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Bible Commentaries
Judges 1

Bell's Commentary on the BibleBell's Commentary

Verses 1-36

  1. Intro: Slippery Slope
    1. Reminder why we study the OT? 1 Cor.10:11 Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition.
    2. ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​It’s a sad story of one Nation under God that turns from the God it was once under.
    3. The British historian, Arnold Toynbee once noted that out of the 22 civilizations on the stage of world history, 19 of them collapsed when they reached the moral position of the USA. [that’s why Judges is so relevant]
    4. It spans from the death of Joshua to the judgeship of Samuel & the intro to the Monarchy.
    5. It is the different accounts of both minor & major Judges.
      1. Minor, barely mentioned names, while the others are expanded upon like Gideon’s story, & Samson, & Deborah and Barak’s. [13 all together]
    6. See last verse for key verse.
      1. There was a leadership vacuum. They were void of leadership.
    7. In the book of Joshua they had Entered the land, Distributed the land, but had not occupied the land.
      1. The Hebrew Nation had not strong central gov after the death of Joshua.
      2. They were a confederacy, of 12 independent tribes, with no unifying force, except their God.
      3. Their form of Government in the days of the Judges is spoken of as a Theocracy, God Himself was supposed to be the direct ruler...but...the people didn’t take their God very seriously.
    8. Sin Cycle throughout the book - Rebellion, Retribution, Repentance, Restoration.
      1. The reoccurring result of abandonment from God’s law is corruption from within and oppression from without.
      2. Another has recorded it as: Sin (Israel turns from the Lord) Servitude (The Lord allows Israel’s enemies to oppress them) Supplication (Israel prays for forgiveness) Salvation (The Lord raises up a judge, or deliverer, to rescue them) Sin (The cycle begins again)
    9. Canaanite - who are the Canaanites. Well, it’s like asking who are the Americans?
      1. All who lived in Canaan were Canaanites. It went from Med to Jordan river, from Tyre/Sidon to Egypt.
      2. Amongst this country were like City States. King of Jerusalem, small by our standards. All the Jebusites, Hittites, etc. lived their.
    10. (1) After the death of Joshua seems to be a heading for the Book of Judges as a whole, with the actual events following Joshua’s death not being narrated till after the record of that death in 2:8.
    11. (9) mountains, South, lowlands - (explain map) Where battles were fought in the south.
      1. We see the general movement from south to north. But we also note a corresponding deterioration as they move north.
    12. (19) Because they had chariots of iron - Should they have been able to make it past their chariots of iron? Yes! Dt.20:1 When you go out to battle against your enemies, and see horses and chariots and people more numerous than you, do not be afraid of them; for the Lord your God is with you, who brought you up from the land of Egypt. Read Joshua 17:16-18 - What chariot of iron are you facing today?
    13. Israel’s slippery slope - we note Israel’s deterioration…
      1. It is the folly of compromise, which would lead to intermarriage w/ Canaanites. Which led to tolerance & even participation in their idolatry.
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on Judges 1". "Bell's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/cbb/judges-1.html. 2017.
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