Thematic Bible: Under the judges


Thematic Bible



And he judged Israel in the days of the Philistines twenty years.


And it came to pass when he made mention of the ark of God, Eli fell from off the seat backward by the side of the gate, and his neck broke, and he died; for he was an old man and heavy. And he had judged Israel forty years.


Nevertheless, the LORD raised up judges who delivered them out of the hand of those that spoiled them. And yet they would not hearken unto their judges, but they fornicated after other gods and bowed themselves unto them; they turned quickly out of the way which their fathers had walked hearing the commandments of the LORD; but they did not do so. And when the LORD raised them up judges, then the LORD was with the judge and delivered them out of the hand of their enemies all the days of that judge; for the LORD repented because of their groanings by reason of those that oppressed them and afflicted them. read more.
But when the judge was dead, then they would return, and corrupt themselves more than their fathers in following other gods to serve them and to bow down unto them; they did not diminish from their own doings nor from their stubborn way.

And after that he gave unto them judges about the space of four hundred and fifty years, until Samuel the prophet.


and said unto him, Behold, thou art old, and thy sons do not walk in thy ways; therefore make us a king to judge us like all the Gentiles. But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, Give us a king to judge us. And Samuel prayed unto the LORD. And the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee, for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me that I should not reign over them. read more.
According to all the works which they have done since the day that I brought them up out of Egypt even unto this day, with which they have forsaken me and served other gods, so they also do unto thee. Now, therefore, hearken unto their voice; however first protest solemnly against them by declaring unto them the rights of the king that shall reign over them. And Samuel told all the words of the LORD unto the people that asked him for a king. And he said, This will be the right of the king that shall reign over you: He will take your sons and appoint them for himself, for his chariots, and to be his horsemen, and some shall run before his chariot. And he will appoint captains over thousands and captains over fifties and will set them to plough his ground and to reap his harvest and to make his weapons of war and the munitions of his chariots. And he will take your daughters to be confectioneries and to be cooks and to be bakers. And he will take your fields and your vineyards and your good oliveyards and give them to his slaves. And he will take the tenth of your seed and of your vineyards to give to his officers and to his slaves. And he will take your menslaves and your maidslaves and your good young men and your asses and do his work with them. He will also take the tenth of your sheep, and finally ye shall be his slaves. And ye shall cry out in that day because of your king which ye shall have chosen you, and the LORD will not hear you in that day. Nevertheless, the people refused to hear the voice of Samuel, and they said, No, but we will have a king over us that we also may be like all the Gentiles and that our king may govern us and go out before us and fight our battles.

Where is thy king, that may save thee with all thy cities? and thy judges of whom thou didst say, Give me a king and princes?


Neither did Manasseh drive out the inhabitants of Bethshean and its towns nor Taanach and its towns nor the inhabitants of Dor and its towns nor the inhabitants of Ibleam and its towns, nor the inhabitants of Megiddo and its towns; but the Canaanite desired to dwell in that land. And it came to pass when Israel was strong that they put the Canaanites under tribute but did not utterly drive them out. Neither did Ephraim drive out the Canaanite that dwelt in Gezer, but the Canaanite dwelt in Gezer among them. read more.
Neither did Zebulun drive out the inhabitants of Kitron nor the inhabitants of Nahalol, but the Canaanite dwelt among them and became tributaries. Neither did Asher drive out the inhabitants of Accho nor the inhabitants of Zidon nor of Ahlab nor of Achzib nor of Helbah nor of Aphik nor of Rehob; to the contrary Asher dwelt among the Canaanites that inhabited the land, for they did not drive them out. Neither did Naphtali drive out the inhabitants of Bethshemesh nor the inhabitants of Bethanath, but he dwelt among the Canaanites that inhabited the land; nevertheless, the inhabitants of Bethshemesh and of Bethanath became tributaries unto them. And the Amorites forced the sons of Dan into the mountain, for they would not allow them to come down to the valley. And the Amorites desired to dwell in Mount Heres in Aijalon and in Shaalbim; yet when the hand of the house of Joseph prevailed, they made them tributaries. And the border of the Amorites was from the ascent to Akrabbim from the rock and upward.

Now these are the Gentiles which the LORD left, to prove Israel with them, even as many of Israel as had not known all the wars of Canaan; he left them only that the generations of the sons of Israel might know, and to teach them war, only for those that had known nothing before: namely, five cardinals of the Philistines and all the Canaanites and the Sidonians and the Hivites that dwelt in Mount Lebanon, from Mount Baalhermon unto the entering in of Hamath. read more.
These, therefore, were left to prove Israel by them, to know whether they would hearken unto the commandments of the LORD, which he had commanded their fathers by the hand of Moses. And as the sons of Israel dwelt among the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites, they took their daughters to be their wives and gave their daughters to their sons and served their gods. And the sons of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD and forgot the LORD their God and served the Baalim and the groves.


And the Philistines fought, and Israel was smitten, and they fled each one into his tent, and there was a very great slaughter, for thirty thousand footmen of Israel fell. And the ark of God was taken, and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were slain.

And Samuel spoke unto all Israel. Now at that time Israel went out to meet the Philistines in battle and pitched their camp beside Ebenezer; and the Philistines pitched theirs in Aphek. And the Philistines put themselves in array against Israel; and when they joined battle, Israel was smitten before the Philistines, who slew of the army in the field about four thousand men.


And the men of Ephraim said unto him, Why hast thou served us thus that thou didst not call us when thou didst go to fight against Midian? And they chided with him sharply. And he replied unto them, What have I done now in comparison with you? Is not the gleaning of the grapes of Ephraim better than the vintage of Abiezer? God has delivered into your hands the princes of Midian, Oreb and Zeeb, and what was I able to do in comparison with you? Then their anger was abated toward him when he spoke that word. read more.
And Gideon came to pass the Jordan, he and the three hundred men that were with him, faint from the pursuit. And he said unto those of Succoth, Give, I pray you, loaves of bread unto the people that follow me; for they are faint that I may pursue after Zebah and Zalmunna, kings of Midian. And the principals of Succoth said, Are the hands of Zebah and Zalmunna now in thy hand that we should give bread unto thy army? And Gideon said, Therefore when the LORD has delivered Zebah and Zalmunna into my hand, then I will tear your flesh with the thorns and the briers of the wilderness. And he went up from there to Penuel and spoke unto them likewise; and those of Penuel answered him as the men of Succoth had answered him. And he spoke also unto the men of Penuel, saying, When I come again in peace, I will break down this tower. Now Zebah and Zalmunna were in Karkor and their hosts with them, about fifteen thousand men, all that were left of all the hosts of the sons of the east, for one hundred and twenty thousand men that drew sword had been slain. And Gideon went up by the way of those that dwelt in tents on the east of Nobah and Jogbehah and smote the camp, for the camp was secure. And as Zebah and Zalmunna fled, he pursued after them and took the two kings of Midian, Zebah and Zalmunna and terrified all the host. And Gideon, the son of Joash, returned from the battle before the sun was up and caught a young man of the men of Succoth and enquired of him; and he described unto him the principals of Succoth and the elders thereof, seventy-seven men. And he came unto the men of Succoth and said, Behold Zebah and Zalmunna, with whom ye did upbraid me, saying, Are the hands of Zebah and Zalmunna now in thy hand, that we should give bread unto thy men that are weary? And he took the elders of the city and thorns and briars of the wilderness, and with them he taught the men of Succoth. Likewise he beat down the tower of Penuel and slew the men of the city. Then he said unto Zebah and Zalmunna, What manner of men were those whom ye slew at Tabor? And they answered, As thou art, so were they; each one resembled the sons of a king. And he said, They were my brethren, the sons of my mother; as the LORD lives, if ye had saved them alive, I would not slay you. And he said unto Jether his firstborn, Rise up and slay them. But the youth did not draw his sword, for he feared because he was yet a youth. Then Zebah and Zalmunna said, Rise thou and fall upon us, for as the man is, so is his strength. And Gideon arose, and slew Zebah and Zalmunna and took away the ornaments that were on their camels' necks. Then the men of Israel said unto Gideon, Rule thou over us, both thou and thy son and thy son's son also, for thou hast delivered us from the hand of Midian. But Gideon replied, I will not rule over you, neither shall my son rule over you; the LORD shall rule over you. And Gideon said unto them, I desire to make a request of you that ye each one would give me the earrings of his prey. (For they had golden earrings because they were Ishmaelites.) And they answered, We will willingly give them. And they spread a garment, and each one cast therein the earrings of his prey. And the weight of the golden earrings that he requested was a thousand seven hundred shekels of gold, without the ornaments and collars and purple clothing that was on the kings of Midian and without the chains that were about their camels' necks. And Gideon made an ephod of them and kept it in his city of Ophrah, and all Israel fornicated after it in that place, and it became a snare unto Gideon and to his house. Thus Midian was broken before the sons of Israel so that they lifted up their heads no more. And the land rested forty years in the days of Gideon.


And the sons of Israel did evil again in the sight of the LORD and served the Baalim and Ashtaroth and the gods of Syria and the gods of Zidon and the gods of Moab and the gods of the sons of Ammon and the gods of the Philistines and forsook the LORD and did not serve him. And the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel, and he sold them into the hands of the Philistines and into the hands of the sons of Ammon, who dashed in pieces and crushed the sons of Israel for eighteen years, all the sons of Israel that were on the other side of the Jordan in the land of the Amorite, which is in Gilead. read more.
Moreover the sons of Ammon passed over the Jordan to fight also against Judah and against Benjamin and against the house of Ephraim so that Israel was sore distressed. And the sons of Israel cried unto the LORD, saying, We have sinned against thee because we have forsaken our God and served the Baalim. And the LORD replied unto the sons of Israel, Were you not oppressed by Egypt, by the Amorites, by the sons of Ammon, by the Philistines, by those of Zidon, by Amalek, and by Maon, and ye cried to me and I delivered you out of their hands? Yet ye have forsaken me and served other gods; therefore, I will deliver you no more. Go and cry unto the gods which ye have chosen; let them deliver you in the time of your affliction. And the sons of Israel said unto the LORD, We have sinned; do thou unto us whatever seems good unto thee; only deliver us now, we pray thee, this day. And they put away the strange gods from among them and served the LORD; and his soul was grieved for the misery of Israel. Then the sons of Ammon were gathered together and encamped in Gilead. And likewise the sons of Israel assembled themselves together and encamped in Mizpeh. And the people and princes of Gilead said one to another, Who shall it be that will begin the battle against the sons of Ammon? He shall be head over all the inhabitants of Gilead.



And after him Elon, a Zebulonite, judged Israel, and he judged Israel ten years. And Elon, the Zebulonite, died and was buried in Aijalon in the country of Zebulun.


And after him Abdon, the son of Hillel, a Pirathonite, judged Israel. And he had forty sons and thirty grandsons that rode on seventy he asses, and he judged Israel eight years. And Abdon, the son of Hillel the Pirathonite, died and was buried in Pirathon in the land of Ephraim in the mount of Amalek.


And it came to pass as soon as Gideon was dead that the sons of Israel turned again and fornicated after the Baalim and made Baalberith their god. And the sons of Israel did not remember the LORD their God, who had delivered them out of the hands of all their enemies on every side,


And also all that generation were gathered unto their fathers, and there arose another generation after them which did not know the LORD nor the work which he had done to Israel. And the sons of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD and served the Baalim. And they forsook the LORD God of their fathers, who brought them out of the land of Egypt, and followed other gods, of the gods of the peoples that were round about them, and bowed themselves unto them and provoked the LORD to anger. read more.
And they forsook the LORD and served Baal and Ashtaroth. And the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel, and he delivered them into the hands of spoilers that spoiled them, and he sold them into the hands of their enemies round about, so that they could no longer stand before their enemies. Wherever they went out, the hand of the LORD was against them for evil, as the LORD had said and as the LORD had sworn unto them; and thus they were greatly distressed. Nevertheless, the LORD raised up judges who delivered them out of the hand of those that spoiled them. And yet they would not hearken unto their judges, but they fornicated after other gods and bowed themselves unto them; they turned quickly out of the way which their fathers had walked hearing the commandments of the LORD; but they did not do so. And when the LORD raised them up judges, then the LORD was with the judge and delivered them out of the hand of their enemies all the days of that judge; for the LORD repented because of their groanings by reason of those that oppressed them and afflicted them. But when the judge was dead, then they would return, and corrupt themselves more than their fathers in following other gods to serve them and to bow down unto them; they did not diminish from their own doings nor from their stubborn way. And the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel, and he said, Because these people transgress my covenant which I commanded their fathers and do not hearken unto my voice; neither will I drive out any longer from before them any of these Gentiles which Joshua left when he died, that through them I may prove Israel, whether they will keep the way of the LORD by walking therein as their fathers kept it, or not. Therefore, the LORD left those Gentiles, without driving them out hastily; neither did he deliver them into the hand of Joshua.


And the sons 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. And he gathered unto him the sons of Ammon and of Amalek and went and smote Israel and took the city of palm trees. So the sons of Israel served Eglon the king of Moab eighteen years. read more.
But when the sons of Israel cried unto the LORD, the LORD raised them up a saviour, Ehud, the son of Gera, a son of Jemini, a man, who had his right hand impeded, and by him the sons of Israel sent a present unto Eglon, the king of Moab. But Ehud had made himself a two-edged sword of a cubit length, and he girded it under his clothing upon his right thigh. And he brought the present unto Eglon, king of Moab, and Eglon was a very fat man. And when he had offered the present, he sent away the people that had brought the present. But he, himself turned again from the graven images that were by Gilgal, and said, I have a secret word for thee, O king, who then said, Keep silence. And all that stood by him went out from him. 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 word from God unto thee. Then he arose out of his seat. But Ehud put forth his left hand and took the sword from his right thigh and thrust it into Eglon's belly; in such a manner that 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 excrement came out. Then Ehud went forth through the porch and shut the doors of the parlour upon him and locked them. When he was gone out, his slaves came; and when they saw that the doors of the parlour were locked, they said, Peradventure he covers his feet in his summer chamber. And having waited until they were confounded and he had not opened the doors of the parlour; therefore, they took a key and opened them; and, behold, their lord was fallen down dead on the earth. But while they had waited, Ehud escaped and passed beyond the graven images and escaped unto Seirath. And as he entered in, he blew the shofar in the mountain of Ephraim, and the sons of Israel went down with him from the mount, and he before them. Then he said unto them, Follow after me, for the LORD has delivered your enemies, the Moabites, into your hands. And they went down after him and took the fords of the Jordan towards Moab and did not let anyone pass. And they slew of Moab at that time about ten thousand men, all fat, and all men of war, and there escaped not a man. So Moab was subjected that day under the hand of Israel. And the land had rest eighty years.


After him Ibzan, of Bethlehem, judged Israel, who had thirty sons and thirty daughters, whom he married abroad and took in thirty daughters from abroad for his sons. And he judged Israel seven years. Then Ibzan died and was buried at Bethlehem.


And after Abimelech there arose to save Israel, Tola, the son of Puah, the son of Dodo, a man of Issachar; and he dwelt in Shamir in Mount Ephraim. And he judged Israel twenty-three years and died and was buried in Shamir.


Therefore the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel, and he sold them into the hand of Chushanrishathaim king of Mesopotamia, and the sons of Israel served Chushanrishathaim eight years. And when the sons of Israel cried unto the LORD, the LORD raised up a saviour to the sons of Israel, who saved them, even Othniel, the son of Kenaz, Caleb's younger brother. And the Spirit of the LORD came upon him, and he judged Israel and went out to war; and the LORD delivered Chushanrishathaim king of Mesopotamia into his hand, and his hand prevailed against Chushanrishathaim. read more.
And the land had rest forty years. And Othniel, the son of Kenaz, died.


And after him arose Jair, a Gileadite, who judged Israel twenty-two years. And he had thirty sons that rode on thirty ass colts, and they had thirty cities, which are called the cities of Jair unto this day, which are in the land of Gilead.


And the men of Ephraim gathered themselves together towards the Aquilon and said unto Jephthah, Why didst thou go over to fight against the sons of Ammon and didst not call us to go with thee? We will burn thy house upon thee with fire. And Jephthah replied unto them, I and my people were at great strife with the sons of Ammon, and when I called you, ye did not defend me from their hands. Seeing, therefore, that ye did not defend me, I put my life in my hands and went over against the sons of Ammon, and the LORD delivered them into my hand. Why then have ye come up against me this day to fight with me? read more.
Then Jephthah gathered together all the men of Gilead and fought with Ephraim; and the men of Gilead smote Ephraim because they had said, Ye are fugitives of Ephraim; ye are Gileadites among Ephraim and Manasseh. And the Gileadites took the passages of the Jordan from Ephraim; and it was such that when any of those of Ephraim who had escaped would say, May I pass? The men of Gilead would ask them, Art thou an Ephrathite? If he said, No; then they would say unto him, Now say Shibboleth. . And he would say Sibboleth; ; for he could not pronounce it the same. Then they would take him and slay him at the passages of the Jordan. And at that time forty-two thousand of those of Ephraim fell. And Jephthah judged Israel six years. Then Jephthah the Gileadite died and was buried in one of the cities of Gilead.


And the angel of the LORD came up from Gilgal to Bochim and said, I brought you up out of Egypt and caused you to enter into the land which I swore unto your fathers, and I said, I will never break my covenant with you as long as ye make no covenant with the inhabitants of this land; to the contrary, ye shall throw down their altars, but ye have not heard my voice; why have ye done this? Therefore, I also said, I will not drive them out from before you, but they shall be as thorns in your sides, and their gods shall be a snare unto you. read more.
And when the angel of the LORD spoke these words unto all the sons of Israel, the people lifted up their voice, and wept. And they called the name of that place Bochim, and they sacrificed there unto the LORD.


But the sons of Israel did evil again in the sight of the LORD when Ehud was dead. And the LORD sold them into the hand of Jabin, king of Canaan, who reigned in Hazor, the captain of whose host was Sisera, and he dwelt in Harosheth of the Gentiles. And the sons of Israel cried unto the LORD, for he had nine hundred chariots of iron, and he had mightily oppressed the sons of Israel for twenty years.


And the sons of Israel did evil again in the sight of the LORD, and the LORD delivered them into the hand of the Philistines for forty years.



And after him was Shamgar, the son of Anath, who slew of the Philistines six hundred men with an ox goad, and he also saved Israel.