Deborah – Part 2 – Judges 5

Gaining the victory, triumphing over, conquering some problem or difficulty is a great motivating factor in life. Once a conquest has been made, the human heart is aroused to rejoice in the victory achieved. This is the experience described in the present passage of Scripture. The great judge of Israel, Deborah, and the commander of the armed forces, Barak, had just led the Israelites in an impossible victory over the mighty army of the Canaanites. For eighteen long years, the Canaanites had held the Israelites in the bondage of slavery and brutal oppression. But God had raised up Deborah and Barak to break the back of the enemy and set the Israelites free from the cruel oppression. A great victory had been achieved over a far, far superior force.

God called the army to assemble and victory would be assured but Barak said, “I will go if you go.”

How did Deborah command such respect? She was responsible for leading the people into battle, but more than that, she influenced them to live for God after the battle was over. Her personality drew people together and commanded the respect of even Barak, a military general. She was also a prophet, whose main role was to encourage the people to obey God. Those who lead must not forget about the spiritual condition of those being led. A true leader is concerned for persons, not just success.

In Chapter 5, after God’s victory,  Barak and Deborah sang praises to God. Songs of praise focus our attention on God, give us an outlet for spiritual celebration, and remind us of God’s faithfulness and character. Whether you are experiencing a great victory or a major dilemma, singing praises to God can have a positive effect on your attitude.

The song of Deborah is a rousing declaration of praise to God. The hearts of Deborah and Barak break forth spontaneously in an emotional outburst of praise and thanksgiving to God for the victory. It was God who had stirred the courage within the Israelites to stand against such a formidable enemy. And it was God who had used nature to burst forth in a thunderstorm, a downpour of rain that swelled the banks of the river and engulfed the enemy with its 900 chariots. It was God who had caused chaos and confusion among the enemy troops and stricken them with panic, causing them to flee from the pursuing Israelite soldiers. Praise and thanksgiving were to be lifted up to God. He was deserving. And the people’s hearts were filled with praise, in particular, the hearts of Deborah and Barak.

The song of Deborah is a magnificent song of victory. It is a hymn of praise and thanksgiving, a song that lifts up the name of the Lord God who gives His people victory over all their enemies.

Wise leaders are rare. They accomplish great amounts of work without direct involvement because they know how to work through other people. They are able to see the big picture that often escapes those directly involved, so they make good mediators, advisers, and planners. Deborah fit this description perfectly. She had all these leadership skills, and she had a remarkable relationship with God. The insight and confidence God gave this woman placed her in a unique position in the Old Testament. Deborah is among the outstanding women of history.

Her story shows that she was not power hungry. She wanted to serve God. Whenever praise came her way, she gave God the credit. She didn’t deny or resist her position in the culture as a woman and wife, but she never allowed herself to be hindered by it either. Her story shows that God can accomplish great things through people who are willing to be led by him.

Deborah’s life challenges us in several ways. She reminds us of the need to be available both to God and to others. She encourages us to spend our efforts on what we can do rather than on worrying about what we can’t do. Deborah challenges us to be wise leaders. She demonstrates what a person can accomplish when God is in control.



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About dkoop

Lead Pastor of Upwards Church: Leander & Jarrell, TX
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