Day 75 – Thru the Bible
Today we continue Judges and Psalms.
Judges 16 – The final days and death of Samson display the kind of character that honors God by providing deliverance for others through self-sacrifice. Samson’s BLINDING is here coupled with his BINDING, a key word in these narratives. For Samson, both blindness and bondage are the result of an arrogance that presumes upon God’s grace (v. 20). That this is the spiritual condition of God’s people is reflected in the fact that the same treatment of “blinding” and “binding” befalls their representative Zedekiah, the final king of Judah at the time of Israel’s great bondage in exile (2 Kings 25:7).
Israel continues in bondage to the Philistines, the chief antagonists in the books of Samuel. Eventually, it is David who is raised up by a gracious God to free Israel from Philistine subjugation.
Jesus, the final Judge and Savior and the final Son of David, is neither blind nor unwillingly bound. He who sees all and enables sight (John 1:48; 9:15) selflessly submitted Himself to humiliation by his enemies.
As the definitive new covenant representative, Jesus saves His people from blindness (John 9:35–41) and identifies with their bondage (Mark 5:1–20; Matthew 27:2).
In all this, how is Jesus accomplishing the work of the Messianic Servant? Hint: Luke 4:16–21.
Judges 17 – Micah’s orthodox name, means “who is like Yahweh,” but He is anything but like Yahweh. He steals from his mother, who creates idols with the money he later returns. He then establishes a private house of worship with “household gods” and a priest from his own family.
The unrelenting testimony of the Scriptures is that idolatry is harmful, dehumanizing and bringing death rather than life (Ephesians 5:5).
What we worship reveals what we most deeply trust. Either we will become blind, deaf, dumb, and ineffective like the idols of our own making, or we will worship the one true God and be conformed to His image—ultimately revealed in Jesus (Romans 8:29; 2 Corinthians 4:4).
The abhorrent agreement between Micah and the young Levite reveals the failure of an unfaithful priest who places the desire for private gain above his calling from a holy God. In place of priestly ordination, the Levite chooses private ordination and compensation. His place and payment in Micah’s house supplants the Lord as his true inheritance (Deuteronomy 18:1–5; Numbers 18:8–24).
Meanwhile Micah incorrectly believes that having his own personal priest will lead to prosperity. He makes the mistake made by many today, assuming that piety is all about using spiritual leverage for personal gain.
How do we know Jesus is our better and faithful priest? Hint: Hebrews 2:17.
At great personal cost—and for no personal gain—Jesus fulfilled His own calling to be the ransom and mediator for all God’s flock (John 10:17–18; 1 Timothy 2:5; Hebrews 9:15).
What have we become under the priesthood of Jesus? Hint: 1 Peter 2:9
Do we receive our inheritance from God based on what we’ve done or what Jesus has given? Hint: Hebrews 9:11–15.
Judges 18 – Once we abandon our personal calling from the Lord in favor of private gain, the pursuit of personal ambition thrives. No longer satisfied to serve one family, the Levite quickly participates in the Danites’ thievery, agreeing to be priest for an entire tribe—an outcome in which he rejoices.
Meanwhile the Danites take what is not theirs; no longer satisfied with an inheritance previously granted by the Lord, they seize land that was never given to them.
Micah raises the rhetorical question that drives the application of the passage: what remains when my personal idols are taken away from me?
Rather than seeking an idolatrous inheritance of our own creation that cannot sustain or satisfy us, we are invited to seek the inheritance Jesus gained for us.
How do we see that Jesus is the only inheritance that is truly secure and the only one that really satisfies? Hint: Colossians 1:11–14; 1 Peter 1:3–5.
Psalm 75 – In this Psalm, four parties testify that God is trustworthy. First, God’s people testify that His “name,” which encapsulates all of His attributes, is always near.
We know that God’s name was ultimately personified in Jesus (Matthew 1:23).
Second, God Himself is summoned for testimony. First, He assures that He sustains the basic structures of the cosmos and society. The second assurance God gives is a warning to the wicked. He judges them by allowing them to condemn themselves. In the meantime, His kindness allows time to repent (Romans 2:3–4).
Third, a preacher is summoned who challenges the believer to look away from those who seem to be powerful now. Majorities, victories, and consensuses do not determine what is right. Right is right regardless of who subscribes or does not subscribe to it.
Finally, an individual declares his trust in the Lord. He expresses confidence in the same Redeemer who, according to Job’s testimony, “lives, and at the last . . . will stand upon the earth” (Job 19:25).
How does this Psalm remind you that ultimately, this One is Jesus, the righteous One who conquered death and now rules at God’s right hand? Hint: Hebrews 1:3; 8:1.
What other thoughts or questions does today’s reading bring up?
Some of these notes are from the ESV Gospel Transformation Bible study notes. We highly recommend this study Bible.
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