“The Depravity Of Humanity”

Posted: August 13, 2014 in Christian Life, Judges, Salvation

It’s hard to imagine that within two generations from Moses and Aaron, God’s chosen people, the Jews, could degenerate to such a low level of living in which everyone did what was right in his own eyes (Judges 20:28; 21:25).  Everything seemed to be tolerated and there was no king in Israel to enforce God’s law. 

Degeneration. When a person is out of fellowship with God, things eventually go from bad to worse. A carnal Christian can act as badly or even worse than an unbeliever can since he is actively resisting God the Holy Spirit and trying to flee from Him as Jonah did (Jonah 1:3). A Christian man in the church at Corinth was engaged in an incestuous relationship with his mother (1 Corinthians 5:1ff). He was grieving God the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4:30). In obedience to the Apostle Paul’s command, the other believers put him out of the fellowship, rather than defend him for his sinful conduct.  It’s sad to say that some “churches” today tolerate such sinful conduct among their members as they did in the Apostle John’s day (Revelation 2:14).

Degradation. In the days of the Judges, after Joshua died, the Jews were doing whatever they wanted to do while ignoring or deliberately disobeying the Mosaic Law. On one occasion a Levite’s concubine was ravished all night by some perverted, homosexual, Jewish men in Gibeah who wanted her husband but got her instead (Judges 19, 20). After letting her go in the morning, she made her way back to the house where her husband was, and then she died on the doorstep (Judges 19:27, 28). By the way, all the works of the flesh, including homosexuality, are perversions of good things that God intended for us to enjoy (Galatians 5:19-21; Romans 1:26, 27; Hebrews 13:4; Proverbs 5:15-18).

Anger. Distraught by such vile and disgusting behavior, the Levite took her dead body home and then cut her up, limb by limb, into twelve parts and sent them to the twelve tribes of Jacob with an explanation. This infuriated the Jews from the other eleven tribes. They went in force to punish the evil doers even though many of them were engaged in idol worship that involved perverted sexual behavior in their religious rituals.

Complicit. But when the people from the tribe of Benjamin refused to turn the wicked men like the Sodomites (Genesis 18, 19) over to them to be punished, a civil war broke out and the eleven tribes of Jacob set out to annihilate one of their own tribes. God didn’t approve of their plans or their modus operandi. He has a wonderful future in store for Jewish believers from all 12 tribes in spite of the way the Jews treated Jesus in His day by calling for His blood to be on them and their children, which has been true to this day (Matthew 27:25; Romans 11; Zechariah 12, 14). The Church hasn’t replaced Israel. Woe to those who mistreat the Jews and who try to expel them from the land that God promised to give to them (Genesis 12:1-3; 15:18-21).

Agony. After two defeats, in which 40,000 Jewish warriors from the eleven tribes were killed in battle, God gave the victory to them. They almost annihilated the whole tribe of Benjamin. But 600 men were able to escape with their lives (Judges 20:47).

Remorse. As commentator Gary Philipps wrote, “The aftermath of [Israel’s] civil war included guilt and remorse; rather than allow Benjamin to become extinct, the Israelites contrived to preserve the tribe through murder and kidnapping.”

Irrational. Yes, it’s hard to imagine that God’s chosen people could act so irrationally. What they did and how they went about it was insane, but it happened nevertheless. To keep the tribe of Benjamin from extinction, they devised a plan that would involve further killing of the Jews who hadn’t come against the tribe of Benjamin in battle.

Virgins.  Only the virgins from Jabesh Gilead would be kept alive. They would be given to the 600 men from the tribe of Benjamin who had escaped so they could have wives to replenish their tribe again (Judges 21:12). They were doing evil that good might come (Romans 3:8). We are not to use sinful methods to accomplish a good objective. (Example – ecumenical evangelism. “Should you help the wicked and love those who hate the Lord?”  2 Chronicles 19:2; 2 Corinthians 6:14; Revelation 18:4) God’s work must be done God’s way if we want His approval and rewards from Christ on judgment day (2 Timothy 2:5; 1 Corinthians 3:11-15).

Imagine. Try to imagine, if you can, how these 400 young, virgin girls must have felt after the rest of their family members were slaughtered by fellow Jews. Then they were taken by force and given to 400 men of the tribe of Benjamin who were responsible for this civil war.

Kidnapping. To make matters worse, the remaining 200 Benjamite men were allowed to kidnap 200 young Jewish girls during a yearly feast and force them to become their wives (Judges 21:15-23). Such action was forbidden by the Mosaic Law (Exodus 21:16; Deuteronomy 24:7). But no one seemed to care.  There seems to be a close parallel to our day and age as many people act lawlessly and do whatever they want to do (1 Timothy 4:1-6; 2 Timothy 3:1ff).  Do you observe God’s laws and the laws of the land in which you live?  When does God allow us to disobey man’s laws (Acts 5:29)?  What attitude should we have at such times (1 Peter 4:12-19)?

Cannibal. We’re told that serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer murdered 17 people and cannibalized his victims. In an interview he told a reporter that he had no reason to change his behavior because if there is no God, there were no universal morals, and there was no accountability in an after life. Does this attitude characterize you or someone you know? Do you think that physical death ends in your being annihilated?

Atheists. The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God’” (Psalm 14:1). An agnostic is far more honest than an atheist. Furthermore, “…it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27). Are you acting like a “practical atheist” by ignoring God and His Word?

Deliverance. True Christians have the Good News concerning Christ to share with others. It is instrumental in saving men and women, boys and girls from the lake of fire that was prepared for the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41, 46). When a person believes on the Lord Jesus Christ, who died for all our sins, who was buried, and who rose again bodily from the grave, he/she gets saved (Acts 16:31; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4; Luke 24:33-43). Are you saved? Are you sure (1 John 5:13)?

Sharing. If you’re a Christian, will you share this Good News with others so they can be saved? God can save anyone. Consider the kind of people He saved (1 Corinthians 6:9-11). Do you fit into this category? The Gospel is the power of God unto the salvation of Jews and non-Jews (Romans 1:16, 17). Fellow Christian, regardless of how people respond to the Gospel or to you, be faithful to the Lord (1 Corinthians 4:2; 15:58). A few will believe (Acts 13:48; 18:9, 10). Most won’t.

Sorry? No, we’re not to apologize for the fact that God included this gruesome story in the pages of Scripture (2 Timothy 3:16, 17). It should serve as a reminder that we all have hearts that are deceitful and desperately wicked (Jeremiah 17:9). If a Christian says he has no sin nature, he is deceiving himself (1 John 1:8). We all need a new nature from God so we can do the things that please God (2 Peter 1:4; 2 Corinthians 5:9).

Help. If this article has stimulated your thinking, or you still have questions, we invite you to call us at 805-238-3549 or visit our website at www.kelseypeach.com for additional help.  Share this article with others and have a discussion with them.  To receive future articles as they come out, click on “Follow.”

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