Day Twenty-seven – Deborah, Judge of Israel

40DAYSBLOGDeborah was a hero.

A bit of historical context: Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt.  As preparation for leading them into the Promised Land of Canaan, he sent twelve spies into Canaan to find out the enemy’s disposition.  Of the twelve, ten came back and told how great the land was, but tried to lead a revolt against Moses because they feared what would happen if they tried to invade.  Their fear was understandable: the land was full of Nephilim!  Nephilim were the abominable half-breeds of fallen gods/angels and human women (see Genesis 6; this is Orthodox opinion, not Orthodox dogma).  

As the ten cowardly spies put it;

The land, through which we have gone to search it, is a land that eateth up the inhabitants thereof; and all the people that we saw in it are men of a great stature.  And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, which come of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight. (Numbers 13:32b-33)

Their fear was understandable, but not their distrust of the God of Israel and His chosen one, Moses.  These ten wanted to elect someone to lead them back to Egypt so that they could live under foreign gods (i.e. demons) rather than risk doing what God had told them.  The riot they incited was the last straw for Yahweh; He proclaimed that they would be exiled for 40 years and only the youth and the two devout spies, Joshua and Caleb (both of whom counseled faith and courage), would be allowed to enter into the Promised Land.  You know what happened forty years later: God parted the Jordan for Joshua and the Israelites, then told them how to defeat the key fortress city of Jericho.  Thus the war against the Nephalim, the men of Canaan, and their demon masters began in earnest.  

There was a pattern to this war that repeated itself over and over (a pattern that continues to this day): when the Tribes of Israel did as the Lord commanded, they triumphed.  But then they would stray, often apostasizing and worshipping the demon masters of the tribes they were meant to destroy.  Then a charismatic Prophet or Judge would chastise the Israelites, they would repent, and the whole cycle would begin again. 

Deborah was both a Prophet and a Judge.  One of her greatest acts was to serve as the political and religious leader in the Battle of Tabor (Barak was the military leader; although he refused to fight unless she went, too).  Three interesting things happened at that battle: first, the enemy relied on war chariots, despite the battleground being in a flood plain.  God provided rain and the chariots were rendered combat ineffective.  The second is that the greatest hero of the battle is another woman: Jael.  When the enemy general was trying to escape, he asked her for water.  Instead, she gave him rich butter which put him to sleep.  This allowed her to kill him by driving a stake through his head:

Blessed above women shall Jael the wife of Heber the Kenite be, blessed shall she be above women in the tent.  He asked water, and she gave him milk; she brought forth butter in a lordly dish.  She put her hand to the nail, and her right hand to the workmen’s hammer; and with the hammer she smote Sisera, she smote off his head, when she had pierced and stricken through his temples.  At her feet he bowed, he fell, he lay down: at her feet he bowed, he fell: where he bowed, there he fell down dead. (Judges 5: 24-27)

The third is the role that angels played in the battle;

They fought from heaven; the stars [i.e. angels] in their courses fought against Sisera. The river of Kishon swept them away, that ancient river, the river Kishon. O my soul, thou hast trodden down strength.  Then were the horsehoofs broken by the means of the pransings, the pransings of their mighty ones.  Curse ye Meroz, said the angel of the Lord, curse ye bitterly the inhabitants thereof; because they came not to the help of the Lord, to the help of the Lord against the mighty. (Judges 5: 20-23)

How cool is that?  If that isn’t enough to get you interested in studying the Old Testament, I don’t know what will.  If you want to read some interesting historical fiction based on the Jewish mythology of the Nephilim, read Godawa’s series.  Once you read the first book, Noah Primeval (to include the appendix, which details the historicity of the Divine Council), you’ll be hooked.