On that day the Benjamites mustered twenty-six thousand armed men from their towns, besides the inhabitants of Gibeah. Of all this force, there were seven hundred picked men who were left-handed; everyone could sling a stone at a hair and not miss. And the Israelites, apart from Benjamin, mustered four hundred thousand armed men, all of them warriors. Judges 20:15-17 NRSV
Here is the final battle, the culmination of the book of Judges. The people of God verses the people of God. Warriors, special sling-shot fighters, all of them armed and called to fight. One may wonder at this point if they even remember what they are fighting about. But they are sure ready.
But is all this really necessary against this one town?
Have you ever gotten in an argument with someone - a co-worker, a spouse or a friend - until it began to escalate beyond the point of the original disagreement? Maybe you stopped speaking, got divorced or moved on in life. You still feel bitter when you think about it but can you recall what started it all? Does it seem like such a big deal today?
God, we often do and say things that are totally unnecessary and unwarrented. Please help us to curb our lips and our responses. Amen.