|Judges 5:12 says – “Awake, awake, Deborah: awake, awake…” Are you a “Deborah” that hears the call of the Spirit? What is that call? It is the call to intercede for the people of God – to intercede and then to lead them out of captivity!
Isaiah 28:23 says – “Give ye ear, and hear my voice; hearken, and hear my speech.”
Psalm 49:1-2 says – “Hear this, all ye people; give ear, all ye inhabitants of the world. Both low and high, rich and poor, together.”
Matthew 13:9 says – “Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.”
In all of these Scriptures, God was calling the people to hear and seek to understand what He was about to say. It was their duty to pay attention. What He was about to say was of utmost importance, and it was necessary for them to incline their ear to it.
In Isaiah 32, there was another call given to “hear My voice” – to “give ear unto My speech.” This time, it was specifically spoken to the women of Judah.
Did they “hear” what God had to say? Unfortunately not! They were found “dull of hearing” at a time when judgment was about to fall on their land. When they should have been alert, they were asleep – intoxicated by the world’s pleasures – if you will.
We read of their pitiful state in Isaiah 32:9-11 which says – “Rise up, ye women that are at ease; hear My voice, ye careless daughters; give ear unto My speech. Many days and years shall ye be troubled, ye careless women: for the vintage shall fail, the gathering shall not come. Tremble, ye women that are at ease; be troubled, ye careless ones: strip you, and make you bare, and gird sackcloth upon your loins.”
God was calling these women to “hear My voice” and “give ear unto My speech,” yet they did not hearken. Why not?
The Prophet Isaiah answers that question with his descriptive words for these women – “ye women that are at ease”…”ye careless daughters”…”ye careless women”… and “ye careless ones.” Note that in three verses of Scripture, he repeats the words “at ease” and “careless” a number of times.
This is absolutely amazing! What an indictment this was for these women! The Prophet certainly was “hot under the collar” when addressing them, wouldn’t you agree? He was upset…he was disturbed…he was angry! And rightfully so! God had a message for them, and they were totally oblivious to what He was saying. They were off in “Lulla Land” when judgment and disaster was about to fall on their nation. When they should have been praying or “standing in the gap” for their people, they were off playing!
“Rise up…” “Awake, awake, Deborah: awake, awake…”
But who really heard the call?
The Prophet had to be faithful to deliver the message – even if it did fall on deaf ears – “Many days and years shall ye be troubled…for the vintage shall fail; the gathering shall not come…Tremble…be troubled…strip you, and make you bare, and gird sackcloth upon your loins.”
Here they were enjoying the easy life when judgment was about to fall. Their nation – Judah – was about to be invaded and destroyed by the Assyrians.
They were “at ease” and “careless” – living in pleasure… wanton… surrounded by the confidence that affluence gives…on beds of down…living a life of self-indulgence…living securely… trusting in wealth and riches…confident that things will continue as they are… completely preoccupied with the world… unconcerned about the present or future state of their nation… and having no thought or notion of destruction coming upon them.
These women were not interested in spiritual things. Nor were they allowing God to be the Lord over their lives. They were totally complacent towards Him – while scoffing at His warnings or simply ignoring them. They didn’t care what their spiritual state was at this point. They were enjoying their self-focused life. Their minds and hearts were totally preoccupied with the things of this life. They lived in vanity and frivolity – despising the Lord … thinking only of their self-gratification … living only for the present moment … surrounding themselves with every luxury…and delighting themselves in the world.
They were soon to realize the folly of forgetting God and the danger of thinking only of carnal pleasures and self-indulgence. Their false confidence and false optimism was about to catch up with them.
“Many days and a year ye shall be troubled” – This denotes a very long period of time – a long duration of troubles. Imagine that! Overnight, they would go from merriment to abject sorrow… from wealth to utter poverty…from ease to unbearable torment. The calamities coming upon their nation would cause them to “tremble” and “be troubled.” They refused to “tremble” when God called them, so they would end up “being troubled” when judgment fell on their land.
“Tremble” and “be troubled.” The “vintage” – the large part of their wealth – was going to fail. The “gathering” of the other fruits would not come. Their fields and vineyards would be destroyed by invading armies, and all the other means of sustenance would come to an end. Overnight, they would become penniless and be without any food.
Do we wonder why the Prophet strongly admonished them to “strip” off their joyful and splendid clothes and gird themselves with garments of mourning?
The sad thing about this whole scenario is that it all could have been averted. Judgment could have been avoided.
If only these women would have “risen up” or “awakened” when God called them to the task! If only they would not have been “at ease” and “careless” and heard the call to intercede for their nation! If only they would have had “ears to hear” the warnings from God! Things would have been different for them and their children!
The end of the story is that they lost it all! They sowed to the flesh and reaped corruption!
What about you, O “Deborah”? Are you hearing what the Spirit of the Lord is saying to the churches of today? Are you hearing the call? Can you discern the warnings of judgment to come? Are you spiritually alert to know the state of your nation?
What are you doing about it? How will you respond to this message that you just read?
Can you hear the call of God to pray like never before?
Or are you like the women of Judah – “at ease” and “careless” – on the brink of total disaster?
Your prayers can and will avail much.
But will you pray?
And then will you lead God’s people out of captivity?