Spend time in prayer and silence with God asking him to meet you and speak to you.
The Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord; they forgot the Lord their God and served the Baals and the Asherahs. The anger of the Lord burned against Israel so that he sold them into the hands of Cushan-Rishathaim king of Aram Naharaim, to whom the Israelites were subject for eight years.
But when they cried out to the Lord, he raised up for them a deliverer, Othniel son of Kenaz, Caleb’s younger brother, who saved them. The Spirit of the Lord came on him, so that he became Israel’s judge and went to war. The Lord gave Cushan-Rishathaim king of Aram into the hands of Othniel, who overpowered him. So the land had peace for forty years, until Othniel son of Kenaz died.
– Judges 3:7-11
Othniel was Israel’s first “Judge.” Othniel had a very rich spiritual heritage as he was the nephew of Caleb, who was a man with unwavering faith and trust in God.
Caleb was one of the two spies who wanted to trust God and go into the Promised Land when the ten other spies said it would be too difficult. Just think of the faith and courage Othniel directly observed throughout his life when he was around his uncle. Can you imagine how the abundant Christian life was apparent in his very own family?
As a result, he was the very first man God chose to be judge. He was there to lead the nation back to God.
Othniel’s leadership brought the Israelites back to God and freed them from the oppressive grip of king of Aram-Naharaim. Sadly, after Othniel’s death, the people quickly fell back into their neighbors’ comfortable culture with its sinful ways. This was the first of 7 cycles depicted in Judges. The Israelites were still going to repeat these painful cycles many more times.
The Big Question
Has there been a time in your life when you didn’t have to learn the hard way?
Maybe you learned from somebody else’s mistake or, even better, you really grasped a principle of God’s word to keep you from serious problems and consequences.
Do you find comfort in God’s word as such a good road-map to life?
How are you doing with passing down a Godly heritage to your children or others in your family?
Conclude in prayer and silence, reflecting on what you’ve learned.