The Book of Judges 15-21

Judges 15

Jdg 15:1 But it came to pass within a while after, in the time of wheat harvest, that Samson visited his wife with a kid; and he said, I will go in to my wife into the chamber. But her father would not suffer him to go in. Samson thinks twice about his wife and now wants to sleep with her. 

Jdg 15:2 And her father said, I verily thought that thou hadst utterly hated her; therefore I gave her to thy companion: is not her younger sister fairer than she? take her, I pray thee, instead of her. Her father tells Samson that he gave his daughter to his best man because he thought he hated her for what she had done. I think the father knew that Samson was a little upset again and offers him his younger daughter who was even more beautiful.

Jdg 15:3 And Samson said concerning them, Now shall I be more blameless than the Philistines, though I do them a displeasure. Well, Samson is even more upset with the Philistines now.

Jdg 15:4 And Samson went and caught three hundred foxes, and took firebrands, and turned tail to tail, and put a firebrand in the midst between two tails. Foxes: Jackals.

Jdg 15:5 And when he had set the brands on fire, he let them go into the standing corn of the Philistines, and burnt up both the shocks, and also the standing corn, with the vineyards and olives. The jackals ran through the fields with the lit torches tied to their tails and burnt everything down in the Philistine fields. 

Jdg 15:6 Then the Philistines said, Who hath done this? And they answered, Samson, the son in law of the Timnite, because he had taken his wife, and given her to his companion. And the Philistines came up, and burnt her and her father with fire. The Philistines retaliate and burn down the house of Samson's wife and father-in-law.

Jdg 15:7 And Samson said unto them, Though ye have done this, yet will I be avenged of you, and after that I will cease. Samson threatens the Philistines with revenge.

Jdg 15:8 And he smote them hip and thigh with a great slaughter: and he went down and dwelt in the top of the rock Etam. Samson kicked some serious Philistine butt. Then he went to live in a cave at Etam. (meaning hawk ground).

Jdg 15:9 Then the Philistines went up, and pitched in Judah, and spread themselves in Lehi. Now the Philistines are getting ready to retaliate against Judah.

Jdg 15:10 And the men of Judah said, Why are ye come up against us? And they answered, To bind Samson are we come up, to do to him as he hath done to us. The men of Judah are concerned and asked why they are being attacked? The Philistines are there to pay back Samson they reply.

Jdg 15:11 Then three thousand men of Judah went to the top of the rock Etam, and said to Samson, Knowest thou not that the Philistines are rulers over us? what is this that thou hast done unto us? And he said unto them, As they did unto me, so have I done unto them. Then 3,000 men of Judah went down to confront Samson about what he had done. Samson tells them, an eye for an eye.

Jdg 15:12 And they said unto him, We are come down to bind thee, that we may deliver thee into the hand of the Philistines. And Samson said unto them, Swear unto me, that ye will not fall upon me yourselves. The men of Judah came to bind Samson and turn him over to the Philistines. Samson agrees, but under one condition. That the men of Judah would not kill him.

Jdg 15:13 And they spake unto him, saying, No; but we will bind thee fast, and deliver thee into their hand: but surely we will not kill thee. And they bound him with two new cords, and brought him up from the rock. The men of Judah agree and tie him up with rope delivering him to the Philistines.

Jdg 15:14 And when he came unto Lehi, the Philistines shouted against him: and the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon him, and the cords that were upon his arms became as flax that was burnt with fire, and his bands loosed from off his hands. They deliver Samson at Lehi, and the Philistines were shouting in triumph. But, the Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon Samson and he snapped the ropes as if they were burnt flax. 

Jdg 15:15 And he found a new jawbone of an ass, and put forth his hand, and took it, and slew a thousand men therewith. Samson picks up a jawbone of an ass and kills 1,000 Philistines.

Jdg 15:16 And Samson said, With the jawbone of an ass, heaps upon heaps, with the jaw of an ass have I slain a thousand men. Samson is going to boast a little for his victory over the Philistines, but it was God who gave him the victory.

Jdg 15:17 And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking, that he cast away the jawbone out of his hand, and called that place Ramathlehi. The place were Samson slaughtered the Philistines became know as Ramathlehi (better know as Jawbone Hill).

Jdg 15:18 And he was sore athirst, and called on the LORD, and said, Thou hast given this great deliverance into the hand of thy servant: and now shall I die for thirst, and fall into the hand of the uncircumcised? Samson accomplished this great victory but now he thinks he will die of thirst. "It won't happen." Was this a reference to the thirst Christ experienced on the cross. After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst. (John 19:28). Jesus knew that His mission was now finished, and to fulfill Scripture He said, "I am thirsty." The last prediction (Psalm 69:21). The difference here is that Samson is winning a little, where as Christ was quoting scripture. "God is always in control."

Jdg 15:19 But God clave an hollow place that was in the jaw, and there came water thereout; and when he had drunk, his spirit came again, and he revived: wherefore he called the name thereof Enhakkore, which is in Lehi unto this day. Samson gets his water to drink from the Lord, and he named the place Enhakkore (fountain of One calling). When we thirst for truth, God has given us the fountains of living water. "Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit." (John 4:14, 7:38).

Jdg 15:20 And he judged Israel in the days of the Philistines twenty years. Samson judged Israel for twenty years and one of his greatest challenges yet is about to take place. "He meets Delilah."

Judges 16

Jdg 16:1 Then went Samson to Gaza, and saw there an harlot, and went in unto her. Gaza was about 35 miles south of Samson's native place. It was a place of great strength and importance; and successively belonged to the Philistines, Hebrews, Chaldeans, and Persians; which latter defended it for two months against Alexander the great, who finally took and destroyed it. It was afterwards rebuilt, and alternately possessed by the Egyptians, Syrians, and Jews. The present town, which the Arabs call Razza, is situated on an eminence, and is rendered picturesque by the number of fine minarets which rise majestically above the buildings, with beautiful date trees interspersed. Samson goes to Gaza and spends the night with a prostitute. (Samson could never control his passion and was an easy mark for a woman).

Jdg 16:2 And it was told the Gazites, saying, Samson is come hither. And they compassed him in, and laid wait for him all night in the gate of the city, and were quiet all the night, saying, In the morning, when it is day, we shall kill him. The word got around real quick about Samson and the men of Gaza wanted to catch him off guard and kill him in the morning.

Jdg 16:3 And Samson lay till midnight, and arose at midnight, and took the doors of the gate of the city, and the two posts, and went away with them, bar and all, and put them upon his shoulders, and carried them up to the top of an hill that is before Hebron. Did Samson get tipped off that the men of Gaza were waiting for him, or did he receive a warning for God? He is about to play a little prank of the people of Gaza. With his enormous strength he lifts the doors of the town gate, posts, bar and all and puts them on his shoulders and carried them off to the top of a hill across from Hebron. (Samson was not only lustful, but he had a good sense of humor).

Jdg 16:4 And it came to pass afterward, that he loved a woman in the valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah. Some time later, Samson meets the love of his life. (At least he thought it was). Her name was Delilah, meaning "languishing, or feeble." 

Jdg 16:5 And the lords of the Philistines came up unto her, and said unto her, Entice him, and see wherein his great strength lieth, and by what means we may prevail against him, that we may bind him to afflict him: and we will give thee every one of us eleven hundred pieces of silver. Here comes the enticement towards Delilah. Note the eleven hundred: (Eleven is the number of defective administration). The Philistines want her to find out the secret behind Samson's strength. (It's not going to be what they find out). 

Jdg 16:6 And Delilah said to Samson, Tell me, I pray thee, wherein thy great strength lieth, and wherewith thou mightest be bound to afflict thee. Delilah begins her little covert plan to find out what makes Samson tick.

Jdg 16:7 And Samson said unto her, If they bind me with seven green withs that were never dried, then shall I be weak, and be as another man. Samson is going to play along with her for a while.

Jdg 16:8 Then the lords of the Philistines brought up to her seven green withs which had not been dried, and she bound him with them. Samson lets Delilah tie him up. (Maybe he thinks it's a sexual thing). 

Jdg 16:9 Now there were men lying in wait, abiding with her in the chamber. And she said unto him, The Philistines be upon thee, Samson. And he brake the withs, as a thread of tow is broken when it toucheth the fire. So his strength was not known. While Samson is waiting for a little fun with Delilah, she screams out to the Philistine men she had hiding out in the house. "Samson, they have come to capture you." Samson snaps the ropes like burning string, so the secret of his strength was not discovered at this time.

Jdg 16:10 And Delilah said unto Samson, Behold, thou hast mocked me, and told me lies: now tell me, I pray thee, wherewith thou mightest be bound. Delilah feels a little mocked by Samson, but she is persistent.

Jdg 16:11 And he said unto her, If they bind me fast with new ropes that never were occupied, then shall I be weak, and be as another man. Samson plays along.

Jdg 16:12 Delilah therefore took new ropes, and bound him therewith, and said unto him, The Philistines be upon thee, Samson. And there were liers in wait abiding in the chamber. And he brake them from off his arms like a thread. Same as in verse 9. 

Jdg 16:13 And Delilah said unto Samson, Hitherto thou hast mocked me, and told me lies: tell me wherewith thou mightest be bound. And he said unto her, If thou weavest the seven locks of my head with the web. Samson plays with her a little more, but he is getting closer to the truth about his hair. "Watch out Samson."

Jdg 16:14 And she fastened it with the pin, and said unto him, The Philistines be upon thee, Samson. And he awaked out of his sleep, and went away with the pin of the beam, and with the web. Samson frees himself again.

Jdg 16:15 And she said unto him, How canst thou say, I love thee, when thine heart is not with me? thou hast mocked me these three times, and hast not told me wherein thy great strength lieth. Time for Delilah to change her tactics. Probably pouting and using her tears of love to soften Samson up.

Jdg 16:16 And it came to pass, when she pressed him daily with her words, and urged him, so that his soul was vexed unto death; Well, that didn't work on Samson, so she began the nagging day after day. That's all it takes, no man can handle that for long. (Sooner or later they give in).

Jdg 16:17 That he told her all his heart, and said unto her, There hath not come a razor upon mine head; for I have been a Nazarite unto God from my mother's womb: if I be shaven, then my strength will go from me, and I shall become weak, and be like any other man. Wow, Samson spills it all out to Delilah about his secret strength. Well, almost everything. Samson's strength was really from God, his hair only showed his commitment to God as a Nazirite.

Jdg 16:18 And when Delilah saw that he had told her all his heart, she sent and called for the lords of the Philistines, saying, Come up this once, for he hath shewed me all his heart. Then the lords of the Philistines came up unto her, and brought money in their hand. Delilah tells the Philistines she knows the secret and to return with her payoff. Good rule of thumb, "never trust anyone but Jesus Christ."

Jdg 16:19 And she made him sleep upon her knees; and she called for a man, and she caused him to shave off the seven locks of his head; and she began to afflict him, and his strength went from him. I think she put him to sleep with more than a lullaby. They shave his locks and Delilah begins to afflict him. 

Jdg 16:20 And she said, The Philistines be upon thee, Samson. And he awoke out of his sleep, and said, I will go out as at other times before, and shake myself. And he wist not that the LORD was departed from him. Uh Oh... Samson finally messed up big time. He wakes up at the threat of the Philistines and finds out his strength is gone. "The Lord had left him." (Something we as Christians would never want to hear).

Jdg 16:21 But the Philistines took him, and put out his eyes, and brought him down to Gaza, and bound him with fetters of brass; and he did grind in the prison house. The Philistines finally capture Samson and gouge his eyes out. They bind him with bronze chains and put him in prison to grind grain.

Jdg 16:22 Howbeit the hair of his head began to grow again after he was shaven. Samson coming back to spiritual strength because God is at work in his life again. (God isn't finished with Samson, or the Philistines).

Jdg 16:23 Then the lords of the Philistines gathered them together for to offer a great sacrifice unto Dagon their god, and to rejoice: for they said, Our god hath delivered Samson our enemy into our hand. The Philistines party on as they worship their fish god "Dagon." They think this idol has given them victory over Samson. Big mistake!

Jdg 16:24 And when the people saw him, they praised their god: for they said, Our god hath delivered into our hands our enemy, and the destroyer of our country, which slew many of us. Praising their false god and drinking wine.

Jdg 16:25 And it came to pass, when their hearts were merry, that they said, Call for Samson, that he may make us sport. And they called for Samson out of the prison house; and he made them sport: and they set him between the pillars. Now that they are feeling good and a little drunk they want some entertainment. So, they bring out Samson to amuse themselves. They put him between the pillars supporting the roof to mock and humiliate him. Another big mistake!

Jdg 16:26 And Samson said unto the lad that held him by the hand, Suffer me that I may feel the pillars whereupon the house standeth, that I may lean upon them. Samson gets a little guidance from a young servant. Remember, he is blind now.

Jdg 16:27 Now the house was full of men and women; and all the lords of the Philistines were there; and there were upon the roof about three thousand men and women, that beheld while Samson made sport. We have a full house filled with people and Philistine rulers. There was over 3,000 men and women on the roof alone.

Jdg 16:28 And Samson called unto the LORD, and said, O Lord GOD, remember me, I pray thee, and strengthen me, I pray thee, only this once, O God, that I may be at once avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes. Samson makes his plea to God one last time. When you repent, God is back on your side.

Jdg 16:29 And Samson took hold of the two middle pillars upon which the house stood, and on which it was borne up, of the one with his right hand, and of the other with his left. Samson feels the returning of the Spirit of God.

Jdg 16:30 And Samson said, Let me die with the Philistines. And he bowed himself with all his might; and the house fell upon the lords, and upon all the people that were therein. So the dead which he slew at his death were more than they which he slew in his life. Samson prays to the Heavenly Father to let him die with the Philistines. Samson is about to sacrifice his life with the help of the Lord in order to get the victory. With a mighty push, he brings down the temple on the rulers and all the people. (Over 3,000 people in all).

Jdg 16:31 Then his brethren and all the house of his father came down, and took him, and brought him up, and buried him between Zorah and Eshtaol in the buryingplace of Manoah his father. And he judged Israel twenty years. His relatives brought his body back home and buried him between Zorah and Eshtaol where his father was buried. Samson judged Israel for twenty years before he met his death.

Judges 17

In the intro we said that some of the events recorded in Judges are not in chronological order. This is one of them, said to be in the time just after Joshua, and an earlier time than Samson. However, we know for sure that it happened when there was no king in Israel. (Judges 17:6).

Jdg 17:1 And there was a man of mount Ephraim, whose name was Micah. Micah: (who is like God), is not the same as Micah the prophet who wrote the book of Micah. This man lived in the hill country of Ephraim where Joshua was buried. (Joshua 24:30).

Jdg 17:2 And he said unto his mother, The eleven hundred shekels of silver that were taken from thee, about which thou cursedst, and spakest of also in mine ears, behold, the silver is with me; I took it. And his mother said, Blessed be thou of the LORD, my son. Micah must have stolen the silver from his mother and either felt guilty, or scared because of the curse. It appears she takes back her curse and blesses her son Micah because he came clean and admitted to the theft. 

Jdg 17:3 And when he had restored the eleven hundred shekels of silver to his mother, his mother said, I had wholly dedicated the silver unto the LORD from my hand for my son, to make a graven image and a molten image: now therefore I will restore it unto thee. The son gives back the silver and she dedicates it to the Lord in honor of her son. But what did she do?

Jdg 17:4 Yet he restored the money unto his mother; and his mother took two hundred shekels of silver, and gave them to the founder, who made thereof a graven image and a molten image: and they were in the house of Micah. She turns it into a idol, a graven image. (Not to pleasing to God). 

Jdg 17:5 And the man Micah had an house of gods, and made an ephod, and teraphim, and consecrated one of his sons, who became his priest. Now Micah sets up a shrine for his idol. Ephod: High priests shoulder piece. Then Micah makes one of his sons his own personal priest. Remember, Micah is from the tribe of Ephraim. (Priests were from the tribe of Levi). Micah chose the priest, there was no calling from God. 

Jdg 17:6 In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes. Straying from the laws of God with no one to guide them.

Jdg 17:7 And there was a young man out of Bethlehemjudah of the family of Judah, who was a Levite, and he sojourned there. Here we a Levite of the family of Judah. (of the tribe of Judah by his mother; and of that of Levi by his father).

Jdg 17:8 And the man departed out of the city from Bethlehemjudah to sojourn where he could find a place: and he came to mount Ephraim to the house of Micah, as he journeyed. He travels to Bethlehem in search of a place to live and came upon Micah's house.

Jdg 17:9 And Micah said unto him, Whence comest thou? And he said unto him, I am a Levite of Bethlehemjudah, and I go to sojourn where I may find a place. The two introduce themselves.

Jdg 17:10 And Micah said unto him, Dwell with me, and be unto me a father and a priest, and I will give thee ten shekels of silver by the year, and a suit of apparel, and thy victuals. So the Levite went in. Micah makes him an offer to be his priest. (Micah knows that priests come from the tribe of Levi).

Jdg 17:11 And the Levite was content to dwell with the man; and the young man was unto him as one of his sons. 

Jdg 17:12 And Micah consecrated the Levite; and the young man became his priest, and was in the house of Micah. The Levite becomes Micah's personal priest.

Jdg 17:13 Then said Micah, Now know I that the LORD will do me good, seeing I have a Levite to my priest. Micah thinks he has the answer for God's blessings now that he has his own Levite priest. Will do me good: It won't turn out that good for Micah. He forgot one thing, he still has his silver idol.

Judges 18

Jdg 18:1 In those days there was no king in Israel: and in those days the tribe of the Danites sought them an inheritance to dwell in; for unto that day all their inheritance had not fallen unto them among the tribes of Israel. Danites: From the tribe of Dan. Looking for some land to settle in.

Jdg 18:2 And the children of Dan sent of their family five men from their coasts, men of valour, from Zorah, and from Eshtaol, to spy out the land, and to search it; and they said unto them, Go, search the land: who when they came to mount Ephraim, to the house of Micah, they lodged there. Sent their scouts to check out the land and they came upon Micah's house and spent the night. 

Jdg 18:3 When they were by the house of Micah, they knew the voice of the young man the Levite: and they turned in thither, and said unto him, Who brought thee hither? and what makest thou in this place? and what hast thou here? Inquiring about a young Levite that was there. (Noticed his accent).

Jdg 18:4 And he said unto them, Thus and thus dealeth Micah with me, and hath hired me, and I am his priest.  

Jdg 18:5 And they said unto him, Ask counsel, we pray thee, of God, that we may know whether our way which we go shall be prosperous. Looking for a little councel from the Levite priest. (They want to know if God is with them on their journey).

Jdg 18:6 And the priest said unto them, Go in peace: before the LORD is your way wherein ye go. The priest tells them to go in peace and the Lord is with them. (Does he really know by consulting God, or is he just telling them what they want to hear). 

Jdg 18:7 Then the five men departed, and came to Laish, and saw the people that were therein, how they dwelt careless, after the manner of the Zidonians, quiet and secure; and there was no magistrate in the land, that might put them to shame in any thing; and they were far from the Zidonians, and had no business with any man. They moved to Laish (also called Leshem), where the people were living care free lives like the Sidonians. (The people were wealthy, peaceful, and secure).

Jdg 18:8 And they came unto their brethren to Zorah and Eshtaol: and their brethren said unto them, What say ye? What's going on there? 

Jdg 18:9 And they said, Arise, that we may go up against them: for we have seen the land, and, behold, it is very good: and are ye still? be not slothful to go, and to enter to possess the land. They want to attack the land because they think it would be an easy take.

Jdg 18:10 When ye go, ye shall come unto a people secure, and to a large land: for God hath given it into your hands; a place where there is no want of any thing that is in the earth. The land is real good and the people are laid back.

Jdg 18:11 And there went from thence of the family of the Danites, out of Zorah and out of Eshtaol, six hundred men appointed with weapons of war. Girded up to fight and take the land.

Jdg 18:12 And they went up, and pitched in Kirjathjearim, in Judah: wherefore they called that place Mahanehdan unto this day: behold, it is behind Kirjathjearim. Mahanehdan: Camp of Dan.

Jdg 18:13 And they passed thence unto mount Ephraim, and came unto the house of Micah. Stopped by Micah's house on the way through the hill country.

Jdg 18:14 Then answered the five men that went to spy out the country of Laish, and said unto their brethren, Do ye know that there is in these houses an ephod, and teraphim, and a graven image, and a molten image? now therefore consider what ye have to do. Checking out the contents of the houses.  

Jdg 18:15 And they turned thitherward, and came to the house of the young man the Levite, even unto the house of Micah, and saluted him.

Jdg 18:16 And the six hundred men appointed with their weapons of war, which were of the children of Dan, stood by the entering of the gate.

Jdg 18:17 And the five men that went to spy out the land went up, and came in thither, and took the graven image, and the ephod, and the teraphim, and the molten image: and the priest stood in the entering of the gate with the six hundred men that were appointed with weapons of war. The five scouts robbing Micah's house.

Jdg 18:18 And these went into Micah's house, and fetched the carved image, the ephod, and the teraphim, and the molten image. Then said the priest unto them, What do ye? The Levite priest sees them and confronts them.

Jdg 18:19 And they said unto him, Hold thy peace, lay thine hand upon thy mouth, and go with us, and be to us a father and a priest: is it better for thee to be a priest unto the house of one man, or that thou be a priest unto a tribe and a family in Israel? They tell him to shut up and come with them and be their priest. This was the token of silence. These men were evidently very ignorant; and absurdly concluded that they should, by taking Micah's gods, secure the presence and favor of the God of Israel, in their expedition and settlement. They perhaps supposed the piety of their motives, and the goodness of their end, would justify the means. But it was a base robbery of Micah, aggravated by the Levite's ingratitude, and their menaces.

Jdg 18:20 And the priest's heart was glad, and he took the ephod, and the teraphim, and the graven image, and went in the midst of the people. The young Levite priests gives in and goes with the best offer. (It's all about the money).

Jdg 18:21 So they turned and departed, and put the little ones and the cattle and the carriage before them. 

Jdg 18:22 And when they were a good way from the house of Micah, the men that were in the houses near to Micah's house were gathered together, and overtook the children of Dan.

Jdg 18:23 And they cried unto the children of Dan. And they turned their faces, and said unto Micah, What aileth thee, that thou comest with such a company? Why you chasing after us the men of Dan shouted to Micah.

Jdg 18:24 And he said, Ye have taken away my gods which I made, and the priest, and ye are gone away: and what have I more? and what is this that ye say unto me, What aileth thee? You just robbed me and I have nothing left. (Micah lost his idol and so called priest). "Micah forgetting about the real God and his plan."

Jdg 18:25 And the children of Dan said unto him, Let not thy voice be heard among us, lest angry fellows run upon thee, and thou lose thy life, with the lives of thy household. They threaten Micah and his family.

Jdg 18:26 And the children of Dan went their way: and when Micah saw that they were too strong for him, he turned and went back unto his house. To many for Micah to challenge, so he returned home.

Jdg 18:27 And they took the things which Micah had made, and the priest which he had, and came unto Laish, unto a people that were at quiet and secure: and they smote them with the edge of the sword, and burnt the city with fire. They took the town and burned it to the ground.

Jdg 18:28 And there was no deliverer, because it was far from Zidon, and they had no business with any man; and it was in the valley that lieth by Bethrehob. And they built a city, and dwelt therein. The people of Dan rebuilt the town and lived there.

Jdg 18:29 And they called the name of the city Dan, after the name of Dan their father, who was born unto Israel: howbeit the name of the city was Laish at the first. Renamed the town Dan after their ancestor, Israel's son. (Joshua 19:47).

Jdg 18:30 And the children of Dan set up the graven image: and Jonathan, the son of Gershom, the son of Manasseh, he and his sons were priests to the tribe of Dan until the day of the captivity of the land. They set up their carved image (Micah's graven image), and appoint Jonathan as their priest. Jonathan was the grandson of Moses. (The priests were to be descendants of Aaron).

Jdg 18:31 And they set them up Micah's graven image, which he made, all the time that the house of God was in Shiloh. They continued to worship Micah's graven image. The people of Dan did whatever they wanted and made up their own rules. (Jeremiah 7:12).

Judges 19

AS we mentioned before some of the events recorded in Judges are not in chronological order. Here we continue in the same days as chapter 18:1, soon after the death of Joshua.

Jdg 19:1 And it came to pass in those days, when there was no king in Israel, that there was a certain Levite sojourning on the side of mount Ephraim, who took to him a concubine out of Bethlehemjudah. The house off God has been neglected, and the Priests and Levites are unemployed and wondering around. Here we have another Levite Priest that won't be fulfilling his duties. 

Jdg 19:2 And his concubine played the whore against him, and went away from him unto her father's house to Bethlehemjudah, and was there four whole months. A concubine was like having an extra wife, or mistress. This one left the Levite because she was angry and went home to her father.

Jdg 19:3 And her husband arose, and went after her, to speak friendly unto her, and to bring her again, having his servant with him, and a couple of asses: and she brought him into her father's house: and when the father of the damsel saw him, he rejoiced to meet him. He goes to patch things up and tries to win her back.

Jdg 19:4 And his father in law, the damsel's father, retained him; and he abode with him three days: so they did eat and drink, and lodged there. 

Jdg 19:5 And it came to pass on the fourth day, when they arose early in the morning, that he rose up to depart: and the damsel's father said unto his son in law, Comfort thine heart with a morsel of bread, and afterward go your way.

Jdg 19:6 And they sat down, and did eat and drink both of them together: for the damsel's father had said unto the man, Be content, I pray thee, and tarry all night, and let thine heart be merry.

Jdg 19:7 And when the man rose up to depart, his father in law urged him: therefore he lodged there again. The father-in-law really wants this guy to stay, so he kept the party going for four days now.

Jdg 19:8 And he arose early in the morning on the fifth day to depart: and the damsel's father said, Comfort thine heart, I pray thee. And they tarried until afternoon, and they did eat both of them. 

Jdg 19:9 And when the man rose up to depart, he, and his concubine, and his servant, his father in law, the damsel's father, said unto him, Behold, now the day draweth toward evening, I pray you tarry all night: behold, the day groweth to an end, lodge here, that thine heart may be merry; and to morrow get you early on your way, that thou mayest go home. He had a servant with him.

Jdg 19:10 But the man would not tarry that night, but he rose up and departed, and came over against Jebus, which is Jerusalem; and there were with him two asses saddled, his concubine also was with him. The man his concubine and servant finally leave.

Jdg 19:11 And when they were by Jebus, the day was far spent; and the servant said unto his master, Come, I pray thee, and let us turn in into this city of the Jebusites, and lodge in it. 

Jdg 19:12 And his master said unto him, We will not turn aside hither into the city of a stranger, that is not of the children of Israel; we will pass over to Gibeah. Heading off to Gibeah. (City of Benjamin). Later the resident of Saul. (1 Samuel 10:26, 11:4). 

Jdg 19:13 And he said unto his servant, Come, and let us draw near to one of these places to lodge all night, in Gibeah, or in Ramah. 

Jdg 19:14 And they passed on and went their way; and the sun went down upon them when they were by Gibeah, which belongeth to Benjamin.

Jdg 19:15 And they turned aside thither, to go in and to lodge in Gibeah: and when he went in, he sat him down in a street of the city: for there was no man that took them into his house to lodging. There was probably no inn to stay at, so they depend on peoples hospitality. These Benjamites were not the most hospitable people. 

Jdg 19:16 And, behold, there came an old man from his work out of the field at even, which was also of mount Ephraim; and he sojourned in Gibeah: but the men of the place were Benjamites. The old man was from Ephraim, the same area as the Levite.

Jdg 19:17 And when he had lifted up his eyes, he saw a wayfaring man in the street of the city: and the old man said, Whither goest thou? and whence comest thou? 

Jdg 19:18 And he said unto him, We are passing from Bethlehemjudah toward the side of mount Ephraim; from thence am I: and I went to Bethlehemjudah, but I am now going to the house of the LORD; and there is no man that receiveth me to house.

Jdg 19:19 Yet there is both straw and provender for our asses; and there is bread and wine also for me, and for thy handmaid, and for the young man which is with thy servants: there is no want of any thing.

Jdg 19:20 And the old man said, Peace be with thee; howsoever let all thy wants lie upon me; only lodge not in the street. The old man invites them to stay at his house.

Jdg 19:21 So he brought him into his house, and gave provender unto the asses: and they washed their feet, and did eat and drink. 

Jdg 19:22 Now as they were making their hearts merry, behold, the men of the city, certain sons of Belial, beset the house round about, and beat at the door, and spake to the master of the house, the old man, saying, Bring forth the man that came into thine house, that we may know him. They were enjoying some wine when certain sons of Belial. (Worthless troublemakers and sons of the devil). "These men would have sex with anything." Remember the men of Sodom? (Genesis 19:4-5, Jude 1:7).

Jdg 19:23 And the man, the master of the house, went out unto them, and said unto them, Nay, my brethren, nay, I pray you, do not so wickedly; seeing that this man is come into mine house, do not this folly. 

Jdg 19:24 Behold, here is my daughter a maiden, and his concubine; them I will bring out now, and humble ye them, and do with them what seemeth good unto you: but unto this man do not so vile a thing. The old man offers them his virgin daughter and the Levite's concubine instead of the man they wanted to have sex with.

Jdg 19:25 But the men would not hearken to him: so the man took his concubine, and brought her forth unto them; and they knew her, and abused her all the night until the morning: and when the day began to spring, they let her go. The worthless men would not listen to the old man, so the Levite took his concubine and pushed her out the door. We can assume that these men are also to drunk to fight, so they take the girl and gang rape her all night long. In the morning they let her go. (We have a lot of scumbags like that around today).

Jdg 19:26 Then came the woman in the dawning of the day, and fell down at the door of the man's house where her lord was, till it was light. The young woman was badly injured and collapsed at the door of the house, and there she died.

Jdg 19:27 And her lord rose up in the morning, and opened the doors of the house, and went out to go his way: and, behold, the woman his concubine was fallen down at the door of the house, and her hands were upon the threshold.

Jdg 19:28 And he said unto her, Up, and let us be going. But none answered. Then the man took her up upon an ass, and the man rose up, and gat him unto his place. The Levite puts her on his donkey and takes the body home.

Jdg 19:29 And when he was come into his house, he took a knife, and laid hold on his concubine, and divided her, together with her bones, into twelve pieces, and sent her into all the coasts of Israel. This Levite was going to send a message to the nation. Each tribe got a piece of his concubine delivered to them. Twelve pieces in all of the innocent concubine.

Jdg 19:30 And it was so, that all that saw it said, There was no such deed done nor seen from the day that the children of Israel came up out of the land of Egypt unto this day: consider of it, take advice, and speak your minds. Everyone saw it and could not believe that such a horrible thing had happened. "The days of Giheah" became proverbial. (Hosea 9:9, 10:9).

Judges 20

Jdg 20:1 Then all the children of Israel went out, and the congregation was gathered together as one man, from Dan even to Beersheba, with the land of Gilead, unto the LORD in Mizpeh. Then: These last two chapters describe events that took place soon after Joshua's death. (This war is about to be fueled by the reaction of what happened to the young woman, the concubine of the Levite).

Jdg 20:2 And the chief of all the people, even of all the tribes of Israel, presented themselves in the assembly of the people of God, four hundred thousand footmen that drew sword. They formed a 400,000 strong army.

Jdg 20:3 (Now the children of Benjamin heard that the children of Israel were gone up to Mizpeh.) Then said the children of Israel, Tell us, how was this wickedness? The word spread to the land of Benjamin that the other tribes had gone to Mizpah.

Jdg 20:4 And the Levite, the husband of the woman that was slain, answered and said, I came into Gibeah that belongeth to Benjamin, I and my concubine, to lodge. The Levite explains what had happened.

Jdg 20:5 And the men of Gibeah rose against me, and beset the house round about upon me by night, and thought to have slain me: and my concubine have they forced, that she is dead.

Jdg 20:6 And I took my concubine, and cut her in pieces, and sent her throughout all the country of the inheritance of Israel: for they have committed lewdness and folly in Israel.

Jdg 20:7 Behold, ye are all children of Israel; give here your advice and counsel. They all need to decide what should be done about this terrible crime.

Jdg 20:8 And all the people arose as one man, saying, We will not any of us go to his tent, neither will we any of us turn into his house. Not going to return home till a decision is made.

Jdg 20:9 But now this shall be the thing which we will do to Gibeah; we will go up by lot against it; Drawing lots to see who will attack Gibeah first.

Jdg 20:10 And we will take ten men of an hundred throughout all the tribes of Israel, and an hundred of a thousand, and a thousand out of ten thousand, to fetch victual for the people, that they may do, when they come to Gibeah of Benjamin, according to all the folly that they have wrought in Israel. 

Jdg 20:11 So all the men of Israel were gathered against the city, knit together as one man. All united to attack the town.

Jdg 20:12 And the tribes of Israel sent men through all the tribe of Benjamin, saying, What wickedness is this that is done among you? The warning was sent out to the tribe of Benjamin.

Jdg 20:13 Now therefore deliver us the men, the children of Belial, which are in Gibeah, that we may put them to death, and put away evil from Israel. But the children of Benjamin would not hearken to the voice of their brethren the children of Israel: They were warned to give up the troublemakers, but the people of Benjamin would not listen. 

Jdg 20:14 But the children of Benjamin gathered themselves together out of the cities unto Gibeah, to go out to battle against the children of Israel. They decide to fight back.

Jdg 20:15 And the children of Benjamin were numbered at that time out of the cities twenty and six thousand men that drew sword, beside the inhabitants of Gibeah, which were numbered seven hundred chosen men. The odds don't look to good for them.

Jdg 20:16 Among all this people there were seven hundred chosen men lefthanded; every one could sling stones at an hair breadth, and not miss. These men were experts with a slingshot at longer distances. (Kind of like modern day snipers).

Jdg 20:17 And the men of Israel, beside Benjamin, were numbered four hundred thousand men that drew sword: all these were men of war. 

Jdg 20:18 And the children of Israel arose, and went up to the house of God, and asked counsel of God, and said, Which of us shall go up first to the battle against the children of Benjamin? And the LORD said, Judah shall go up first. Note they consult with the Lord on this one. They will take turns with the attack, and Judah would attack first.

Jdg 20:19 And the children of Israel rose up in the morning, and encamped against Gibeah.

Jdg 20:20 And the men of Israel went out to battle against Benjamin; and the men of Israel put themselves in array to fight against them at Gibeah. The war was on and they began their attack against Gibeah.

Jdg 20:21 And the children of Benjamin came forth out of Gibeah, and destroyed down to the ground of the Israelites that day twenty and two thousand men. The first attack was not good for the Israelites. The slingshot snipers surprised them and took out 22,000 Israelites on the battlefield.

Jdg 20:22 And the people the men of Israel encouraged themselves, and set their battle again in array in the place where they put themselves in array the first day. The Israelites decide to encourage each other and take position again the next day.

Jdg 20:23 (And the children of Israel went up and wept before the LORD until even, and asked counsel of the LORD, saying, Shall I go up again to battle against the children of Benjamin my brother? And the LORD said, Go up against him.) Note they consulted with the Lord again, and the Lord tells them to go out and fight again. (Never give up, never surrender). 

Jdg 20:24 And the children of Israel came near against the children of Benjamin the second day. 

Jdg 20:25 And Benjamin went forth against them out of Gibeah the second day, and destroyed down to the ground of the children of Israel again eighteen thousand men; all these drew the sword. Another 18,000 Israelites were taken out on the second day of the battle. Note we have 40,000 total lost now. (again 40 meaning probation).

Jdg 20:26 Then all the children of Israel, and all the people, went up, and came unto the house of God, and wept, and sat there before the LORD, and fasted that day until even, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the LORD. Back to the drawing board.

Jdg 20:27 And the children of Israel enquired of the LORD, (for the ark of the covenant of God was there in those days, "They consult with the Lord again."  

Jdg 20:28 And Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron, stood before it in those days,) saying, Shall I yet again go out to battle against the children of Benjamin my brother, or shall I cease? And the LORD said, Go up; for to morrow I will deliver them into thine hand. Phinehas: It is evident, from this mention of Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, that these transactions must have taken place not long after the death of Joshua. (Joshua 22:13). The Lord confirms that they will take the Benjamites this time.

Jdg 20:29 And Israel set liers in wait round about Gibeah. Setting up an ambush around Gibeah. 

Jdg 20:30 And the children of Israel went up against the children of Benjamin on the third day, and put themselves in array against Gibeah, as at other times.

Jdg 20:31 And the children of Benjamin went out against the people, and were drawn away from the city; and they began to smite of the people, and kill, as at other times, in the highways, of which one goeth up to the house of God, and the other to Gibeah in the field, about thirty men of Israel. Here comes the snipers again. (Their about to be taken out).

Jdg 20:32 And the children of Benjamin said, They are smitten down before us, as at the first. But the children of Israel said, Let us flee, and draw them from the city unto the highways. Drawing the enemy away from the town.

Jdg 20:33 And all the men of Israel rose up out of their place, and put themselves in array at Baaltamar: and the liers in wait of Israel came forth out of their places, even out of the meadows of Gibeah. The ambush was set and the Israelites jump up to surprise the enemy.

Jdg 20:34 And there came against Gibeah ten thousand chosen men out of all Israel, and the battle was sore: but they knew not that evil was near them. Quite the heavy battle taking place.

Jdg 20:35 And the LORD smote Benjamin before Israel: and the children of Israel destroyed of the Benjamites that day twenty and five thousand and an hundred men: all these drew the sword. With the help of the Lord, the Israelites defeat Benjamin. (They took out 25,100 of Benjamin's best warriors and experienced swordsmen).

Jdg 20:36 So the children of Benjamin saw that they were smitten: for the men of Israel gave place to the Benjamites, because they trusted unto the liers in wait which they had set beside Gibeah. 

Jdg 20:37 And the liers in wait hasted, and rushed upon Gibeah; and the liers in wait drew themselves along, and smote all the city with the edge of the sword.

Jdg 20:38 Now there was an appointed sign between the men of Israel and the liers in wait, that they should make a great flame with smoke rise up out of the city.

Jdg 20:39 And when the men of Israel retired in the battle, Benjamin began to smite and kill of the men of Israel about thirty persons: for they said, Surely they are smitten down before us, as in the first battle.

Jdg 20:40 But when the flame began to arise up out of the city with a pillar of smoke, the Benjamites looked behind them, and, behold, the flame of the city ascended up to heaven.

Jdg 20:41 And when the men of Israel turned again, the men of Benjamin were amazed: for they saw that evil was come upon them.

Jdg 20:42 Therefore they turned their backs before the men of Israel unto the way of the wilderness; but the battle overtook them; and them which came out of the cities they destroyed in the midst of them.

Jdg 20:43 Thus they inclosed the Benjamites round about, and chased them, and trode them down with ease over against Gibeah toward the sunrising.

Jdg 20:44 And there fell of Benjamin eighteen thousand men; all these were men of valour. Another 18,000 of Benjamin's strongest warriors died in battle.

Jdg 20:45 And they turned and fled toward the wilderness unto the rock of Rimmon: and they gleaned of them in the highways five thousand men; and pursued hard after them unto Gidom, and slew two thousand men of them. The men of Benjamin try to escape, but Israel killed another 7,000 of them who were along the road and near Gidom.

Jdg 20:46 So that all which fell that day of Benjamin were twenty and five thousand men that drew the sword; all these were men of valour. 

Jdg 20:47 But six hundred men turned and fled to the wilderness unto the rock Rimmon, and abode in the rock Rimmon four months. Only 600 men of Benjamin left who hid out in the rock of Rimmon.

Jdg 20:48 And the men of Israel turned again upon the children of Benjamin, and smote them with the edge of the sword, as well the men of every city, as the beast, and all that came to hand: also they set on fire all the cities that they came to. Total destruction to the cities of Benjamin. God said it, God gave Israel the victory. (God is always in control).

Judges 21

Jdg 21:1 Now the men of Israel had sworn in Mizpeh, saying, There shall not any of us give his daughter unto Benjamin to wife. Had sworn: Before the fighting in chapter 20.

Jdg 21:2 And the people came to the house of God, and abode there till even before God, and lifted up their voices, and wept sore; 

Jdg 21:3 And said, O LORD God of Israel, why is this come to pass in Israel, that there should be to day one tribe lacking in Israel? Weeping that one of the tribes of Israel is missing.

Jdg 21:4 And it came to pass on the morrow, that the people rose early, and built there an altar, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings. 

Jdg 21:5 And the children of Israel said, Who is there among all the tribes of Israel that came not up with the congregation unto the LORD? For they had made a great oath concerning him that came not up to the LORD to Mizpeh, saying, He shall surely be put to death. 

Jdg 21:6 And the children of Israel repented them for Benjamin their brother, and said, There is one tribe cut off from Israel this day. Still feeling sorry for their brother Benjamin.

Jdg 21:7 How shall we do for wives for them that remain, seeing we have sworn by the LORD that we will not give them of our daughters to wives? First they swear not to give the men of Benjamin their daughters, now they worry about the few men remaining that have no wives.

Jdg 21:8 And they said, What one is there of the tribes of Israel that came not up to Mizpeh to the LORD? And, behold, there came none to the camp from Jabeshgilead to the assembly. Looking for the ones who did not join them at Mizpah. (Their coming up with a plan to solve their problem here).

Jdg 21:9 For the people were numbered, and, behold, there were none of the inhabitants of Jabeshgilead there. Jabeshgilead: This place, as its name imports, was situated in Gilead, east of Jordan. 

Jdg 21:10 And the congregation sent thither twelve thousand men of the valiantest, and commanded them, saying, Go and smite the inhabitants of Jabeshgilead with the edge of the sword, with the women and the children. 

Jdg 21:11 And this is the thing that ye shall do, Ye shall utterly destroy every male, and every woman that hath lain by man. Kill all the men and women who are not virgins.

Jdg 21:12 And they found among the inhabitants of Jabeshgilead four hundred young virgins, that had known no man by lying with any male: and they brought them unto the camp to Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan. So, they come up with 400 virgins as part of their plan.

Jdg 21:13 And the whole congregation sent some to speak to the children of Benjamin that were in the rock Rimmon, and to call peaceably unto them. Trying to make peace with the men of Benjamin.

Jdg 21:14 And Benjamin came again at that time; and they gave them wives which they had saved alive of the women of Jabeshgilead: and yet so they sufficed them not. They give the 400 virgin women to the men of Benjamin, but their was not enough women for all the men. Remember their were 600 men left over after the battle.

Jdg 21:15 And the people repented them for Benjamin, because that the LORD had made a breach in the tribes of Israel.

Jdg 21:16 Then the elders of the congregation said, How shall we do for wives for them that remain, seeing the women are destroyed out of Benjamin? Looking for a way to come up with another 200 wives for the men of Benjamin.

Jdg 21:17 And they said, There must be an inheritance for them that be escaped of Benjamin, that a tribe be not destroyed out of Israel.

Jdg 21:18 Howbeit we may not give them wives of our daughters: for the children of Israel have sworn, saying, Cursed be he that giveth a wife to Benjamin. 

Jdg 21:19 Then they said, Behold, there is a feast of the LORD in Shiloh yearly in a place which is on the north side of Bethel, on the east side of the highway that goeth up from Bethel to Shechem, and on the south of Lebonah. This could have been the feast of unleavened bread, or the feast of the first fruits etc.

Jdg 21:20 Therefore they commanded the children of Benjamin, saying, Go and lie in wait in the vineyards; 

Jdg 21:21 And see, and, behold, if the daughters of Shiloh come out to dance in dances, then come ye out of the vineyards, and catch you every man his wife of the daughters of Shiloh, and go to the land of Benjamin. Here is the plan they come up with. "Just kidnap a wife from the women of Shiloh." (Real creative).

Jdg 21:22 And it shall be, when their fathers or their brethren come unto us to complain, that we will say unto them, Be favourable unto them for our sakes: because we reserved not to each man his wife in the war: for ye did not give unto them at this time, that ye should be guilty. Just play stupid and because you willing did not give your daughters, you won't be guilty of the curse. (Here we have mans solution, not God's).

Jdg 21:23 And the children of Benjamin did so, and took them wives, according to their number, of them that danced, whom they caught: and they went and returned unto their inheritance, and repaired the cities, and dwelt in them. Well, they solved the problem and the men of Benjamin got their wives. We can assume that the Benjamites acted in the most honorable way to the women they had just kidnapped and carried off. The women were probably well off when it came to inheritance from the Benjamites. However, this solution was not God's solution to the problem, but mans solution to a human problem.

Jdg 21:24 And the children of Israel departed thence at that time, every man to his tribe and to his family, and they went out from thence every man to his inheritance. Everyone returning home happy.

Jdg 21:25 In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes. Once again, no king, and all the people did what they felt right in their own eyes. (Proverbs 14:12, Ecclesiastes 11:9).

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