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::Devotional:: ‘The Left Handed Judge’

October 22, 2009

Do you ever pass over a piece of scripture and just wonder why it was placed there in the first place?  Something that just jumps out at you but you can’t seem to figure out it’s significance?  Like this morning I’m reading from the book of Judges about Ehud the second judge during this period of Israel’s history.  The scripture points out that he was left-handed.  That seemed oddly insignificant to me at first, but after a little more digging I found there was a lot more to it than I could see.

During that time period in history hands represented to things – weakness and power.  The left hand represented weakness and the right and represented power.  In fact, Ehud would have been considered handicap in those days.  Not only that but he was from the tribe of Benjamin and there were many Benjamites who were left-handed.  Ehud was a handicapped man from a handicapped tribe.

Because Israel had forgotten about God and their commitment to him, he had given them over to the rule of the Moabites and king Eglon.  When Israel cried out to God for deliverance from this rule he raised up Ehud from among the people to rescue them.  The story is gets really interesting from there.

Ehud went on a solo mission to take out the king of the Moabites.  He had fashioned a double-edged sword which he hid under his clothes on his right side, because he was left-handed, where nobody would expect to see it. He brought the king a gift and earned his trust.  When he had the opportunity to get the king alone to “tell him a secret” he pulled out his sword and stabbed the king in the stomach.  Eglon was such an obese king that the sword disappeared into his gut.  Ehud left the room and locked the door behind him and the nation of Israel was delivered from the Moabites and experienced eighty years of peace.  Just like that.

Great story right?  It probably would even make a good movie, but how is it relevant to us today right?  Well, just like Ehud, God will use us despite any of our weaknesses if we are willing to submit to him.

The power behind those God called to lead his people like Abraham, Moses, Joshua and Ehud came from him and him alone.  Nobody is capable on their own to participate in God’s will.

for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.  Philippians 2:13

Ehud was a vessel and God was the victor.  What victory, what glory, would God bring to himself through us if we submitted and allowed him to work?

-Stay Rooted Col. 2:7-

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