THROUGH THE BIBLE IN THREE YEARS
You never want to get on the boss's "bad side," you might be the one he can do without.
One boss forgot where he was supposed to meet his wife for lunch.
So he told his secretary to call his wife, and ask where he would be during the lunch hour.
And Jephthah said unto the elders of Gilead, If ye bring me home again to fight against the children of Ammon,
and the LORD deliver them before me, shall I be your head?
This story in Judges 11 is one of my favorites.
Jephthah was born "out of wedlock" from an affair Gilead had with a harlot.
Nevertheless, Gilead took Jephthah to his home and raised him along with his other sons.
However, after Gilead died, Jephthah was "kicked out" by his brothers.
This reminds me of Jesus, "He came unto his own, and his own received him not." (John 1:11)
But Jephthah made the best of a bad situation.
He went into the wilderness and began to raise an army.
Being a mercenary, in those days, was a reasonable and acceptable occupation.
Soon, Jephthah's army was very strong and well known.
Now, when the people of Gilead's family ran into some trouble with the Ammonites, they decided to ask Jephthah's army to HELP them fight the battle.
He wasn't good enough to live in their town, but he was good enough to fight their battles for them!
That part of the story reminds me of Jesus too.
Many folk believe Jesus is good enough to fight their battle of sin for them, but they don't want Jesus ruling their hearts!
Notice Jephthah's question in the Scripture above, "IF ye bring me home again to fight against the children of Ammon, and the Lord deliver them before me, will I be your HEAD?"
In other words, "If I fight your battle for you and win, will you make me your KING?"
You see, Jephthah made a conditional agreement with his brothers.
If they wouldn't make him king, he wouldn't fight the battle for them!
He wasn't going to fight their battle and remain a "cast-out!"
My friends, Jesus isn't in the salvation business to give "fire insurance!"
He will not save from sin if He is to be left "outside" our lives!
He must become LORD of who we are!
Jesus doesn't want to "save" us so we can remain as we are!
He wants to CHANGE us to be what HE wants!
And unless He becomes LORD, He will not be SAVIOR!
I've been preaching this for 32 years.
And, as long as God gives me breath, I'll preach it continually:
WITHOUT SURRENDER THERE IS NO SALVATION!
Surrender to Jesus as LORD is the ONE requirement for salvation.