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CALL : +685 24414
FAX 20429
5th Floor John Williams Building
Tamaligi, Apia

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Monday 16 October, 2017
"Ehud’s tribute"

Judges 3:12–30
But when the people of Israel cried to the Lord, the Lord raised up for them a deliverer, Ehud, the son of Gera, the Benjaminite, a left-handed man … (verse 15a)

The stories in the book of Judges follow a template: sin of apostasy, oppression, cry for deliverance, sending of a judge as saviour and rest in the land. The people entered into this vicious cycle when they sinned against God but, even though God delivered them from oppression by their enemies and gave them rest, they never came out of the downward spiral. The first saviour (called a judge) was Othniel and he did exactly what was expected of him. However, the subsequent judges were less idealised and each had weakness and imperfections.

The second judge, Ehud, had to use deception to garner victory. Firstly, we are told by the storyteller that Ehud was left-handed. This can mean that he was ambidextrous and was trained to also use his left hand. This is the key to his story. If he was left-handed, he would conceal his sword on his right thigh. The soldiers would normally think that a right-handed person would conceal a weapon on his left thigh and missed the concealed weapon on the right thigh! Secondly, Ehud pretended to have a secret message from God only for the king’s ears, thus paving the way for him to carry out his assassination in private and getting away undetected. By using deception, Ehud was able to get near to King Eglon to deliver the fatal blow with the sword.

Is victory achieved only through deception? Is victory by any means truly acceptable to God?

† Lord, do I need to resort to deception in order to get my way? Can I not trust you more in my life? Show me your way in all I do. Amene