|I do not know how many times
I have read over Judges 2:18 and understood it as merely an historical
statement. While I was working on this issue of Women in Christ, another
meaning stood out as if it were in bold type shouting at me.
Judges 2:18 NIV "Whenever the Lord raised up a judge for them, he was with the judge and saved them out of the hands of their enemies as long as the judge lived; for the Lord had compassion on them as they groaned under those who oppressed and afflicted them."
God still has compassion on those who are oppressed and suffering. He has raised up a judge who still lives and saves the oppressed and afflicted. Do you live in a nation governed by fear? Do you live in fear of crime or terrorism? Perhaps you are in slavery to an addiction. Perhaps you live in fear of your spouse in an abusive marriage. Are you living in fear of dying because you do not know what lies beyond?
You do not have to live in a state of fear. God can bring you into a state of peace. He has compassion on you. He wants to deliver you from your enemies. The judge God raised up to deliver you is not limited by mortality or geography or limited resources. This judge is none other than God our Savior.
The prophet Isaiah wrote, “For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; it is he who will save us.” (Isaiah 33:22)
The Apostle Paul said to the Athenians, “In the
past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere
to repent. For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice
by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to all men by raising
him from the dead.”
The Apostle John wrote, “I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war.” (Revelation 19:11)
Luke recorded that “He [Jesus] went to Nazareth,
where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue,
as was his custom. And he stood up to read. The scroll of the prophet Isaiah
was handed to him. Unrolling it he found the place where it is written:
‘The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he anointed me to preach good
news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to
proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.’ Then he rolled up the scroll, gave
it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue
were fastened on him, and he began by saying to them, ‘Today this
scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.’ “
Listen to Jesus’ invitation: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)
Another witness is the author of Hebrews who tells us, “because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.” (Hebrews 7:24-25)
These witnesses are recorded and preserved for
our examination. Their testimony assures us that whatever is causing distress,
Jesus is able to save. Salvation is not just a religious buzzword. Salvation
is relevant to our concerns and fears now. "Now is the day of salvation."
(II Corinthians 6:2) Appeal to the judge that God raised up to deliver
you. Turn to him; learn from him; live in union with Jesus the Christ.
Let him deliver you.
by Scarlett Stough