Abimelech Wanted to Get Revenge

Think how many temptations you and I face in an ordinary day. Staying in bed late - the temptation to laziness. Growling at the breakfast table - the temptation to unkindness. Arguing over who should change the baby this time - the temptation to selfishness. Starting work 10 minu … More

Revenge

The next day the men went out into the fields, and Abimelech was told about the planned rebellion. He took his men and divided them into three companies and laid in wait in the field. He looked and behold, the people were coming out of the city and he rose up against them and smote them (vv. 42-52). In an act of revenge against those who had questioned his leadership Abimelech turned on the city that had shown him so many favors and completely leveled it, killing off its citizens. It seems that men like Abimelech who rose to power from an inferior background often wanted to get revenge to the point of destroying their own base of power. Zebul had actually brought the situation under control but his master felt he had to teach Shechem a lesson.

Abimelech’s death came at a time when he was about to destroy his last enemies who had gathered at the fortress of the city. A woman threw down a stone that crushed his skull and not wanting to be killed by a woman he had his armor-bearer finish him off with his sword (vv. 53-54). And when the men of Israel saw that Abimelech was dead, they departed each man to his home (v. 55). That’s how God punished Abimelech for killing his brothers and bringing shame on his father’s family (v. 56). He reaped what he sowed and all of those who joined him suffered the same destiny (v. 57).

Application

I never want to get revenge but always let God take care of any enemies I may have.

Judges 9:42-57 (English Standard Version)


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