Prophetess Deborah

Prophets can be females and are known as prophetesses.  The lists seven with Deborah being outstanding.  Deborah is not the wife of a famous man, not the sister, and not the mother of someone famous.  She stands on her own merits as a judge and prophetess.  Judges 4 tells her story and Judges 5 sings her praise.  She brought a message from God, rescuing the Jewish people from the hand of the Canaanite King Jabin about a century after they entered the Promised Land.  Deborah sends reluctant General Barak (not of our Presidents) into battle against Jabin’s commander Sisera who had 900 iron chariots.  Technology was against Barak.  He insisted Deborah go with him.  A woman went into battle!  That is unique also.  The bad guys are defeated, the Jews return to God and Sisera flees on foot.  He finds a nomad, enters the tent, and the wife, Jael, and puts a tent peg through his head while he sleeps.  Whew.  Two female heroines and a new song of praise!  A fun story but does it throw light on the question of Jesus speaking in the tradition of prophets?

         God seems to be acting “out of the box” when he chooses a woman.  The appearance of Jesus and his story was also “out of the box” and demanding investigation.  Just because someone claims to speak for God, does not mean they do.  Today, with technology, people in the United States can tune into sermons any time of the day on radio or TV, even with Covid.  On Sunday because of Zoom and Live Streaming, I can go to church almost anywhere in the world.  Who do I listen to for wisdom?  Sometimes God uses the unlikely to touch our hearts, a female judge or the son of a carpenter.  As we listen to their message we must see if it is congruent with revealed knowledge or truth and leads us to God.  Sunday we will ponder how Jesus spoke with “authority.”  Who are the authorities, the prophets that you listen to for direction and why?

         A ninety year old lady was scammed where I live as a “Christian lawyer” called to ask her for money for her granddaughter – but don’t tell!  Telemarkers ring our phones daily saying we have won a prize or need to sign something.  Scams have made us into doubters and it is hard to trust.  It is comforting to know God’s prophets do not lead us astray.  “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path. (Psm 119:105)”  Blessings as you seek to obey today.

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