Go In the Strength You Have

Day 116

Judges 6:1‐40; Luke 22:54‐23:12; Psalms 95:1‐96:13; Proverb 14:5‐6

Go In the Strength You Have

Take the world for Christ!

Too big, Lord!

Well, then, take your city for Christ!

Like Israel during the seven years Midian oppressed them, Central Florida – my zip code – is threatened with being overrun by evil. Is that God’s will for my zip code? For yours? For the World? NO!

It is weak faith manifested in the failure of the church to act in the power of Christ’s name that provides evil with the opportunity to oppress. Yet, like Gideon, God has already spoken to us: Verse 12, “The LORD is with you, mighty warrior.” Verse 14, Go in the strength you have…” Verse 16, I will be with you…” Verse 23, “Peace! Do not be afraid.”

While he was still processing wheat, God called Gideon a “mighty warrior,” knowing he could be acting in obedience and faith to God. He told Gideon to set out “in the strength you have.” It is the faith-filled act of going that unleashes God’s power. We wait too long for the power before going. “Go, and make disciples.” And best of all – “Peace! Do not be afraid.”

Who is God’s warrior in your zip code?

Richard Bordin
Holy Cross
Winter Haven, FL

For help studying the Bible, please find the Old Testament Study Guide and the New Testament Study Guide sections of the Bible Challenge website.

To donate to the Bible Challenge, click here.

Deborah and Jael

Day 115

Judges 4:1‐5:31; Luke 22:35‐53; Psalm 94:1‐23; Proverbs 14:3‐4

Deborah and Jael

Eve tempting Adam to eat, Sarai scoffing at the idea of bearing Abram’s son to the point of laughter, Rebekah deceiving Isaac to gain favor and a blessing for Jacob, and so on. Women’s roles in the Bible up to the Book of Judges were less than positive. Then two women come to the forefront in the Book of Judges. Deborah sat under the Palm of Deborah, “…and the people of Israel came up to her for judgment” (4:5). She is in a position analogous to that of Joshua, and identical to that of the other judges. No higher position existed in Israel during this period. She speaks the truth of God and has national recognition and acceptance. Barak, the chosen commander for the key battle with King Jabin, will not go to war without her being there, reminiscent of Israel’s forces prevailing while Moses’ arms were raised and flagging when they were lowered.

Deborah not only speaks authoritatively of Barak’s victory, but also has knowledge from God that the enemy commander, Sisera, will not fall into Barak’s hands, but instead into the hands of a woman. Sisera escapes the battle on foot and, thinking a tent woman (nomad) named Jael will submit to his authority, makes himself incredibly vulnerable. He did not ascertain to whom she owed allegiance, and got a tent peg driven through his temple for his mistake. This to many would seem to be a gruesome, reprehensible act in our modern point of view, but the act of a tough woman in time of war.

Joe Pollock
St. Peter’s
Lake Mary, FL

For help studying the Bible, please find the Old Testament Study Guide and the New Testament Study Guide sections of the Bible Challenge website.

To donate to the Bible Challenge, click here.

The Profit of the Right Knowledge

Day 114

Judges 2:10‐3:31; Luke 22:14‐34; Psalms 92:1‐93:5; Proverbs 14:1‐2

The Profit of the Right Knowledge

In chapter 2, God lays out the pattern that is demonstrated three times in chapter 3 and again and again throughout the book of Judges: They forgot God; they did their own thing; they got themselves into a big mess; they called out to God; God raised up a judge; they listened; they repented; they prospered; the judge died; and soon they once again forgot what God had done.

Where is your community in this cycle? Where is your family in this cycle? I find verse 10 to contain the most painful line in the whole reading: “Another generation grew up who knew neither the Lord nor what he had done.” We, like the Israelites, too easily forget what God has done and who God is. At the heart of the Bible Challenge is the invitation to read the Word and to actively learn and remember what He has done.

I encourage you to add your own testimony of God’s work in your life (e.g. share answered prayers with a small group of friends and/or keep a journal of God’s work in your life). Each generation needed a judge to help them remember God’s Word. You are a judge for today, to speak out the Scripture and your story of God at work in your life. Invite those near you to remember and so be blessed. That is the joy found in Psalms 92 and 93 where the psalmist celebrates the profit of knowing and remembering God’s word.

The Rev. Loren Fox
Church of Our Savior
Palm Bay, FL

For help studying the Bible, please find the Old Testament Study Guide and the New Testament Study Guide sections of the Bible Challenge website.

To donate to the Bible Challenge, click here.