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March 20, 2019

Please read today’s Scriptures and use the comment section on this page to share your insights from today’s reading. You can also just mention a verse that impacted you or post a question!

Read (and Hear) the Bible in One Year
Christian Standard Bible for 2019

Text: Judges 6-7
Audio: Judges 6-7

You can use the audio Bible as a guide to help “set the pace” as you read along.

Judges 1 (ESV)

After the death of Joshua, the people of Israel inquired of the Lord, “Who shall go up first for us against the Canaanites, to fight against them?” The Lord said, “Judah shall go up; behold, I have given the land into his hand.” And Judah said to Simeon his brother, “Come up with me into the territory allotted to me, that we may fight against the Canaanites. And I likewise will go with you into the territory allotted to you.” So Simeon went with him. Then Judah went up and the Lord gave the Canaanites and the Perizzites into their hand, and they defeated 10,000 of them at Bezek. They found Adoni-bezek at Bezek and fought against him and defeated the Canaanites and the Perizzites. Adoni-bezek fled, but they pursued him and caught him and cut off his thumbs and his big toes. And Adoni-bezek said, “Seventy kings with their thumbs and their big toes cut off used to pick up scraps under my table. As I have done, so God has repaid me.” And they brought him to Jerusalem, and he died there.

And the men of Judah fought against Jerusalem and captured it and struck it with the edge of the sword and set the city on fire. And afterward the men of Judah went down to fight against the Canaanites who lived in the hill country, in the Negeb, and in the lowland. 10 And Judah went against the Canaanites who lived in Hebron (now the name of Hebron was formerly Kiriath-arba), and they defeated Sheshai and Ahiman and Talmai.

11 From there they went against the inhabitants of Debir. The name of Debir was formerly Kiriath-sepher. 12 And Caleb said, “He who attacks Kiriath-sepher and captures it, I will give him Achsah my daughter for a wife.” 13 And Othniel the son of Kenaz, Caleb’s younger brother, captured it. And he gave him Achsah his daughter for a wife. 14 When she came to him, she urged him to ask her father for a field. And she dismounted from her donkey, and Caleb said to her, “What do you want?” 15 She said to him, “Give me a blessing. Since you have set me in the land of the Negeb, give me also springs of water.” And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the lower springs.

16 And the descendants of the Kenite, Moses’ father-in-law, went up with the people of Judah from the city of palms into the wilderness of Judah, which lies in the Negeb near Arad, and they went and settled with the people. 17 And Judah went with Simeon his brother, and they defeated the Canaanites who inhabited Zephath and devoted it to destruction. So the name of the city was called Hormah. 18 Judah also captured Gaza with its territory, and Ashkelon with its territory, and Ekron with its territory. 19 And the Lord was with Judah, and he took possession of the hill country, but he could not drive out the inhabitants of the plain because they had chariots of iron. 20 And Hebron was given to Caleb, as Moses had said. And he drove out from it the three sons of Anak. 21 But the people of Benjamin did not drive out the Jebusites who lived in Jerusalem, so the Jebusites have lived with the people of Benjamin in Jerusalem to this day.

22 The house of Joseph also went up against Bethel, and the Lord was with them. 23 And the house of Joseph scouted out Bethel. (Now the name of the city was formerly Luz.) 24 And the spies saw a man coming out of the city, and they said to him, “Please show us the way into the city, and we will deal kindly with you.” 25 And he showed them the way into the city. And they struck the city with the edge of the sword, but they let the man and all his family go.26 And the man went to the land of the Hittites and built a city and called its name Luz. That is its name to this day.

27 Manasseh did not drive out the inhabitants of Beth-shean and its villages, or Taanach and its villages, or the inhabitants of Dor and its villages, or the inhabitants of Ibleam and its villages, or the inhabitants of Megiddo and its villages, for the Canaanites persisted in dwelling in that land. 28 When Israel grew strong, they put the Canaanites to forced labor, but did not drive them out completely.

29 And Ephraim did not drive out the Canaanites who lived in Gezer, so the Canaanites lived in Gezer among them.

30 Zebulun did not drive out the inhabitants of Kitron, or the inhabitants of Nahalol, so the Canaanites lived among them, but became subject to forced labor.

31 Asher did not drive out the inhabitants of Acco, or the inhabitants of Sidon or of Ahlab or of Achzib or of Helbah or of Aphik or of Rehob, 32 so the Asherites lived among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land, for they did not drive them out.

33 Naphtali did not drive out the inhabitants of Beth-shemesh, or the inhabitants of Beth-anath, so they lived among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land. Nevertheless, the inhabitants of Beth-shemesh and of Beth-anath became subject to forced labor for them.

34 The Amorites pressed the people of Dan back into the hill country, for they did not allow them to come down to the plain. 35 The Amorites persisted in dwelling in Mount Heres, in Aijalon, and in Shaalbim, but the hand of the house of Joseph rested heavily on them, and they became subject to forced labor. 36 And the border of the Amorites ran from the ascent of Akrabbim, from Sela and upward.

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Next: Judges 2

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This Post Has 4 Comments
  1. After the Death of Joshua

    The last chapter of the Book of Joshua records the death of Joshua (Joshua 24:29). Judges chapter 1 begins with "After the death of Joshua" as the people look for a new leader. They ask the Lord who it will be and He appoints Judah, who along with his brother Simeon, defeat 10,000 Canaanites and Perizzites who the Lord delivered into their hands. 

    After many wars and victories, the phrase "did not drive out" appears eight times in this chapter:

    Judges 1:21 But the people of Benjamin did not drive out the Jebusites who lived in Jerusalem, so the Jebusites have lived with the people of Benjamin in Jerusalem to this day.

    Judges 1:27 Manasseh did not drive out the inhabitants of Beth-shean and its villages, or Taanach and its villages, or the inhabitants of Dor and its villages, or the inhabitants of Ibleam and its villages, or the inhabitants of Megiddo and its villages, for the Canaanites persisted in dwelling in that land.

    Judges 1:28 When Israel grew strong, they put the Canaanites to forced labor, but did not drive them out completely.

    Judges 1:29 And Ephraim did not drive out the Canaanites who lived in Gezer, so the Canaanites lived in Gezer among them.

    Judges 1:30 Zebulun did not drive out the inhabitants of Kitron, or the inhabitants of Nahalol, so the Canaanites lived among them, but became subject to forced labor.

    Judges 1:31 Asher did not drive out the inhabitants of Acco, or the inhabitants of Sidon or of Ahlab or of Achzib or of Helbah or of Aphik or of Rehob

    Judges 1:32 so the Asherites lived among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land, for they did not drive them out.

    Judges 1:33 Naphtali did not drive out the inhabitants of Beth-shemesh, or the inhabitants of Beth-anath, so they lived among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land. Nevertheless, the inhabitants of Beth-shemesh and of Beth-anath became subject to forced labor for them.

    Then we read in Judges 1:34, "the Amorites pressed the people of Dan back into the hill country, for they did not allow them to come down to the plain" but "became subject for forced labor" because "the hand of the house of Joseph rested heavily on them" (Judges 1:35).

    Regarding the fact that "they" could not drive them out, John MacArthur writes in his study Bible: "They had been promised by Joshua that they could conquer the lowland (Joshua 17:16, 18) and should have remembered Joshua 11:4–9. This is a recurring failure among the tribes to rise to full trust and obedience for victory by God’s power. Compromising for less than what God was able to give (Joshua 1:6–9) began even in Joshua’s day (Judges 2:2–6) and earlier (Num. 13, 14). In another sense, God permitted enemies to hold out as a test to display whether His people would obey Him (2:20–23; 3:1, 4). Another factor involved keeping the wild animal count from rising too fast (Deuteronomy 7:22)."

    MacArthur, J., Jr. (Ed.). (1997). The MacArthur Study Bible (electronic ed., p. 339). Nashville, TN: Word Pub.

    As we begin the Book of Judges, the following overview of Judges from Ligonier.org is helpful:

    "The events described in the book of Judges cover a period of approximately 350 years, from the death of Joshua to the rise of the monarchy under Samuel. Unlike Joshua, however, which recounted a period of Israel’s history largely marked by faithfulness to God, Judges recounts a period of history characterized for the most part by unfaithfulness. Yet Judges, like the other historical books, should not be considered merely a dry and boring narration of names and places and dates. The Jews referred to the books of Joshua, Judges, Samuel, and Kings as the “former prophets.” These books demonstrate the outworking in history of God’s faithfulness to His plan of redemption, to His covenant promises and warnings. The following are the five commentaries on Judges that I have found the most helpful."

    In his commentary on the Book of Judges, Dale Davis writes, "The church (in general) has a problem with the Book of Judges. It is so earthy, so puzzling, so primitive, so violent—in a word, so strange, that the church can scarcely stomach it. As with many Old Testament materials, the sentiment seems to be, ‘If we just study the epistles long enough, maybe it will go away.’ The church has her way of dealing with embarrassing Scripture; ignore it. Yet that is difficult to do with Judges. It’s so interesting. Only people who take tranquilizers before sitting down can doze off while they read it."

    Davis, D. R. (2000). Judges: Such a Great Salvation (p. 9). Ross-shire, Great Britain: Christian Focus Publications.

    Let's not ignore the value of the Book of Judges but work through it to learn lessons we can apply to our lives in Christ today!

  2. Firstly, I was a bit shocked by the cutting off of thumbs and big toes, and I had to read through it a couple of times so I could make sure I understood it. 

    Dale Davis' says what I was thinking – this book is violent – already! But I like to be reminded that God is not One with whom you fool around. I always keep in mind what you've said time and time again – "The God of the Old Testament is the same God of the New Testament; He does not change."

    Secondly, I was very interested in what John MacArthur said about how not being able to defeat certain tribes was a "recurring failure among the tribes to rise to full trust and obedience for victory by God's power." They "compromised for less than what God was able to give." 

    WOW. That really blew me away. It made me question myself – am I compromising in my own life? It's really something to think about, and also something I've asked myself before: "Am I supposed to do things better? Am I using the full potential that God has given me?" 

    1. Dear Brynne – I love that you personalize the readings and ask yourself what areas of your life you may be compromising. We should all desire to reach our fullest potential in Christ! 

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