Today’s Reading: Judges 15:1-16:31
A cycle of revenge and violence greets us as we read Judges 15. After Samson’s slaughter of Philistines, they paid a visit to the tribe of Judah. Notice the problem here: Judah has accepted the fact that the Philistines rule over them. They don’t want any trouble. In fact, they accuse Samson of being a troublemaker. If these people had recognized what God was doing in their midst everything would have been different.
That is the danger of the status quo. Things are fine the way they are – don’t rock the boat. It’s not perfect but when is it ever perfect? Judah had compromised with the enemy so long that they didn’t even recognize it anymore. If you want to be at peace with our enemy then Christianity is not for you. Once you commit yourself to living for Jesus and serving him with all your heart, there will be opposition.
The result of ignoring the enemy’s work is that believers will ultimately join the enemy’s work. The men of Judah said, “We’ve come to tie you up and hand you over to the Philistines” (v. 12). This just proves that there is no such thing as a harmonious co-existence between the church and the world, for where there is compromise such as this, it is because the world has taken over.
Martin Neimoller, a Christians who lived during WW2 wrote: “When the Nazis came for the communists, I remained silent; I was not a communist. When they locked up the social democrats, I remained silent; I was not a social democrat. When they came for the trade unionists, I did not speak out; I was not a trade unionist. When they came for the Jews, I did not speak out; I was not a Jew. When they came for me, there was no one left to speak out.”
If we don’t see anything in our world to confront then we have something to be concerned about. Have we become used to our world system? Are we blinded to the collision of the Church and the World so that we cannot tell the difference? May God open our eyes to the things which trouble Him. “Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labour in the Lord is not in vain” (1 Cor 15:58).