Judges 2

Judges 2 begins the sad decline by the people away from God.  During the journey of taking the Promised Land, God had instructed His people to “tear down the altars” and get rid of those who might lead them away from Him later.  “But you haven’t obeyed me” was what God told them because they didn’t rid the area of those influences and foreign people.  God knew that “they’ll trip you up and their gods will become a trap”.  If we live with fire, we will get burned.  And the people have moved away from God and now “oh how they wept”.  They were living in the woe is me life of losing the blessing of God.  “They were helpless before their enemies….they were in a bad way”.  “They angered God” and “He handed them off to plunderers”.  Life had gone from being blessed and the center of God’s attention to very lonely and out of God’s eye.  How can this happen?

 “Another generation grew up that didn’t know anything of God or the work He had done for Israel”.  Hmmm.  Seems like a parenting and grand parenting problem to me.  These people were not told, nor taught, about the past or the history of God’s interaction and touch on their heritage.  They had not experienced God’s love first hand and their parents had not taught them why the way they live matters.  So “they lost no time leaving the road walked by their parents, the road of obedience”.  If we don’t teach our children well, it should come as no surprise that they take a different course and path should it?  But that is exactly what happens here.  The older generation did not teach the younger about God and the need to stay connected with Him and Him alone.  So instead, there went “running after other gods, serving and worshiping them”.  And the result was that “God’s anger blazed”.  So the obvious question is – whose fault is this issue?  Well it seems obvious to me that if parents and grand parents (yes I am lumping both together now because every generation has a responsibility to tell the story of God’s touch on their lives and the need to walk humbly with Him) don’t do their job, things are not going to go well for future generations.  At the same time, blaming someone else for the choices that are made is not correct either.  At the end of the day sin is always a personal choice and no one else can be blamed for that.  But others certainly can influence the choice and provide the history and relationship and legacy that make those choices more likely to be godly rather than sinful.  We need to make sure we are teaching our kids and grandkids well.  They need to know God’s truth and expectations for life.  They need to see how that works in our lives as grown ups.  We need to be the example that leads them to Jesus.  When they follow us, they should end up at the Cross and walk in obedience into God’s presence.  Everyone is responsible for how life gets lived.  Ultimately the one who makes the choice in their life will answer for it, but those of us in that circle of influence also need to do our part in living life as a “light” and teaching well God’s truth and story.  If we don’t (and probably it looks like we haven’t), then the result is that God moves away and lets evil cause havoc until we come back.  We need to do that and quickly.  It starts at home.  Let’s get after it today!

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