At first glance, Ehud’s career as a judge in Israel may not seem relevant to us. He clearly lived in another time. He took radical and violent action to free his people. His murder of Eglon shocks us. His war on Moab was swift and deadly. His life is difficult to relate to. But our commitment to God’s word challenges us to ignore this leader. As we read about his life, some questions come to mind: (1) When was the last time God showed me something wrong in my life and I took immediate and painful action to correct the error? (2) When was the last time I asked God to show me how he could use something unique about me (as he used Ehud’s left-handedness)? (3) When was the last time I made a plan to obey God in some specific area of my life and then followed through with that plan? (4) When was the last time my life was an example to others of obedience to God?
The enemies we face are as real as Ehud’s, but they are most often within ourselves. The battles we fight are not against other people but against the power of sin. We need God’s help in doing battle against sin. We also need to remember that he has already won the war. He has defeated sin at the cross of his Son, Jesus. His help is the cause of each success, and his forgiveness is sufficient for each failure.
Strengths and accomplishments:
- Second judge of Israel
- A man of direct action, a frontline leader
- Used a perceived weakness (left-handedness) to do a great work for God
- Led the revolt against Moabite domination and gave Israel 80 years of peace
Lessons from his life:
- Some conditions call for radical action
- God responds to the cry of repentance
- God is ready to use our unique qualities to accomplish his work
- Where: Born during the last years of the desert wanderings or during Israel’s early years in the promised land
- Occupations: Messenger, judge
- Relative: Father: Gera
- Contemporary: Eglon of Moab
Key verse: “Again the Israelites cried out to the LORD, and he gave them a deliverer – – Ehud, a left-handed man, the son of Gera the Benjamite” (Judges 3:15).
His story is told in Judges 3:12-30.