Monday, August 17, 2009

A Most Unusual Weapon

So Moab was subdued that day under the hand of Israel. And the land had rest eighty years. After him came Shamgar son of Anath, who killed six hundred of the Philistines with an oxgoad. He too delivered Israel. Judges 3:30-31 NRSV

An oxgoad is a big stick that you use to get your oxen to move. In other words, you are "goading" your cattle to plow and pull. I think it might have been sharp or heavy or both.

But the oxgoad is a farm implement. It is not a weapon.

The Bible tells us something about turning swords into plowshares but here is the exact opposite: turning farming tools into mighty weapons!

Obviously, God has got to be behind this as much as we don't like to think about God as a killer.

But how many people could a normal person kill with a big stick? One? Three? A dozen?

We are told he killed 600!! This is superhero status. And his efforts saved Israel from the Philistines. They probably tried to take advantage after the Moabites were defeated. God was making sure Israel stayed safe. Even if God had to use a simple farmer and an everyday object.

God, we keep looking for big miracles to save us and give us hope. Help us to see when you use simple things for superhero purposes. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Question for the day: Will you allow God to use your everyday work implements to do great things? What do you think God will use?

Copyright 2009 Amelia G. Sims

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