Who was Abimelech in the Bible?

People who desire power always seem to outnumber the people who are able to use the power wisely once they have it. Perhaps this is because power has a way to take over and control the person using it. This is especially true in cases of inherited but unmerited power. Abimelech’s life shows us what happens when the hunger for power corrupts judgment.

Abimelech’s position in Gideon’s family as the son of a concubine must have created great tension between him and Gideon’s many other sons. One against 70: such odds can either crush a person or make them ruthless. It’s obvious which direction Abimelech chose. Gideon’s position as warrior and judge had placed Abimelech in an environment of power. Gideon’s death provided an opportunity for his son to seize power. Once the process began, the disastrous results were inevitable. A person’s thirst for power is not satisfied when he gets power, it only becomes more intense. Abimelech’s life was controlled by that thirst. Eventually, he could not tolerate any threat to his power.

By this time ownership had changed. Abimelech no longer had power, power had him. One of the most valuable lessons we can learn here is that our goals control our actions. The amount of control is related to how important the goal is. Abimelech’s most important goal was to have power. His lust for power led him to wipe out not only his brothers but whole cities that would not submit to him. Nothing but death could stop this bloodthirsty drive Abimelech had to conquer. How ironic that he was fatally injured by a woman! The contrast between Abimelech and the great people of the Bible is great. Abimelech wanted to control the nation, while the great people of the Bible were willing to be controlled by God.

Do you allow God to guide control your life? Do you know God? Do you know Jesus?

Are you certain that you are going to heaven? If the answer is no or your not really sure and there is something stirring inside you at this very moment to do this, then all you have to do is say a small prayer and you can be assured of your name being added to the Book of Life. Go to the prayer of salvation and pray the words out loud and believe in your heart and you will be saved.

Abimelech’s story is told in Judges 8:31 – 9:57. He is also mentioned in 2 Samuel 11:21.

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