Least surprising thing you probably read from today’s jumpstart Scripture:
And his concubine was unfaithful to him. Judges 19:2a
Most surprising and shocking part?
And when he entered his house, he took a knife, and taking hold of his concubine he divided her, limb by limb, into twelve pieces, and sent her throughout all the territory of Israel. Judges 19:29
And in between the two passages is a heartbreaking story of sexual sin, hedonism (multiple verses of “let your heart be merry”) rape, and sex trafficking (v. 23-26). If I can be honest with everyone reading this, I had a hard time reading this chapter. I hope you did too. Especially if you’re a man. From the Levite’s sin of taking in a concubine in the first place to what it ended up leading to. It’s graphic and grievous but sadly, shouldn’t be surprising. That’s because where hedonism and sexual sin is, rape and sex trafficking will follow. Let this be a sober reminder of this.
From the statistics on college campus rapes to sex trafficking we should not be surprised that the concubine’s ending fate was as graphic as it was. That’s sin. Sin that doesn’t seem that big of a deal when your drinking and “letting your heart be merry” for days on end but then leads to the heartbreaking conclusion in Judges 19. If it wasn’t for Jesus, I don’t know how I would process the consequences of such things we dealt with in this chapter and still see in the world today. But by God’s grace we do have Jesus. One who gives hope and healing for such atrocities through the Gospel and the church stepping up and speaking out on such things. In fact that’s how this chapter ends. The last verse of the chapter, the very following verse after the tragic fate of the concubine being chopped up and divided by her Levite “master”, it says:
And all who saw it said, “Such a thing has never happened or been seen from the day that the people of Israel came up out of the land of Egypt until this day; consider it, take counsel, and speak.”
Consider it, take counsel, and speak. The same we should do today when hearing of and ministering to such sins.
By: Erik Koliser — West Campus Pastor