Whenever the Lord raised up a judge for them, he was with the judge and saved them out of the hands of their enemies as long as the judge lived; for the Lord relented because of their groaning under those who oppressed and afflicted them. But when the judge died, the people returned to ways even more corrupt than those of their ancestors, following other gods and serving and worshiping them. They refused to give up their evil practices and stubborn ways. Judges 2:18-19 NIV
Whether we like to admit it or not, we are influenced by those who are in power over us. Whether that person is a teacher, parent, pastor, or employer, it's easy to allow your boss's attitudes and philosophies to affect your own.
|Nobody I know - photo credit|
Of course, this isn't always a good thing. It depends on who you're being influenced by. If your leader is Godly, it can help. If he isn't, well, that's another story.
But regardless, who's the boss should not determine your behavior (unless we're talking about the Ultimate Boss). Yet, it seems that was the case with the Israelites, especially during the time of the judges.
The entire book (all twenty-one chapters, 618 verses) is quite succinctly summarized in nine verses in the book's second chapter (Judges 2:11-19). And my summary of that summary?
- The Israelites stopped following the Lord, so they were captured by enemies.
- God rose up judges to save them from their enemies, and they were saved.
- While the judge ruled and saved, they listened to the Lord
- When the judge died, they returned to their wickedness
- Later, rinse, repeat ;)
You don't have to wait for the judge to die to prove your own convictions.
We're discussing this here, and at Living by Grace on Facebook. Won't you join us?