SOAP Journal – 21 July 2017 (Judges 3:15-16)

But when the sons of Israel cried to the LORD, the LORD raised up a deliverer for them, Ehud the son of Gera, the Benjamite, a left-handed man. And the sons of Israel sent tribute by him to Eglon the king of Moab. Ehud made himself a sword which had two edges, a cubit in length, and he bound it on his right thigh under his cloak.

Judges 3:15-16

Ehud is one of the more interesting judges. He is a left-handed man who makes his own sword and straps it on so it is obvious that he is either left-handed or has no intention of drawing his sword. He finds Eglon, the king of Moab, while he (Eglon) is in his “cool roof chamber” and stabs Eglon there, then lets himself out and locks up on his way out. Neither he nor his method is what anyone expects. And, in that way, he and my Lord are alike.

Ehud’s sword had two edges. The Word of God is described as sharper than any two-edged sword (Hebrews 4:12). What is more, John sees Jesus carrying His (Jesus’) sword in an unexpected manner as well: coming from His mouth (Revelation 1:16, 19:15). While I know that the sword coming from Jesus’ mouth in John’s vision is most likely a metaphor, the idea that sticks with me is that neither Jesus nor Ehud does things in the way that the people expect. Ehud assassinates Eglon while the Moabite king is in the bathroom. Jesus came not as a political and military ruler, as the Jews of His time thought the Messiah would be, but as a servant Who was eventually executed in our place. Ehud keeps his victory quiet long enough to get things where God and he want them. While Jesus’ victory is not quiet — we Christians have much to say on the subject — there is a gap between Jesus winning the victory at Calvary and when he will gather His troops and come to claim that victory.

From this, I am reminded that Jesus is not going to do things the way I expect Him to. He might very well work in the way that I think He ought to, but He is in no way bound to that. He is my Deliverer, and, like Ehud, does things in a fashion that will not always seem normal to me.

Jesus, thank You for being my Savior. Thank You for saving me and for doing so in the way that is effective, not in the way that anyone was expecting. Please keep me mindful that You continue to work in ways that I will not always understand. Please keep my heart ready to cooperate with Your plans.

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