Who was Deborah in the Old Testament? What did she do and why is she listed among the great people of Israel? For this answer we must look to history and the Biblical record.
During this time in history this woman judged Israel. Recorded in Judges the 4th chapter and the only woman mentioned in the bible as a judge is Deborah, the wife of Lapidoth. She sat in judgment of the people, road out to battle and prophesied about other women who would bring deliverance to Israel. This is a time when embarrassed men are not listening because of moral weakness. WOW! Is this ever relevant for today? Yes it is because many men are comfortable in apathy and denial.
Deborah calls the Israelite commander Barak and communicates the command of God to him. How come Barak didn’t hear God for himself? He relied on Deborah because he lacked the moral clarity necessary to make a good decision. Maybe he kept busy avoiding issues by drinking, eating fast food and entertaining himself with adult entertainment (nice name for porn and strippers)? His ability to think clearly is a result of a compromised life. He obeys Deborah he lacks faith to go into battle himself. Deborah goes with him but informs him that because of his weak moral condition deliverance will come at the hand of a woman over the opposing commander.
Had Israel obeyed the Lord sooner the battle would not have come to friendly tents and won by women. The men would have handled it. This was against the cultural role for women at that time yet God overlooked gender and looked at Deborah’s willingness to follow instruction. God brought deliverance from their oppressors through the women. Her acts of obedience make her character impeccable. This is a message to the men of that day and to the men of our day. Obedience is best done as soon as possible. Quick obedience will avoid the necessity to take vile actions. Action demonstrating faith is relevant for any generation and just as these women stepped out in obedience so men of any size, shape and color can and must step out resisting a compromised life. It is also a message to the women, “keep up the good work.” Thank God for women they get a man’s attention. Moral men command everyone’s attention.
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