The Costliness of Isolation

What is a person suppose to make of Judges 18? There are many a good lesson to be had from the migration of the Danites away from the land the Lord gave them. Thinking they knew better, they left the call of God to follow their own plans.

Their demise ends up being one of unhampered idolatry that never seems to find a cure, until they have totally disappeared from the closing book of Revelation 7. There is no seal of God on the foreheads of the Danites.

But today, I am challenged more by the people of Laish (located in the orange northern region marked Dan on the map found in yesterday’s posting). I’m sure I have idolatry that needs to be contended with, but the issue of isolation or withdrawal from accountability seems the greater likelihood.

In verse seven the vulnerability most notable to the enemy of Laish was that:

“they dwelt safely, quiet and secure. There were no rulers in the land who might put them to shame for anything. They had no ties with anyone.”

We often think we would enjoy time to ourselves. No one telling me what to do, or challenging me, or sharpening me. What’s the big deal with fellowship, anyway?

Verse 28 shows the result of the isolated living that the people of Laish engaged in:

“There was no deliverer, because it was far from Sidon, and they had no ties with anyone.”

And so it was, the idolatrous, rebel-rousing, God-defying Danites were able to sneak in and strike them by the edge of the sword and burn the city with fire. Laish was so razed that Dan reconstructed and gave it the new name of Dan!

No doubt, isolation seems like the easy way to go. Do your own thing, when you want to do it, the way you want to do it. But this chapter shows me…it’s costly.

O Lord, help me to be content where You want me, and not to go searching for greener pastures outside of Your will. Please help me to establish ties with other people, and avoid the isolation black hole.

PS: brace yourself for tomorrow’s chapter…it’s a real gut wrencher

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3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Trinka on January 27, 2008 at 11:32 am

    I find isolation as a huge temptation. I enjoy time alone to begin with, and in the winter, it’s cold outside and dark, and I don’t really feel that hot and and and and and ….Another evening with the TV …!

    Reply

  2. Posted by Hae-Kwang on January 27, 2008 at 2:35 pm

    Maybe the category of isolation has various levels of degrees where being apart from others for a very long duration, like this example in Sacred Scripture, is the extreme end?I don’t like being by myself for tOo long because it gets boring, etc. but there are times when the communication channel with God seems to be stronger, and when thought-levels get even deeper, when it’s just me. It’s almost like being out in nature by one’s self, where it’s just creation and you, and traces of God’s fingerprints are seen where you normally wouldn’t have noticed.As long as one returns to the community after little time apart for prayer and thought, and just to be with the heavenly, maybe a little time apart isn’t so bad?

    Reply

  3. Posted by Deborah on January 28, 2008 at 4:30 am

    I think you’re right Hae. Think of how often Jesus drew aside to a solitary place. Or even Paul having 14 years in the desert. There is a definite calling to a time of quietness with the Lord. But even in those times, I think we still have “ties”. People who know us and are aware of that drawing aside. Jesus had His disciples who knew where He was and tried to have His back.In this passage it just struck me as a group of people who isolated strictly for the joy of doing things their own way. Thanks for visiting too Hae. I always appreciate the things you share.

    Reply

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