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They were guilty not only of neglect to the call of God but also of alack of concern in the welfare of their brethren. Little they cared if the other tribes were subjugated and destroyed. It was sufficient, they thought, for them to man their own defences and stay in their own territory. How miserably they missed the spirit of the call that God had given all Israel, when He wanted them to be messengers of the Covenant to the people of the entire world, to bring the news of the peace, safety, and salvation, as well as the other covenant-blessings, to them all!

The Asherites were guilty not only of failure in filling these Covenant responsibilities to the world of Gentiles, but were guilty of malicious neglect and deliberate unconcern for their own people -— the chosen nation of Israel!

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Such is the condition that follows when an individual begins to lay up treasures on earth instead of in Heaven. The people of Dan, also, were self-centred.

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They stayed in their ships, carrying on their commerce with the outside world. Their attitude was extremely short-sighted; for what value would their seaport towns and commerce be without a friendly hinterland behind them? If the rest of the Israelites were wiped out, what mercy and fair trade could the Danites expect from the oppressing conquerors?

But the sternest denunciations of all were given to the inhabitants of Meroz. The angel of the Lord pronounced a curse upon them, because they allowed an opportunity for service to go by without taking advantage of it. They were not guilty of active rebellion against the Israelites. It is not recorded that the reason for their neglect was that they were completely occupied with their own personal activities, as were the people of Reuben, Asher, and Dan. The inhabitants of Meroz simply did nothing; and the sin of doing nothing brought upon them a denunciation that was more severe than was given to any of the others.

Was Meroz in a vital position and invaluable to the scheme of the battle, without whose help the battle would be lost? No, for God can carry His plans through to a successful conclusion without any of us, individually. None of us are indispensable. We do not know if the people of Meroz were near to the scene of battle, or on one of the escape routes open to the enemy, and because of that might have been able to do an important service to the rest of Israel.

What we do know is that they were situated in a place where they could have done service for God, but they did not do it. They did nothing! The curse against Meroz was carried out so completely and so thoroughly that there is neither memory remaining of its people nor ruins left of its location. It has been completely destroyed. The blessing of God came especially upon the six tribes who fought valiantly and faithfully against the enemy. They came and fought, and took no gain of money for themselves as compensation for the time they had lost from their own occupations. It is easy to see what rewards are accruing to those who faithfully serve the cause of God and are obedient to His every command.

The standards and requirements for us in this New Testament dispensation are certainly no less than those for Israel.

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And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciples. With what attitude does the song of Deborah and Barak open? Name some other famous songs of Scripture and relate the background of each one. In what condition was Israel at the time Deborah was called as a prophetess?

Why were the tribes of Zebulun and Naphtali commended?

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Why were the tribes of Gad and Reuben denounced? Quote a New Testament verse that shows what our attitude is to be toward the work of the Lord. Barak is listed in the eleventh chapter of Hebrews as one who had conquering faith. Because they obeyed God, He delivered the enemy into their hands.

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They took no credit to themselves. That God might receive honour and glory, they were inspired to sing a song of thanksgiving and victory to the Lord for His mercy to them. They were so grateful to God that, no doubt, on that very same day they wanted to praise Him in song. They did not wait until months later to praise God.

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This can be a lesson for us. Do we praise God as faithfully and as promptly as did Deborah and Barak? Let us consider this song. Perhaps it will be an example for us. Deborah and Barak had a right to sing unto the Lord; so have we. In James For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.

Let him sing psalms. Willing Service Why did God avenge His people? Because they gave willing service to Him. We can be victorious if our service is willingly given to God. What kind of service do we offer the Lord? The praises of this song were directed to the Lord God of Israel. No doubt, in times past, when the Children of Israel had served other gods, their songs were to false gods. As they were praising God for their recent victory, to their memory came many past blessings. God had been with the Children of Israel so long as they served Him. In Trouble Deborah sang of the conditions that were in Israel before God raised her to be a judge.

The highways had not been occupied; where were the merchants, the caravans, the trade? Travellers had used the byways instead of the highways; were they unsafe because of robbers and thieves? People did not live in the villages; had they taken refuge in walled cities from which they could not care for the crops? There was war in the gates where sat the judges and officers; was there no place to take their problems to be dealt with justly?

No shield or spear could be seen; were they conquered and stripped of their weapons?

There was a noise of archers in the places of water-drawing; could not a person even draw water in peace? Why had there been all this trouble? That was why all this trouble had come upon Israel. Children must choose today, too, whom they will serve, regardless of the choice of their parents. Are you serving God, or the enemy of your soul? Romans ,13 KJV Our greeting cards are professionally printed on May you feel God's gentle peace, As He travels by Greeting Card Text: May you be strengthened by His healing touch, encouraged by His everlasting presence and uplifted by the prayers of those who love you.

Greeting Card Text: Marriage is a special journey, Between two souls upon earth's sod, Made sweeter and ever more sacred, When the focus is placed upon God. May God bless your union with grace, your Greeting Card Text: Praying you feel the peace and comfort of our Heavenly Father in this time of sorrow May He give you strength and courage for today and a gentle hope for tomorrow.

Greeting Card Text: In the quiet times of life, Amidst the rush of day, What a strength to know, He's just a prayer away. May it lift your heart, As God's seed is sown, To know that others bring, A history of the Apostolic Christian Church in America from