Now Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lapidoth, was judging Israel at that time.
Deborah is the only female judge in Israel. She was also a prophetess, which was not unusual in Bible times we see evidence throughout the scriptures that there were female prophetesses. The New Testament makes it clear that God grants the gift of prophecy unto women also, and that’s they were to practice it appropriately (1 Corinthians 11:5). The underlying issue, it seems, is not that women can’t or shouldn’t hold roles in leadership, but rather that there is to be no authority over a man (1 Timothy 2:12).
“When leaders lead in Israel, When the people willingly offer themselves, Bless the Lord!
When leaders lead according to the directives of God’s word and the people willingly offer themselves to the Lord and His word, amazing things begin to take place. I often refer to 2 Chronicles 16:9, “For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him.” Oh that people would seek to be loyal to all of God’s truths and that leaders would lead in the same manner.
The torrent of Kishon swept them away, That ancient torrent, the torrent of Kishon. O my soul, march on in strength! 22 Then the horses’ hooves pounded, The galloping, galloping of his steeds.
So much of Scripture is so beautifully written. It paints such clear pictures of what was going on and all that the people were experiencing. Often times is it beautiful poetry. Truly the Word of God is living and active (Hebrews 4:12) honey on our lips, a light unto our paths and water to our thirsty souls.
11 Now the Angel of the Lord came and sat under the terebinth tree which was in Ophrah, which belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, while his son Gideon threshed wheat in the winepress, in order to hide it from the Midianites. 12 And the Angel of the Lord appeared to him, and said to him, “The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor!”
Gideon is without a doubt one of the most incredible characters in the Scriptures. I love how it is he was called. Imagine an angel of the Lord appearing to you and calling you, ‘mighty man of valor’. In Christ, we can all be men and women of valor, for He is our victory and conqueror. In fact, Romans 8:37 tells us that we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. As we learn to live our lives in this understanding we will experience victorious Christian living.
So he said to Him, “O my Lord, how can I save Israel? Indeed my clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father’s house.” 16 And the Lord said to him, “Surely I will be with you, and you shall defeat the Midianites as one man.”
We must never allow our weaknesses to interfere with God’s call in our lives. Paul made it clear that it was in his weaknesses that God was able to show himself the strongest (2 Corinthians 12:10). And so it is with us!
36 So Gideon said to God, “If You will save Israel by my hand as You have said— 37 look, I shall put a fleece of wool on the threshing floor; if there is dew on the fleece only, and it is dry on all the ground, then I shall know that You will save Israel by my hand, as You have said.”
You may have heard people talk about ‘laying a fleece before the Lord’. This is what they are referring to. It refers to laying something before the Lord, asking for a confirmation of something He may want you to do. We need to be careful with fleeces, we can grow dependent upon them and quit seeking for confirmation by the Word and the Holy Spirit. We mustn’t rely too heavily on circumstances to direct us. I like to look for three things in discerning the will of the Lord; 1) the directing of the Holy Spirit, 2) confirmation in His word, 3) circumstance. This approach has yet to fail me in discerning the Lord’s will for my life.