It’s often what isn’t mentioned that really tells the story. Take, for example, a job applicant who omits details from his previous job; it’s probably because those details might make him look bad.
We don’t know for sure, but the Bible’s short record of Abdon might be saying as much by what it doesn’t say as by what it does.
Abdon (whose name means “Service”) must have been a very wealthy man. It is impressive enough that he was able to father – and raise – 40 sons; it is truly incredible that he was able to provide each of them – and each of his 30 grandsons – with his own donkey to ride. In today’s terms, it would be like buying each of them his own car!
But, curiously absent from Abdon’s record is any mention of his deeds or of Israel’s deliverance from any oppressing nation. That may be because he never really performed any amazing deeds or helped to rescue Israel from anyone. He may have simply been the wealthiest, most influential person available at the time Israel needed someone to serve as judge.
We don’t know for sure, but that seems to be the implication of the Bible’s account.
Abdon served for 8yrs.
We see it happen around us regularly. The leader isn’t always the one best equipped for the job/task at hand. Sometimes the leader is chosen/elected – or self-promoted – because he has the most money and can buy the most influence, or because of his family name, or because he was in the right place at the right time.
Good leaders are those who have prepared for the task at hand, and have the best interests of those he serves in mind.
The best leaders are those whom God has put in place and who seek God’s will in their decision making.
You can read Abdon’s story in Judges 12:13-15.