“Whenever the Lord raised up a judge for them, he was with the judge and saved them out of the hands of their enemies as long as the judge lived; for the Lord relented because of their groaning under those who oppressed and afflicted them.”
Judges 2:18 NIV
The Book of Judges is the story of Israel’s troubling cycle of (1) covenant breaking, (2) falling under rule of other nations, then (3) crying out to God for help. The Lord responds by raising “judges”—ambassadors for His Kingdom within Israel. This week, we will see how Israel reacted to these judges, and what we can learn from these stories.
Louis Zamperini was an American, Olympic sprinter who joined the Army Air Force after WW2 began. Louis’ squadron was on a search mission one day when their plane suddenly sputtered, crashing in the middle of the Pacific. Louis and two other men survived, while the other eight were killed. They drifted at sea on a life raft for a month and a half, living off albatross & shark meat, before being captured by the Japanese.
Little did he know, the hell Louis endured on the raft was only the beginning. He spent the next two years living in brutal conditions as a POW. Prison guard, Mutsuhiro "The Bird" Watanabe, took a special, sadistic interest in Louis, seeking him out everyday to violently abuse him.
Finally, the war ended, and Louis somehow returned home to his family whom were told he died.
Underneath the love & fame he received, Louis was miserable. He could not break the traumatic nightmares and addiction to booze… that is, until the day he met Jesus.
Louis realized his whole journey amounted to nothing without mentioning the One who rescued him. He gave his life to Christ and was immediately healed of the nightmares, healed of the addiction, and forgave his captors.
Daily Battle Order:
How do you make your life count? Is it by living an interesting life? No! It’s by abiding in Christ, bearing fruit for His Kingdom! Today, realize you are a judge on behalf of His Kingdom, an ambassador of light. What’s your plan today to make your life count?