I'm so glad you are here! I hope during your visit you get a glimpse of God's heart for we become what we are gazing at. Currently I am writing my way through Judges sharing glimpses of God's heart and character for a weekday devotional. To check out the entire series so far head on over the the Judges Devotional. And if you blog, come on over on Friday's for a blog link up.
Are you a Braveheart fan?
I would like the movie a whole ton more if the girl didn't die at the beginning. I've been told that is the whole point. It's because William Wallace's love was killed the revolution started. But part of me just pushes against that, "there's got to be another way. Can't revolution come without sorrow?" Yet I'm finding more and more that it wont... can't. That we need things to rock us out of our apathy. More on that later in the chapter.
Chapter 19 of Judges is like Braveheart for me. It's just so sad with a similar story-line and I yearn for another way. It causes me to wrestle with God through the question of why this awfulness and why in the world He included it in the Bible.
But then there's another pull in my heart. A desire to hear what's real. I don't want to hear just the good. I don't want a Bible full of great people who never messed up. I want to hear about people I can relate to. I want to see the ramifications of sin for when we think lightly of sin, we think lightly of Jesus the Redeemer. So why when I hear this awfulness do I hate it so much when really it's the redeeming stories my soul craves? I think it's because we weren't created for a world like this. We were created for Eden, for heaven, yet we are also built to crave God and everything about Him. So the awfulness of sin meets redemption and we experience the aching beauty.
But for now we have a few day till we get to the awful parts of Judges 19. So let's take in these few verses of grace and savor the morsels.
"In those days Israel had no king. Now a Levite who lived in a remote area in the hill country of Ephraim took a concubine from Bethlehem in Judah. But she was unfaithful to him. She left him and went back to her father's house in Bethlehem, Judah. After she had been there four months, her husband went to her to persuade her to return. He had with him his servant and two donkeys. She took him into her father's house, and when her father saw him, he gladly welcomed him." Judges 19:1-3
A new Levite enters the picture and here he shows incredible grace. He was treated unfairly, really unfairly. I bet Hollywood could have a heyday with this. Total side note, but it really bothers me how so often they manipulate your emotions with affairs in movies-leading your heart and mind to root for the "in love" people to be together even thought they are married. Urgh, that just makes me so mad! Anyway, who knows why this lady had an affair. Perhaps some guy woo-ed her and made her feel like she was the top of the world. Perhaps for awhile this man was smitten with her and she found him irresistible. After all she was just a concubine and who knows how this Levite treated her.
Mr Levite, pride wounded and heart seemingly broken, comes to seek her, to woo her back. He comes in grace, bearing gifts. Much like the Lord. We break His heart by turning to our own ways, our own self-sufficiency yet He pursues us with unending grace.
And Mrs. Levite, this is her last act, and her only recorded one in Scripture. How embarrassing! But isn't that just like sin. Sin brings death which brings shame, embarrassment and a host of other things. It makes you wonder how something so painful can ever seem so pleasurable.
The grace given by Mr. Levite and Mrs. Levites dad is like a shower of relief. Where is the condemnation? I don't see it here. Just like Jesus with the adulterous lady. With Jesus there is no condemnation for those who put their trust in Him. And another side note, isn't it interesting there are so many instances of women having affairs in Scripture. Let's keep watch over our minds ladies, Scripture gives warning that we are not exempt, ever. Where our mind goes, our heart follows and it's just downhill from there. Pain and embarrassment downhill right into death.
So today, I remember Jesus' grace. His favor and acceptance given to those who don't deserve it. If Jesus, the King over all can offer acceptance, forgiveness and favor for imperfect people how much more should we!
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