Judges 2QUESTION: Danger of Compromise - 1ANSWER:Judges 2 - Part 1
by Pastor Nathan Shepherd (Dive Chapel, Candle Key, Florida)
“Hey guys, before we get started let’s give a big clap for the band. Those beautiful young ladies are ‘Pebbles’ and we’re always super-blessed when they grace us with their music and their talents.” The 200-plus crowd gave a raucous standing ovation.
“Also, I want to give you all a quick update on Reef Restoration Ministries’ ‘Queen Eileen’ reef project which is an old sunken submarine we found in ‘Snapper Hole’ off Maya’s and my backyard a few months ago. I know a lot of you have been praying for us. Well, we got a big hit this week. A foundation in New Hampshire just gave us a grant of $50,000 to produce a twenty-two minute video about this reef. It will be played in public schools through the national “Betterment in Science” program. So that’s really, really cool.” Another big round of applause filled the interior of the bay front warehouse.
When the clapping subsided, Nathan Shepherd opened up his Bible and the congregation of the Dive Chapel followed suit. It sounded like wind in angels’ wings – somebody had said that a few weeks ago in Pastor Nathan’s office.
“Judges, chapter two, starts with ‘The Angel of the LORD’. That’s L-O-R-D, all capital letters, translated from YHWH, which we’ve decided to pronounce Yahweh in the western world. It says here that the Angel of the LORD came up from Gilgal to Bochim. Remember that Gilgal is the place where the people of Israel re-consecrated themselves to God when they first crossed into the Promised Land.
“Now, the Angel of the LORD, all caps, I believe, is Jesus. This is a pre-incarnation appearance of Christ! Right on! Let me real quickly touch on that concept. First, right here in Judges 2:1, this Angel of the LORD says, ‘I led you up from Egypt and brought you to the land of which I swore to your fathers.’ If this Angel is saying that He led the children of Israel out of Egypt, who else could it be but God, Jesus?
“In the Old Testament there are at least 43 references to these pre-incarnation appearances of Jesus. In the book of Judges alone we’ll see 14 of them. We know from John 1 that Jesus was there at the beginning of the earth and that He was the Creator of all things, the Intelligent Designer.
“Now, two cool things here are that, first, Jesus is the one who leads us into the Promised Land of our salvation. And, second, when we go astray, He comes up from our Gilgal to wherever we are now. Did you get that? He comes after us! Look right here what He says, ‘I will never break My covenant with you.’ But, you can just see the leaders of Israel going, ‘oops, but, uhh, we’ve not lived up to our side of that covenant.’Judges 2 – Read Part 2!