Judges 18:7-13

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Monday, June 19, 2017 0 comments

by Katie Erickson

“So the five men left and came to Laish, where they saw that the people were living in safety, like the Sidonians, at peace and secure. And since their land lacked nothing, they were prosperous. Also, they lived a long way from the Sidonians and had no relationship with anyone else.
When they returned to Zorah and Eshtaol, their fellow Danites asked them, 'How did you find things?' They answered, 'Come on, let’s attack them! We have seen the land, and it is very good. Aren’t you going to do something? Don’t hesitate to go there and take it over. When you get there, you will find an unsuspecting people and a spacious land that God has put into your hands, a land that lacks nothing whatever.'
Then six hundred men of the Danites, armed for battle, set out from Zorah and Eshtaol. On their way they set up camp near Kiriath Jearim in Judah. This is why the place west of Kiriath Jearim is called Mahaneh Dan to this day. From there they went on to the hill country of Ephraim and came to Micah’s house.” (Judges 18:7-13)

To get the context of today’s passage, I encourage you to read my posts from the last two weeks, here and here. Last week, we saw that the Israelite tribe of Dan didn’t trust God with the land that He had provided for them, so they went looking for different land on their own.

The Danite spies had gone 100 miles north, outside the land that God had given to Israel. This new land they found was very secure and very prosperous. It was a long distance from any of their enemies, it had water (springs that formed the source of the Jordan River), and it had the mountains of Lebanon for protection. It was called Laish, and its residents were basically like sitting ducks here in that spot.

The spies all agreed that they should take this land immediately. 600 men set out to conquer this new land, but they did stop for camp first. “Mahaneh Dan” means Dan’s camp, and that is evidently how that place was remembered for many years.

The Danite spies said God blessed their taking of this land, but that was likely based on the word from Micah’s priest, which really wasn’t from God and had nothing to do with taking that land. God had not given this land to Israel, but they wanted to take it for themselves anyway because they liked it. They misinterpreted the priest’s word from “God” to fit what they wanted it to say; that’s a form of eisegesis, or reading your own meaning into the text.

Has that happened to you in your life? You see something that is better than what you have and you want it, whether God is ok with you having it or not. Maybe it’s a new car or a new phone that you really want but can’t really afford; maybe you would have to give less money to God and His mission to afford this new thing. Do you think God wants you to have that? Do you misinterpret God’s Word to justify getting that thing you want?

Honor God by following what He commands you and being content with what He provides for you.

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