JUDGES

The following comments are from Navigator's and Quiet Time Diary journals. One verse will be entered, then the comment, then the date.

1:1    After the death of Joshua, the Israelites asked the Lord, "Who will be the first to go up and fight for us against the Canaanites?"

    The Canaanites were the enemy, but the Israelites seemed never to rid themselves of them (v. 28-31). This probably did not please the Lord. (DRM 5/10/88)

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

    This answers the following question: {Where am I compromising with others instead of obeying the Lord?} The Lord wants believers to 'stick together' as a family. Since I have found few in that 'family,' I still talk to the world and try to show them the light of salvation in some way. How will they know if no one tells them? (DRM 4/28/02)

2:2    and as for you, you shall make no covenant with the inhabitants of this land; you shall tear down their altars. But you have not obeyed Me; what is this you have done?

    This answers the following question: {What consequences has disobeying God meant for me?} This verse seems to indicate that we should tear down the false religions in the land. I don't do that physically, but hope that these people will change their ways before its too late. God will judge me for my thoughts and deeds - I can only hope. (DRM 4/29/02)

2:3    "Therefore I also said, 'I will not drive them (previous occupants of Israel) out before you; but they shall become as thorns in your sides, and their gods shall be a snare to you.' "

    This verse was a prophecy to the Israelites of their future. It was fulfilled in verse 11. What did they do in between? When they heard this prophecy they mourned, but did not change. Generally, I'm glad when I get direction from the Lord. I just need patience to wait for fulfillment. (DRM 1/11/04)

2:7    The people served the LORD all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders who survived Joshua, who had seen all the great work of the LORD which He had done for Israel.

    Many people don't care about history, unless they lived through it. While Joshua was alive and later his elders, they knew how the Lord brought them out of Egypt and gave them the land. The next generation didn't pay attention to their history. This is like the USA today. (DRM 1/10/10)

2:10    All that generation also were gathered to their fathers; and there arose another generation after them who did not know the LORD, nor yet the work which He had done for Israel.

    This refers to the generation of Joshua, who died (v. 8) after settling Israel in its inherited land. So the generation who traveled the Exodus from Egypt died, then Joshua's next generation died about his time, so the grandchildren never experienced the wonders of God. Did their parents tell them? According to this verse, if they did, the new generation didn't believe.
    This is like the USA today. The government took God out of the schools for 50 years and now young believers are harder to find. In time, the USA will follow the path of Israel of that time. (v. 11-12) (DRM 2/7/14)

2:11, 12    Then the sons of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD and served the Baals, 12and they forsook the LORD, the God of their fathers, who had brought them out of the land of Egypt, and followed other gods from among the gods of the peoples who were around them, and bowed themselves down to them, thus they provoked the LORD to anger.

    Joshua had just died (v. 8) at the age of 110. The people who were then in Israel hadn't been told the history of how the Lord God moved them there from Egypt. It seems the previous generation didn't tell the then current generation - thus they didn't know or trust in the God who brought them there.
    Today's society is similar and also different. Some parents tell their children of their faith and others (mostly those who have no faith) don't even mention what they believe.
    Today's parents must tell their children about Jesus, or Christianity will also end in a generation. (DRM 6/16/16)

2:13, 14    So they forsook the LORD and served Baal and the Ashtaroth. 14The anger of the LORD burned against Israel, and He gave them into the hands of plunderers who plundered them; and He sold them into the hands of their enemies around them, so that they could no longer stand before their enemies.

    Time had progressed since the exodus. The people who lived in Israel had not experienced all that the original generation experienced in God's love, feeding, and protection. Now the stories had faded. The current generation only knew Israel as their home.
    The Israelites were introduced to these gods by their neighbors. When conflicts arose, God, who was not honored, allowed the Israelites to lose and the enemy won.
    We are not to do as Israel did at the time. Keep faith in the true God, and His Son, Jesus. (DRM 9/17/17)

    [Re 2:14]    This answers the following question: {Why is it so vital that I live un uncompromising life for the Lord?} As shown in this verse, God can be vengeful on people who ignore Him. Knowing that God loves people who also love Him, it seems more healthy to have "the fear of the Lord." (DRM 4/30/02)

    [Re: 2:14]    The Israelites were easily swayed by their neighbors. The neighbor's customs to worship other gods was adopted by the Israelites, which caused the anger of the Lord - after all He had done for them. He was trying to teach them [and me] a lesson ó to follow Him alone, and He will direct my paths. (DRM 1/12/04)

    But that doesn't have to be our reality. We can submit to the sovereign authority of the eternal Ruler we were made to follow óJesusóbecause He is our living Judge and King of Kings. (from Our Daily Bread XOCHITL DIXON 9/14/17)

2:15    Whenever Israel went out to fight, the hand of the Lord was against them to defeat them, just as he had sworn to them. They were in great distress. 

    I wondered at the end of Chapter 1 if God would be happy with the Israelites for not "defeating" the Canaanites. God keeps His word! (DRM 5/11/88)

2:16    Then the LORD raised up judges who delivered them from the hands of those who plundered them. 

    This answers the following question: {How do I respond to God's offer of deliverance from sin?} While the Israelites did not accept God's gift of the judges, I'm thankful that I know and have received God's gift of Jesus for the substitution for my sins. Praise Jesus! (DRM 5/1/02)

2:17    Yet they did not listen to their judges, for they played the harlot after other gods and bowed themselves down to them. They turned aside quickly from the way in which their fathers had walked in obeying the commandments of the LORD; they did not do as their fathers.

    After Joshua died, God put the elders in charge, then He rose up the Judges (v. 16) to direct them. Still, they didn't listen to the judges and worshipped other gods. While I can't direct nations, the point may be that each individual (then and now) has to make their own decision to follow the Lord; and not other gods. Am I giving Him enough attention? (DRM 1/11/10)

2:21, 22    I also will no longer drive out before them any of the nations which Joshua left when he died, 22in order to test Israel by them, whether they will keep the way of the LORD to walk in it as their fathers did, or not."

    In Joshua 1:3,4 God told Joshua that He was giving a large territory to Israel - but they never occupied the whole "promised land." Why?
    Israel kept disobeying the Lord and His commands. They followed the gods of their neighbors (v. 12-13). The Lord sent judges and the Israelites did not listen to them (v. 16-17).
    It's easier to understand why Israel never got all of the promised land after reading these two verses. What I don't understand is why Israel didn't turn back and follow the Lord God if they knew they were disobeying and continued. The Holy Spirit was needed! (DRM 7/28/15)

3:7    The Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord; they forgot the Lord their God and served the Baals and the Asherahs.

    At least three times in this chapter alone, the Israelites fell out of favor from God, and each time He sent them a deliverer. Thank you, God, for sending Jesus Christ later! (DRM 5/12/88)

4:14    Then Deborah said to Barak, "Go! This is the day the Lord has given Sisera into your hands."

    This verse has special meaning to me: There ARE certain times when it is obvious that the Lord is watching! (DRM 5/13/88)

5:16    "Why did you sit among the sheepfolds, To hear the piping for the flocks? Among the divisions of Reuben There were great searchings of heart. 

    This answers the following question: {What form of reluctance is paralyzing my involvement in spiritual war?} Like the "divisions of Reuben" in this verse, I hesitate to get involved in some aspects of spiritual war. I am fearful of what others think of me and don't want to embarrass myself. I need boldness! (DRM 5/2/02)

5:31a, c    So may all your enemies perish, O Lord! . . .   Then the land had peace forty years. 

    While I did not understand all of "Deborah's Song," which is this chapter, Jael is a woman who killed Sisera with a hammer. This Sisera must have been an enemy, as God is praised at the end. (DRM 5/14/88)

6:1    Then the sons of Israel did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, and the LORD gave them into the hands of Midian seven years.

    I would call this "cause and effect." The Israelites did not obey the Lord's commands, so the Lord let the Midianites control them.
    Since God did this for Israel, He could also do this for individuals in a Fatherly way. Am I doing anything that is displeasing to the Lord? If so, how can I correct it? (DRM 1/12/10)

6:10    and I said to you, "I am the LORD your God; you shall not fear the gods of the Amorites in whose land you live. But you have not obeyed Me." ' " 

    This seems to dwell on the same theme: Israel ignores God, God lets them, Israel repents, God provides a leader, then Israel ignores God again and begins a new cycle. Here they were in the hands of the Midianites for 7 years where God was punishing them for disobedience. He wanted them back. He is a forgiving God - if we will only confess to Him. (DRM 1/13/04)

6:14    The LORD looked at him [Gideon] and said, "Go in this your strength and deliver Israel from the hand of Midian. Have I not sent you?"

    Clearly the angel of the Lord (v. 12) or the Lord God (this verse) appeared to Gideon and had a mission for him - to deliver Israel from the Midianites.
    Like Moses and others, Gideon felt unworthy to do such a great work for the Lord and wanted confirmation that this was truly the Lord God who was asking him to do the work.
    Sometimes when I do things, I wonder if the Lord wants me to do it - especially after apparent failure - still the Lord has a reason for everything and we will see the results "later." (DRM 7/8/15)

6:15    "But Lord," Gideon asked, "how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family."

    A friend asked me to read this chapter probably because many times I feel inadequate to be a servant to God. 
    Slowly, I am starting to feel otherwise and no longer feel that I am not useful. I really feel that God has a purpose for me, and it won't be long before I will be asked to serve Him in a more "vocal" way - by either writing or speaking more about Him. (DRM 11/21/87)

    This answers the following question: {What characteristics in myself do I see represented in Gideon?} Like Gideon, I feel inadequate to do the Lord's work. I have put up excuses and wondered if He really can use me. While I'm still not sure if I am a leader, at least I can do little things. (DRM 5/3/02)

6:15, 16    And he [Gideon] said to Him, "O Lord, how shall I deliver Israel? Behold, my family is the least in Manasseh, and I am the youngest in my father's house." 16But the LORD said to him, "Surely I will be with you, and you shall defeat Midian as one man." 

    Like Moses, Gideon couldn't believe that he was chosen by God to do a great work for the Kingdom. He probably questioned God more than anyone else. Still, God chose him, and Gideon believed. I pray God will use me also. (DRM 1/14/04)

6:17    So Gideon said to Him, "If now I have found favor in Your sight, then show me a sign that it is You who speak with me. . ."

    Sometimes I have been like Gideon. When I have new ideas or plans, I wonder if the source is my desire or the Lord's. I don't want to do anything that isn't His will for me. When I ask for a sign of some sort, and it comes to pass, I have more confidence that I am doing His will. (DRM 1/13/10)

6:21    Then the angel of the LORD put out the end of the staff that was in his hand and touched the meat and the unleavened bread; and fire sprang up from the rock and consumed the meat and the unleavened bread. Then the angel of the LORD vanished from his sight.

    Gideon always wanted proof that what he was going told to do was truly from the Lord. This verse shows how the angel of the Lord confirmed it was God's will.
    In verse 14 the Lord - or His angel - said, "Go in this your strength and deliver Israel from the hand of Median, Have I not sent you?" Gideon was reluctant at first, so asked in this way for confirmation before going ahead with the task.
Gideon was right in that we should make sure that God wants us to do the things that come to our minds and these are not just our personal desires. God will confirm in some way if He has a special task for you to complete. (DRM 5/4/17)

6:31    But Joash said to all who stood against him, "Will you contend for Baal, or will you deliver him? Whoever will plead for him shall be put to death by morning. If he is a god, let him contend for himself, because someone has torn down his altar."

    Joash was Gideon's father (v. 29). God told Gideon to tear down the altar (v. 25), and now the men of the city wanted to kill Gideon (v. 30) for what he did. Joash said in this verse that if Baal was a god, then he could defend himself and didn't need them to do anything.
    I think the point is - if we do something that the Lord God doesn't like or want, He will correct us in some manner. (DRM 1/14/10)

6:36, 37    Then Gideon said to God, "If You will deliver Israel through me, as You have spoken, 32behold, I will put a fleece of wool on the threshing floor. If there is dew on the fleece only, and it is dry on all the ground, then I will know that You will deliver Israel through me, as You have spoken."

    Gideon was visited by an angel (v. 12) who directed him to deliver Israel from the hand of Midian (v. 14).
    Gideon wanted to be sure that what he was told truly came from the Lord and devised a test that starts in these two verses. If God passed Gideon's test, He knew the Lord God was directing him and his confidence of success grew.
    Sometimes it seems that God is directing us to do something for Him. While this example seems extreme, I know I've asked for confirmation in easier ways and knew He was the Director. You may want to try if in doubt. (DRM 10/9/17)

6:39, 40a    Then Gideon said to God, "Do not let Thine anger burn against me that I may speak once more; please let me make a test once more with the fleece, let it now be dry only on the fleece, and let there be dew on all the ground. 40And God did so that night; . . . 

    In some ways, I would also like God to tell me exactly what He wants me to do. Gideon received an answer twice. In other parts of the Bible, we are told not to test the Lord. So far, I have depended on the Holy Spirit for direction. (DRM 1/15/04)

7:2    The LORD said to Gideon, "The people who are with you are too many for Me to give Midian into their hands, for Israel would become boastful, saying, 'My own power has delivered me.'

    This is just like today's news. Israel is planning on attacking another nation and is depending on it's own military might; not the Lord God.
    Individually, God wants us to depend on Him for the (what seems to be) impossible tasks. So long as He agrees with the desire in our heart, it will come to pass, so long as we depend on Him, and not our own strength. (DRM 3/8/12)

7:3    "Now therefore come, proclaim in the hearing of the people, saying, 'Whoever is afraid and trembling, let him return and depart from Mount Gilead.' " So 22,000 people returned, but 10,000 remained.

    This answers the following question: {How can I respond when confronted to do spiritual warfare?} Honestly, I fear the unknown and would have been in the first group, unless I knew what to prepare for. With the Lord's help, I can do anything in Christ Jesus. I just have to know what the job entails first. (DRM 5/4/02)

7:7    The LORD said to Gideon, "I will deliver you with the 300 men who lapped and will give the Midianites into your hands; so let all the other people go, each man to his home."

    Gideon had a group of 32,000 men to defeat the Midianites. God had Gideon reduce that number to 300 to show that He was in control. As the Midianites and the Amalekites were "as numerous as locusts" (v. 12), Gideon had great faith in the Lord to deliver on His promises. Do I have similar faith in God to provide for my health and needs? (DRM 1/15/10)

7:8    So the 300 men took the people's provisions and their trumpets into their hands. And Gideon sent all the other men of Israel, each to his tent, but retained the 300 men; and the camp of Midian was below him in the valley.

    Joshua and the troops were ready to attack Midian. God said 32,000 soldiers was too many for this battle, so Joshua was given instructions on how to lower the number needed to just 300. The purpose? That it would be shown that God provided the victory, not the large number of soldiers (v. 2).
    God wants us to depend on Him for our needs in life, not on our own ability or finances to pay for the material or work to be done. (DRM 2/24/14)

7:13    When Gideon came [to the enemy camp], behold, a man was relating a dream to his friend. And he said, "Behold, I had a dream, a loaf of barley bread was tumbling into the camp of Midian, and it came to the tent and struck it so that it fell, and turned it upside down so that the tent lay flat."

    Gideon was ready to battle with Midian with 32,000 men, but God eventually reduced it to 300. In this verse Gideon found out God's plan. He "terrorized" the Midian army by putting a dream in their minds. God works through many ways. (DRM 1/16/04)

7:17    "Watch me," he told them. "Follow my lead. When I get to the edge of the camp, do exactly as I do."

    Gideon now knew that he was a leader sent by God and had the confidence to be that leader. If God wants me to be that new leader, He will also tell me how to do it! (DRM 5/15/88)

7:18  When I [Gideon] and all who are with me blow the trumpet, then you also blow the trumpets all around the camp and say, 'For the LORD and for Gideon.' "

    Gideon was to take the camp of his enemies in Midian (v. 1). He had too many soldiers, so God reduced their number from 32,000 (v. 3) to 300 (v. 7) to show that He was in control and not Israel's army, soldiers or military might.
    With the enemy surrounded, God had Gideon and his 300 men blow the trumpets (v. 18) and the enemy was defeated. (There's more detail than I can write here.)
    God wants us to depend totally on Him and not depend on our own (e.g. money, health). He will meet all our needs if we trust totally in Him. (DRM 3/29/16)

7:21    And each [Gideon's men] stood in his place around the camp; and all the army ran, crying out as they fled.

    Gideon's men now numbered 300, as the Lord had directed. They could not defeat this army without the Lord. God had put fear in the hearts of the encamped army and they fled as they heard Gideon's trumpets. Gideon's men stood, and did not advance. The Midianite army fled. God literally gave Gideon the victory. With a pure heart, God can do this for me. (DRM 1/17/04)

7:22    When they blew 300 trumpets, the LORD set the sword of one against another even throughout the whole army; and the army fled as far as Beth-shittah toward Zererah, as far as the edge of Abel-meholah, by Tabbath.

    Apparently the Midianites and the Amalekites were expecting defeat (v. 12). When Gideon and his group of 300 blew their trumpets in the middle of the night, the opposition killed some of their own, and also fled away! God knew their fears and Gideon was able to take over the land. God provided for Gideon and also will take care of His own. (DRM 1/16/10)

8:23    But Gideon told them, "I will not rule over you, nor will my son rule over you. The Lord will rule over you."

    The Israelites were impressed with Gideon's successes in battle and wanted to make him king. Gideon told them a lot in this verse and it is true to this day! (DRM 5/16/88)

8:28    So Midian was subdued before the sons of Israel, and they did not lift up their heads anymore. And the land was undisturbed for forty years in the days of Gideon.

    Generally when a country loses a war, they have to repair all the damages and won't want to go back to war with the same enemy for a while. (I can think of WW I and WW II Germany as an exception.) This also shows that God, through Gideon, had a decisive victory - and the Midianites feared the Lord and His chosen Israel. (DRM 1/17/10)

8:33    Then it came about, as soon as Gideon was dead, that the sons of Israel again played the harlot with the Baals, and made Baal-berith their god. 

    In verse 23, Gideon said he would not rule over Israel, that the Lord shall be the ruler. Still, he was in charge for another 40 years and all was peaceful. The Israelites had time to forget the Lord. I think the only way to serve the Lord is if He is dwelling within you. Without this, the demons will succeed at any type of distraction - permanently. (DRM 1/18/04)

9:56    Thus God repaid the wickedness that Abimelech had done to his father by murdering his seventy brothers. 

    Over three years had passed since Abimelech had taken control of Shechem by killing his seventy brothers who were also sons of Gideon. Happily God repaid Abimelech for his deeds! (DRM 5/17/88)

10:16    Then they (the Israelites) got rid of the foreign gods among them and served the Lord. 

    The Israelites decided, over years, to forsake the Lord and He decided to save them no longer (verse 13). However, God changed His mind and took them back. (DRM 5/18/88)

11:30, 31, 39    And Jephthah made a vow to the Lord. . . 31whatever comes out of the door of my house . . . when I return . . . will be the Lord's, and I will sacrifice it. . . 39he did to her (his daughter) as he had vowed. And she was a virgin. 

    When making a vow to the Lord, sometimes it is very hard to keep! Truly righteous and godly servants will fulfill all vows made to the Lord. (DRM 5/19/88)

12:6a, b    they said, "All right, say 'shibbeleth,'" if he said "shibbeleth," because he could not pronounce the word correctly, they seized him and killed him. . .

    There is always a way to tell who was telling the truth. Mispronunciation of words was a great way of telling who actually was a Ephraimite. (DRM 5/20/88)

13:3, 4    Then the angel of the LORD appeared to the woman and said to her, "Behold now, you are barren and have borne no children, but you shall conceive and give birth to a son. 4Now therefore, be careful not to drink wine or strong drink, nor eat  any unclean thing.

    I chose this verse to show that, even thousands of years ago, women did not drink alcohol during pregnancy. I wonder if people knew then what the consequences would be - and it doesn't encourage me to drink alcohol any other time, either!
    At least in this passage, the angel didn't say who the father would be - or was it assumed? (DRM 1/18/10)

13:5    "For behold, you shall conceive and give birth to a son, and no razor shall come upon his head, for the boy shall be a Nazirite to God from the womb; and he shall begin to deliver Israel from the hands of the Philistines."

    In some ways, Biblical announcements of births seem very similar, no matter what year they are given. To me, the key word here is "begin." This boy was not to complete the mission, but to begin it! I pray God will also use me on a mission. (DRM 1/19/04)

13:7    But he [angel] said to me, 'Behold, you shall conceive and give birth to a son, and now you shall not drink wine or strong drink nor eat any unclean thing, for the boy shall be a Nazirite to God from the womb to the day of his death.' "

    Even before Sampson was born, he was to be a special person and be used by God. (Nazirite)
    Some aspects of this story make me think of the announcement to Mary and Joseph before Jesus' birth. God knows each of us before we are created in our mother's womb. He has a plan for each child, thus we should not kill them for convenience sake (abortion).
    The angel is a messenger from God and is not to be worshipped, as only God=Jesus is to be worshipped.
    Even today, women should not "drink wine or strong drink nor eat any unclean thing" during pregnancy. (DRM 3/20/15)

13:20    As the flame blazed up from the altar toward heaven, the angel of the Lord ascended in the flame. Seeing this, Manoah and his wife fell with their faces to the ground. 

    The angel described here had just predicted Samson's birth. To see the ascent of an angel would certainly change my life! (DRM 5/21/88)

13:24    Then the woman gave birth to a son and named him Samson; and the child grew up and the LORD blessed him.

    This makes me think of the lack of details in Jesus' life. We know just about no details about 20 years (more or less) of either life.
    I think highly of my childhood memories and look forward to hearing more from these people in the future - in Heaven.
    God blesses each of us differently - certainly Samson's blessings included his strength. (DRM 1/19/10)

14:1    Then Samson went down to Timnah, and saw a woman in Timnah, one of the daughters of the Philistines. 

    The prophecy about Samson was that he would "begin to deliver Israel from the hands of the Philistines." This would be the first step. By marrying a Philistine wife, he would be a part of their family, and have to learn to be like them. God continuously told the Israelites not to intermarry, but Samson's way seemed to be God's will. (DRM 1/20/04)

14:6a    The Spirit of the Lord came upon him (Samson) in power so that he tore the lion apart with his bare hands as he might have torn a young goat. 

    The power of the Lord comes to people in various ways. To Samson it was his strength. Thank you God for providing for each of us in individual ways. (DRM 5/22/88)

14:17    However she wept before him seven days while their feast lasted. And it came about on the seventh day that he told her because she pressed him so hard. She then told the riddle to the sons of her people. 

    Apparently this was the first seven days of Samson's marriage to his wife. It seems obvious that she valued her family more than her new husband, so pleaded with him to tell her his secret. God had given Samson his strength, and she, as a Philistine, tried to take it away. This should lead me to be cautious to talking to people from "the other side." (DRM 1/21/04)

14:19    Then the Spirit of the LORD came upon him [Samson] mightily, and he went down to Ashkelon and killed thirty of them and took their spoil and gave the changes of clothes to those who told the riddle. And his anger burned, and he went up to his father's house.

    I truly don't understand this verse. The Ten Commandments had already been written and included, "thou shall not kill." Of course the Philistines were the enemy and he was a "judge." I also don't understand how anger is useful, but can understand why he could be angry with his wife in this situation. Trust is important in marriage and close friendships. (DRM 1/20/10)

15:2a, b    "I was so sure you thoroughly hated her," he (his wife's father) said, "that I gave her to your friend. . . "

    I  can't imagine how upset I would be if my father-in-law told me that he gave my wife to someone else! Certainly Samson had a right to get upset! (DRM 5/23/88)

15:14, 15    When he came to Lehi, the Philistines shouted as they met him. And the Spirit of the Lord came upon him mightily so that the ropes that were on his arms were as flax that is burned with fire, and his bonds dropped from his hands. 15And he found a fresh jawbone of a donkey, so he reached out and took it and killed a thousand men with it.     

    Samson's secret strength came from the Spirit of the Lord. He couldn't be restrained by ropes and was a one man army to destroy the Philistines. Apparently he believed in vengeance - but he was on the right side - a servant of God. (DRM 1/22/04)

15:19    But God split the hollow place that is in Lehi so that water came out of it. When he [Samson] drank, his strength returned and he revived. Therefore he named it En-hakkore, which is in Lehi to this day.

    I remember Moses and God splitting the rock for water in Exodus, but forgot this!
    While Samson killed many people with his incredible strength, all that he killed were the enemies of the Jewish/Israelite people.
    Even today, God works His will in unusual ways and unexpected people. (DRM 1/21/10)

16:6    So Delilah said to Samson, "Tell me the secret of your great strength, and how you can be tied up and subdued."

    Time after time Delilah said these words to get Samson to tell her the secret of his great strength.
    Eventually, she wore him down and he told her of the power of his hair. When he did this, she immediately turned him over to the enemy.
    Sin is like this and it wants to consume our lives also. We must turn it away! (DRM 8/16/87)

16:16    And it came about when she [Delilah] pressed him daily with her words and urged him, that his soul was annoyed to death. 

    After my wife tied me up and tried to hurt me three times, and continuously pleaded to know how to hurt me, I can't understand why Samson would tell her the source of his strength [verse 17]. Perhaps it was his love for this woman. Most likely it was God's will that we don't always understand. To me this is an example of how God can work good out of pain. (DRM 1/23/04)

16:17    So he [Samson] told her [Delilah] all that was in his heart and said to her, "A razor has never come on my head, for I have been a Nazirite to God from my mother's womb. If I am shaved, then my strength will leave me and I will become weak and be like any other man."

    I guess I can understand both sides of the story. Delilah acted for the enemy, the Philistines, as he was destroying their property. Samson "loved" (v. 4) Delilah and finally gave in after her constant questioning.
    I think Samson shouldn't have given in as she was so obviously trying to hurt him - and he should have known she would attempt to hurt him by the three unsuccessful attempts just before this. (DRM 1/22/10)

16:28    Then Samson called to the LORD and said, "O Lord GOD, please remember me and please strengthen me just this time, O God, that I may at once be avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes."

    Samson knew that his strength came from the Lord God, not the length of his hair - however that was used by God. Here Samson called on God and God provided the strength to complete Samson's final act - to destroy the structure where thousands of Philistines were. My faith is in the Lord, and not my own actions - however I have to do something to make people aware of my "existence" in ministry or business (advertising). (DRM 1/23/10)

16:30    And Samson said "let me die with the Philistines!" And he bent with all his might so that the house fell on the lords and all the people who were in it. So the dead whom he killed at his death were more than those whom he killed in his life. 

    Certainly God gave Samson special abilities and they were used for His glory. While I don't understand the revenge aspect of Samson's ministry, the plan was achieved. God may use me in a way I don't expect. (DRM 1/24/04)

17:5    Now this man Micah had a shrine, and he made an ephod and some idols and installed one of his sons as his priest.

    More to follow (I'm sure . . . ) Deuteronomy 5:8 states that you shall not make for yourself an idol. . . which is happening here. God certainly should have corrected Micah in some way. . . (DRM 5/24/88)

18:20    Then the priest was glad. He took the ephod, the other household gods and the carved image and went along with the people.

    The Danites tribe passed by Micah's house on their way to conquer a city and took Micah's priest and gods with them to eventually settle the city named Dan. (DRM 5/25/88)

19:29    When he reached home, he took a knife and cut up his concubine, limb by limb, into twelve parts and sent them to all the areas of Israel.

    Another strange passage to me. A Levite was traveling from Ephraim to Bethlehem where he took this concubine, then traveled back, men raped her and this Levite did this {in verse above}. (DRM 5/26/88)

20:46    On that day twenty-five thousand Benjamite swordsmen fell, all of them valiant fighters.

    The Bible deals with large numbers of people! Thank God that He chose me to be one of His people! Here I am, Lord! (DRM 5/28/88)

21:15    The people grieved for Benjamin, because the Lord had made a gap in the tribes of Israel.

    This final chapter of Judges dealt with the finding of a way to keep the Benjamite & Jabesh Gilead tribes among the twelve. The solution sounded "sneaky," but was interesting! Do I have to be "sneaky" to find a wife? I hope not! (DRM 5/29/88)