of years from now, people can look back and say THOSE people acknowledged God in their lives! I want to be defined as a generation who knows God and makes Him known. I want to see passion in the next generation to follow God greater than their sinful nature to wander away.

Our God is big enough to break the cycle in this generation. I’m ready and willing to join in on that work!

66 in 52 Challenge

Judges – Week 7 {66 in 52 Challenge}

This is part of the 66 in 52 Bible Journaling Challenge. Over the course of the 52 weeks in 2018, I plan to focus in on one verse from each book of the Bible with many others who have signed up to join me. Each week I will be posting a summary page with some thought about that week’s book(s) of the Bible along with some links that may help our reflection. Click here to sign up if you want to join us at any point along the journey!


Week 7 - Judges

The Big Picture of Judges:

At some point along the line I found myself underlining the same 5 phrases over and in the book of Judges. While there are many fascinating stories and situations throughout the book, much of the book describes how people cycle again and again through these five phases:

  • The people sin/do evil/wander from God’s law.
  • God gets mad and sends them away.
  • The people cry out and repent.
  • God sends a deliverer to save them.
  • There is peace.

After Joshua dies (and really we see this before all the way back to Genesis), this process repeats again and again. God’s people get swept up into sin and despite God’s call for them to come back, they don’t. God is not willing to let His people go and will fight for them, even if that means letting hard things happen to them. But He hears their call and sends a deliverer, a “judge”, to save them in their oppression and bring them back.

Some of the Judges Written About in this Book:

  • Othniel (Judges 3)
  • Ehud (Judges 3)
  • Shmgar (Judges 3)
  • Deborah (Judges 4-5)
  • Gideon (Judges 6-8)
  • Tola (Judges 10)
  • Jair (Judges 10)
  • Jephthah (Judges 10-12)
  • Izban (Judges 12)
  • Elon (Judges 12)
  • Abdon (Judges 12)
  • Samson (Judges 13-16)

A Few Key Verses and Possible Reflection Questions/Prayers:

Some of us are planning to read through the whole book each week, while others are just focusing in on one verse. This section of the weekly intro post might help you narrow down a verse to reflect on for the week, but you do not have to choose one of these verse, pick any section of the book you want! These are just some ideas.

  • “After that whole generation had been gathered to their fathers, another generation grew up, who neither knew the Lord not what He had done for Israel.” (Judges 2:10)
    REFLECTION:What small thing can you do this week to make sure that the generation after us knows the Lord and what He has done for us?
  • “After ___ died, the Israelites once again did evil in the eyes of the Lord.” (Judges 4:1 and many other places again and again throughout the book)
    REFLECTION:Like God’s people we find ourselves falling again and again into sin. What are the areas that Satan most often trips you up?
  • “The Lord turned to him and said, ‘Go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian’s hand. Am I not sending you?” (Judges 6:14)
    REFLECTION:What is God calling you to do where you feel like you just don’t have the strength or energy to complete the task? Where do you need to “go in the strength you {DO} have” and trust that He is faithful as He sends you?

God’s Grace in Judges:

As I said back in the first section, again and again and again God’s people wandered into sin, and again and again and again, God heard their cries and saved them. Each of these Judges foreshadows not only God the Father as the Ultimate Judge, but also Jesus, our Ultimate Savior. The rescue and deliverance each of these judges brought was only temporary, but later a Savior came that defeated sin once and for all. Despite our unfaithfulness, God is always faithful.

Some Other Resources:

The Challenge:

So now it’s your turn! Pick a verse and settle in this week, or read through the whole book. If you post any picture or blogs on social media, tag them with #66in52challenge so we can all share in this journey together!