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Comparing Judges and Ruth. Judges 21:25 “Every man did what was right in his own eyes.”. Ruth 1:16 “Your God will be my God . . .”. Schedule. Nov 9 – Judges 19-21: Gibeah in the Tribe of Benjamin Nov 16 – Ruth 1-4: Contrasts to the Judges. Nov 23 – “When Jesus Returns”:

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comparing judges and ruth

Comparing Judgesand Ruth

Judges 21:25 “Every man did what was right in his own eyes.”

Ruth 1:16

“Your God will be my God . . .”

  • Nov 9 – Judges 19-21: Gibeah in the Tribe of Benjamin
  • Nov 16 – Ruth 1-4: Contrasts to the Judges

Nov 23 – “When Jesus Returns”:

New Class by Allen and George

judges 17 21

Judges 17-21

Pervasive Spiritual Decay

Leads to Social Misery

Judges 17:6; 18:1; 19:1; 21:25

recap of last week spiritual decay chapters 17 18
Recap of Last Week: Spiritual Decay, Chapters 17, 18

The thief Micah builds a private shrine in his home to worship God via Idols. He hires a wandering Levite, who is no priest, and feels good about what he has done. Meanwhile, a group of Danites are searching for suitable land in the north, that God had not allotted to them. The Danites steal Micah’s Levite and his idols so they can use them for worship. They conquer the north land as though this is where God wanted them to be. Dan becomes a center of idol worship to God.

The Aha Moment:

The Levite turns out to be a

direct descendant of Moses.


New Dan

Micah’s Home


Tribe of Dan

introducing a levite
Introducing a Levite

Judges 19:1-13

  • He is paying no attention to God’s directions concerning where Levites should live.
  • Is not monogamous. (Gen 2:24)
  • His concubine leaves him and goes to her father (v2)
  • The penalty for adultery is not carried out. (Lev 20:10) He should not take her back (Deut 24:4)
  • Instead, he seeks to bring her back to him with insincerely kind words (v 3). Lit he “spoke to her heart.”
  • He enjoys fun. “Enjoy yourself.” v 6,9This fun will be his undoing.

How did the father-in-law unwittingly

contribute to his daughter’s death?



9 miles away


6 miles away


don t stop at a heathen city
“Don’t Stop at a Heathen City”

Judges 19:14-21 – The ‘Godly’ City of Gibeah

  • V. 15 None of their brethren took them into their house. They sat in the open square. (Deut 16:24; 26:12)
  • V. 16 The one who offers hospitality is an old laborer who is not from Gibeah.
  • V. 19 There was no reason to refuse the Levite’s request for hospitality. He brought his food, etc.

Was the Levite’s insistence that he stay at an Israelite city a good idea? v. 22, 23

Who were these Israelites of Gibeah acting like? v. 22, 23, comp’d to Gen. 19:4-5

the crime committed
The Crime Committed

Judges 19:22-25

In v22, who is responsible? The whole city?

Lit. “men of the city” (not “the men of the city”).

“worthless fellows” – ESV

“sons of Belial” - KJV

“certain base fellows” ASV

“sons of worthlessness” - YLT

the crime committed1
The Crime Committed

What do the old man and the Levite have in common in v 24,25?

Do with her whatever you please – v 24.

Seize her and force her to leave, defenseless to save his cowardly skin – v 25.

He’s the master, v 26. She is the property.

Contrast these actions with love, as Christ loves the Church:

Love defends the beloved.

Love offers self so the beloved can live.

Love acts lovingly at all times, not just when it is convenient, easy.

the aftermath

So much hate, violence, cowardice, callous disregard, insincerity, love of self. Life has broken down and unraveled. They reject God’s rule in their lives (19:1).

The Aftermath

This generation that comes after Joshua and Eleazar is already infected with sin that makes them, to a degree, indistinguishable from the Gentiles.

Judges 19:26-30

What can be said further

of the Levite’s “love”

for his concubine?

civil warfare 65 000 die tribe near extinction
Civil Warfare: 65,000 Die, Tribe Near Extinction
  • Rest of Israel is outraged at Benjamites behavior and gathers for war, Jdgs. 20:1-11.
  • A diplomatic solutions fail when Benjamin will not extradite the guilty people of Gibeah, Jdgs. 20:12-17.
  • God directs Israel to attack, but suffers two defeats, Jdgs. 20:18-28 (like in Joshua 7 with Ai, when there was sin).
  • Third attack is successful, Jdgs. 20:29-48.


The Land of Gilead


Tribe of Benjamin


oops now what
Oops, now what . . .
  • Israel is grieved that it was so harsh on Benjamin (21:1-7).
  • Israel made two extreme oaths before battle (21:8-15):
    • Our daughters will never marry any Benjamites.
    • Any Israelite city which did not help us in war will be utterly destroyed.

Which of these two oaths did they steadfastly follow?

Which oath were they selectively enforcing?

they circumvent the law
They Circumvent the Law
  • Only 2/3 of the problem is solved. Need to find another 200 wives for Benjamites.
  • They will allow Benjamites to kidnap 200 virgins from the town of Shiloh during the upcoming feast (21:16-25).

What can we learn from this incident

about our speech during a crisis or

a highly emotional situation?


Town of Jabesh Gilead



Tribe of Benjamin

who is the hero
Who is the Hero?
  • The Levite who meanders around looking for fun, who has more than one wife, who acts as a coward and a brute.
  • The old laborer in Gibeah who is ready to turn over his daughter rather than defend her.
  • Certain evil men in Gibeah, who acted as terrorists.
  • The Benjamites who fought on behalf of the evil men of Gibeah.
  • The Israelites with unrepented sin.
  • The Israelites who weaseled-around God’s law about oaths, only keeping the ones they preferred.
  • The Israelites who murdered the innocent people of Jabesh Gilead and made their daughters slaves to Benjamin.
  • The Benjamites who agreed to accept as wives persons they kidnapped from the Tabernacle of God at Shiloh.

Peaceful Pastoral LifeBrotherly LoveHonorReal LoveObedience to the LawTrue FamilySelf SacrificeGenerosity

These are not in Judges!

These are in the Book of Ruth


“In those days Israel had no King;

Everyone did as he saw fit. . .”

Judges 17:6

Ruth 1:16

“Your God will be my God . . .”