Day 18. Unheroic Heroes #3

Heb. 11:31-33    By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies, was not killed with those who were disobedient.

32 And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson and Jephthah, about David and Samuel and the prophets, 33 who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised

In our last two devotionals we talked about how the writer of Hebrews, in his great chapter listing heroes of faith, listed some that are not quite as heroic as Noah or Abraham.  Previously we talked about Gideon and his initial reluctance to do the job God was calling him to do.  Today we will focus on the next character the Hebrew writer mentioned—Barak.

Barak is mentioned beginning in Judges 4 during the time that Deborah was serving as Israel’s judge.  Deborah sought out Barak and told him the Lord was calling him to lead an army against the Canaanite king Jabin who had an army with 900 iron chariots.  Barak’s reply was not the brave heroic response we might have expected.  In Judges 4:8 we read “Barak said to her, “If you go with me, I will go; but if you don’t go with me, I won’t go.”

Deborah agreed to go with him, and they were victorious in the battle, though it wasn’t Barak who was the hero.  Another woman, Jael, was the one who killed the commander of Jabin’s army.  But the thing that encourages me is that the Hebrew writer still mentions Barak as a man of faith.  That just tells me that even if I’m not the brave, courageous fighter I ought to be, and even if I have to have someone else to help me, God can still use me and He will still honor me for going where He calls me to go in spite of my fears and my reluctance.  I’m glad Barak got included in this list.  It gives me hope.

Prayer:  God, thank you for being willing to use people like Barak, and people like me, who may not be the most heroic or brave warriors for You.  Thank You for calling us and using us in spite of our weakness.  Help us to be more like the father who came to Jesus asking for healing for his son who said “I do believe, help me overcome my unbelief.”

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