Arise, Barak, and Lead
Arise, Barak, and lead…. ~Judges 5:12
The Bible contains the historical account of insignificant and weak people whom God used to do great things. Someone said, “The men who conquered the world were men the world could not conquer.” One of these seemingly-insignificant men was a man named Barak. Barak is presented to us as a man of faith. “And what shall I more say? for the time would fail me to tell of Gedeon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthae” (Hebrews 11:32a). Paul refers to four notable men of faith found in the book of Judges. Barak is one of these men.
We see Barak’s induction.
“And she sent and called Barak the son of Abinoam out of Kedeshnaphtali, and said unto him, Hath not the Lord God of Israel commanded, saying, Go and draw toward mount Tabor, and take with thee ten thousand men of the children of Naphtali and of the children of Zebulun?” Barak had a calling from God to stand in the gap for God and Israel. Judging from Deborah’s question to him, he had received this call previously, but declined to step up. The call of God is a privilege. The call of God comes in private. The call of God involves our performance. At a critical time in Israel, Barak is called and inducted to serve the Lord. We must remember that the call of God is a privilege in serving Him.
We see Barak’s instruction.
“Go and draw toward mount Tabor, and take with thee ten thousand men of the children of Naphtali and of the children of Zebulun? And I will draw unto thee to the river Kishon Sisera, the captain of Jabin’s army, with his chariots and his multitude; and I will deliver him into thine hand.” The instructions given to Barak included the “what,” “how,” and “where.” The gifts and calling of God are without repentance. God knows what we can do and what we can’t do. God gives clear instructions so that we do not go and do what we are not supposed to do. God instructed Barak on how victory over Sisera would be accomplished. Listen, not only for the calling, but also for plan on how to get it done.
We see Barak’s insecurity.
“And Barak said unto her, If thou wilt go with me, then I will go: but if thou wilt not go with me, then I will not go.” Amazingly, Barak lacked complete confidence in the instructions that were given to him. He said that he would go if Deborah went with him. Barak had little faith in himself and in God. How many of us allow our insecurities to get in the way of doing God’s work? In spite of his little faith, God said he would still see victory, but the honor that God wanted to give Barak would be given to a woman named Jael.
We see Barak and the indomitable.
God blessed Barak’s leadership so that 10,000 men from Zebulon and Naphthali would go with him to the war. As the two sides assembled to fight, Deborah once again had to nudge Barak to go forward. He stepped out in faith (and probably with fear), and the Lord gave him an overwhelming victory over Sisera, his chariots, and his army. Sisera had to flee on foot and ran to the tent of Jael. Jael and her husband, Heber, made the decision that they were on the Lord’s side. As Sisera hid and rested in the tent of Jael, she took a nail and a hammer and smote him in the head. The final blow that gave Barak the victory came from the hand of Jael. In all of this, God gave a convincing victory over the enemy. Even though Barak is to be commended for exercising faith against a foe that outnumbered him and was stronger than him, his little faith removed him from the honor that God would have given him. The lesson in all of this is that we must have absolute faith in God’s calling and commands for our life. We must follow through and do what God says we must do. God said, “Arise, Barak, and lead”!
Have a faithful God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Job 35-37