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The Outline of the Judges

"In those days there was no king in Israel; every


man did what was right in his eyes" (Judges
21:25).
(Not that much different from our day.)
So; now we are in the year 1380 B.C., and for over 350 years, or until
approximately 1030B.C. God will raise up Judges that will deliver and
rule Israel from its enemies. At this point Joshua and Eleazar have
died and the Israelites are asking God who will lead them. The land
of Canaan has been divided for 11 of the 12 tribes Also, not all of the
Promised Land has been conquered at this point.
There will be 14 major and minor judges during this period. We will
treat this chapter differently as we have many main characters.
The Book of Judges tells of the period when the Israelites were ruled
by the "judges" whom God appointed, the most famous being Ehud,
Deborah, Gideon, Jephthah, and Samson. During this period, the
Israelites were often unfaithful to God and given to evil. They were
constantly at war with themselves and their neighbors. The book
ends with the line: "In those days there was no king in Israel; every
man did what was right in his eyes" (Judges 21:25).
The book opens with the conquest of Canaan and many lands that
were not taken by the Israelites.

The following is an outline of the Judges:


Judge Peace Captivity Mission
8 yr. Oppression
by
Mesopotamians

Othniel Delivered Israel from


Cush.

40 Yrs. of peace

18 yr. oppression
by Moabites

Ehud Delivered Israel from


Elgon, King of Moab

Philistine
oppression

Shamgar Delivered Israel from


the Philistines

Canaanite 20 yr.
oppression

Deborah Told Barak to defeat


Sisera

Barak
40 Yrs. of Peace

Midian 7 yr.
oppression

Gideon Delivered Israel from


the Midianites

40 yrs. of Peace

Abimelech
oppression 3
years
Tola Delivered Israel from
Abimelech. Judged
Israel 23 yrs.

Jair Judged Israel 22 yrs.

45 Yrs. of Peace

18 Yr. Philistine
oppression

Jephthah Delivered Israel from


the Ammonites..

6 yrs. of peace

Ibzan Judged Israel 7 yrs.

7 yrs. peace

Elon Judged Israel 10 yrs.

10 yr. peace

Abdon
8 yr. peace

40 Yr. Philistine
oppression

Samson Delivered Israel from


the Philistines

After the Judge chapters we are given a story of the decadence that
was going on in the Hebrew nation. In Chapter 18, the tribe of Dan
takes land from a previous occupant and sets up their own idols.
In Chapter 19 we see the rape of a Levite’s concubine by men from
the tribe of Benjamin in the city Gibeah. What they were going to do
before this rape involved homosexuality. The old man describes the
disgrace of their behavior.
In chapters 20-21 there is a war between Israel and the tribe of
Benjamin. This is revenge for the rape of the concubine. Israel wins
and will not allow any wives to be given to the tribe of Benjamin
from the other tribes. The tribe of Benjamin is almost extinct. Israel
then decides to have mercy with Benjamin and give some wives to
the tribe from Shiloh.

The ending verse best describes the society’s view against the law of
God in those days:

"In those days there was no king in Israel; every


man did what was right in his eyes" (Judges 21:25).
Not much different than our own day.