Daily reading

Today’s reading is: Jdg. 19-21


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Judges Chapter Nineteen

  1. Chapter 19 introduces a new character—yet another Levite dwelling in Ephraim.
  2. This Levite was willing to take back his unfaithful concubine (Jdg. 19:1-9).
  3. This Levite was unwilling to spend the night in a Canaanite city (Jdg. 19:10-13).
  4. The Levite was pleased to celebrate with a fellow Ephraimite (Jdg. 19:14-21).
  5. The ugly scene which follows reminds the reader of Lot in the city of Sodom (Jdg. 19:22-30; Gen. 19:1-11).
  6. The aftermath of this incident is far worse than the aftermath Lot’s incident (incest).

Judges Chapter Twenty

  1. The Levite’s dismembered concubine incites all Israel to action (Jdg. 19:29,30).
  2. Israel (minus Benjamin) assembles themselves, ready for action (Jdg. 20:1,2).
    1. They are “as one man” in a lemming-like lockstep (Jdg. 20:1,8,11). Ever read Charles Mackay? Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds (1852). How about Dr. Mattias Desmet? He calls this phenomenon “mass formation psychosis” (2020).
    2. They are bound by foolish vows (Jdg. 21:1,5,7).
  3. The Levite recites his testimony, and his audience is impassioned to punish Gibeah for their evil (Jdg. 20:3-11). Note: the responsibility to deal with an apostate city belongs to the clan(s) and/or tribe to deal with (Dt. 13:12-18). See the notes in TTB Day 077.
  4. The Self-righteous Opponents of Benjamin demanded jurisdiction over the guilty Sons of Belial (Jdg. 20:12,13a).
  5. When Benjamin refuses their demands, a civil war ensues (Jdg. 20:13b-17). Note: these combined tribal forces were supposed to be finishing the Tribal Conquest left unfinished in the days of Joshua.
  6. The Self-righteous Opponents of Benjamin endured two humiliating defeats before their final, crushing victory (Jdg. 20:18-48). Interesting how the Lord through Phinehas kept goading them on (Jdg. 20:18,23,26,27,28,35).
    1. The Benjamite military is destroyed, with only a remnant fleeing to Rimmon for a four month refuge (Jdg. 20:47).
    2. The Self-righteous Opponents of Benjamin inflicted a near-total destruction of the Benjamite civilian population (Jdg. 20:48).

Judges Chapter Twenty-One

Judges Chapter Twenty-One

  1. At the time that the Self-righteous Opponents of Benjamin vowed to defeat Benjamin martially, they also vowed to punish Benjamin maritally (Jdg. 21:1).
  2. This oath also included a “great oath” to execute any clans who did not participate in the action against Benjamin (Jdg. 21:5).
  3. Following the crushing defeat of Benjamin, the Self-righteous Opponents of Benjamin realized that their vow to deny Benjamite marriages will result in Benjamite extinction (Jdg. 21:2,3). At this point they are beginning to return to sanity but they fail to inquire of the Lord.
  4. Israel was delighted to discover that the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead were not party to the vow of Mizpah (Jdg. 21:4-10).
    1. Jabesh-gilead then became the victim of “the great oath.”
    2. The Self-righteous Opponents of Benjamin put Jabesh-gilead to the sword, and captured 400 virgins for Benjamin’s survival (Jdg. 21:11,12).
  5. In the peace talks with the 600 Benjamite fugitives, the Self-righteous Opponents of Benjamin found themselves 200 virgins short (Jdg. 21:13-15).
  6. The Self-righteous Opponents of Benjamin concocted a scheme by which 200 of their daughters could be kidnapped by Benjamin, thereby keeping their vow to not “give” Benjamin any of their daughters (Jdg. 21:16-24).
  7. Judges concludes with the repeated statement of societal chaos via personal rightness (Jdg. 17:6; 21:25 cf. Prov. 12:15; 21:2).