Word for Today Archive

Pastoral Commentary for Judges 20
Author: Pastor Bob Nordlie

After the tribes of Israel learned of this crime, they gathered in Mizpah so they could learn all the facts about this case and determine a course of action. The Levite recounted his story and the Israelites decided to send an army against Gibeah that "they may repay Gibeah of Benjamin, for all the outrage that they have committed in Israel." The tribe of Benjamin was asked to surrender the men of Gibeah so that they could be punished justly for their crime. The Benjamites refused, and assembled their own army to fight against their fellow Israelites at Gibeah. At Bethel, the Israelites asked the LORD who should go first to fight against the Bejamites. God designated Judah to go first, but when the battle commenced 22,000 Israelites were killed. With weeping the men of Israel sought the LORD who told them to go up against Benjamin again. On the next day 18,000 Israelites died. With weeping and fasting they approached the LORD again, who told them that on the next day He would deliver Benjamin into their hands. Initially the battle seemed to go against Israel, but when they retreated and Benjamin pursued they were ambushed by Israel, followed by another frontal assault which led to the death of more than 25,000 Benjamites. In the meantime, the city of Gibeah was attacked and burned. The slaughter increased, and the other towns of the tribe of Benjamin were killed and burned. Thus, this terrible immorality, combined with the tribe of Benjamin's refusal to repent, led to what amounted to civil war, as in the days of Jephthah.

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2019-11-22 12:12:24