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February 17, 2021 6:00 am
This is something that we have to make sure we don't let faith stumble us, make us depressed look to the Lord to see what our next move is going to be in Judges chapter 20 teaches us to fight through defeat. Read what you know were not old victory in this life. The cross of Christ is that lesson for us. This is cross reference radio with our pastor and teacher Rick Gaston. Rick is the pastor of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville. Pastor Rick is currently teaching through the book of Judges. Please stay with us after today's message here. More information about cross reference radio, specifically how you can get a free copy of this teaching.here's Pastor Rick with the conclusion of a study called a hard victory in Judges chapter 20 verse 21 and the children. The bedroom and came out of give you on that day and cut down to the ground 22,000 men of the Israelites as a whole stadium of people that's there's the carnage, God allowed the wicked ones to slaughter those who are trying to execute justice.
A lot of searching in the hearts of Israel that day. So again, I repeat, being right is not enough. You got to be close to God they going to be moving close to God, to their credit there and they're not going to allow their battlefield defeats to defeat their faith.
We all should know something about that again you you will just doesn't punch sometimes just to get to get stronger, and sometimes we suffer the initial defeats and there they are. They're very painful, very costly.
How did it go with that first church when Stephen was stoned to death. Then James was killed with the sword that kinda news rocked the church.
What is happening here. Did we not have Pentecost did not God give us the Holy Spirit was there or not.
You know the sound of a rushing mighty wind in the tongues of fire and run them. They're not the know 3000 converts. How can we suffer the loss okay Stephen know he was, you know, he laid it out in front of them can exceed that one with James. What kind of resources does God have when he can spare James will hear much about change, but he's one of the three on the inner circle of the dust of the apostles and disciples is something to this suite, the other to a John his brother, and Peter.
We know a lot about Peter peters, the guy would decide not to have mouth and then John we know a lot about John but we don't know much about Jane except God put him in the midst of those two. I think he was a stabilizing factor. I think he was the one that was solid and heat heat influence the other two. How must you account for these things in the Bible wants us to account for these these records that we have before us the wants us to search it out, rightly dividing the word of God, said Paul will. This is painful to read but we have to go through. Now verse 22 and the people. That is, the men of Israel, encourage themselves and again from the battle line at the place where they had put themselves in array on the first day they did not quit. This had to be settled. They weren't going away easily.
May my faith go away easily when it wants to, and if they were sallow in the faith.
I think they would've just fine. I don't think they would've turned out this way they are ready while they seek the Lord in verse 23. Some commentators believe verse 23, which tells of them going up to the house of the Lord again comes before verse 22. I don't think there's any need to do that at all.
I think that they suffered a defeat and date they set up a perimeter again and while they held that perimeter.
The leader said all right, you just stay there. They come out your attacker you are working on them but will be back with hunger.
Seek the Lord.
Verse 23 then the children of Israel went up and went before Yahweh until evening and asked counsel of Yahweh saying shall I again drawn near for battle against the children of my brother Benjamin. Yahweh said go up against him all that kinda question what what should he have said began to go home. These mental learning to pray under pressure, and place themselves before God there drawing closer to God. So they were. They are right. But they are closing the gap that distance that evidently existed between them. Some of you may remember some of these past elections, and in the 90s you know the president that didn't know the meaning of if okay okay okay then the 2008 2012 we had to suffer. You know this. Those who don't deserve to have such victories, and many Christians were emotionally devastated.
This is something that we have to make sure we don't let take take our faith or stumble us or make us depressed. But we look to the Lord to see what our next move is going to be in Judges chapter 20 teaches us to fight through defeat. We you know were not owed victory in this life.
The cross of Christ is that lesson for us. Luke 22 verse 44 and being in agony he prayed more earnestly. Then his sweat became like get great drops of blood falling down to the ground. In the example of Christ. This agony intensified in the presence of the Lord and defeat led to renewed and improved efforts on the part of the righteous. Then as they should.
Now then, is, as in the garden of Eden. We see the Lord's sweat, as though a great drops of blood and he did it going bleed a lot more for the will and he did on our behalf through repeated defeats Israel persevered to victory. That's part of the lesson because what oh I know what I do. God you not answer my prayer. Why could you let this happen, why, why even have a Bible with you going to do this. I'm totally right. I seek you all the time.
How can I possibly be defeated. We go to do then rent a guy just get angry with me and leave me alone Bible tells us that those who harden their hearts don't prosper against God. Psalm 37 verse 24, though he fail he shall not be utterly cast down for Yahweh upholds him with his hand. Verse 24, so the children of Israel approached the children of Benjamin on the second day the second try will not be easy either. They will persevere.
Benjamin went out again against them from Divya on the second day and cut down to the ground 18,000 more of the children of Israel. All these drew the sword and so there is another gigantic defeat wanting what he was going to the minds of the leaders at this point. These are the men that have seen God do miracles. Many of them veterans from the agile onward with the Lord rained hail on the enemy. And yet they gotta be saying what is going on here.
This the lives that are amenable just to be being slaughtered we going to the house of God was seeking him this is what this is what we get. God never promised them victory, not yet verse 26 then all the children of Israel.
That is all the people went up and came to the house of God and wept. They sat there before Yahweh and fasted that day until evening, and they offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before Yahweh. So there they are at Shiloh sacrifices are being made an offer to the Lord. There's this great outcry to heaven.
Still nowhere else for them to turn and their drawer there drawing close to God in Matthew's gospel in Luke we read these words of Jesus. Blessed is he who is not offended because of me.
Blessed is the one that doesn't get upset with what I do or don't do drawn from adverse a lot agony over again. It seems to be getting harder than expected and tired to do this again, but I know what I need.
I know, and I'll still want to be ascribed instructed in the word bringing from his treasure things new and things old.
There's an excitement in that accident did the scribe is bringing you out these lessons from the Lord that God is just shared with him after he's done that. He digs down deep and he goes into past victories and past experiences because he's full of the word of God. And that's how we all want to be as a royal belong to a royal priesthood, also Matthew 17 verse 21. This is when the disciples could not cast out a demon and then down the valley and the Lord comes down from the Transfiguration and there he finds them and he has to cast out the demon we came to your apostles and the disciples but they couldn't do anything. So the Lord doesn't well disciples.
Later on they go to the Lord and they say why could we not do it.
We huffed and puffed could blow the house down Lord answered them. He says however he first he says will you not faith that's always the first.
However, I know that part I like hearing it either anyway. But then he says this he says however this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting newsletter draw closer if you going to get these big victories you gonna have to get closer to God.
You have to sever the flesh as much as you can jettison the carnality when you feel the urge to get up any you suppressant that is not easy as our scales tell us a tough crowd. Always a tough crowd so verse 27, so the children of Israel inquired of Yahweh, the ark of the covenant of God was there in those days. And of course the writer is writing from the days probably of David or after David and he sees source 400 ohm, 400 years later out from these event 400 years removed from these events. But this reminds us of you know the defeated AI though. That was a swift turnaround. Joshua just knew he was going to win them send all the troops and set the scouts and they should not of set commanders policies course. Joshua found out verse 28 and finny is the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron stood before it.
In those days that was the ark of the covenant saying shall I yet again go out to battle against the children of my brother Benjamin or shall I cease and Yahweh said go up for tomorrow.
I will deliver them into your hand. So he's thinking about giving up where that never happens to the righteous course. It does, he says that should I feel are we going to win this hook should I just stop and God says no go up and this time the Lord says you will win and the promises explicit. They closed the distance verse 29 then Israel set men in ambush, all around, give you. So the doing something different now.
Not the final assault. This tactic is been seen before. Joshua use it to bring down AI so now you know there's a saying if you want the same results. Just keep doing the same thing so I can be positive and be negative in this case, it would've been negative to continue to do the same thing.
So God assures them of the victories as go up against them, but he doesn't seem to give them the battle plan that seems to come from amongst the generals that keeps me in the fight and fellowship with God, we have fellowship with God. We we have our duty to do our responsibilities of we have to apply ourselves. If you going to share your faith as a Christian, you better be your Bible reader and about prayer and a hood. No go in the assembly. There things that you're supposed to do it your duty. If you going to be a pastor in the pulpit.
You better spent a lot of time digging in the word or else how you just get along like that.
I I feel guilty when I snack my study time should be doing this. I don't is not that bad but it's close. So anyway, nothing course sometimes I cheat. Verse 29. Israel set men in ambush, all around to be a verse 30 in the children of Israel went up against the children of Benjamin on the third day and put themselves in battle array against give you as at the other time so what's going to happen is those men that it attacked the Levite and killed and murdered the concubine they going to be killed.
The impenitent monsters with them their advocates, and hell is awaiting them in everlasting suffering.
There there to this day, and that's something we must not lose sight of today as we when we deal with the atrocities before us immorality in the blasphemy verse 31 so the children of Benjamin went out against the people and were drawn away from the city, they began to strike down and kill some of the people as at other times in the highways one of which goes up to Bethel and the other two tibia in the field about 30 men of Israel, so the Benjamite is a faint move. Cuticles are settling too much of this, but I have to just explain a little bit they go up.
The final assault as before to faint. In any they withdraw in the drawing out the Benjamite's after them. Will that strategy cost 30 lives verse beats verse 32 and the children of Benjamin said they are defeated before us as at first with the children of Israel said, let us flee and draw them away from the city to the highways, making it difficult for them to get back to their fortifications. Verse 33. So all the men of Israel, rose from their place and put themselves in battle array at Beltane Mark.
Then Israel's man in ambush burst forth from their position in the plain of Geba not deeper. They are in the Hebrew it's tibia, but this is a suffix that belongs to it by guessing dramatically that changes the meaning so is really a cave in in in in the area.
Cave available niches. They hid out. That's what the writers they laid in ambush, nobody could see them, which is the idea of an ambush.
Verse 34 and 10,000 selectmen from Israel came against.
Give me a and the battle was fears, but the Benjamite did not know that disaster was upon them. So here these chosen men. These handpicked men they going to make a difference to strategically put I guess the other general got fired and the new general is ladies on the ball it with underlay ambushes were going to do faint moves and am willing to put elite troops in this sector and it wins as I where was this guy before.
No verse 34 and 10,000 hour I read that verse 35 Yahweh defeated Benjamin before Israel and the children of Israel destroyed that day. 25,100 Benjamite.
All these drew the sword so the Lord won the victory wiped out almost all of Benjamin. Some of the laws Benjamin lost troops in the other battles to that would account for the lower number only 600 survivors verse 36, so the children of Benjamin so that they were defeated the men of Israel had given ground to the Benjamite's because they relied on the man in ambush, whom they had set against give you so. The writer is going back and giving us details about the ambush really wish you wouldn't. But he did and the man in the meat. These guys one day I better watch these little comments right to do would be in heaven. You can't beat me up in the men in ambush verse 37 quickly rushed upon give you the men and and were spread out and struck the whole city with the edge of the sword. Now the appointed signal between the men of Israel and the men in ambush was that they would make a great cloud of smoke rise up from the city so when they got in the city, they would quickly see get a fire going in and get it. You know the smoke going up in the men out in the field see this and that would be there signal and Benjamite succeed in that would be their death sentence.
Verse 39, whereupon the men of Israel would turn in battle.
Now Benjamin had begun to strike and kill about 30 of the men of Israel, for they said surely they are defeated before us in the first as in the first battle. So again, the historian is repeating himself going back giving detail verse 40 but when the cloud began to rise from the city in a column of smoke. The Benjamite's look behind them and there was a whole city going up in smoke to heaven. Well, I'm not going to make comments about Saul would just keep well 400 years later soulmate.
This is capital city because he is from. Give your in the Bible repeats several times tibia of Saul and you just knowing how vile Saul king Saul will be just can't help singing on the apple doesn't fall far from the treeless somebody does something about it.
One positive that verse that does something about it.
Part so Saul was a vile man but Jonathan his son was not so there's no such thing as generational curses and people can't break any of this cast system that he did no such thing as is come down to the individual. Jonathan was a righteous man and and he even you know remained loyal to his father.
What could he do some commentators beat up on Jonathan.
I think that is right. Well, I don't remember what verse I was 41 and when the men of Israel turned back the minute Benjamin panicked when they saw the disaster had come upon them. Therefore, verse 42 they turned their backs before the men of Israel in the direction of the wilderness, but the battle overtook them and whoever came out of the cities they destroyed in their midst. Verse 43 this round of the Benjamite's chase them in easily trample them down as far as the front of give you toward the east and 18,000 men of Benjamin felt all these were men of valor again is not an addition it's included in the other numbers he's repeating the scene. Verse 45. Then they turned and fled toward the wilderness to the rock of rim on and they cut down 5000 of them on the highways and they pursued them relentlessly up to get him and killed 2000 of them took this is a federal dealing with evil and will get this will make it to Kings two and the prophets tell the king you know one of the prophets: the King for not being thorough. That happened more than once in the but here they are being thorough, and that's a lesson for us.
Good deal with the evil.
Don't leave any of it due to spawn and come back as much is within your power, sometimes we want to be merciful and and let up, and then what we end up doing is handing the victory back. I remember that as a steelworker when some of the men knew that I was a Christian could share my faith them when they would let loose the obscenities. It was all sorry Rick and I were there. Once I said I might telling me sorry Aminah been around know you do that in the Lord rebuke me said very gently what you doing is salting the earth.
Don't take it back. They want to go say they're sorry for the profane profanity in front of you than take it and use it. Don't go saying is okay so okay is okay now right so there they are at rim on 600 men. Verse 47 fled the wilderness to the rock of rim on the state at the rock for four months so they held out.
Evidently they had provisions while the rest of Israel figured out what they gonna do it.
They could just keep a siege around the mentally just died of starvation and thirst verse 48 and the men of Israel turned back against the children of Benjamin and struck them down the edge of the sword in every city man and beast. All were found.
They also certified all the cities they came to.
So they slaughtered everyone men women and children. They went on a rampage. They will not going to leave anyone.
This was the initial mindset to rally and retaliate.
They were not going to leave a seed. They will regret this later in the next chapter and then they will take steps to do something about a hit in the utmost group for the steps so at first evil seems to have been winning and then the hammer fell. Ecclesiastes 11 because a sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily. Therefore, the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil. You know that so far so good. And it's it's a foolish it's a foolish mindset well again next chapter. The bizarre is only one thing that may not be that they do you see in you know you can once lady sometimes have a lot more to be grateful that with not living like the Old Testament and more get to the next chapter move thanks for tuning in to cross reference radio for this study in the book of Judges cross reference radio is the teaching ministry pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel in Mechanicsville, Virginia.
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