Judges 5:23

I. THE CURSE WAS FOR INACTIVITY. Meroz had committed no offence, but is solely to blame for failing in action. Innocence of positive guilt is not enough to secure us from condemnation in the judgment of God. We shall be judged by what we have left undone as well as by what we have done. In Christ's vision of judgment, those who are made to stand on the left of the throne and are then condemned to outer darkness are not offenders against the moral law, but simply persons who have neglected the active duties of charity (Matthew 25:45). It is a very common error for people to suppose that they are blameless so long as they keep themselves unspotted from the world, forgetting that the first duty of religion is the energetic exercise of charity (James 1:27). Better to have some faults and much useful service than to be faultless and useless. The soldier who returns from war with scarred face and stained garments is nobler than he who fears to enter the battle lest he shall soil his raiment or mar his countenance.

II. THE CURSE WAS FOR INACTIVITY IS REGARD TO PUBLIC DUTY. Meroz was unpatriotic. Possibly the men on whom the curse fell were diligent farmers and kind and careful parents. But they neglected their duty to their country. We must beware of the narrowness of the parochial mind. The congregation which studies its own edification alone, and has no care for the evangelising of the nation and for mission work among the heathen, brings itself under the curse of Meroz. In the faithful payment of taxes, in the conscientious use of the franchise, in the right use of influence in public matters men have a constant call to patriotic duty. But we have all larger duties to men as men, and so long as misery, ignorance, and wickedness prevail none of us can escape condemnation until we have done our part to remove those evils.


1. It-was the time of the nation's greatest need and danger when Meroz was discovered to be indolently unpatriotic. Great emergencies reveal the evil which has existed unobserved in quieter times. If we are not faithful in that which is least we shall be proved unfaithful in that which is greatest. The evil which may be fatal to our nation in times of danger may be lurking among us unseen in these more quiet times. Therefore the shameful failings of those who are held up to the reprobation of history may be no worse than the mean selfishness which pervades the lives of multitudes who meet with no blame, simply because the day of trial has not yet made their character apparent to the world.

2. The danger in which the unfaithfulness of Meroz was revealed brought a call to aggressive action. Meroz was found wanting in a time of war. We are called to resist evil. If we permit others to be oppressed by injustice and cruelty when we might deliver them by any sacrifice and toil of our own, we bring ourselves under the curse of Meroz. Christianity is aggressive. It is the duty of Christians not merely to promote purity, and charity, and truth, etc., but to expose and attack the vices and wrongs of the world. - A.

Curse ye Meroz... because they came not to the help of the Lord.
I. THE SIN OF THE MEN OF MEROZ is described in very remarkable terms, although we have grown so familiar with them as scarce perhaps to notice their strange character: "They came not to the help of the Lord." Everywhere we read of the Lord's coming to the help of man; but man coming to the help of the Lord seems strange. The Lord employs instruments for the executing of His purposes, though He needs them not. The tribes of Israel were summoned to this war, and the inhabitants of Meroz declined the summons. Well; but God had entered into marriage covenant with Israel. The kingdom of Israel was His kingdom. The interests of Israel were His interests; and He had bound up with them the glory of His own name. Accordingly it is not now said of the men of Meroz that they came not to Deborah's help, nor to Barak's help, nor even to the help of Israel, but that "they came not to the help of the Lord."

1. A little more specifically, the sin of the men of Meroz had in it unbelief — criminal distrust of the word and promise and power of the living God. No doubt it was largely cowardice that led them to refuse their aid. But whence the cowardice? They did not believe that the Canaanites could be subdued. They would keep on good terms with the oppressors to save their own heads.

2. But besides criminal unbelief — that root and strength of all other iniquities — the sin of the men of Meroz had in it a vile preference of their own ease, and fancied present interest before the authority and honour and interest of the God of Israel.

3. And thus, further, their sin was nothing less than enmity, war, against the living God. Doubtless they would be fain to say, "What have we done so much against Him? we have but sat still in our quiet homes." Aye, and therein fought against Him. Oh, there is no possible medium between the love of the adorable God and the hatred of Him — between willing, active service rendered to God and hostility, war, against Him — "He that is not with Me is against Me; and he that gathereth not with Me scattereth abroad."

4. It was to "the help of the Lord against the mighty" they refused to come — against the mighty. Had the enemy, that is to say, been a feeble, contemptible one in numbers and strength, they might have had some plausible pretext for leaving the struggle to others. But all was in reality at stake.

II. Notice THE JUDGMENT OF THE LORD AGAINST THE MEN OF MEROZ for this sin. I think there can be very little doubt that there must have been some special aggravation in the case of Meroz which has not been placed on record — perhaps its having been in the immediate neighbourhood of the field of action, together with some more emphatic treachery of dealing in its refusal of aid. Lessons:

1. First, a lesson of duty — very urgent duty. It will help to bring both the duty and the urgency of it better out if it is borne in mind that, from the fall of our race downwards, the Lord has had a controversy, so to speak — a quarrel in this fallen world — a war with mighty adversaries, Satan, sin, the world that lieth in the wicked one — His gracious purpose having all along been in that war to call a people out of the world for the glory of His own name — an innumerable multitude of all kindreds and peoples and tongues, to be "washed, and sanctified, and justified, in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God."

2. Observe a second lesson of a different character, one of precious and varied encouragement to all such as are disposed humbly, yet resolutely and prayerfully, to offer themselves to the help of the Lord against the mighty. See, for example, how He will condescend to receive and welcome your aid (ver. 9). And see the grateful mention, if I might so speak with reverence, which God makes of particular services (ver. 14).

3. Once more, we have a lesson here of solemn warning — duty, encouragement, warning. For observe that it is by no means any and every kind of help and service that will suffice to separate us from the class, and save us from the curse, of the inhabitants of Meroz. A man may come, for example, with a help so stinted and grudging as to make it quite manifest that it is but the covering up of a desire to be let alone altogether. Or he may come with a help not so stinted in the simple amount of it, yet not offered to the Lord Himself, which is the hinge, you will carefully observe, of this whole matter, "they came not to the help of the Lord" — "Ye did it," or, "ye did it not, to Me." Assuredly, by how much the Lord has revealed His condescension and grace, in making offer to us of so marvellous a oneness of cause and interest and blessedness with Himself, by so much the more aggravated a judgment and doom must the contempt and rejection of that grace bring with it.

(C. J. Brown, D. D.)






(W. Roby.)

What had Meroz done to deserve the punishment of God? In the first place, Meroz had omitted to do a positive and plain duty. They did not join with the enemy, but they refused to help the people of God. Then again, the sin of Meroz was a sin of lukewarmness, carelessness. Supposing England to have been overrun by an hostile army. Supposing that at last, gathering all her strength to repel her enemies from her fair country, one town in an important position refused to join in the battle at a critical moment, so that the enemies of England were not crushed as we desired to see them. Surely all England would ring with words of hatred for the people that could so act. Meroz was guilty of lack of patriotism, but a lack of patriotism in the case of the children of Israel was also a lack of proper religious zeal. Well, then, in the third place, Meroz let slip an opportunity; it neglected a crisis in its life. The war led up to the gates of Meroz, the opportunity was given to them of striking a blow for God against sinners. The opportunity was refused.

1. From the conduct of the people of Meroz, then, we may take three great warnings; and in the first place a warning against sins of omission. People are apt to think a very great deal too little about sins of omission. We are all of us apt to slur over the good things which we have left undone, and to think that the only thing hateful in the sight of God or offensive to Him whom we call our heavenly Father are the gross sins which attract perhaps the observation and hatred of others, and from which our own consciences do naturally recoil. How very often do you hear a person say in a satisfied way that they have never done harm to anybody. Such persons who say that are in great danger. They seem to see no sins though there may be many in their lives; but they have forgotten altogether that the object of their own crisis, the very object of their coming into the world, was not to do no sin, but to glorify God by their lives. Neglecting prayers. When we lift up our hands to God on high and call Him our Father, when we have that mighty privilege and that great duty accorded to us and yet neglect it, is it no sin, I say, to go day by day with careless prayers, or neglected prayers, to God? Surely there is some sin in neglecting our Church and our duties of public worship. And then again, while we think of habits of evil and so forth, we are inclined not to think half enough about encouraging habits of good, doing what is right as well as avoiding what is wrong. Then again, faith — a great duty to us. Yet how many go on through life without ever troubling themselves to look into the matters of their faith, or how many dare to live on through life with a sort of lurking or lingering doubt at their hearts, which chills all their acts of devotion and makes their lives unlovely in the sight of God. The curse of God came down on Meroz; doomed to judgment was the city, not because it did that which was wrong in opposing the people of God, but because she neglected a plain duty that God had put before her plainly.

2. Then we see, in the second place, that the sin of Meroz was a sin of lukewarmness. We are warned very frequently and very earnestly in Holy Scripture about the sin of lukewarmness, not being eager to take the part of God, not being eager to proclaim ourselves His children and to show ourselves worthy of the membership of His Church. There are many warnings to this effect, notably, the character of Esau in the Old Testament. And then you remember, surely, those awful denunciations in the Book of the Revelation against the lukewarm Laodicea. We are inclined to be very hot and earnest and keen about matters of business, or about matters of pleasure, or about matters of politics, or perhaps we may even add about matters of Church partisanship. But how about true religion? Oh, we say, "Let us take that easy. Our fathers did, perhaps, before us, why should not we? Do not let us take any trouble about that. That will come all right in the end."

3. And again, in the last place, we notice that the sin of Meroz was neglecting to seize an opportunity, letting a crisis in its history pass by without making use of it. The opportunity was given for striking a blow for God, and it was let slip by. We are in danger in this way. There are crises in every man and woman's life, crises in the lives of all of us, which God gives to us; some of very vital importance — opportunities, which may perhaps never come again, of striking some blow for God, or of gaining some great spiritual victory over the sins which beset us. It is very important to remember this.

(Cecil Hook, M. A.)

1. Meroz is never again mentioned in Scripture, and its exact site is unknown. Its sin resulted in its extinction. What was that sin?(1) It was, first, an act of selfishness. The inhabitants of Meroz cared only for their own interests. The yoke of Jabin did not apparently lie so heavily upon them as upon the northern tribes. They could see no advantage to be gained for themselves by a military revolt, and they would run no risks in connection with it.(2) It was, therefore, a neglect of duty. They did not fight against their brethren, but they would not fight for them. It was a purely negative sin, a sin of omission, but it was none the less a distinct and positive "No" to the call of duty.(3) This refusal was an act of impiety. It betrayed a sad lack of patriotism and a contemptible indifference towards national freedom and honour. These miserable lovers of case had the souls of slaves, and were unworthy of their ancestral traditions. Their indifference was, moreover, impious. It implied a disregard of God, whose worship they were bound to uphold.

2. Meroz has perished; but did none of its inhabitants escape? Have they not had a numerous progeny and become a great people spread over the face of the earth? Their descendants are not unknown among ourselves. Is there nothing in our life that corresponds to the sin of Meroz? Consider our position in relation to the gospel of Christ, and we shall see. Our Lord has summoned us to the conquest of the world. All souls are His — His by right of creation and redemption, as they should also be by willing submission. That submission is hindered by men's ignorance and error, by reckless indifference and deliberate sin, by calculating worldliness not less than by unbridled self-indulgence. Against these foes the whole force of the gospel is directed. Every man, be he learned or ignorant, an Englishman or a Hindoo, is interested in that fact, and needs the help of which it is at once the pledge and the source. Christ, and Christ only, is the Saviour of the world; even as, on the other hand, every man belongs unto Christ, and is bound by the most stringent and absolute obligation to Him who is Lord of all. Christ comes not to this conquest alone, but as "Captain of the Lord's host." He summons His people to His side, gives them spear and shield, and equips them for the fight. We have, of course, the power of refusal. Our Lord asks for willing service, and will have no pressed men in the ranks. You can escape this service if you are so minded, meeting Christ's call and your brother's need with a flat denial.Multitudes do so fail, and why?

1. Some are influenced by a false intellectualism. Let us, as far as it is in our power, know the best that has been thought and said, come in contact with master minds, understand their working, see things as with their eyes, and catch the glow of their enthusiasm. To gaze on the fair forms of truth and beauty, to listen to the harmonies of perfect music, is a pure delight, and imparts an added charm to life. But such an aim touches only a small part of our duty. The knowledge of Christ — the crown of all science — can only be acquired by the obedience of faith and love; while no amount of self-culture or of aesthetic worship will justify us in ignoring the sins and sorrows of mankind, or in neglecting the opportunities we possess of meeting the terrible pressure of human need.

2. Other men are absorbed in business. Their main aim is to get on in the world, to become rich and prosperous, to make good bargains, and to ensure at any rate a steady increase of their capital or their savings. Coal, steam, and iron have their devout, if not their disinterested, worshippers. Money, which is designed to be a means, becomes an end in itself — committed to men in trust, it is hoarded or used as if it were their own, and they do nothing to rescue the heathen, because they are themselves the slaves of "covetousness, which is idolatry."

3. A third class make no response to the call of Christ because of their love of pleasure. They care only for amusement, for sensuous excitement, or something to relieve the weariness and ennui of life, and to make it bright, eager, and thrilling. Enslaved and befooled by passion, "all that is within them doth condemn itself for being there."

4. Yet others are prevented from joining us in our campaign because of their theological laxity. One religion, they urge, is as good as another, and to convert the heathen is a superfluous, if it be not an impossible, task. And similarly when men excuse their indifference to this great work on the ground of the coldness, the worldliness, and the strife of the Churches at home. The best of Christians are no doubt imperfect, the ideal of their life is but inadequately realised, and many who profess to be Christ's are sadly inconsistent. We deplore the fact, but it does not exempt us from a plain duty. Still the Saviour asks, "What is that to thee? follow thou Me."

(James Stuart.)

indifference: —

I. THE LORD'S PEOPLE IDENTIFIED WITH THEIR LORD. Observe the bearing of this principle on —

1. Sympathy (Acts 9:4).

2. Power (Ephesians 1:22).

3. Life and grace (John 15.).

4. Reproach (Luke 10:16).

II. THE SIN OF MEROZ. This disregard of God's people implies —

1. Ignorance of God's love to His children.

2. An imperfect sense of the scheme of Divine government. By human means, etc.

3. An imperfect sense of personal responsibility — Cain (Genesis 4:9).

4. Indifference to God's truth and honour — Pilate.

5. Selfishness — Balaam.

6. Indecision — Peter in the judgment hall.

III. THE SIN REMAINS. It is ever displaying itself in new forms.

1. The Church at home indifferent to the evangelisation of the heathen.

2. Wealthy congregations indifferent to poorer localities.

3. Women of ease and leisure to their burdened and weary sisters.

4. Parents unwilling to give their sons for the ministry.

5. Indifference to the conversion of souls.


1. Of old it was, "If the Lord be God," etc. (1 Kings 18:21). Not less solemn and critical is the question now, "What think ye of Christ?" Not to confess Him is to deny Him (Matthew 10:33).

2. So with our employment of gifts and opportunities. The buried talent and the hidden pound, or their ill-using, involve the "darkness that is without."

3. So of the "brotherhood." We are to love it, to promote and defend it. There may be flaws, but this does not justify separation. It calls for prayer and the active operation of faith, sincerity, and truth. "They shall prosper that love thee."

V. SHUN INDIFFERENCE AND INDECISION. They bring men to perish, like Balaam, with the ungodly. Be decided as Paul, though, it bring the loss of all things. What is there so noble as to "fill up that which is behind of the sufferings of Christ for His body's sake, which is the Church"? (Colossians 1:24).

(H. W. Dearden, M. A.)

In a way that in some respects reminds us of the German prophetess Velleda, of the British queen Boadicea, and of the French peasant girl Joan of Arc, does Deborah revive the national spirit, and summon the people to repel the national foes. In this verse she utters true scorn for those who were inactive and self-contained in a time when the nation was in its throes for liberty and independence.


1. In its fierce opposition.

2. In its reverses of victory and defeat.

3. In its call for a sacrifice.


1. The reproachful cry of the world's sin and sorrow.

2. Conscious separation from God. Common aim and common work are indispensable for true fellowship.

3. Loss of the rewards of true service.

4. Rebuke of Christ: "Ye did it not."

(U. R. Thomas.)

Notice, first of all, that the sin for which Meroz is cursed is pure inaction. There are in all our cities a great multitude of useless men and of men perfectly contented with their uselessness. Consider some of the various points which uselessness assumes.

I. The first source of the uselessness of good men is MORAL COWARDICE. The vice is wonderfully common. The fear is concentrated on no individual, but is there not a sense of hostile or contemptuous surroundings that lies like a chilling hand upon what ought to be the most exuberant and spontaneous utterance of life? Men do not escape from their cowardice by having it proved to them that it is a foolish thing to be afraid. Nothing but the knowledge of God's love, taking such possession of a man that his one wish and thought in life is to glorify and serve God, can liberate him from, because it makes him totally forget, the fear of man.

II. The second cause of uselessness is FALSE HUMILITY. Humility is good when it stimulates, it is bad when it paralyses, the active powers of a man. If conscious weakness causes a man to believe that it makes no difference whether he works or not, then his humility is his curse. Remember —

1. That man judges by the size of things; God judges by their fitness.

2. That small as you think you are, you are the average size of moral and intellectual humanity.

3. That such a humility as yours comes, if you get at its root, from an over-thought about yourself, an over-sense of your own personality, and so is closely akin to pride.

III. The third cause of uselessness is INDOLENCE. There is only one permanent escape from indolence and self-indulgence — the grateful and obedient dedication to God through Christ, which makes all good work, all self-sacrifice, a privilege and joy instead of a hardship, since it is done for Him.

(Bp. Phillips Brooks.)

Take a heretic, a rebel, a person that hath an ill cause to manage; what he is deficient in the strength of his cause he makes up with diligence; while he that hath right on his side is cold, indiligent, lazy, inactive, trusting that the goodness of his cause will not fail to prevail without assistance. So wrong prevails, while evil persons are zealous and the good remiss.

(Bp. Jeremy Taylor.)

Abinoam, Amalek, Anath, Asher, Barak, Benjamin, Dan, Deborah, Heber, Issachar, Jael, Machir, Naphtali, Reuben, Seir, Shamgar, Sisera, Zebulun
Canaan, Edom, Gilead, Jordan River, Kishon River, Megiddo, Meroz, Seir, Sinai, Taanach
Angel, Bitter, Bitterly, Curse, Cursing, Didn't, Inhabitants, Meroz, Messenger, Mighty, Ones, Says, Strong, Thereof, Townspeople, Utterly, Warriors
1. The Song of Deborah and Barak

Dictionary of Bible Themes
Judges 5:23

     5885   indifference
     8786   opposition, to sin and evil

Judges 5:1-31

     5420   music

Judges 5:14-31

     5091   Deborah

Recreant Reuben
Why satest then among the sheepfolds, to hear the pipings for the flocks? At the watercourses of Reuben there were great searchings of heart.'--JUDGES v. 16 (R.V.). I. The fight. The warfare is ever repeated, though in new forms. In the highest form it is Christ versus the World, And that conflict must be fought out in our own souls first. Our religion should lead not only to accept and rely on what Christ does for us, but to do and dare for Christ. He has given Himself for us, and has thereby
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

'All Things are Yours'
'They fought from heaven; the stars in their courses fought against Sisera.'--JUDGES v. 20. 'For thou shalt be in league with the stones of the field: and the beasts of the field shall be at peace with thee.'--Job v. 23. These two poetical fragments present the same truth on opposite sides. The first of them comes from Deborah's triumphant chant. The singer identifies God with the cause of Israel, and declares that heaven itself fought against those who fought against God's people. There may be
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Love Makes Suns
'Let them that love Him be as the sun when he goeth forth in his might.' JUDGES V. 51. These are the closing words of Deborah, the great warrior-prophetess of Israel. They are in singular contrast with the tone of fierce enthusiasm for battle which throbs through the rest of the chant, and with its stern approval of the deed of Jael when she slew Sisera. Here, in its last notes, we have an anticipation of the highest and best truths of the Gospel. 'Let them that love Him be as the sun when he goeth
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Songs of Deliverance
The results which accrued from the conquest achieved by Barak, are upon a small scale similar to those which come to us through the deliverance wrought out by the Lord Jesus Christ. I shall take our text and spiritualize it, viewing its joyous details as emblematic of the blessings granted to us through our Redeemer. Those who went to draw water at the wells after Barak's victory, were no longer disturbed by the robbers who lurked at the fountains for purposes of plunder; and instead of drawing the
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 13: 1867

Whether the Orders Will Outlast the Day of Judgment?
Objection 1: It would seem that the orders of angels will not outlast the Day of Judgment. For the Apostle says (1 Cor. 15:24), that Christ will "bring to naught all principality and power, when He shall have delivered up the kingdom to God and the Father," and this will be in the final consummation. Therefore for the same reason all others will be abolished in that state. Objection 2: Further, to the office of the angelic orders it belongs to cleanse, enlighten, and perfect. But after the Day of
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

Why is it that Our Lord Has Tarried Till Now? Why Has not the Redeemer Returned Long Ere This?
At first sight perhaps this inquiry might appear almost irreverent and some may feel inclined to remind us that "secret things belong unto the Lord." In response we would say, It is not in any spirit of idle curiosity nor is it to indulge an inquisitive speculation that we take up this question, but simply because we believe that a humble examination of it will prove profitable to our souls, inasmuch as the answer to our inquiry demonstrates the wisdom and grace of Him with whom we have to do. Of
Arthur W. Pink—The Redeemer's Return

Hindrances to Revivals.
Text.--I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down. Why should the work cease, whilst I leave it, and come down to you."--Nehemiah vi. 3. THIS servant of God had come down from Babylon to rebuild the temple and re-establish the worship of God at Jerusalem, the city of his fathers' sepulchres. When it was discovered by Sanballat and certain individuals, his allies, who had long enjoyed the desolations of Zion, that now the temple, and the holy city were about to be rebuilt, they raised a great
Charles Grandison Finney—Lectures on Revivals of Religion

The Publication of the Gospel
The Lord gave the word: great was the company of those that published it [or of the preachers] P erhaps no one Psalm has given greater exercise to the skill and patience of commentators and critics, than the sixty-eighth. I suppose the difficulties do not properly belong to the Psalm, but arise from our ignorance of various circumstances to which the Psalmist alludes; which probably were, at that time, generally known and understood. The first verse is the same with the stated form of benediction
John Newton—Messiah Vol. 2

Salvation Published from the Mountains
O Zion, that bringest good tidings, get thee up into the high mountain; O Jerusalem, that bringest good tidings, lift up thy voice with strength; lift it up, be not afraid: say unto the cities of Judah, Behold your God! I t would be improper to propose an alteration, though a slight one, in the reading of a text, without bearing my testimony to the great value of our English version, which I believe, in point of simplicity, strength, and fidelity, is not likely to be excelled by a new translation
John Newton—Messiah Vol. 1

The Sovereignty of God in Operation
"For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things: to whom be the glory for ever. Amen" (Romans 11:36). Has God foreordained everything that comes to pass? Has He decreed that what is, was to have been? In the final analysis this is only another way of asking, Is God now governing the world and everyone and everything in it? If God is governing the world then is He governing it according to a definite purpose, or aimlessly and at random? If He is governing it according to some purpose, then
Arthur W. Pink—The Sovereignty of God

Appendix ix. List of Old Testament Passages Messianically Applied in Ancient Rabbinic Writings
THE following list contains the passages in the Old Testament applied to the Messiah or to Messianic times in the most ancient Jewish writings. They amount in all to 456, thus distributed: 75 from the Pentateuch, 243 from the Prophets, and 138 from the Hagiorgrapha, and supported by more than 558 separate quotations from Rabbinic writings. Despite all labour care, it can scarcely be hoped that the list is quite complete, although, it is hoped, no important passage has been omitted. The Rabbinic references
Alfred Edersheim—The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah

The Hebrews and the Philistines --Damascus
THE ISRAELITES IN THE LAND OF CANAAN: THE JUDGES--THE PHILISTINES AND THE HEBREW KINGDOM--SAUL, DAVID, SOLOMON, THE DEFECTION OF THE TEN TRIBES--THE XXIst EGYPTIAN DYNASTY--SHESHONQ OR SHISHAK DAMASCUS. The Hebrews in the desert: their families, clans, and tribes--The Amorites and the Hebrews on the left bank of the Jordan--The conquest of Canaan and the native reaction against the Hebrews--The judges, Ehud, Deborah, Jerubbaal or Gideon and the Manassite supremacy; Abimelech, Jephihdh. The Philistines,
G. Maspero—History Of Egypt, Chaldaea, Syria, Babylonia, and Assyria, V 6

For the understanding of the early history and religion of Israel, the book of Judges, which covers the period from the death of Joshua to the beginning of the struggle with the Philistines, is of inestimable importance; and it is very fortunate that the elements contributed by the later editors are so easily separated from the ancient stories whose moral they seek to point. That moral is most elaborately stated in ii. 6-iii. 6, which is a sort of programme or preface to iii. 7-xvi. 31, which constitutes
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

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