“And Baraq said, ‘If you will go with me, I will go; if you will not go with me, I will not go.’”
We have spoken already of the theme of this account…that of men not standing up and taking leadership in the life of Israel. Here we see Baraq, the flash of lightning, showing his true colors. This is the reason that he did not obey God’s command in the first place. And here, even after the Judge and prophetess is confronting him in his disobedience, we find Baraq still being obstinate and stubborn in disobedience. Such is what happens when one places oneself before God.
Lest in hindsight, we condemn Baraq based on his cowardice and disobedience, we must be reminded that his actions are little different than men in America today. In our culture women tend to be the driving force when it comes to the spirituality of their families and many men are absent or otherwise too preoccupied to work or projects to be bothered. Many men take Baraq’s exact attitude toward Deborah when it applies to church worship on Sunday morning — “I’ll go if you really want me to, but unless you go, I won’t go.”
Yet, as men, we are called to be the spiritual leaders of our homes. We should be setting the bar for our families and living out a model of spirituality and faithfulness for our children and our wives to imitate. We should value the word of God and commit ourselves to studying it so that we can teach our families and then lead our families in the wisdom of the Word. Yet, more often than not, men in the west — men who are professing Christians — do not do so. Thus, if there is repenting to do, Baraq is not alone.