Monday, April 08, 2019

"Thanks Ned"

Judges 18.27-28 NIV

“Then they took what Micah had made, and his priest, and went on to Laish, against a peaceful and unsuspecting people. They attacked them with the sword and burned down their city. There was no one to rescue them because they lived a long way from Sidon and had no relationship with anyone else. The city was in a valley near Beth Rehob.

The people of Dan felt squeezed. They were the last tribe to roll the dice for an inheritance in Canaan. Stuck between four other tribes, Dan got the property leftovers. Besides being the smallest portion of land, “the Danites had difficulty taking possession of their territory” (Joshua 19.40-48). Apparently the original inhabitants were hard to dislodge. So the leaders of Dan sent six hundred warriors to locate a less protected piece of real estate. Israelite spies found Laish at the northern tip of Palestine “where they saw that the people were living in safety,… unsuspecting 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” (Judges 18.7).

Perfect! Just what the soldiers of Dan were looking for. The people of Laish thought they were secure and “living in safety.” They were “prosperous” and “lacked nothing,” but they were also naïve and “unsuspecting.”

False security is easily breached. Laish had no idea what was about to happen. They lost everything and it could have been avoided. Laish could have developed allies of neighboring cities for just such a time as this. Instead they were all alone and “had no relationship with anyone else.” This made the city an easy target for war-savvy Israelites. Laish was destroyed “with the sword and burned” to the ground.

I attended a dance at my high school somewhere around 1968. A couple of long haired guys from another school cornered me and I felt threatened. Ned noticed my plight. He quietly strolled over and asked if everything was all right. Ned was a big guy. He was a lineman for the Ingraham High School football team and best of all, Ned was my friend. The bullies quickly got the picture and vanished. Thank you Ned.

Laish had no such friend. Do you? There will come a time when you wish you did. -

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