Abimelech said his rule over Shechem would be better than the 70 sons of Jerubbaal. When Shechem's leaders gave Abimelech 70 pieces of silver from the house of Baal-berith. he hired worthless men to follow him. After killing the 7o sons except Jotham who hid himself, men of Shechem made Abimelech king (Judges 9:1-5). Not following justice, lovingkindness and walking humbly with God produce ego, selfishness and murder.
Jotham told men of Shechem a story to help them consider whether they practiced truth and integrity in making Abimelech king. He emphasized that his father, Gideon, risked his life in delivering them from Midian. Their response to Gideon's kindness was killing his 7o sons (Judges 9:7-20). We can get an opposing point of view across through parables or telling a story. Without justice, you lose truth and integrity.
While Abimelech ruled over Israel three years, God sent an evil spirit between Abimelech and Shechem. As a result, men of Shechem acted deceptively with Abimelech to avenge his killing of the 70 sons. They robbed all who passed along the road (Judges 9:22-25). Without love, distrust, deception and stealing occur.
When men of Shechem put their trust in Gaal son of Ebed, they went into house of their god and cursed Abimelech. They refused to serve him and desired people come under different authority (Judges 9:26-29). By not walking humbly with God, rebellion, slander and gossip occur.
Zebul ruler of city burned with anger and sent messengers to Abimelech deceitfully saying, “Gaal and his relatives are stirring up the city against you.” Abimelech ambushed men of Shechem, razed the city and sowed it with salt. He killed 1000 men and women hiding in chamber of temple of El-berith (Judges 9:30-49). Not practicing justice, lovingkindness and walking humbly with God lead to total chaos and destruction of a city.
A women threw a millstone on Abimelech crushing his skull. When men of Israel saw Abimelech dead, each departed to his home. God repaid Abimelech's wickedness and curse of Jotham came upon them (Judges 9:50-57). God repays sin in equal measure to how people treat others both individually and corporately in your city.
Romans 1:22-32 reviews the principles from this chapter how a darkened mind (no justice--vs. 22-25), degraded emotions (no lovingkindness--vs. 26-27) and deadened will (not walking humbly with God--vs. 28-32) lead to total breakdown in our cities.
How are the principles of a darkened mind, degraded emotions and deadened will being expressed in your life? Ask God to show you at least one thing on how to embrace truth, love and humility.