Mt Sinai (Law) and Mt Zion (Grace)

Mt Sinai (Law) and  Mt Zion (Grace)
Mt Sinai (Law) and Mt Zion (Grace)

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Women of Faith-Deborah-Wife of Manoah-Naomi and Ruth

I want to continue to talk about the women in the Bible who impacted their world by their faith in God and made for themselves a lasting legacy in history.

Deborah - lived in the time of the Judges and we see her story in Judges 4. She was a prophetess and became a Judge after Judge Ehud died. She Judged Israel from Mt. Ephraim.

Now in these days the Spirit of the Lord would come upon a prophet or prophetess to give His Word to the people. Today, through the redemptive action of our Savior, we can have the Holy Spirit living in us all the time.

The children of Israel did evil in the sight of God and the Lord sold them into the hand of Jabin, king of Canaan whose captain was Sisera. Jabin's army had 900 iron chariots.

These would be pulled by 2 horses and have a teamster and a warrior inside. There was a host of infantry that would be deployed with the chariots.

Deborah called Barak from Kedesh-Naphtali and prophesied to him: Has not the Lord God of Israel commanded saying go toward Mt. Tabor and take with you 10,000 men of the children of Naphtali and Zebulun? I will draw unto you at the river Kishon, Sisera, the captain of Jabin’s army and I will deliver them into your hand.

Barak said unto Deborah, I will go if you go with me. She answered, I will surely go with you, but the journey you take will not be for your honor; for the Lord shall sell Sisera into the hand of a woman. And Deborah arose and went with Barak to Kedesh.

Heber the Kenite which was from the children of Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, and had left the Kenites and had pitched his tent in the plain by Kedesh. He told Sisera that Barak had went to Mt. Tabor.
So, Sisera took his army and 900 chariots to the river of Kishon. Just as the Lord had said, through Deborah.

Jethro, who was Zipphora's father and a priest in Midian had come to visit Moses in the wilderness and advised him on how to be the judge of so many people, Exodus 18.

So, Sisera took his army and 900 chariots to the river of Kishon. Just as the Lord had spoken through Deborah.

Deborah said to Barak to get up and go for this is the day in which the Lord has delivered Sisera into your hand; has not the Lord went out before you? 

So Barak went down with 10,000 men, and defeated Sisera’s army with the sword for the battle was decided by the Lord.

Sisera left his chariot and ran away on foot. He ended up at the tent of Heber the Kenite. Now there was peace between king Jabin and the house of Heber. Jael, Heber’s wife went out to meet him and told him to come on in the tent and turn in, fear not. She covered him with a blanket. Sisera said to please get him some water and she gave him some milk and tucked him in. He asked her to watch the door and if any one asked if a man came in, tell them no.

So he went to sleep in the tent, for he was exhausted. Jael then took a tent peg ad drove it through his temples with a hammer and into the ground. Once again the household of Jethro had helped Israel.

As Barak looked for Sisera, Jael went out to meet him and said come, I will show you whom you seek. And she took Barak in the tent and there was Sisera, dead, his head nailed to the floor. Just as God had said, through his prophetess, Deborah.

So Jabin the king of Canaan was subdued that day by Barak, and Deborah, and Jael at the Word of the Lord. They listened to, and believed God.

Judges 5 is the song of Deborah and Barak that gives Praise to God and recounts the events of that day. The land had rest for 40 years.
1 ¶  Then sang Deborah and Barak the son of Abinoam on that day, saying,
2  Praise ye the LORD for the avenging of Israel, when the people willingly offered themselves.
3  Hear, O ye kings; give ear, O ye princes; I, even I, will sing unto the LORD; I will sing praise to the LORD God of Israel.
4  LORD, when thou wentest out of Seir, when thou marchedst out of the field of Edom, the earth trembled, and the heavens dropped, the clouds also dropped water.
5  The mountains melted from before the LORD, even that Sinai from before the LORD God of Israel.
6 ¶  In the days of Shamgar the son of Anath, in the days of Jael, the highways were unoccupied, and the travellers walked through byways.
7  The inhabitants of the villages ceased, they ceased in Israel, until that I Deborah arose, that I arose a mother in Israel.

The Wife of Manoah-  the mother of Samson we read about in Judges 13. Although not named, this woman struck a special place in God’s heart. Hebrews 11:6 says that without faith it is impossible to please God. So, with faith it is possible to please Him. Manoah was from the tribe of Dan and so, probably was his wife. It appears that she was barren and had entreated the Lord about this. The children of Israel had
did evil in the sight of the Lord and the Lord delivered them into the hands of the Philistines for 40 years.
Judges 13:3  And the angel of the LORD appeared unto the woman, and said unto her, Behold now, thou art barren, and bearest not: but thou shalt conceive, and bear a son.
4  Now therefore beware, I pray thee, and drink not wine nor strong drink, and eat not any unclean thing:
5  For, lo, thou shalt conceive, and bear a son; and no razor shall come on his head: for the child shall be a Nazarite unto God from the womb: and he shall begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines.
Now the angel of the LORD is special…none other than Jesus appearing as a man.

She went and told her husband and said that a man of God had come to her and his countenance was like an angel of God, very terrible. She related what the man had said. Now this was Jesus in His glory, like the transfiguration in the New Testament.

She went and told her husband and said that a man of God had come to her and his countenance was like an angel of God, very terrible. She related what the man had said.

So Manoah entreated the Lord and asked that the man of God would come again to teach us what to do to the child to be born. God responded and again the angel of God came again to the woman who was in the field without her husband. So she ran and got him. It is interesting that the angel of the Lord came to the woman the second time and not Manoah. Faith moves God and this woman had some.

Judges 13: 11  And Manoah arose, and went after his wife, and came to the man, and said unto him, Art thou the man that spakest unto the woman? And he said, I am, (another hint He was Jesus).
12  And Manoah said, Now let thy words come to pass. How shall we order the child, and how shall we do unto him?
13  And the angel of the LORD said unto Manoah, Of all that I said unto the woman let her beware.
14  She may not eat of any thing that cometh of the vine, neither let her drink wine or strong drink, nor eat any unclean thing: all that I commanded her let her observe.

15 ¶  And Manoah said unto the angel of the LORD, I pray thee, let us detain thee, until we shall have made ready a kid for thee.
16  And the angel of the LORD said unto Manoah, Though thou detain me, I will not eat of thy bread: and if thou wilt offer a burnt offering, thou must offer it unto the LORD. For Manoah knew not that he was an angel of the LORD.
17  And Manoah said unto the angel of the LORD, What is thy name, that when thy sayings come to pass we may do thee honour?
18  And the angel of the LORD said unto him, Why askest thou thus after my name, seeing it is secret?
Some translations add wonderful.
19  So Manoah took a kid with a meat offering, and offered it upon a rock unto the LORD: and the angel did wondrously; and Manoah and his wife looked on.

20  For it came to pass, when the flame went up toward heaven from off the altar, that the angel of the LORD ascended in the flame of the altar. And Manoah and his wife looked on it, and fell on their faces to the ground.

21  But the angel of the LORD did no more appear to Manoah and to his wife. Then Manoah knew that he was an angel of the LORD.
22  And Manoah said unto his wife, We shall surely die, because we have seen God.
23  But his wife said unto him, If the LORD were pleased to kill us, he would not have received a burnt offering and a meat offering at our hands, neither would he have shewed us all these things, nor would as at this time have told us such things as these.
24 ¶  And the woman bare a son, and called his name Samson: and the child grew, and the LORD blessed him.

As you know the man Samson Judged Israel for 40 years and defeated many Philistines by himself. The Spirit of the Lord would come upon him and he became supernaturally strong. In one fight he killed 1000 soldiers with a donkey’s jawbone. 

In his death he pushed down the Philistine temple to Dagon and killed more Philistines than in his whole life.

Sampson would not have been except for the faith of his mother, the wife of Manoah.

Naomi and Ruth – in the time of the Judges there was a famine. A man from Bethlehem-Judah,  Elimelech (God of the king) and his wife, Naomi (pleasant), and their 2 sons, Mahlon (sick) and Chilion (pining- destruction) went to sojourn in Moab. They were from the tribe of Judah.
Judges 1:3  And Elimelech Naomi’s husband died; and she was left, and her two sons.
4  And they took them wives of the women of Moab; the name of the one was Orpah, and the name of the other Ruth: and they dwelled there about ten years.

5  And Mahlon and Chilion died also both of them; and the woman was left of her two sons and her husband.

Seems to me that Elimelech had not made God his king for who would name their sons; sick and destruction? Naomi was probably the biggest influence on Ruth.
Elimelech was an Israelite, who by his race and inheritance had covenant with God. God by His Grace has always taken care of His own. However if they would not believe this or depend upon their God, that loving covenant would not help them. If Elimelech had stayed in his own land and trusted God, he would have been alright. Isaac stayed in Gerar (modern Gaza) where famine was severe and was blessed 100 fold, Genesis 26:1-12. But Elimelech did not stay and did not believe as did Naomi, and it cost him his life as well as his sons.  

6 ¶  Then she arose with her daughters in law, that she might return from the country of Moab: for she had heard in the country of Moab how that the LORD had visited his people in giving them bread.

7  Wherefore she went forth out of the place where she was, and her two daughters in law with her; and they went on the way to return unto the land of Judah.

8  And Naomi said unto her two daughters in law, Go, return each to her mother’s house: the LORD deal kindly with you, as ye have dealt with the dead, and with me.
9  The LORD grant you that ye may find rest, each of you in the house of her husband. Then she kissed them; and they lifted up their voice, and wept.
10  And they said unto her, Surely we will return with thee unto thy people.
11  And Naomi said, Turn again, my daughters: why will ye go with me? are there yet any more sons in my womb, that they may be your husbands?
12  Turn again, my daughters, go your way; for I am too old to have an husband. If I should say, I have hope, if I should have an husband also to night, and should also bear sons;
13  Would ye tarry for them till they were grown? would ye stay for them from having husbands? nay, my daughters; for it grieveth me much for your sakes that the hand of the LORD is gone out against me.

14  And they lifted up their voice, and wept again: and Orpah kissed her mother in law; but Ruth clave unto her.

15  And she said, Behold, thy sister in law is gone back unto her people, and unto her gods: return thou after thy sister in law.
16  And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God:

17  Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the LORD do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part thee and me.

The faith of Naomi and maybe her husband, Mahlon, had affected Ruth. Her statements are ones of strong conviction. She went with Naomi back to Israel.

Naomi had a kinsman who had wealth whose name was Boaz. Ruth told Naomi that she would go and glean (explain gleaning) after him in whose sight I shall find grace and Naomi said, go my daughter. It so happened that it was in Boaz’s field. He saw her later and liked her and told her to glean in his field only. He told his young men to leave her alone and drop extra barley where she was gleaning.

2: 10  Then she fell on her face, and bowed herself to the ground, and said unto him, Why have I found grace in thine eyes, that thou shouldest take knowledge of me, seeing I am a stranger?
11  And Boaz answered and said unto her, It hath fully been shewed me, all that thou hast done unto thy mother in law since the death of thine husband: and how thou hast left thy father and thy mother, and the land of thy nativity, and art come unto a people which thou knewest not heretofore.
12  The LORD recompense thy work, and a full reward be given thee of the LORD God of Israel, under whose wings thou art come to trust.

Boaz fed her that night and spoke to his men to let her glean among the sheaves as well. When Ruth went home to Naomi and told her that the grain she had was gleaned in Boaz’s field she was very happy.

20  And Naomi said unto her daughter in law, Blessed be he of the LORD, who hath not left off his kindness to the living and to the dead. And Naomi said unto her, The man is near of kin unto us, one of our next kinsmen.

Ruth continued to glean with the maidens during the barley and wheat harvest.

Following Naomi’s advice, Ruth went after dark to the threshing floor where Boaz was after the days harvest. He had eaten and drank and was merry. Ruth had cleaned up and dressed and lay down at his feet. When he woke up he said who is there? Ruth answered, It is Ruth your handmaid; spread your skirt over your handmaid for you are a near kinsman.
3:10  And he said, Blessed be thou of the LORD, my daughter: for thou hast shewed more kindness in the latter end than at the beginning, inasmuch as thou followedst not young men, whether poor or rich.

11  And now, my daughter, fear not; I will do to thee all that thou requirest: for all the city of my people doth know that thou art a virtuous woman.
12  And now it is true that I am thy near kinsman: howbeit there is a kinsman nearer than I.
13  Tarry this night, and it shall be in the morning, that if he will perform unto thee the part of a kinsman, well; let him do the kinsman’s part: but if he will not do the part of a kinsman to thee, then will I do the part of a kinsman to thee, as the LORD liveth: lie down until the morning.
14 ¶  And she lay at his feet until the morning: and she rose up before one could know another. And he said, Let it not be known that a woman came into the floor.

Boaz met with the other kinsman and told him about Naomi in front of witnesses. He said he would buy the land from Naomi and be her kinsman. Boaz said that he would have to take Ruth and raise children for her dead husband as well and he would not. So, Boaz took in Naomi as her kinsman and he took Ruth as his wife. They had a son, Obed, who had a son, Jesse, who’s son was David the great king of Israel.

So Ruth, a Moabite, by faith was allowed into the Holy family line of Jesus Christ and became the great-grandmother of David. The knowledge of God that she obtained by Naomi and her husband, is what enabled her to believe and have faith in God's blessings and promise.

Quotes from KJV. Art from Internet.

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