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  The Great Bible Story #47
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Israel in the Promised Land

Jacob Ninan
Joshua led Israel in victory over the kings of Canaan and occupied their land which God had promised earlier to Abraham and his descendants. Different parts of the land were allotted to the tribes of Israel. But Israel had not taken care in many cases to completely destroy the Canaanites, and so they continued to live among the Israelites. God told His people that because of their disobedience they would always have the Canaanites as trouble makers in their midst. A parallel now is when believers disobey God and get married to unbelievers.

When Joshua died, there was nobody identified to lead the people. So people began to do things as each one wished. Many of them began to worship the idols of the Canaanites, because of which God's judgment had come upon those Canaanites. God chastised them by letting their enemies conquer them. It became a pattern for Israel that whenever they got into serious problem they would cry out to God, and God would raise up someone to deliver them. But soon after they felt safe, they would fall again to idol worship and leave their God who had saved them. This pattern is very common among Christians too, isn't it?

The leaders God raised up to deliver Israel were known as judges. One of the first judges was Othniel, the younger brother of Caleb. The people had rest for forty years under his rule. When he died, the people strayed from God again. Then God sent Eglon, the king of Moab, against them. He took the Ammonites and the Amalekites also with him and conquered Israel. Israel was under him for eighteen years.

When the people cried out to God because of their slavery, God raised up a man called Ehud who went into the palace of King Eglon, killed him secretly and fled from the place. When he reached his people he gathered them and went and defeated Moab. This time the people of Israel were free from Moab for eighty years.

When the people went away from God again, He gave them into the hands of Jabin who was king in Hazor. Deborah, a prophetess in Israel, was judging the people those days. She told a man called Barak that God had chosen him to defeat Jabin's army which was led by Sisera. Barak went only after she agreed to go with him. Sisera fled when Barak pursued him, and went into the tent of a woman called Jael where he thought he would be safe. Jael gave him food and drink, and when he was sleeping, she drove a tent peg into his head. This was how Barak got the victory!


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Comfort & Counsel