Searching for a True Savior: An Exposition of Judges

Searching for a True Savior: An Exposition of Judges

In this series, we’re going verse by verse through the book of Judges, seeing how God continually showed mercy on the Israelites by sending them a rescuer in the form of a “judge,” and how the Israelites responded by continually drifting away from God’s law. As we study this disturbing and violent book, we can recognize our need for a true savior and how God satisfied his love and his justice through the person of Jesus Christ.

Man-Made Morality

June 4, 2023 | Judges 19-21 | exposition

Unlike the earlier chapters, these final five chapters are so spiritually dark, and Israel has drifted so far from God, that these chapters are almost never preached. Indeed, these final chapters are so disturbing that you may be tempted to cover your ears and look away. Unlike the earlier chapters, in these final chapters, there is no foreign oppressor. The enemy is within, not without. No judges are named. This is Israel on its own. Editorial comment by the author on Israel’s sin is minimal, leaving the reader the burden of interpretation.

Last week, we covered the first “case study” depicting Israel’s spiritual decline into “Man-Made Religion.” Now this week, we’ll look at how Israel’s moral condition has become more like the Canaanite peoples around them than the people God had called them to be as His holy nation, in a sermon called “Man-Made Morality.”

Man-Made Religion

May 28, 2023 | Judges 17-18 | exposition

We Americans love a good buffet! Are you guilty of making up your own religion? Or do you have faith in God as He reveals Himself through His Word and through His Son, Jesus? In Judges 17-18, Israel began to follow a man-made religion that displeased God.

Blind But Now I See

May 21, 2023 | Judges 16 | exposition

What did it take for you to turn to God? Living in America, we are so blessed that we tend to focus on the blessings rather than the Blesser. Outwardly, we look like we have it all together. But on the inside, we’re a mess! Nice job, nice house, nice car… but on the inside… marital woes, family issues, in debt up to your ears… And where’s God in all this? Has God forgotten you? Or like Samson, have you forgotten God?

In Judges 16, God revealed much about Himself in answering Samson’s humble prayer for help. We can see how God reveals Himself to who humbly seek Him.

The Wedding Crasher

May 14, 2023 | Judges 14-15 | exposition

Are you struggling today with a compromised faith? Do unbelievers notice that you are different, that you are a committed follower of Jesus? Or is your life indistinguishable from the world?

The Philistines represent the most deadly enemy of all because they have tempted Israel to compromise their faith. Little by little, if they don’t recognize the truth, they will lose their faith as a nation and become just like the world. A compromised faith is much more dangerous and insidious than a persecuted faith. In Judges 14-15, God worked behind the scenes to rescue Israel from their compromised faith that had put them under the rule of the Philistines. We can recognize that God wants us to have an uncompromised faith.

What’s In a Name?

May 7, 2023 | Judges 12:8 - 13 | exposition

What about your name? Does God know your name? We all love to be called by our names. It means that someone knows us. They recognize us. And yes, God knows your name. He knows you better than you know yourself. As we return to our study of Judges today, we’ll see that God not only knows us, but by His grace, He reveals Himself to us that we might know Him.

In Judges 12-13, the Lord sent His angel to reveal to a barren woman and her husband that she would conceive and bear a son who would begin to save Israel from the Philistines. We can learn much about God from the revelation He gave this couple.

Misunderstandings About God

April 30, 2023 | Judges 10-12:7 | exposition

What’s your view of God? How do you see Him? Is He up in heaven with a gray beard, wearing a black judge’s robe, with a gavel in His hand, ready to judge you? Or is He like a celestial Santa Claus waiting patiently for your wish list to come in through the prayer line? Maybe you see Him as a hippie guru holding an “All you need is love sign”? Or maybe He looks like Morgan Freeman in the movie Bruce Almighty? Where do you get your view, your understanding of God?

As we continue through Judges, we see the people of Israel declining in the knowledge of God. With every generation, they remember less of His revealed Word to them. They see Him as the pagans do their false gods. In Judges 10-12, the Israelites continued their downward cycle of sin and rebellion against God, becoming less like His special called people and more like the people of the world. When they cried out to the Lord, He empowered another judge to rescue them, yet they have become so worldly that they no longer understand the character of their Lord. We often misunderstand the character of God.

When Spoils Spoil Us

April 23, 2023 | Judges 8-9 | exposition

“Spoils” are the reward of having won a victory, as in the “spoils of war.” For in our study today, we’ll see how Gideon’s victory, his success, actually revealed a problem that he had, indeed that we all are apt to have, namely–– we often let success go to our heads. It’s one thing to trust God when we are in a season of lack or trouble. But what about when we’re going through a season of plenty, of prosperity?

In Judges 8-9, the Lord gave victory to Gideon and the Israelites over their Median oppressors, but they let the spoils of war spoil their relationship with God and with one another. They didn’t know how to handle God’s blessings. They let success spoil their hearts. What are the warning signs that success is spoiling our hearts?

Triumph in Weakness

April 2, 2023 | Judges 7 | exposition

Admitting our weaknesses, goes against our human nature doesn’t it? We value strength, influence, wealth, possessions, beauty… We don’t care much for weakness, for humility, for being impoverished or downtrodden. Yet, did you know that you can be too big, too rich, too full of yourself to see God’s victory, God’s triumph in your life? Until we admit our weakness apart from God, until we humble ourselves before God, we cannot experience the salvation and victory only He can give us.

Our human default is to trust ourselves, our own wisdom, our own bank accounts, our charge cards, our own strength. But God wants us to learn to put all of our trust in Him. In chapter 7 of Judges, the Lord taught Gideon and the people of Israel to put all their trust in His power to save them, rather than their own strength. We can learn to put all of our trust in the Lord.

Obedience over Fear

March 26, 2023 | Judges 6 |

We all struggle with various fears and phobias. But God wants us to choose obedience to Him over our fears. He wants to help us overcome our fears in order to obey His Word and His calling on our lives.

In chapter 6 of Judges, the Israelites have again fallen back into that repetitive cycle of sin and sorrow. And God heard their cry and again sent them a judge to rescue them. This time it’s a timid man named Gideon that God calls to overcome his fear and obey the Lord. We can learn to overcome our fears by obeying the Lord.

Answering God’s Call

March 19, 2023 | Judges 4-5 | exposition

What’s God’s calling on your life? Or do you not think you have a calling? You don’t think He could use you? You don’t have any special talent or ability? Awesome! God loves using ordinary people to accomplish extraordinary things.

Or maybe you’re going through a time of trouble? Sometimes God uses suffering to get our attention, so that we’ll actually hear His call. Receiving His comfort, we also receive His call to comfort others in the same trouble we once had. Are you willing to answer God’s call on your life?

In chapter 4 and 5 of Judges, the people of Israel again rebelled against the Lord and did evil in His sight, but after falling into servitude, they cried out to the Lord, so the Lord called an unlikely duo named, Deborah and Barak, to rescue Israel. And they answered God’s call. We can answer God’s call on our lives.