Deborah was a leader of ancient Israel. She was a judge and prophetess. The Israelites had been oppressed for twenty years by a general named Sisera, who served a Caananite king. But God used Deborah to deliver Israel. Judges 4:6-7 says, “She sent for Barak son of Abinoam from Kedesh in Naphtali and said to him, ‘The LORD, the God of Israel, commands you: “Go, take with you ten thousand men of Naphtali and Zebulun and lead the way to Mount Tabor. I will lure Sisera, the commander of Jabin’s army, with his chariots and his troops to the Kishon River and give him into your hands.”’” (NIV)
Deborah and Barak assemble their forces at Mount Tabor and the enemy army arrives. The story continues in Judges 4:14, “Then Deborah said to Barak, ‘Go! This is the day the LORD has given Sisera into your hands. Has not the LORD gone ahead of you?’” (NIV) So, Barak leads the charge and the enemy is defeated.
What encouragement do we find in this ancient battle? Well, as in Deborah’s time, God commands us to go on a mission. According to Matthew 28:19, that mission is making disciples for Jesus. But unlike Deborah’s time, God does not go ahead of us. No, Jesus goes with us. The very last words of the command are “And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20 NIV) If we’re by Jesus’ side, who can stop us?!
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Bumper music “Landing Place” performed by Mark July, used under license from Shutterstock.