EP 140? Why Don’t We Hear Sermons About Judge Deborah?

Diana WinklerChristianity

Deborah by Charles Landelle, 1901

Perhaps you came from a church background that recognized the valuable contributions of the women of the Bible, but for most Christians, they don’t ever get to hear about prominent women in the Bible, with the exception of Mary. Deborah, one of the Judges of Israel, is an godly example of a prophetess, military leader, judge, and minstrel that few hear about. We are going to explore the wonderful attributes of Deborah, Barak, and another brave woman, Jael, who turns the tide of the war with King Jabin. Join me for this encouraging and uplifting study!

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Judge Deborah Full Transcript:

[00:00:00] Welcome to the Wounds of the Faithful Podcast. Brought to you by DSW Ministries. Your host is singer songwriter, speaker and domestic violence advocate, Diana Winkler. She is passionate about helping survivors in the church heal from domestic violence and abuse and trauma. This podcast is not a substitute for professional counseling or qualified medical help.

[00:00:26] Now here is Diana.

[00:00:33] welcome back to the podcast. So glad that you’re here. I know that you die hards that listen every week you might have noticed that I missed a week. Well, actually, I, I had it recorded. I just didn’t edit it in time to get released on Wednesday. And the reason why is because it was my first week back at [00:01:00] work full time.

[00:01:02] And when I got home and sat on the couch and put my feet up, I was exhausted and I was actually dozing off on the couch. And so it was like that every day last week. And. So forgive me, I did not have the energy to edit the podcast in time. That’s how it goes.

[00:01:23] Still recovering from my foot surgery. Today I have been doing some yard work with my regular sneakers on. I’m not wearing the orthopedic sandal that I was wearing for three weeks. I felt pretty good today, energy wise, and my foot was actually doing pretty well.

[00:01:46] It is 110 here, this week. We have been lucky up until this week with under a hundred degree temperatures. Now it is July 1st today as I’m recording, [00:02:00] and it is normally 115, 118. By the time July 1st gets here.

[00:02:06] Normally you’ll get into a hundred degrees here, by I enjoyed being able to go out in the garden and do my chores without overheating. But today was a challenge. I got all the watering done. Anyhow my foot survived and, I have a little bit of discomfort, because I’m doing physical therapy now.

[00:02:28] It’s kind of sore. It’s about a two or three, not really bad.

[00:02:32] very bearable. I got six weeks more to go and then, middle of September I’m shooting for doing the left foot.

[00:02:42] So I sure appreciate all of the messages and the well wishes and the prayers for my recovery. It is slow for me. But I have to be patient and anyway. What was really fun this week was my [00:03:00] church.

[00:03:00] The lady that’s the, pastor of Children’s Ministries Becky.

[00:03:06] I got in the mail these four cards from her class that she teaches. I believe it’s, early elementary. And they all wrote these beautiful messages to me about God’s comfort and God’s love. And one of them said, you are so brave going to the hospital, getting surgery. And they wrote really beautiful handwriting and it was just precious.

[00:03:32] And I emailed Becky a note back to please read to the children and thank them for me. I was so blessed and so appreciative of that, that someone would take the time, especially little kids, to, write an encouraging note to someone.

[00:03:47] So yeah, that totally made my week.

[00:03:51] Anyway. What are we doing today? I think you’re really gonna enjoy this. We are doing Deborah, [00:04:00] the judge. I know we were in Judges 19, which was really hard. If you didn’t listen to last week’s episode. It was pretty brutal, but we got through it and, we learned something tangible.

[00:04:16] There’s always something in God’s word that we can get a lesson from. But I think you’re gonna, like Deborah, how many people have never heard a message about Deborah, the judge. I have never heard a message from the pulpit on this passage.

[00:04:37] And I think the reason why is that churches don’t want the women to know that a woman. Actually was a military leader and was a judge over Israel, which included men. There’s a lot of churches that believe that women shouldn’t teach at all, shouldn’t have leadership over a man. And I’m not talking about being a pastor, talking about any kinda teaching [00:05:00] whatsoever from scripture.

[00:05:02] And there are a lot of examples in the Old Testament and in the New Testament, and we’re gonna mention some of them today. This is gonna be exciting. So encouraging for you today, I was encouraged. It was fun to dig into this part of scripture, not only because she was a woman of faith and character.

[00:05:24] And a great leader, but she was an encourager, as you’re gonna see here. So Deborah and Barack are in judges chapter four, but I wanted to set the scene here as to what’s going on in judges, why did they have judges? Just a quick overview.

[00:05:46] Moses originally had some problems with the people and there were so many people coming to him for problems to, resolve them and it was too many. And so [00:06:00] he assigned people to be judges over Israel, to have somebody to go to for their problems, whether it’s against their neighbor or a marriage problem or financial, whatever.

[00:06:17] And some of the judges were good and some of them not so good. But the first chapter of judges sets the scene as

[00:06:27] the Lord gave the land of Canaan to the Israelites, and they were driving out the wicked inhabitants of the land that God promised them. But, A lot of the tribes of Israel did not drive out the neighboring nations who were not believers in Jehovah God. And they were wicked. That’s the start of the problem here in Judges.

[00:06:52] It starts out with the death of Joshua.

[00:06:55] And I wanted to point out something. Really interesting [00:07:00] that you may or may not have seen before, but they were at war. Against the and Caleb said he who attacks Carieth- Sephor and captures that I will give him Askha, my daughter for a wife.

[00:07:17] Othniel, the son of Kenna, Caleb’s younger brother, captured it and he gave him Aksha, his daughter for a wife. When she came to him, she urged him to ask her father for a field and she dismounted from her donkey. And Caleb said to her, what do you want? She said to him, give me a blessing since you have set me in the land of Negeb.

[00:07:44] Give me also springs of water. And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the lower springs. And so you think of this story, and I’m looking at the commentary in my Bible cuz it kind of gives a little bit more [00:08:00] insight. This treatment of Aksha might appear offensive to modern readers. However, in this world of nomadic and clan organization, Caleb was honoring his daughter.

[00:08:13] Marriage to a warrior was common, and Aksha would have welcomed a worthy husband and a dowry that included water rights for her family. So not only did she get a field, but she got the upper springs and the lower springs. That is a a huge blessing, and that means that they are pretty well off with those gifts.

[00:08:40] So, anyway,

[00:08:41] Really briefly here, I’m gonna start talking about

[00:08:44] the tribes of Israel who did not drive out the inhabitants. Benjamin was one of them. He could not drive out the inhabitants of the plane because they had chariots of iron. The people of Benjamin did not drive out the Jebusites who lived in Jerusalem. So the Jebusites have [00:09:00] lived with the people of Benjamin in Jerusalem to this day.

[00:09:03] Then the house of Joseph, also went up against Bethel and the Lord was with them. Skipping ahead. Canaanites persisted in dwelling in that land. When Israel grew strong, they put the Canaanites to forced labor, but did not drive them out completely. So the law of Moses does not allow Israelites to enslave another Israelites.

[00:09:27] They can do what’s called indentured servitude, where you work off a debt that you owe, but you are not allowed to have a slave of your people, but you could take a slave from the people that you go at war with. You can capture people of foreign nations. Right or wrong. That’s what did happen.

[00:09:52] Ephraim . Zebulon. Asher did not drive out the inhabitants. Seeing a pattern here, aren’t we? Naphtali. The tribe of Dan.

[00:09:59] [00:10:00] So we’re in judges t wo. The Lord, it says the angel of the Lord that is the pre-incarnate Christ went up from gilgal to Bochin and said, I brought you up from Egypt and brought you into the land that I swore to give to your fathers. I said, I will never break my covenant with you, and you shall make no covenant with the inhabitants of this land.

[00:10:24] You shall break down their altars, that you have not obeyed my voice. What is this that you have done? So now I say, I will not drive them out before you, but they shall become a thorn in your side and their God shall be a snare to you. As soon as the angel of the Lord spoke these words to all the people of Israel, the people lifted up their voices and wept, and they called that place Bochem, and they sacrificed there to the Lord.

[00:10:52] So, The Lord is pretty much saying, well, if you’re not gonna drive out the inhabitants of this [00:11:00] land, who sacrificed to, false gods, and who sacrificed their infant children to the god of Mol there are natural consequences for that. Okay? You want, you wanna be around them. You want them to live with you.

[00:11:16] You wanna have them be your slaves, forced labor. They’re gonna be a thorn in your side, and you’re gonna adopt their gods. You’re gonna adopt their ways and there are gonna be consequences for that. And some of the people did mourn that. So it also talks about the death of Joshua.

[00:11:37] And he died at 110 years old, and there rose another generation after them who did not know the Lord or the work that he has done for Israel.

[00:11:47] I mean, when they were with Joshua, it says the people served the Lord all the days of Joshua and all the days of the elders who outlived Joshua, who had seen the great work that the Lord [00:12:00] has done for Israel. But this is what happens when you don’t teach your children the Lord. If they don’t see your faith and your

[00:12:10] godliness, your example, then this new generation that comes up is not gonna know God. It’s not gonna be by osmosis. And it’s not easy. I’m not saying that at all. It’s very difficult to raise children for the Lord. I totally understand that. But this is what would happen if the next generation does not know about the Lord.

[00:12:34] So this is in chapter two, verse 11. And the people of Israel did what was evil in the sight of the Lord and served the Baals. So those are false gods. Verse 12, in they abandoned the Lord, they provoked the Lord to anger. So the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel and he gave them over to plunderers

[00:12:55] who plundered them and he sold them into the land of their surrounding enemies [00:13:00] so they could no longer withstand their enemies.

[00:13:02] Whenever they marched out, the hand of the Lord was against them for harm, as the Lord had warned and as the Lord had sworn to them, they were in terrible distress.

[00:13:13] So that sounds unkind, that the Lord would allow them to be taken by their enemies. Well, I warned you. You’re going to be around these people then they will also take advantage of you.

[00:13:27] They also they will come in and take over and then you’re in a real pickle.

[00:13:33] And sometimes when we are in sin and we are doing what is not right in God’s eyes on purpose. God lets us suffer the consequences of our own actions. He lets us go through those things to teach us a lesson.

[00:13:48] Because if you don’t suffer those natural consequences, then you’re not gonna change. You’re not gonna repent. You’re just gonna keep going. So that’s actually loving that. God would [00:14:00] try to teach them that this is the reason why I don’t want you marrying into these clans. I don’t want you to do business with these clans.

[00:14:09] I don’t want you to adopt their customs because you’re gonna become them. You’re gonna be just like them. Chapter two, verse 16.

[00:14:18] Then the Lord raised up judges who saved them out of the land of those who plundered them. Yet they did not listen to their judges for they whored after other gods and bowed down to them.

[00:14:30] They soon turned aside from the way in which their fathers had walked, who had obeyed the commandments of the Lord and they did not do so. Whenever the Lord raised up judges for them, the Lord was with the judge and he saved them from the hand of their enemies. All the days of the judge for the Lord was moved to pity by their groaning because of those who afflicted and oppressed them.

[00:14:56] But whenever the judge died, they turned back and [00:15:00] were more corrupt than their fathers going after other gods serving them and bowing down to them. They did not drop any of their practices or their stubborn ways. So the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel, and he said, because this people have transgressed my covenant, that I commanded their fathers and have not obeyed my voice,

[00:15:24] I will no longer drive them out before them. Any of the nations that Joshua left when he died, in order to test Israel by them, whether they will take care to walk in the way of the Lord as their fathers did or not. So the Lord left those nations not driving them out quickly, and he did not give them into the hand of Joshua.

[00:15:49] So it’s a test. So the people of Israel lived among the Canaanites, and their daughters, they took to themselves for wives and their own daughters. They gave to their [00:16:00] sons and they served their gods. So yeah, there’s a pattern here.

[00:16:05] So we are now at Deborah and Barak in chapter four.

[00:16:11] And this is pretty cool stuff.

[00:16:14] So, who is Deborah? Deborah was from the tribe of Ephraim. Deborah was a leader, a judge and a prophetess in Israel. One to whom God would reveal his secrets. That’s in Amos three seven. Surely the Lord God does nothing unless he reveals his secret.

[00:16:37] To his servants, the prophets.

[00:16:39] And so she was a spiritual leader, folks.

[00:16:44] She was a godly woman. So let’s start reading and then we’ll make some comments here.

[00:16:52] Verse one in chapter four, and the people of Israel again, did what was evil in the sight of the Lord [00:17:00] after Ehud died and the Lord sold them into the hand of Jabin, king of Canaan, who reigned in Hazor the commander of his army was Sisera, who lived in Haria, hago Yam. Well, that’s a mouthful. Then the people of Israel cried out to the Lord for help.

[00:17:21] He had 900 chariots of iron and he oppressed the people of Israel cruelly for 20 years.

[00:17:29] So again, people are doing what’s evil in the sight of the Lord. This is a pattern. So they are in bondage to jabin and Hazor. I’ve been to Hazor. That was one of the first places on the tour of Israel that we saw. There is quite a bit of archeological remnants there. It was right [00:18:00] across from where our hotel was on the north side of the Sea of Galilee.

[00:18:04] It was pretty interesting and our guide made sure that we knew that is pronounced hat Soar. Not, Hayzor. Our guide was a native Israeli too. So,

[00:18:18] so the 900 Chariots of Iron, this is an important detail because that was some serious war equipment in that day. If you had chariots of iron, that’s kind of maybe the equivalent of having tanks during World War II or airplanes, you could do a whole lot more and have more power with those 900 chariots of iron.

[00:18:45] So the people of Israel they were miserable for 20 years.

[00:18:50] So let’s read a little bit more, and then we’ll talk a little bit more about Deborah as a person.

[00:18:56] Now, Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of [00:19:00] Lapada, was judging Israel at that time. She used to sit under the palm of Deborah between Rama. And Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim and the people of Israel came up to her for judgment.

[00:19:15] Okay? So that’s what they would do, is they would sit under a tree and people that had their problems, disagreements would come up to the judge and she would judge, give decisions for the people that wanted her help. So that includes men and women coming to her for judgment.

[00:19:41] So before we get into verse six with the military stuff, let’s talk a little bit more about who Deborah is here. I mean, Deborah receives instruction from God, and you will see that she moves to act on it. [00:20:00] She does not sit around, making a list of the pros and cons of what God told her to do and listing all the things that are gonna go wrong or doubting that she can do this.

[00:20:15] If God tells her to do something, then hey, God said it, I’m gonna do it. That was enough for her. Her faith in him gave her the power to act.

[00:20:27] The practice was to seek guidance from God through prayer and meditation before making a ruling. So here’s an important detail. Many of the judges were also considered prophets, who spoke a word from the Lord. So yes, women can be prophets or prophetess

[00:20:47] contrary to popular belief. And when was Deborah alive? She lived somewhere about 1150 BC about a century or so [00:21:00] after the Hebrews entered Canaan.

[00:21:02] And the only thing known about Deborah’s private life was the name of her husband, Lapidoth. There’s no clue where Deborah’s parents were, what kind of work that Lapidoth did or whether she had any children. I’m gonna assume that she didn’t have any children because they usually mention that.

[00:21:28] Children were very important.

[00:21:30] So she was a woman inspired to declare the divine will of God and on this occasion to deliver her country from oppression. We’re gonna read that here shortly.

[00:21:45] So what is a prophetess anyway? It’s somebody that’s extraordinarily inspired by God and endowed with the power of working miracles and foretelling things to [00:22:00] come.

[00:22:00] And sometimes better understanding about the word and the mind of God.

[00:22:06] Usually the sons of the prophets, they went to school and they are also called prophets.

[00:22:13] We don’t really read anything about Deborah doing any miracles so some commentaries have said that she was only a woman of holiness and knowledge of the scriptures by which she was qualified for judging the people.

[00:22:32] But in judges four, seven and judges four nine. As we know she had the gift of prophecy for telling at least in some instances, future events.

[00:22:45] She also corrected abuses, grievances. So now we’re gonna start reading about her military expertise,

[00:22:56] but you’re gonna see that she had an extensive [00:23:00] influence and she was very well respected.

[00:23:03] And many have compared her to Joan of Arc. Now, if you don’t know anything about Joan of Arc, she is the patron saint of France, and you know how much I love France. And we went to the city of Rouen, which is in Normandy region of France, that is the hometown of Joan of Arc. And I was very inspired by her story that God spoke to her and led France to victory back in the day.

[00:23:39] And they burned her at the stake because they couldn’t believe that God spoke to a woman a virgin, an unmarried woman, but she was a military leader and she led the people to victory because of what God spoke to her. [00:24:00] So, I really love her story is very similar. So if you have a chance to ever go to France, definitely go to and see the place where she was.

[00:24:10] They have a whole museum and a church and a square named after her where all the events took place. It’s well worth your time

[00:24:19] anyway.

[00:24:20] I wanted to mention some other prophetess in the Bible. One is Miriam in Exodus 1520 which says, then Miriam, the prophetess, the sister of Erin took a tambourine in her hand and all the women went out after her with tambourines and dancing. Oh, look, a woman worship leader and dancing of all things.

[00:24:45] I bet you’ve never heard of Hulda. There’s a name for the next kid that you have, Hulda that’s in Second Kings 22:14

[00:24:55] And as Isaiah went to Hulda the [00:25:00] prophetess, the wife of Shalom, the son of Tikva, now she lived in Jerusalem in the second quarter and they talked with her, gee, these men went to this prophetess to talk with her. What a concept. And Nehemiah, we have Noadiah.

[00:25:21] Have you ever heard of Noadiah? Probably not. So in Nehemiah six 14, we can read, remember Tobia, Sambalot. Oh my God. According to these things that they did, and also the prophetess Noadiah and the rest of the prophets who wanted to make me afraid. Sambalot, Tobiah and Geshum they were the enemies of Nehemiah trying to keep him from building the wall.

[00:25:50] That’s who they are. And you may have heard of this next one, Anna, in Luke 2:36, and there was a prophetess [00:26:00] Anna, the daughter of Benuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was in advanced in years having lived with her husband seven years from when she was a virgin, and then as a widow until she was 84.

[00:26:14] She did not depart from the temple worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day and coming up at that very hour, she began to give thanks to God and to speak of him to all who were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem. So that is, if you’re wondering where does that, in context that is when Joseph and Mary take Jesus to the temple and to get circumcised,

[00:26:45] and she was there at the temple, so she was out there. So, evangelizing, telling everyone about God and his salvation.

[00:26:56] So now that we know what a prophetess is and that, [00:27:00] and there’s more than I haven’t mentioned Philip, the evangelist in the book of Acts had daughters who were prophesying that was not just the Old Testament. There definitely some women that we re prophets.

[00:27:18] And so if you’re wondering how many judges are there, there’s 11 judges. We might get to those if we have time to mention them. One of them you may know already as Samson. He was not the greatest judge.

[00:27:33] But the Bible doesn’t record any kind of dissent or rebellion against Deborah . And leadership doesn’t reside in gender, but in character and gifting. I’ve been a part of 17 churches in my life so far, and it was always, it didn’t matter if the man didn’t have any gifts at all.

[00:27:56] He was supposed to be the one leading in the [00:28:00] church or being the song leader. I could tell you I was the only one that could hold a pitch or had any musical gifts and they wouldn’t let me lead any of the song service because I was a female. So they had, the pastor up there who had no singing ability whatsoever and had no musicianship at all.

[00:28:26] And the congregation has to be tortured by that instead of, oh, well gimme a microphone and I’ll play the piano and lead the people in some songs. So it’s not about gender, it’s about the gifts that the Lord has given us and he wants us to use those to serve him. The Israelites recognized Deborah’s abilities and prospered under her.

[00:28:54] She’s just outstanding. And speaking of music. She is a [00:29:00] songwriter and a minstrel. We’re gonna read about that here towards the end. She writes a song for us. So let’s talk about the military stuff here. Let’s go on to,

[00:29:13] so we’re in verse six. She sent and summoned Barack, the son of Abinoam from Kadesh Naftali, and said to him, Has not the Lord, the God of Israel commanded you. Go gather your men at Mount Tabor, taking 10,000 from the people of Naftali and the people of Zebulon. And I will draw out Sisera, the general of Jabins army to meet you by the river Kishon within with his chariots and his troops.

[00:29:47] And I will give him into your hand. Verse eight. Barach said to her, if you will go with me, I will go, but if you will not go with me, I will not go. [00:30:00] And she said, I will surely go with you. Nevertheless, the road on which you’re going will not lead to your glory. For the Lord will sell Sisera into the hand of a woman.

[00:30:14] Then Deborah arose and went with Barak to Kadish, and Barak called out Zebulon and Naftali to Kadish, and 10,000 men went up at his heels and Deborah went up with him. So

[00:30:30] let’s pause here.

[00:30:32] What does all of this mean?

[00:30:34] I studied a lot of commentaries in preparation for this lesson because, one, because I’ve never heard any messages from this passage of scripture. In Bible college, I remember our history teacher, he was Old Testament history. He did a cursory, because we were in judges and he was teaching judges. He had to mention her.

[00:30:58] I don’t remember anything [00:31:00] that he said about Deborah. He just kind of glossed over it. He didn’t really expound into any of that. When I went on the commentary, just about every commentary would say that Barack had confidence in God to trust him for victory, and he’s recognized for his faith in Hebrews 11:32.

[00:31:23] His faith would be, Great to go forth against insurmountable odds. If Deborah agreed to join him without hesitation, Deborah courageously agrees to go. And I only had one commentary that I read and I won’t say whose it is, that said that the reason why she, that she was military leader and told Barack what to do is because Barack didn’t have any faith in the Lord for himself, that he put his trust in Deborah and was too chicken to go into war without her.[00:32:00] [00:32:00] I don’t agree with that. I don’t agree with that at all. He wouldn’t be in Hebrews 11 if he was a coward.

[00:32:09] I think that in like for example, the Jewish Virtual Library, which is an excellent resource by the way, suggests that Barack’s response to Deborah shows high esteem in which the ancient prophetess was held. So yeah, there’s some that have said that he’s uncomfortable at being ordered into battle by a woman.

[00:32:31] Even if she was the ruling judge at the time.

[00:32:34] And after Deborah said, well, there’s no glory for you because the glory’s gonna be to a woman. A woman is the one who’s gonna win the war, so to speak. But I really believe that Barack is a godly man. He loves the Lord and he does have faith. But I think that he wanted to fight alongside with Deborah because [00:33:00] he knew that the Lord was with her in a very special way, not just while she’s a military leader and she’s, telling me what to do.

[00:33:08] It’s, God has told her what’s going to happen as a prophetess. And we’re gonna see soon that

[00:33:17] she’s not lording it over him. She is an encouraging person. She wants the best for the people. That are under her. Anyway, so let’s read some more here. Verse 11. Now, Heber, the Kennitte had separated from the, Kens the descendants of Hoab, the father-in-law of Moses, and had pitched his tent as far away as Oak in Zayanam, which is near Kadesh.

[00:33:44] When Sisera was told that Barack, the son of Abinoam had gone up to Mount Tabor, Sisera called out all of his chariots, 900 chariots of iron, and all the men who were with him from her Rosh [00:34:00] Hadum to the River Kishon. And Deborah said to Barack, Up! this is the day in which the Lord has given Sisera into your hand.

[00:34:12] Does not the Lord go out before you?

[00:34:15] So Barack went down for Mount Tabor with 10,000 men following him, and the Lord routed Sisera in all of his chariots and all of his army before Barack by the edge of the sword. And Sisera, got down from his chariot and fled away on foot. And Barak pursued the chariots in the army to Roche Ed goin and all the army of Sisera fell by the edge of the sword.

[00:34:45] Not a man was left. Now before we get to the graphic part of the story, those of you who know the story, know what’s coming. Let’s comment about this. So

[00:34:59] we [00:35:00] mentioned about the 900 chariots and we’re gonna read later in the song of Deborah that

[00:35:07] even though they had these 900 chariots of iron the Lord sends a flood of some sort. Let’s see, where are my notes?

[00:35:18] So, The tradition is that this battle took place during the rainy season from October to December. Okay? Although there’s not really a date reference in scripture. The tradition is that the rains produced mud that bogged down all these chariots. Whether it’s true or not they were defeated.

[00:35:41] It kinda makes sense

[00:35:43] that the Lord would send some rain or some sort of a flood.

[00:35:48] I mean, your sophisticated, impressive military technology ruined with a little bit of mud, right?

[00:35:56] But as I said, Deborah is [00:36:00] encouraging Barack here. Up! For this is the day which Lord has given Sisera into your hand. Does not the Lord go out before you? He is encouraging him. He’s lifting him up. He’s telling him the Lord is with you. Go out there and slay some dragons. Right? So that speaks to the character Deborah.

[00:36:22] A good leader is an encouraging leader, not just somebody that bosses you around and tells you what to do. It’s. A good leader inspires you to go out there and do your best and do things that you wouldn’t have the courage to do. It’s terrifying to go into battle. Any kind of battle we wanna kind of poo here.

[00:36:46] Oh, poor Barack wants Deborah to hold his hand. Well, I don’t think that’s true. I think that even in the best of circumstances it’s terrifying to go to war [00:37:00] and to have somebody with you who is that godly and who has the power of God behind her is a huge comfort and just gives you that extra oomph there to get out there and fight.

[00:37:14] Remember when I pointed out the Kenittes are the descendants of the father-in-law of Moses. So remember that part. verse 17, here we go. But Sisera fled away on foot to the tent of Jael the wife of Heber, for there was peace between Jabin, the queen of Hazor and the house of Heber.

[00:37:38] The Kennitte.

[00:37:39] And Jael came out to meet Sisera and said to him, turn aside my Lord, turn aside to me. Do not be afraid. So he turned aside to her in the tent and she covered him with a rug

[00:37:55] and he said to her, please give me a little water to [00:38:00] drink for I am thirsty. So she opened a skin of milk and gave him a drink and covered him. So let me stop there. Okay. So normally

[00:38:13] the women had their own tents. The wives had their own tents separate from the husbands. Apparently that’s what I have been reading. In the commentaries that they have two separate tents and the women were in charge of putting up and taking down the tents, and this is an enemy.

[00:38:31] Yeah. Adolf Hitler asking to come into the tent and you assure him, oh sure. Come on in to the tent. Now. He only came up there because

[00:38:41] Sisera had some sort of agreement or peace treaty of some sort with the Bedouin tribe. The heritage is traced back to Moses’ father-in-law. So that’s the only reason why he went [00:39:00] into this tent, because he thought, oh, well, we’re friends with this tribe.

[00:39:06] So this is a safe place to go.

[00:39:09] And Jael is the wife of the clan leader. So here’s the funny part. He asks for water, but she instead gives him milk and Kurds, which is a heavy meal. How many of you, if you’re asking for water and you’re really thirsty, how many of you want lukewarm milk? Not me. She gave him milk.

[00:39:34] And milk traditionally causes you to be sleepy anyway, so it caused him to sleep. And

[00:39:43] He has a reason to believe he could trust Jael. And this is what his thinking was. Any pursuer would hardly think to look in a woman’s tent for any man let alone a weary fugitive for this would be a breach of etiquette. And that comes from a [00:40:00] commentary of K Yeah.

[00:40:02] It’s inappropriate to go into the clan leader’s wife’s tent, especially when nobody’s around. So, okay, we wanna get to the juicy stuff here. Okay, so let’s we’re gonna go to verse 20. She opened up a skin of milk, gave him a drink, and covered him. And he said to her, stand at the opening of the tent. And if any man comes and asks you, is anyone here, say no.

[00:40:33] but Jael the wife of Heber, took a tent peg and took a hammer in her hand. Then she went softly to him. And drove the peg into his temple until it went down into the ground while he was lying fast asleep from weariness. And so he died obviously.

[00:40:58] So let’s talk [00:41:00] about that fun little passage.

[00:41:01] So, some of the commentaries they’re saying that hey she said to come in. So this is the promise of security and therefore she can’t be excused from treachery even though her substance of her act was lawful and worthy. This is commentary by And this is gory,

[00:41:25] yes. This was an eyewitness account. And how did she know how to handle a tent peg like that? Well, I mentioned before it was the women’s job to set up the tents, so she knew how to swing that hammer so hard that it went into the ground. Crazy, huh. And others would say, oh, she broke a fundamental principle of hospitality, and many in the ancient world would think her a treacherous [00:42:00] woman. She broke her promise to Sisera and killed a man that her own husband had made peace with. Well, this is what I say. We are at war, and war is treacherous.

[00:42:16] And many of our modern wars. We had women on both sides of the fence there. Both sides of the war. If it wasn’t for the women, we probably wouldn’t have won some of these wars. Even if they’re not in battle. They are either spies or they’re working behind the scenes with communications or they are nurses healing the wounded.

[00:42:45] There were many different roles that women played in war. We have in the Bible we’ve got Rehab, who is the prostitute in Jericho [00:43:00] who saved a few Israelites. She was spared because she helped the scouts in at Jericho. When

[00:43:09] The walls came down and everyone was going to be destroyed. So is this a gorey section of scripture? Yes,

[00:43:18] but this is war and he was the enemy. And yes, she probably, you could probably say she lied. She was sneaky, but he was an evil man. And so during war you get away with a few horrible things in order to win. That’s, if you’ve seen any war movies, you know that a lot of terrible things happen during wars.

[00:43:42] And she was the one that Deborah prophesied that she was gonna be the one that killed the leader and stopped the war.

[00:43:50] So God used her quote unquote treachery to accomplish his purposes. I mean this guy harshly oppressed the [00:44:00] people of Israel. He was an evil man and

[00:44:04] God sometimes uses the evil and makes something positive come forth. Now, if you remember Judas, One of Jesus disciples betrayed him, and yes. Was that an evil thing for him to do? Yes. But it was prophesied that Judas would betray him. That was part of the plan.

[00:44:29] That was part of the plan of salvation. The religious leaders, they thought that they were protecting God’s law and the Jewish faith. They thought they were doing the right thing, but they were the fulfillment of prophecy.

[00:44:48] The Jews didn’t kill Jesus. You’ll hear that a lot. The Jews didn’t kill Jesus. Jesus gave himself up for us.

[00:44:56] So back to Deborah here.

[00:44:58] Let’s go back [00:45:00] to our scriptures. Verse 22. And behold, as Barack was pursuing Sisera, Jael went out to meet him and said to him, come and I will show you the man whom you are seeking. So he went into her tent and there lay Sisera dead with the tent peg in his temple. Can you imagine that scene,

[00:45:23] verse 23. So on that day, God subdued Jabin, the king of Canaan, before the people of Israel and the hand of the people of Israel pressed harder and harder against Jabin, the King of Canaan, until they destroyed Jabin. King of Canaan. So, yeah, that’s pretty exciting. Sisera is gone, the leader of the army and so now they can go in and destroy the king and win this war.

[00:45:54] So we’re going to read the song of Deborah and Barack. [00:46:00] This is a celebration. A celebration that that they won and lots of interesting stuff in here.

[00:46:11] Now you’ve got this the song of Deborah. It’s considered a ballad and it tells a story. And lots of details of eyewitness accounts of this celebration and the battle that just took place. I mean, you can actually picture Deborah and Barack walking and singing, and maybe she’s got a tambourin in her hand and she’s dancing

[00:46:40] with the people that were also fighting alongside them. So obviously Deborah’s leadership style is like team oriented. She doesn’t need to have all the glory, she shares, she recognizes, Encourages them, and [00:47:00] develops others as leaders. We already talked about that.

[00:47:03] But this apparently is one of the oldest pieces of Hebrew poetry. I found very fascinating.

[00:47:13] So let’s read some of this. Then sang Deborah and Barack, on that day, that the leaders took the lead in Israel, that the people offered themselves willingly. Bless the Lord. Here O Kings, give ear O princes to the Lord. I will sing, I will make melody to the Lord, the God of Israel. Lord, when you went out from Sair, when you marched from the region of Edam, the earth trembled and the heavens dropped.

[00:47:48] Yes, the clouds dropped Water. The mountains quaked before the Lord, even Sinai, before the Lord, the God of Israel. So that’s talking [00:48:00] about, that’s why the commentaries believed that there were some water involved in this battle where there’s mud and it slowed down the chariots. That’s where they’re getting that from.

[00:48:12] Verse six. In the days of Shamgar, the son of Anoth, in the days of Jael the highways were abandoned and the travelers kept to the byways. The villagers ceased in Israel. They ceased to be in until I arose. I, Deborah arose as a mother in Israel. When new gods were chosen. Then war was in the gates. Was shield or speared to be seen among 40,000 in Israel?

[00:48:49] My heart goes out to the commanders of Israel who offered themselves willingly among the people. Bless the Lord. [00:49:00] So this is really neat. I love when it says that she arose as a mother, that talks about tenderness and love.

[00:49:09] The gods, they’re talking about if you’re reading along with me, those are little g fake gods and some more empathy and compassion. My heart goes out to the commanders of Israel and she’s praising them because, hey they came out and fought this battle. I didn’t have to coerce them.

[00:49:32] That’s go to 10. Tell of it. You who ride on white donkeys. You who sit on rich carpets and you who walk by the way to the sound of musicians at the watering places. There they repeat the righteous triumphs of the Lord, the righteous triumphs of his villagers in Israel. Then down to the gates, march, the people of the Lord.

[00:49:59] [00:50:00] Verse 12, awake, awake Deborah. Awake, awake, breakout in song. Arise Barack, lead away your captives. Oh, son of Abinoam. Then down March, the remnant of the noble, the people of the Lord marched down for me against the mighty. From ephrem the root. They marched down into the valley.

[00:50:25] Following you Benjamin, with your kinsmen. From Ma Chair marched down the commanders and from Zebulon, those who bear the lieutenant’s staff. The princes of Issachar came with Deborah and Issachar faithful to Barack. Why did you sit among the sheep folds to hear the whistling For the flocks? Among the clans of Ruben, there were great searchings of heart. Gilead stayed behind. [00:51:00] Gilead stayed beyond the Jordan. And Dan. Why did he stay with the ships? Asher sat still at the coast of the sea staying by his landings.

[00:51:13] Zebulon is a people who risk their lives to the death. Naftali too, on the heights of the field.

[00:51:21] So let’s let me, explain a little bit of that.

[00:51:24] I don’t know how we missed it in the scripture. I might have skipped over that part, but some of the tribes of Israel did not help out during the war. They kind of stayed where they were and did their own thing. So I

[00:51:41] think Ruben it’s staying that they stayed with the flocks and then Dan apparently they were on the shore with their ships and also Asher. They were in the docks along the sea. Oh, but Zebulon, they risked their [00:52:00] lives and Naphtali also. So she’s kind of pointing out who were the ones that rose up to the occasion who just didn’t come to help.

[00:52:09] Let’s move on to verse 19. The Kings came, they fought, then fought the kings of Canaan at TaNaK by the waters of Megiddo. They got no spoils of silver. From heaven the stars fought from their courses. They fought against Sisera. The Torrent Kishon swept them away. The Ancient Torrent, the Torrent Kishon march on My Soul with might.

[00:52:42] I’m thinking that the Torrent Keshan was some sort of a weather pattern,

[00:52:46] maybe a storm of some sort. Verse 22, then loud, beat the horse’s hooks with the galloping, galloping of his steeds. Curse Maraz says the [00:53:00] angel of the Lord .Curse its inhabitants thoroughly because they did not come to help of the Lord, to the help of the Lord against the mighty. So angel of the Lord. The pre-incarnate Christ is also saying to the ones that didn’t help shame on you.

[00:53:17] Where’s 24 most blessed of women be Jael the wife of Heber, the Kenite, I a tent dwelling women most blessed. He asked for water and she gave him milk. She brought him Kurds in a nobles bowl. She sent her hand to the tent peg. In her right hand to the workman’s mallet, she struck Sisera. She crushed his head.

[00:53:43] She shattered and pierced his temple Between her feet, he sank, he fell. He lay still Between her feet, he sank. He fell. Where he sank there he fell dead. How was [00:54:00] that? For some prose?! Notice they used most blessed of women. Where else have you heard that before? Mary? The mother of Jesus. So yeah, we might not like her methods, but here in Song of Deborah, she is praised.

[00:54:21] She is blessed because she was brave enough to take care of Sisera. It sounds really hilarious. As I stated before that he asked for water. She didn’t give him water. She gave him milk. Haha, it probably makes you more thirsty. And

[00:54:39] they, they’re describing again how she did it in a graphic way. Verse 28, out of the window, she peered the mother of Sisera wailed through the lattice. Why is this chariot so long and coming? Why Tary? The hoof beets of [00:55:00] his chariots.

[00:55:00] So that’s the mother. Where is he?

[00:55:04] Verse 29, her wisest princess’s answer. Indeed, she answers herself, have they not found and divided the spoil a womb or two for every man. Spoil of dyed materials for Sisera, spoil of dyed materials, embroidered two pieces of dyed work embroidered for the neck as a spoil. So these are,

[00:55:34] I guess those are the daughters. And they’re thinking that they’re getting all the spoils from more, they’re describing those and then they’re talking about getting their women. They’re taking their fill of women, says two for every man. So

[00:55:53] they’re saying that’s why he’s late. Of course, we know the truth that he’s dead. [00:56:00] So the last of the poem of Deborah is verse 31. So may all of your enemies perish Oh lord. But your friends be like the sun as he rises in his might. And the land had rest for 40 years. So under the leadership of Deborah, the head peace and rest for 40 years.

[00:56:26] I wonder what it sounded like, don’t you? What kind of tune did it have? I kind of tried to say it like a prose. I’m not an expert poet by any means, but

[00:56:38] okay, looks like that is it for,

[00:56:41] for the Song of Deborah and Deborah, the judge. Hopefully this was a enjoyable lesson for you today. I enjoyed it. I think that’s a really neat sonnet of Deborah. I love her character, she’s just not another pretty face folks. She’s got integrity and [00:57:00] character and godliness, and she’s an encourager and she is fearless and leads, leads her people with humility and grace.

[00:57:11] She knows how to write a song folks, a really great song. She gives credit to others where it is due. But she’ll also call you out if you’re not doing what you’re supposed to be doing.

[00:57:27] She’s got a sense of humor I can tell.

[00:57:29] So tell me what you think of Deborah, the judge. Has this encouraged you to be brave out there in the world and be a leader? Be a godly leader to whoever God puts in front of you. Don’t let people tell you that you can’t. You can be a leader. You can speak the word of truth from the Lord to those that you come in contact with.

[00:57:55] And

[00:57:56] read the rest of judges that we haven’t gone over already. There’s [00:58:00] some interesting stories in there. Some not as graphic or crazy. I mean, Samson’s a little crazy. Read Samson if you haven’t. But hopefully this gives you, as I always say, I hope it gives you courage to go into God’s word for yourself and read it and study it.

[00:58:21] I’m just giving you. The platform to jump off. I’m not your pastor. I’m not officially your Bible study teacher. I’m just a fellow Christian who cares about you and your spiritual walk and know it has been damaged by the trauma and abuse that you’ve gone through. That we have gone through that distorts who God is, the true God, the true Jesus.

[00:58:51] And so that’s why we’re doing these series to show you, don’t be afraid of these stories. Be brave and get into the [00:59:00] stories. If you don’t understand something or it bothers you, talk to somebody about it. Get some commentaries out there. Find somebody that you trust that you think has a good command of scripture.

[00:59:14] If you wanna talk to me some more, if I don’t know the answer to your question, I’ll find out for you. Okay. So you’re welcome to contact me either on social media, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube. You can write write a comment below for the YouTubers and you can send me an email, Diana DSW Ministries dot org.

[00:59:40] You can leave a comment or a question on my blog page at DSW Ministries dot org. You can read all of my podcast episodes have a transcript, so if you want to read or print out the lesson you [01:00:00] can do that on the blog page. It has the link for the episode today. And then below the show notes, there is a full transcript.

[01:00:13] Some of my first season and half of the second season doesn’t have a transcript yet. I’m gonna work on that when I’m laid up in September. I’m going to work on the back episodes and put transcripts in there for you guys. Thank you for being here with me.

[01:00:29] Thank you for showing up and. For studying the word of God with me. Thank you for praying for me, and if you have a prayer request, let me know. I will pray for you. Absolutely. Join me next week. Oh, I gotta guess next week.

[01:00:47] And she’s a musician. You’re gonna love her. So until next week, be encouraged.

[01:00:54] God bless you and have a good week. Bye for now.