Consequences of Incomplete Conquests

The Benjamites, however, did not drive out the Jebusites, who were living in Jerusalem; to this day the Jebusites live there with the Benjamites. Judges 1:21

The Benjamites are the first tribe mentioned in Judges that did not drive out all the inhabitants of the land allotted to them. While the tribes controlled their lands, eight of the western tribes are mentioned in Joshua or Judges for not completely driving out the inhabitants from their land. They made the remaining habitants wood cutters and water carrier slaves. Perhaps they wanted the forced laborers to do the work so they didn’t have to do it, or maybe they just got complacent. Israel’s failure to completely drive out the inhabitants as God ordered exposes them to the lingering presence of pagan influences which over years would draw many Israelites away from the God of their fathers to the worship of false gods. They broke their covenant with God which led to God no longer being the force to drive them out, instead the people would be a thorn in their sides and a snare for Israel. We should take a lesson from this for our lives. We need to drive out behaviors and actions that lead us to sin. If we allow them to linger in our lives we will likely get burned, and God’s glory will be diminished because of our actions. If you are easily tempted, leave the kitchen. Purpose in your heart to follow only the Lord in all you do. Lean on him. Turn to Him and He will turn to you. He will not leave you nor forsake you. We serve a good and faithful God.