In my previous blog post from November 7 titled "Unmentionables," I stated I lacked understanding of the intended truth of Judges 19. My post prompted a converstation between my friend, my husband, and me. My friend gave me permission to share his insight on the matter.
The story I referred to begins in chapter 19 then ends in chapter 21 of the book of Judges. The very last verse, Judges 21:25, sums it up and says, "In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in his own eyes," (ESV). Consequently, the horrific actions of a few resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands.
Unfortunately, rather than consider what changes needed to be made to make their nation stronger in the midst of their adversity, the people in this story did what they thought was right and sought vengeance through bloodshed. Just like me, they could not see past the horror of the event. Ego was their ruler.
It is interesting to note those seeking retribution asked God twice if they should attack. God said yes, but then thousands of their own men died. The third time God allowed them victory over the tribe of Benjamin. However, in the end, all involved on both sides suffered great loss. It appears God was trying to teach the entire nation a valuable lesson.
Those seeking retribution did ask God for permission to attack before they attacked. But maybe their question should have been a different one. I wonder what would have happened if they had asked what He wanted them to do rather than if they could do what they wanted to do. If they had done so, I think the results would have been different.
The same is true of us today. We tend to do what we think is right rather than seek God about what He says is right. For most of us, our ego is our ruler.
The solution for our world today is not found in relying on what is right in our own eyes. What we think is right is not right. The solution is found in our reliance on what He says is right. We need to be asking God a new question. I wonder what God would tell us if we asked Him how He wanted us to behave. Instead of giving us permission to devour one another, I think He would tell us to love Him above all else and, then, love one another. In fact, He already has.