Judges 8:28
Thus was Midian subdued before the children of Israel, so that they lifted up their heads no more. And the country was in quietness forty years in the days of Gideon.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(28) Thus was Midian subdued.—This verse closes the second great epoch of Gideon’s life. The separate phrases occur in Judges 1:2; Judges 4:23-24; Judges 5:31. The remaining verses of the chapter furnish us with a few notices of the third and last period of his life.

Jdg 8:28. They lifted up their heads no more — That is, they recovered not their former strength or courage, so as to conquer or oppress others. The country was in quietness forty years — To the fortieth year from the beginning of the Midianitish oppression; in the days of Gideon — As long as Gideon lived.

8:22-28 Gideon refused the government the people offered him. No good man can be pleased with any honour done to himself, which belongs only to God. Gideon thought to keep up the remembrance of this victory by an ephod, made of the choicest of the spoils. But probably this ephod had, as usual, a teraphim annexed to it, and Gideon intended this for an oracle to be consulted. Many are led into false ways by one false step of a good man. It became a snare to Gideon himself, and it proved the ruin of the family. How soon will ornaments which feed the lust of the eye, and form the pride of life, as well as tend to the indulgences of the flesh, bring shame on those who are fond of them!The ephod was that particular part of the high priest's dress which was necessary to be worst when he inquired of God by Urim and Thummim. It seems that Gideon being now the civil ruler, desired to have an ephod of his own, kept in his own city, to he worn by the priest whenever Gideon might summon him to inquire of the Lord for him. His relations with the tribe of Ephraim probably made him unwilling to resort to Shiloh. Compare the act of Jeroboam 1 Kings 12:28. Jud 8:28. Midian Subdued.

28. Thus was Midian subdued before the children of Israel—This invasion of the Arab hordes into Canaan was as alarming and desolating as the irruption of the Huns into Europe. It was the severest scourge ever inflicted upon Israel; and both it and the deliverance under Gideon lived for centuries in the minds of the people (Ps 83:11).

Lifted up their heads no more, i.e. recovered not their former strength or courage, so as to conquer or oppress others, as they had done.

Forty years, i.e. to the fortieth year, from the beginning of the Midianitish oppression: see on Judges 3:11.

In the days of Gideon, i.e. as long as Gideon lived.

Thus was Midian subdued before the children of Israel,.... By the hand of Gideon humbled and brought under, their power over Israel was broken, and they delivered out of their hands:

so that they lifted up their heads no more; in a proud and haughty manner to insult them, and in an hostile way to invade and oppress them; such a blow was given them that they could not recover themselves, nor do we read of any effort of theirs ever after, or of their giving or attempting to give any disturbance to Israel, or any other nation:

and the country was in quietness forty years in the days of Gideon; that is, the land of Canaan; it was free from wars with Midian, or any other people, and enjoyed undisturbed peace and tranquillity. According to Bishop Usher (m), this was the fortieth year from the rest restored by Deborah and Barak; and, according to Abarbinel and others, these forty years are to be reckoned from the beginning of the servitude; that is, the seven years' oppression under the Midianites are included in them; but I cannot see that in this instance, and in others before met with, years of bondage can be counted with years of peace and prosperity, and go under that general name. The true sense seems to be, that after the Israelites had been in subjection to the Midianites for seven years, and Gideon had delivered them, that from thenceforward they had rest and quietness forty years, which in all probability was the time Gideon lived after his victories.

(m) Annal. Vet. Test. p. 43.

Thus was Midian subdued before the children of Israel, so that they lifted up their heads no more. And the country was in quietness forty years in the days of Gideon.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
28. The Deuteronomic editor’s conclusion of the story; cf. Jdg 3:30 n. and Jdg 3:11 n.

Verse 28. - Lifted up their heads no more. Thus showing the wisdom of Gideon's perseverance in pushing on his victory to completeness (see Homiletics on Judges 8:4-12). The narrative goes back to ver. 26, or perhaps rather to ver. 21. Judges 8:28The history of Gideon is concluded in Judges 8:28-32. - Judges 8:28. The Midianites had been so humiliated that they lifted up their head no more, and the land of Israel had rest forty years "in the days of Gideon," i.e., as long as Gideon lived.
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