08/01/21 – Have Mercy

6 The people of Israel again did what was evil in the sight of the Lord and served the Baals and the Ashtaroth, the gods of Syria, the gods of Sidon, the gods of Moab, the gods of the Ammonites, and the gods of the Philistines. And they forsook the Lord and did not serve him. 7 So the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel, and he sold them into the hand of the Philistines and into the hand of the Ammonites, 8 and they crushed and oppressed the people of Israel that year. For eighteen years they oppressed all the people of Israel who were beyond the Jordan in the land of the Amorites, which is in Gilead. 9 And the Ammonites crossed the Jordan to fight also against Judah and against Benjamin and against the house of Ephraim, so that Israel was severely distressed. 10 And the people of Israel cried out to the Lord, saying, “We have sinned against you, because we have forsaken our God and have served the Baals.” 11 And the Lord said to the people of Israel, “Did I not save you from the Egyptians and from the Amorites, from the Ammonites and from the Philistines? 12 The Sidonians also, and the Amalekites and the Maonites oppressed you, and you cried out to me, and I saved you out of their hand. 13 Yet you have forsaken me and served other gods; therefore I will save you no more. 14 Go and cry out to the gods whom you have chosen; let them save you in the time of your distress.” 15 And the people of Israel said to the Lord, “We have sinned; do to us whatever seems good to you. Only please deliver us this day.” 16 So they put away the foreign gods from among them and served the Lord, and he became impatient over the misery of Israel. 17 Then the Ammonites were called to arms, and they encamped in Gilead. And the people of Israel came together, and they encamped at Mizpah. 18 And the people, the leaders of Gilead, said one to another, “Who is the man who will begin to fight against the Ammonites? He shall be head over all the inhabitants of Gilead.”
‭‭Judges‬ ‭10:6-40‬ ‭ESV‬‬

1 Now Jephthah the Gileadite was a mighty warrior, but he was the son of a prostitute. Gilead was the father of Jephthah. 2 And Gilead’s wife also bore him sons. And when his wife’s sons grew up, they drove Jephthah out and said to him, “You shall not have an inheritance in our father’s house, for you are the son of another woman.” 3 Then Jephthah fled from his brothers and lived in the land of Tob, and worthless fellows collected around Jephthah and went out with him.
‭‭Judges‬ ‭11:1-3‬ ‭ESV‬‬

I. The Repetition of the Repulsive
A. Sin sucks us into what feels like a cycle, but it is actually a spiral.

II. A Remix of the Repetitive
A. Syncretism rejects God because it rejects no god at all.
B. Syncretism is not just an ancient problem but an American one, too, even if it looks different here than it did there.
C. Syncretism is Satanic because it is ultimately not worship of many gods but worship of Satan.

III. Rejection of Ridiculous Religion
A. God is a jealous God & saw / sees syncretism as rejection, which He rejects in kind.
B. Our propensity to always cry out to the God of the Bible in times of trouble proves we know He alone is God. (Luke 15:11-32)

IV. Next Step
A. Sinners are better off in the hands of God than trusting their fate to anything or anyone else.
B. To be rid of sin for God we need not just to clean ourselves up but to have Jesus fill us up. (Luke 11:24-26)
C. Out of sheer grace God provided / provides a rejected champion to fight for His people.