Reflections: Saturday of the Third Week after Trinity

Daily Lectionary: Judges 4:1-24; Acts 14:1-18     

But Jael the wife of Heber took a tent peg, and took a hammer in her hand. Then she went softly to him and drove the peg into his temple until it went down into the ground while he was lying fast asleep from weariness.
(Judges 4:21)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. And the people did what was evil in the sight of the Lord . . . once again. Of course they did. When do we not? I almost feel as if each section in the book of Judges is just an example of a year in the life of Eli Lietzau, or even a day for that matter.  I’m constantly falling back into sin, seeking after other gods, hurting and hating my neighbor, being crushed by the Law that oftentimes really does hurt, and then being saved in the most unexpected and impossible way. 

So the Israelites have been sold into the hands of Jabin the king of Canaan. And he has a pretty imposing general in his army, Sisera, who should by all accounts win every battle that he ever enters. But he doesn’t win this one, not once the Lord fights for His people. Sisera’s army is routed and he goes running, running for cover under the tent of an old friend. He thinks that he is safe and sound, hidden from danger. But as he is exhausted and falls dead asleep, the last thing that ever goes through his head is a spike nailed into the ground by Jael, the wife of his friend. 

Now I may be stretching this a little bit far, but in Sisera I see a little bit of Satan. At the Cross, Satan believed he was safe from his enemy, and more than that, he thought he had won the battle and the war. Rational logic would say that at Calvary, Satan found himself to be the victor as the Lord of life was dying. And so, I have to believe the last thing that went through Satan’s head as the nails were pounded into Jesus’ hands and feet was, “Victory is mine!”  But wouldn’t you know it, both in the case of Jael and her tent and Jesus and His Cross, a spike and a hammer brings an unbelievable end to the enemy and an impossible victory to God’s people, to you. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. 

Salvation unto us has come By God’s free grace and favor; Good works cannot avert our doom, They help and save us never. Faith looks to Jesus Christ alone, Who did for all the world atone; He is our one Redeemer. (“Salvation unto Us Has Come” LSB 555, st.1)

-Rev. Eli Lietzau is pastor of Wheat Ridge Evangelical Lutheran Church in Wheat Ridge, CO.

Audio Reflections speaker: Rev. Duane Bamsch

Come on an adventure with author Eric Eichinger as he unpacks the saga of Jesus’ Hero Journey. You’ll see how aspects of this journey are seen in popular stories, and how God used Jesus to create the most action-packed one with a real Savior for all. Now available from Concordia Publishing House.