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Judges 21:8-15

Provision for Their Survival

And they said, “What one is there of the tribes of Israel who did not come up to the Lord at Mizpah?” And behold, no one had come to the camp from Jabesh-gilead to the assembly. For when the people were [d]numbered, behold, not one of the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead was there. 10 And the congregation sent 12,000 of the valiant warriors there, and commanded them, saying, “Go and strike the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead with the edge of the sword, with the women and the little ones. 11 This is the thing that you shall do: you shall utterly destroy every man and every woman who has [e]lain with a man.” 12 And they found among the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead 400 young virgins who had not known a man by lying with [f]him; and they brought them to the camp at Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan.

13 Then the whole congregation sent word and spoke to the sons of Benjamin who were at the rock of Rimmon, and proclaimed peace to them. 14 Benjamin returned at that time, and they gave them the women whom they had kept alive from the women of Jabesh-gilead; yet they [g]were not enough for them. 15 And the people were sorry for Benjamin because the Lord had made a breach in the tribes of Israel.

There is a less-than-obvious lesson here. After all the fighting, and nearly wiping out all traces of the sons of Benjamin, the other tribes did not neglect their family bonds in the end.

Though Benjamin had been unfaithful, had become detestable and shielded the wicked from punishment, they were still family. So after all the fighting, their brothers did everything they could to make peace with their brothers, even going and finding wives for them.

More often than we’d like, we have conflicts with our fellow man (and woman). Far more than we’d like, those conflicts are with those who are family (by blood or through Jesus). When the dust settles, don’t neglect your family bonds. Make peace with them, and do everything you can to show that peace is your heart’s desire.

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