Full Hospitality for Weary Travelers

Perhaps the most effective way to demonstrate God’s values and Christ’s love to others is to invite and welcome guests into our homes. I can’t help but think of the film Christmas Vacation. The Griswalds are having Christmas at their home this year; that means everybody will intr … More

Hospitality

Since it was late in the day his servant suggested that they spend the night in Jerusalem but the Levite said no because it belonged to foreigners and was not considered a proper place to be (vv 11-13). Instead they traveled on north to Gibeah and arrived  there just as the sun  was going down (v. 14). The towns of Palestine at this period in time could not, it seems, furnish any establishment in the shape of an inn or public lodging-house. Hence it was not uncommon, for travelers who were late in arriving to spread their bedding in the streets to pass the night in the open air. These weary travelers could find no hospitality by the local Benjaminites but finally found another Ephraimite who was residing there who offered his house for the night (vv. 15-18).

The Levite had been careful to point out to the old man that they were self sufficient and did not need any food for themselves or their animals (v. 19). All they needed was shelter. However no item was overlooked as the beasts were taken care of, the travel stains of his guests were washed away and ample provisions for their physical needs were made (vv. 20-21). Any anxiety that had been in their hearts before must have been relieved by this fine hospitality. It was sort of like a time of real calmness just before a big storm.

Application

Have you ever experienced being on a trip and very weary when a Christian family who are total strangers to you have invited you to their place to spend the night. In the ministry which I have been involved in, I have had this happen to me on numerous occasions. It is truly a great joy to experience this kind of hospitality. I also find great joy to do the same for others in our home.

Judges 19:11-21 (English Standard Version)


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