For further reading see Judges 4-5
Before the kings, the judges led Israel. Deborah is the only female judge in the Bible. But while many judges are shown to be bad leaders, Deborah is given as a prominent example of a good leader. She is a woman of many talents: prophet, judge, and military leader. She is called a mother in Israel – a counterpart to the patriarchs. No passive margarine ad mum, her motherhood is tied here to her military leadership. While Barak, the man under her command, sometimes hesitates, Deborah is decisive. She is the answer to the desperate prayers for rescue by an oppressed people. After her victory there is peace for 40 years – twice the time of the previous oppression. There is no suggestion that a man should have been judge. Rather, in Deborah we are shown one of the finest leaders in the Bible. Deborah confounds our ideas of womanhood and leadership.
Question: Think of the women you know. Is there a woman who needs to be encouraged in her leadership, for the glory of God?
Prayer: God, your word often opens up new understandings. Help me in your Spirit to understand what Deborah has to say to us about your work today. Amen.