We find the story of Ehud the deliverer, in Judges, chapter 3.  We read in verse 12, “And the children of Israel did evil again in the sight of the LORD: and the LORD strengthened Eglon the king of Moab against Israel, because they had done evil in the sight of the LORD.”  The children of Israel served under King Eglon for eighteen years before they “cried unto the LORD.”  When they finally turned to the Lord in repentance, we read in verse 15 that “the LORD raised them up a deliverer, Ehud the son of Gera, a Benjamite, a man LEFTHANDED.”  It’s important that we notice that Ehud was left-handed.  In fact, this is the first time that a left-handed man is mentioned in the Bible.

Ehud brought a present to Eglon from the Israelites, but as we read in verse 16, “Ehud made him a dagger which had two edges, of a cubit length; and he did gird it under his raiment upon his RIGHT THIGH.”  The right side was the proper side for a left-handed man to have his sword. It would give him the appearance of being unarmed since the king’s guards would be looking at his left thigh for any weapon he might have.  His dagger was about 18 inches long and could be easily concealed under his robe.

Verse 17 tells us that Eglon was “a very fat man.”  We read in verses 20-22, “And Ehud came unto him; and he was sitting in a summer parlour, which he had for himself alone. And Ehud said, I have a message from God unto thee. And he arose out of his seat. And Ehud put forth his left hand, and took the dagger from his right thigh, and thrust it into his belly: And the haft also went in after the blade; and the fat closed upon the blade, so that he could not draw the dagger out of his belly; and the dirt came out.”

Verses 27-29 show us that after Ehud had escaped, he went to Mt. Ephraim and blew a trumpet to gather the people of Israel.  With their enemy’s king now dead, he led them into battle against the Moabites, killing about 10,000 mighty soldiers.  We then read in verse 30, “So Moab was subdued that day under the hand of Israel. And the land had rest fourscore years.”  So, what lesson do we get from this incredible story?  We might ask, “What’s in this story for me?  How does it influence my life?”

  • Ehud was left-handed, which most people would consider the ‘weak hand’, so it symbolizes the weakness of the one called to serve, deliver, and lead.
  • The two-edged sword is, of course, a type of the Word of God. Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and SHARPER THAN ANY TWOEDGED SWORD, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”
  • Taking the sword with the left hand illustrates how faith realizes our own weakness, but depends on the power of the Word of God.
  • The fatness of Eglon is a symbol of prosperity, the prosperity of the world. The Word of God must be fully plunged into that which is of the world: the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life to destroy it in our eyes, so that we might value only the things of God.
  • As believers, having properly ‘slain’ that which draws our hearts away from the Lord, we are able to overcome the temptations of Satan and the world and, in the greatest practical sense, be conquerors and overcomers in this “present evil world.”
  • Ehud’s father was Gera, which mean ‘meditation.’ Ehud’s name means ‘I will give praise.’  It is through meditation on God’s Word that we are strengthened, emboldened, and brought to that place where our heart’s delight is to praise the One who loved us and saved us from Hell.  (216.2)