|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
5:12-23 Deborah called on her own soul to be in earnest. He that will set the hearts of other men on fire with the love of Christ, must himself burn with love. Praising God is a work we should awake to, and awake ourselves unto. She notices who fought against Israel, who fought for them, and who kept away. Who fought against them. They were obstinate enemies to God's people, therefore the more dangerous. Who fought for them. The several tribes that helped are here spoken of with honour; for though God is above all to be glorified, those who are employed must have their due praise, to encourage others. But the whole creation is at war with those to whom God is an enemy. The river of Kishon fought against their enemies. At most times it was shallow, yet now, probably by the great rain that fell, it was so swelled, and the stream so deep and strong, that those who attempted to pass, were drowned. Deborah's own soul fought against them. When the soul is employed in holy exercises, and heart-work is made of them, through the grace of God, the strength of our spiritual enemies will be trodden down, and will fall before us. She observes who kept away, and did not side with Israel, as might have been expected. Thus many are kept from doing their duty by the fear of trouble, the love of ease, and undue affection to their worldly business and advantage. Narrow, selfish spirits care not what becomes of God's church, so that they can but get, keep, and save money. All seek their own, Php 2:21. A little will serve those for a pretence to stay at home, who have no mind to engage in needful services, because there is difficulty and danger in them. But we cannot keep away from the contest between the Lord and his enemies; and if we do not actively endeavour to promote his cause in this wicked world, we shall fall under the curse against the workers of iniquity. Though He needs no human help, yet he is pleased to accept the services of those who improve their talents to advance his cause. He requires every man to do so.
Verse 20. - According to Josephus, a great storm in the face of the Canaanites led to their utter discomfiture, and also swelled the Kishon to overflow its banks.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
They fought from heaven,.... Either the angels of heaven, afterwards called stars; or the heavens, the elements, fought for Israel, and against Sisera; a violent storm of rain and hail falling at this time, which discomfited Sisera's army; See Gill on Judges 4:15, or this victory was obtained in such a manner as plainly showed it was not of man, but of God from heaven; so the Targum,"from heaven war was made with them;''with the kings before mentioned; God fought against them, and no wonder they were conquered:
the stars in their courses fought against Sisera it seems as if it was in the night that this battle was fought, at least that the pursuit lasted till night, when the stars by their brightness and clear shining favoured the Israelites, and were greatly to the disadvantage of the Canaanites; unless it can be thought, as is by some, that the stars had an influence to cause a tempest of rain, hail, thunder, and lightnings, by which the army of Sisera was discomfited in the daytime, as before observed.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
20. the stars in their courses fought—A fearful tempest burst upon them and threw them into disorder.
Judges 5:20 Parallel Commentaries
Judges 5:20 NIV
Judges 5:20 NLT
Judges 5:20 ESV
Judges 5:20 NASB
Judges 5:20 KJV
Bible Hub: Online Parallel Bible