Issue #109

Tim Keller says, “God is a God of grace, not works. He takes and uses people who are at the margins of society – in order to show that salvation is from Him, not from our own human ability”. I continue to marvel at who God chooses to be His representatives at times of great difficulty. He seems to always choose the least desirable applicant! Once again today, we will witness from His word the unbelievable choice of a man whom society would shun to do a great and mighty work. I gain incredible comfort that God singles out just normal, fallen and struggling people to be His workman in matters of great importance. People like you and me! If only we would realize that in God’s hands we can be heroes to so many other people who we daily meet with and know so well.

The people of Israel had turned their backs on God again. They never seemed to learn. They lived their lives doing things what they felt ‘was right in their own eyes’. They never enquired of God and just did whatever pleased them with no regard to His word. Consequently, without God going before them; without God’s clear direction; without God’s strength, the Israelites found themselves in enormous trouble. Such is the case when we ignore God! When we find ourselves in trouble, and suffering the consequences of the bad choices we make, we nearly always blame God! ‘Where is God in this we ask? Why is God allowing this circumstance to happen to me? This is so unfair!’ What do we expect?

In God’s amazing grace, He hears His people crying out and He comes to the rescue! In two scenes from Israel’s history, we witness two men whom God chose, to bring relief to His rebellious people – Othniel and Ehud. Now the choice of the second man will raise some eyebrows as he is a most unexpected person indeed. Yet, what we learn from this wonderful passage of Scripture is that God will use what the world deems as foolish, weak, lowly and despised to achieve the most remarkable of all victories! All through Scripture we discover God’s unique strategy – He uses people at the margins of society to accomplish His great works! People like you and me!

Ehud was a man with a disability, yet he brought down a king, and led the Israelite people to a great victory over their oppressors. Ehud was available to the great and awesome God. God equipped him, enabled him and empowered him. God orchestrated the whole event! It is staggering when you think about it! Yet this is our God, and He is the same God for us today! I hope as we continue our journey through Judges that each one of you will learn to trust God whole-heartedly; realize exactly who you are in Christ and who lives inside of you; and be prepared to do the unexpected under the Lord God’s power! I pray that you will become genuine heroes in the name of Christ to those in your family, to your friends, associates and to those whom God brings into your life almost on a daily basis!