Through 2024, every member of the Thirst Collective –, Salt&Light, Stories of Hope, 还好吗, Living Room, Collective Studio – has committed to reading the Bible from cover to cover. 

We thought it’d be cool to pick out reflections and insights from our team’s readings to share with you. This time, dive deep into Judges with us!

Judges 2: Disobedience and defeat

Edric Sng, Thirst Collective

“I will no longer drive out before them any of the nations Joshua left when he died. I will use them to test Israel and see whether they will keep the way of the Lord and walk in it as their ancestors did.” The Lord had allowed those nations to remain; he did not drive them out at once by giving them into the hands of Joshua.” (‭‭Judges‬ ‭2‬:‭21‬-‭23‬)

Sometimes the negative things in our life are there for our good. They help us grow our faith; grow in our sharpness for spiritual war; to grow in our discernment; to grow in our dependence on God.

Or as John Piper once said, “Don’t waste your cancer.”

Judges 3: Othniel, Ehud and Shamgar

Theresa, Salt&Light

“Ehud reached with his left hand, drew the sword from his right thigh and plunged it into the king’s belly.” (Judges 3:21)

I always marvel at the brave left-handed Ehud whom God raised as a deliverer.

He must have been considered a weakling (unlike “normal” right-handed people) but his strategy was to use that “weakness” to disarm the king’s guards, who thought him so harmless they left him alone with the king.

The king probably also didn’t think much of this left handed man. And because they underestimated him, they didn’t even check on the king till he was properly dead and Ehud had already escaped hours ago.

Sometimes our handicap is our sharpest weapon, when God uses it for His purpose.

Judges 8: Gideon’s heart

Zemin, 还好吗

“But if you are afraid to go down, go down to the camp with Purah your servant. ‭‭And you shall hear what they say, and afterward your hands shall be strengthened to go down against the camp.” Then he went down with Purah his servant to the outposts of the armed men who were in the camp.” (Judges 7:10-11)

“So Gideon said, “Well then, when the Lord has given Zebah and Zalmunna into my hand, I will flail your flesh with the thorns of the wilderness and with briers.””  (Judges 8:7)

The contrast between these verses shows how Gideon grew from a timid man to a confident man.

Fearful Gideon grew by walking close to God, constantly listening to and obeying Him (even though it was very difficult to do so).

God knew the capacity of what Gideon could handle and even gave him an option to bring his servant along to boost his courage.

After experiencing what God can do, Gideon could confidently say with assurance that God would give him victory. May we learn from Gideon to trust in God!

Judges 13: God hears Manoah and his wife

Christina Wong,

“Then Manoah prayed to the Lord: “Pardon your servant, Lord. I beg you to let the man of God you sent to us come again to teach us how to bring up the boy who is to be born.” God heard Manoah, and the angel of God came again to the woman while she was out in the field; but her husband Manoah was not with her. The woman hurried to tell her husband, “He’s here! The man who appeared to me the other day!” Manoah got up and followed his wife. When he came to the man, he said, “Are you the man who talked to my wife?” “I am,” he said.” (Judges 13:8-11)

In a time of evil, oppression and spiritual barrenness, Manoah and his wife displayed faith and trust in God beyond human understanding.

When Manoah first heard about what his wife said to him about the pregnancy, he never questioned it though considering their situation, it would’ve been most easy to do so!

Judges 14: Samson’s life

Felicia Chin, 还好吗

“(His father and mother had no idea that God was behind this, that he was arranging an opportunity against the Philistines. At the time the Philistines Lorded it over Israel.)” (‭‭Judges‬ ‭14‬:‭4‬)

Sometimes God’s plans do not pan out the way we think they should; Samson’s parents did not associate their son wanting to marry a Philistine woman as part of God’s plan of deliverance from the Philistines. 

God might involve people we least expect (even our enemies in the case of Samson) to work together with God’s children to enable His plans. We must not judge so quickly or box God’s ways up.

Judges 16: Samson without strength

Peck Sim, Salt&Light

“Then Samson prayed to the Lord , “Sovereign , remember me. Please, God, strengthen me just once more, and let me with one blow get revenge on the Philistines for my two eyes.” (Judges 16:28)

The hair did not give strength. It was Samson’s broken and contrite heart that restored God’s spirit and power within him and granted him strength.

In the final showdown, blind and weak and humiliated, Samson killed more than he did in his entire lifetime.

God’s power was made perfect in Samson’s weakness the moment Samson gave himself over to God.

Judges 20: Israel’s war with Benjamin and Gibeah


 ⁠“The sons of Israel went up and wept before the Lord until evening, and asked of the Lord, “Shall we advance again to battle against the sons of our brother Benjamin?” And the Lord said, “Go up against them.” (Judges‬ ‭20‬:‭23,‬ ‭AMP‬‬)

That the people wept while doing this showed that they did not wish for this to happen.

Infighting isn’t a good look for anyone. In our modern context, it can look like denominational differences, insisting on personal opinions or anything that destroys the unity in the Body of Christ.

The same body gets damaged. A sad situation. The enemy rejoices. My reflection is to be careful of how I react in actions and in words if I come across these situations, and repent if I had been a part of it.

Remember to guard unity!

  1. What struck you most through your reading of Judges?
  2. How can you apply this biblical truth or principle to your daily life?