Updated: Jun 16, 2021
"So it was, whenever Israel had sown , Midianites would come up; also Amalekites and the people of East would come up against them...and leave no sustenance for Israel" (Jud.6:3 & 4).
Often times, through the pages of the Old Testament, we see God allowing the Israelites, His preferred and chosen nation, to suffer some defeats and setbacks in the hands of their enemies. Among such enemy nations are the Philistines and the Amalekites.
The release to suffer such humiliating defeats from their enemies was not borne out of hatred for His beloved nation. Far from that, He rather used those defeats to call their attention to the consequences of their disobedience and misbehavior.
Being a merciful God, He soon would turn the tide in their favor. It was just a way of telling them that He could remove His covering from them whenever they erred. This ultimately made them prone to defeats even from the hands of the least expected nation(s), for as long as their stubbornness persisted.
A similar approach He used to allegorically explain the unfaithfulness of this nation in turning their back against Him, when He instructed prophet Hosea to marry a harlot. It was a symbolical representation of the infidelity of His chosen people and a nation very dear to His heart. The scriptures say of Hosea, the LORD said:
"Go, take yourself a wife of harlotry
And children of harlotry,
For the land has committed a great harlotry
by departing form the LORD" (Hos.1:2)
Within the framework of our passage today, it is obvious that the choice of making dens, caves, and strongholds (Jud.6:2), their alternate forms of defense, was helpless as their assailants still prevailed anyway.
God ONLY, was and (is) their sure protection. This is simply because the attack was from the LORD - "then the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD. So the LORD delivered them into the hand of Midian for seven years" (Jud.61).
With the style of the invasion orchestrated on Israel, this was an attack that did not shed blood. It rather focused on destroying and wasting their labor. Destroyed so much so that the Israelites became impoverished. Beloved, nothing could be more painful for a labor or harvest to be wasted ! Labors, and harvests are easily destroyed than composed and put together.
Having engaged in the rigors of tilling the ground and sowing, the harvest period would be a mirage to the Israelites ! This was owing to the fact that the three nations, namely : the Amalekites, Midianites and the people from the East, would have strategically positioned themselves waiting and watching to invade the nation of Israel, just about the time to harvest their ripe produce.
Within a twinkling of an eye and in one fell swoop, the trio, coming in the company of their uncountable camels, would invade the harvest and leave the children of Israel with no sustenance.
It was usually a story of wasted effort on the part of the people of God. Needless to say they were living contrary to Scriptures : Ps. 126:5 "those who sow in tears shall reap in joy."
In their agony and at their wits end, they embraced their last resort : crying to God. They sought His face in bitter cries. A benevolent and merciful God we have, would respond and send help to them almost immediately at such instances.
Beloved, what door of sins have we opened to power wasting our labor and harvest? We need to pray against it today !
Prayer: LORD, I pray that every power of labor and harvest destroyers in our lives, be subdued in the name of the LORD .
LORD, I pray, by Your mercy, You shall protect my labor and harvest ( in ministry, marriage, job, business, academics, profession ) from destroyers. Amen.
Olusegun A Emosu
The RCCG Rehoboth Parish ,
1879, S Stone Mountain Lithonia Rd,
Lithonia G A 30058
June 14th, 2021