The Bible Book by Book
The Name. The name is taken from the Judges whose deeds it records.

The Character of the Book. The book is fragmentary and unchronological in its arrangement. The events recorded are largely local and tribal instead of national, but are of great value as showing the condition and character of the people.

The Condition of the Nation. Israel was unorganized and somewhat unsettled. They lacked moral energy and the spirit of obedience to Jehovah and were constantly falling into idolatry and then suffering at the hands of heathen nations. This condition is summed up in the oft repeated words: "The children of Israel again did evil in the eyes of the Lord" and "the Lord sold them into the hand of the oppressor."

The Contents. Judges records the conflict of the nation with the Canaanite people and with itself; the condition of the country, people and times and the faithfulness, righteousness and mercy of God. It gives an account of "Seven apostasies, seven servitudes to the seven heathen nations and seven deliverances." It furnishes an explanation of these "ups and downs" and is not merely a record of historical events but an interpretation of those events.

The Work of the Judges. The Judges were raised up as occasion required and were tribesmen upon whom God laid the burden of apostate and oppressed Israel. They exercised judicial functions and led the armies of Israel against their enemies. They, therefore, asserted the nation's principles and upheld the cause of Jehovah. As deliverers they were all types of Christ.

The Key-word is Confusion and the key-verse is "every man did that which was right in his own eyes" 17:6, which would certainly bring about a state of confusion.


I. From the Conquest to the Judges, 1:1-3:6.

II. The Judges and their Work. 3:7-16 end.

1. Against Mesopotamia, 3:7-12.

2. Against Moab, 3:13-30.

3. Against Philistia, 3:31.

4. Against the Canaanites, Chs. 4-5.

5. Against the Midianites, Chs. 6-10.

6. Against the Amorites, Chs. 11-12.

7. Against the Philistines, Chs, 13-16.

III. The Idolatry of Micah, Chs. 17-18.

IV. The Crime of Gibea, Chs. 19-21.

For Study and Discussion. (1) Learn the names of the Judges in order with the time each served, or the period of rest after his work had been accomplished. (2) The enemy each judge had to combat and what work was accomplished by each judge. (3) What elements of strength and of weakness are to be found in the character of each judge. (4) From the story of Gideon and Sampson, point out New Testament truths. (5) From the story of Jephthah and Deborah gather lessons for practical life today. (6) Religious apostasy as a cause of national decay. (7) Political folly and social immorality as a sign of national decay. (8) The method of divine deliverance.

For the Outline Study of the Bible by Books by J.B. TIDELL, A.M., D.D. Professor of Biblical Literature in Baylor University, Waco, Texas
Judges 1. Israelites Capture Jerusalem, Hebron, Others

1. The acts of Judah and Simeon
4. Adonibezek justly requited
8. Jerusalem taken
10. Hebron taken
11. Othniel has Achsah to wife for taking of Debir
16. The Kenites dwell in Judah
17. Hormah, Gaza, Askelon, and Ekron taken
21. The acts of Benjamin
22. Of the house of Joseph, who take Bethel
30. Of Zebulun
31. Of Asher
33. Of Naphtali
34. Of Dan

Judges 2. Israel Rebuked and Defeated

1. An angel rebukes the people at Bochim
6. The wickedness of the new generation after Joshua
14. God's anger and pity toward them
20. The Canaanites left to prove Israel

Judges 3. Israel's idolatry and Servitude; Deliverance by Othniel, Ehud and Shamgar

1. The nations which were left to prove Israel
5. By communion with them they commit idolatry
8. Othniel delivered them from Chushan-Rishathaim
12. Ehud from Eglon
31. and Shamgar from the Philistines

Judges 4. Deborah and Barak Deliver the People from the Canaanites

1. Deborah and Barak deliver them from Jabin and Sisera
17. Jael kills Sisera

Judges 5. The Song of Deborah and Barak

1. The Song of Deborah and Barak

Judges 6. Oppression by Midian; Gideon Chosen; Destruction of Altar of Baal; Fleece

1. The Israelites for their sin are oppressed by Midian
8. A prophet rebukes them
11. An angel sends Gideon for their deliverance
17. Gideon's present is consumed with fire
24. Gideon destroys Baal's altar; offers a sacrifice upon the altar Jehovah-shalom
28. Joash defends his son, and calls him Jerubbaal
33. Gideon's army
36. Gideon's signs

Judges 7. Gideon Uses 300 Chosen Men to Defeat the Midianites

1. Gideon's army of thirty-two thousand is brought to three hundred
9. He is encouraged by the dream and interpretation of the burley cake
16. His plan of trumpets and lamps in pitchers
24. The Ephraimites take Oreb and Zeeb

Judges 8. Zebah and Zalmunna Taken; Gideon's Ephod and Death; 40 years of Peace

1. Gideon pacifies the Ephraimites
4. Succoth and Penuel refuse to deliver Gideon's army
10. Zebah and Zalmunna are taken
13. Succoth and Penuel are destroyed
17. Gideon revenges his brothers's death on Zebah and Zalmunna
22. He refuses government
24. His ephod the cause of idolatry
28. Midian subdued
29. Gideon's children, and death
33. The Israelites' idolatry and ingratitude

Judges 9. Abimelech Conspires to Become King, Falls after 3 Years; Shechem; Abimelech

1. Abimelech by conspiracy with the Shechemites, and murder of his brothers, is made king
7. Jotham by a parable rebukes them, and foretells their ruin
22. Gaal conspires with the Shechemites against him
30. Zebul reveals it
34. Abimelech overcomes them, and sows the city with salt
46. He burns the hold of the god Berith
50. At Thebez he is slain by a piece of a millstone
56. Jotham's curse is fulfilled.

Judges 10. Tola; Jair; Jephthah; Philistines and Ammonites Oppress Israel

1. Tola judges Israel in Shamir
3. Jair, whose thirty sons had thirty cities
6. The Philistines and Ammonites oppress Israel
10. In their misery God sends them to their false gods
15. Upon their repentance he pities them

Judges 11. Jephthah's Covenant with the Gileadites

1. The covenant between Jephthah and the Gileadites, that he should lead
12. The treaty of peace between him and the Ammonites is in vain
29. Jephthah's vow
32. His conquest of the Ammonites
34. He performs his vow on his daughter.

Judges 12. Jephthah, Ephraim, Ibzan, Elon, Abdon

1. The Ephraimites, quarrelling with Jephthah, are slain by the Gileadites
7. Jephthah dies
8. Ibzan, who had thirty sons, and thirty daughters
11. and Elon
13. and Abdon, who had forty sons, and thirty nephews, judge Israel

Judges 13. Israel Oppressed by the Philistines; Samson Is Born

1. Israel is delivered into the hands of Philistines
2. An angel appears to Manoah's wife
8. The angel appears to Manoah
15. Manoah's sacrifices, whereby the angel is discovered.
24. Samson is born

Judges 14. Samson's Marriage and Riddle

1. Samson desires a wife of the Philistines.
6. In his journey he kills a lion
8. In a second journey he finds honey in the carcass
10. Samson's marriage feast
12. His riddle by his wife is made known
19. He strikes down thirty Philistines
20. His wife is married to another.

Judges 15. Samson Burns the Philistine Crops

1. Samson is denied his wife
3. He burns the Philistines' corn with foxes and firebrands
6. His wife and her father are burnt by the Philistines
8. Samson smites them hip and thigh
9. He is bound by the men of Judah, and delivered to the Philistines
14. He kills them with a jawbone
18. God makes the fountain En-hakkore for him in Lehi

Judges 16. Samson and Delilah; Samson's Capture and Death

1. Samson at Gaza escapes, and carries away the gates of the city
4. Delilah corrupted by the Philistines, entices Samson
6. Thrice she is deceived
15. At last she overcomes him
21. The Philistines take him, and put out his eyes
22. His strength renewing, he pulls down the house upon the Philistines and dies

Judges 17. Micah's Idolatry

1. Of the money that Micah first stole, then restored, his mother makes idols
5. And he makes ornaments for them
7. He hires a Levite to be his priest

Judges 18. Danites Settle in Laish, Take Micah's Idols

1. The Danites send five men to seek out an inheritance
3. At the house of Micah they consult with Jonathan, and are encouraged
7. They search Laish, and bring back news of good hope
11. Six hundred men are sent to surprise it
16. In their way they rob Micah of his priest and his consecrated things
27. They win Laish, and call it Dan
30. They set up idolatry, wherein Jonathan inherits the priesthood.

Judges 19. A Levite's Concubine Degraded

1. A Levite goes to Bethlehem to fetch home his concubine
16. An old man entertains him at Gibeah
22. The Gibeonites abuse his concubine to death
29. He divides her into twelve pieces, and sends them to the twelve tribes

Judges 20. Israelites Defeat the Benjamites

1. The Levite in a general assembly declared his wrong
8. The decree of the assembly
12. The Benjamites, being cited, make head against the Israelites
18. The Israelites in two battles lose forty thousand
26. They destroy by a plan all the Benjamites, except six hundred.

Judges 21. Wives for the Benjamites

1. The people bewail the desolation of Benjamin
8. By the destruction of Jabesh Gilead they provide them four hundred wives.
16. They advise the remainder to surprise the virgins that danced at Shiloh
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