We’ve said it throughout the book of Judges, but the theme that we see highlighted more than any other is the sinfulness of the Israelites. We’ve seen it in all sorts of ways, but perhaps the way that summarizes it best is what we see today. Today we see the beginning of a civil war that would change the landscape of Old Testament history. From the division that this civil war represented, the kingdom of Israel would eventually split. This showed that the sin and apostasy shown throughout the book had now turned onto fellow Israelites.
This passage really exposes the effects of sin doesn’t it? There are a few things for us to draw from:
- Sin has consequences. You probably know Romans 6:23—”But the wages of sin is death…” That verse is talking about spiritual death primarily, but in this passage we see that physical death, among other things, can also be a consequence. The division and hatred that we see here is the direct result of our sin.
- Sin is personal. What I mean by this is that sin effects people personally. Your sin that no one knows about is still negatively effecting others because it is negatively effecting you.
- Sin must be paid for. To realize that your sin is personal and has consequences is bad news. Even to realize that your sin must be paid for isn’t great news! But to know that your sin has already been paid for is amazing news! The effects of sin are unending throughout the Old Testament, because there is always a hopeful expectation for the Messiah who would come and save the people from their sin. What better day, than Good Friday, for us to remember the sacrifice that Jesus made for us by dying on the cross and paying for our sin once and for all.
You might have a sin pattern in your life right now that you are ashamed of and frustrated with. Be encouraged and reminded that Jesus paid the price for your sin, so that you wouldn’t have to.
By: Graham Withers — Pastoral Ministry Apprentice