Anything you hold more closely than God and give more time to could be considered an idol. God is jealous and will leave you to your own devices if you chase after them rather than Him. What’s even sadder is the children; they only follow what they see, and if you don’t put God first, they will follow after whatever makes them feel good rather than God. With all the main characters gone, Moses and Joshua, it didn’t take long before Israel fell into the trap of the Canaanites. The children didn’t see or know God as the elders did, so they didn’t fear Him as they should have. Israel didn’t drive out the Canaanites as God had warned them, and if they weren’t going to make the effort to get rid of them, he wasn’t going to do it for them. God is so good that he sent an angel to advise them of their foolishness, which I believe was probably Jesus because he spoke the words in the first person rather than speaking them as if God had said them. They wept upon hearing his words and then made the appropriate sacrifices; that seemed short-lived, so God raised up judges, but they wouldn’t listen to them, so he let their enemies overtake them.
The lesson for this chapter is for us not to allow anything to come between us and our worshipping of God. Whatever your distraction is, make sure it doesn’t override your dedication to God. If you do, you may be in danger of Him allowing you to reap the consequences of what you sow.
And an angel of the LORD came up from Gilgal to Bochim, and said, I made you to go up out of Egypt, and have brought you unto the land which I sware unto your fathers; and I said, I will never break my covenant with you. And ye shall make no league with the inhabitants of this land; ye shall throw down their altars: but ye have not obeyed my voice: why have ye done this? Wherefore I also said, I will not drive them out from before you; but they shall be as thorns in your sides, and their gods shall be a snare unto you. Judges 2:1-3