Thank you for taking the time to come to this site and study with me. The subject we are about embark into is very important. If you are here because you have been abused or raisied in an abusive home where conditions were not good, please open your heart and ponder the truths found in this study. The Truth will make us free and the more we learn the more we can be free. I would also like to recommend another study titled “My Parents Dropped The Ball; Is There Hope For Me?” This study goes into the reasons that parents treat children badly. I pray it will help and put you onto the road to freedom! Having said that, let’s get started!
Feel Like You Have Started Out in Weakness?
“…out of weakness were made strong…” Hebrews 11:34 (KJV)
If there was ever anyone who is at a disatvantage it would be a victim. A victim is someone who has been done wrong and those who have done them wrong don’t feel sorry or express sorrow for their deeds. It is a helpless feeling to know what someone has done will effect you for a long time. Many people today are truly victims of those who are filled with self and go about their daily lives seeking for ways to satisfy their own desires at the expense of others. We see it on the internet where identity theft is rampant. We see it with child pornography and the abuse of under age children. Frankly, it is everywhere. You in fact, may be going through this lesson because somewhere in life you were victimized and done wrong by someone.
If you are struggling with fear, anger, rejection, depression or any number of things. Is there hope? Is there a way to be free from the past that was so callously given to you without your consent? You may have grown up in an abusive home where you were treated shamefully or even worse, abused. Perhaps you have been divorced or are going through a divorce where your husband/wife has taken advantage of you wrongfully. The situations are endless. There is good news for you if you are one of society’s victims. You don’t have to stay where you are and the power that you thought others had over you is not really that strong. Again, I would like to take you to the word of God as the source of answers for these kinds of lifes’ tragedies.
Jephthah; a Man With a Negative Past
“Now Jephthah the Gileadite was a mighty man of valour, and he was the son of an harlot: and Gilead begat Jephthah.” Judges 11:1 (KJV)
Unto the pages of Gods’ word steps a man who is reffered to as the son of a harlot (prostitute). What a title! Maybe you feel that you have been labeled this way. Did Jephthah have any say in the situation he was born into? No he didn’t. It is ironic to note here that his name means (let go free, to open wide). His name meant deliverance or freedom when in fact he was born into a home where bondage was the normal way of life. How could something so good come from something so bad? The answer is, when God is involved in a man or woman’s life great and marvelous things can happen even though circumstances say otherwise. You see, it really doesn’t matter what title others have put on you, the most important title is the one God gives you. It is his dream and purpose for your life that will produce fantastic results! Things didn’t go well at first for this Biblical victim, in fact they got steadily worse.
Question #1 What would you have done if you were in Jephthah’s shoes?
Things Got Worse Instead of Better
“And Gilead’s wife bare him sons; and his wife’s sons grew up, and they thrust out Jephthah, and said unto him, Thou shalt not inherit in our father’s house; for thou art the son of a strange woman.” Judges 11:2 (KJV)
Because of his status as the son of a harlot and the attitude that he developed there was turmoil and hostility in his home. Matters were even worse for him personally because he probably didn’t even know who his own father was. Eventually he was kicked out of the house to fend for himself. No one wanted him , not mother, step-father or step-brothers and sisters. They were glad to be rid of him. No one knows the loneliness that he experienced or the anger and revenge that filled his heart. He probably thought, “If this is what they think of me then that’s what I will become.” His life spiraled downward and the friends he picked up were not the best.
“Then Jephthah fled from his brethren, and dwelt in the land of Tob: and there were gathered vain men to Jephthah, and went out with him.” Judges 11:3 (KJV)
Jephthah’s life went from bad to worse until he began to think about his situation. He began to reason in his mind and heart that there was a higher purpose in all of this and he turned himself toward God. This was the very thing that made him successful. The reason is that God began to show him the areas of his life that he needed to develop in order to be successful. Herein is a powerful truth. Our success in life is not based on what we can do really well, it is actually based on us developing the areas of our lives where we are weak. You may be good at making lots of money but if you have a weakness in your spending habits, you will not be successful. If you are good at leadership yet you have a problem with pride, that pride can cause you to stay at a place where you can’t excel. Overcoming means being liberated from the weak areas, the areas of sin, and being loosed to become the best that you can be.
Question #2 When things get hard in your life what do you turn to?
You Have a Strong Right and a Weak Left
The story is told of a boxer who started out with a strong right punch to which he attributed his first five victories. He thought he was pretty good until he came up against a skilled and experienced fighter. He barely got a hit in to the other man and was easily beaten. His wise trainer spoke to him after the match and told him, “You have one problem. You don’t know that you have a left hand. You’re using your strong hand and leaving the value of the weaker hand out of it.” The boxer then began to develop his left punch even though it felt uncomfortable to him. As he strengthened his left punch he eventually went on to be a great boxer and even defeated the man that had beaten him before. You too have a strong right punch. That thing you rely on. But what is the thing that continually brings you down? Your weakness. Why not ask God to replace anger and a dominating spirit with a heart of love and peace? Sound awkward? You would be amazed at the change in your life if you would let HIM do it. We all have a strong right punch. We all have a weak left hand too. Every one is different but the principle still applies.
“For the kingdom of heaven is as a man travelling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods.  And unto one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several ability; and straightway took his journey.” Matthew 25:14-15 (KJV)
Jesus spoke of this very same principle. Each of us have been given talents from God. What you do with them is very important. You can squander them or use them to develop more talents. In essence, God is looking for you to eventually develop talents that aren’t there right now! In other words, to develop your left hand. This can only be done through the power of his Spirit! Jephthah had to learn this leasson too. Often those who have been kicked out of the home become self reliant and untrusting of others. The “I did it my way” attitude rules and nothing is allowed in from the outside. This is a weakness that must be overcome through Gods’ power.
Question #3 Is there a weakness in your life that you struggle with? Do you believe that God can and will help you?
Jephthah Trusted in God for His Future
“Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” Galatians 6:7 (KJV)
As you read through the entire chapter of Judges 11 you will see the continuing reference that Jephthah makes to the Lord. Four times he speaks of the Lord and his mighty power. When we turn to God we gain a brand new perspective on life and the things going on around us. It’s as if life takes on a whole new meaning and we see things from a completely different viewpoint. As he turned to God something remarkable happened.
“Then the Spirit of the Lord came upon Jephthah, and he passed over Gilead, and Manasseh, and passed over Mizpeh of Gilead, and from Mizpeh of Gilead he passed over unto the children of Ammon.” Judges 11:29 (KJV)
Jephthah was crowned as the leader of the armies of Israel and God gave them victory. When it was all said and done he became a judge over the entire nation of Israel. He was in essence the President of the country. How could someone so cast down at the first and dealing with so many issues and attitudes come out on top? Simple, he abandoned his victim status and turned his eyes heavenward with faith and trust in God. When he did, God met him there and helped him to victory. The same principles will apply today. You may have been a victim of circumstances outside of your control but life is too short to dwell on the past, even a very bad past. God is the healer of the past, the deliverer of the present and ruler of the future. When we align ourselves with HIM this scripture will apply.
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28 (KJV)
Question #4 Do you think that Jephthah did the right thing by trusting in God for his future?
Will You Trust God With Your Future?
“And Jephthah judged Israel six years. Then died Jephthah the Gileadite, and was buried in one of the cities of Gilead.” Judges 12:7 (KJV)
The story of Jephthah tells a story that happen long ago. True as it is, we need help today. I would like to turn you to the words of Jesus that apply to every one of us.
“Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?  (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.  But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” Matthew 6:31-33 (KJV)
“For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Luke 19:10 (KJV)
“Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” Luke 12:32 (KJV)
I would like to finish this very short and basic study in this area by saying, “You are not alone.” There are many who have gone through what you have. In fact, there was one who knows sorrow like no one else. Jesus Christ taught us by example how to deal with those who would hurt and wound us while he was on the cross.
“And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left.  Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.” Luke 23:33-34 (KJV)
You can know the power of God in your life through forgiveness. Forgiveness will start to heal the past and when you turn to God he will heal your today and all of your tomorrows. In fact, when we forgive we loose the future into Gods’ hand. Why not trust God for your future? He has a beautiful plan just for you. When we don’t forgive we bind the future to the past. Don’t be bound by the past, let God cleanse you and give you freedom.
“If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” John 8:36 (KJV)
Question #5 Are there people in your life that you need to forgive? Will you pray and ask God for the strength to trust HIS leadership?
If this lesson has helped you please let us know. If you have any questions about the material or on any subject please leave it with us and we will contact you through e-mail. If you would like to speak to someone about your situation please leave us information about how to contact you and we will get back with you. Another lesson that may be of help is titled “Forgiveness” that can give you help in your quest to be free from the things that bind you. Thanks for stopping by and may God give you freedom from your past.
Focus on Freedom