Book of Judges

Overview of the book of Judges

The book of judges is about failure and misery. It is also a book about God’s great and abiding mercy. There is a cycle that was found throughout the book of judges. It is a cycle of Rest, Ruin, Relapse, Repentance, and Restoration. We find the full cycle at six places in the book of judges. The book of Judges bible depicts the Israel people living in the promised land from the death of Joshua until the beginning of the monarchy.

Through the leadership of Joshua, Many of the promises made by God to their ancestors were fulfilled. This book is the account of how Israel behaves between the death of Joshua and the king. Instead of remaining loyal to God and following His laws given in times of Moses, the generations of Israelites wander in their faith, worshipping idols and indulging in violence and forgetting the promises of the Lord.

Judge definition bible were charismatic leaders who delivered Israel from foreign denominations after the conquest of the promised land.

Who wrote the book of judges

The author of judges is unknown. The book was written after the death of Samson and after Saul became the king of Israel. Some of the accounts were assembled by Samuel from the period of judges. The date of the composition was unknown but it was composed during the monarchy. Judges are the seventh book of the old testament.

The role of Judges in the Bible

In the history of Israel, the period of judges is a dark era. The book of judges shows How persistent Israel forgets the Lord and How faithful God is to discipline and deliver Israel people.

In judges, we see Israel’s need for a Messiah, a godly king. Because there was no good king and the people of Israel do what is right in their own eyes. Both judges and Ruth tell us how bad things were done by them before God gave them a king. The writer of Hebrews references several characters from Judges as examples of old testament characters who were approved through faith.

The main five characters in the book of judges


He is the lone hero from the tribe of Benjamin. He delivered Israel from oppression from the east. ( chapter 3:12-30)


she is the woman from the Joseph tribes. She was a judge at that time when Israel was being overrun by a coalition of Canaanites under Sisera. ( chapter 4-5)

Gideon and his son Abimelech

Gideon is the ideal judge who evokes the memory of Moses. His son was the antithesis of a responsible and faithful judge. (Chapter 6-9)


He was a social outcast from the tribe of Joseph. He is a judge when Israel is being threatened by a coalition of powers under the king of Ammon. ( chapter 10:6- 12:7)


He was a lone hero from the tribe of Dan. He delivered Israel from oppression from the west. (Chapter 13-16)

Outline of judges

Background of the period of the Judges, 1:1-3:6

  • The political background, 1:1-36
  • The spiritual Background, 2:1-3:6

History of the period of the Judges, 3:7-16:31

  • Mesopotamian Oppression and Othniel’s Deliverance, 3:7-11
  • Moabite oppression and Ehud’s Deliverance, 3:12-30
  • Shamgar’s victory over the philistines, 3:31
  • Canaanite oppression and deliverance by Major judges Deborah and Barak, 4:1-5:31
    • The story, 4:1-24
    • The song, Judg 5:1-31
  • Midianite oppression and Gideon’s Deliverance, 6:1-8:35
    • Gideon’s call, 6:1-40
    • Gideon’s conquests, 7:1-8:35
  • Abimelech’s Tyranny, 9:1-57
  • Tola’s Judgeship, 10:1-2
  • Jair’s Judgeship, 10:3-5
  • Ammonite Oppression and Jephthah’s Deliverance, 10:6-12:7
  • Ibzan’s Judgeship, 12:8-10
  • Elon”s judgeship, 12: 11-12
  • Abdon’s judgeship, 12:13- 15
  • Philistine Oppression and Samson’s Career, 13:1-16:31
    • Annunciation and birth of Samson, 13:1-25
    • Marriage of Samson, 14:1-20
    • Exploits of Samson, 15:1-20
    • Fall of Samson, 16:1-31

Apostasy of the Period of Judges, chapter 17:1-21:25

A. Micah and the Migration of the Danites, Judges 17:1-18:31
  • Micah and his private priest, Judges 17:1-13
  • Danite migration, 18:1-31
The Benjamite War, 19:1-21:25
  • The reason for the war, 19:1-20:13
  • The execution of the war, 20:14-48
  • The results of the war, 21:1-25

What is the book of judges about


During the journey of Israelites from Egypt to Canaan, God had chosen two national leaders: Moses for the first generation and Joshua for the next. The God of Israel parted the red sea for Moses and parted the Jordan River for Joshua. This is a clear sign that God has planned to protect and provide for those who followed these leaders. The people of Israel were loyal to God during Joshua’s lifetime but after the death of Joshua, God doesn’t choose a successor.

The Generations after Joshua forget how the Lord rescued the idols and made them his special nation. When Israel people started worshipping the idols the lord revoked his protection. This resulted in foreign people invading and oppressing Israel than the people of Israel cry out to God for help. Then God sends a deliverer ( Judge) to rally the people and give the nation peace.

Who were the judges in the bible

The book of judges bible has 12 judges. It tells the stories of 12 Judges whom God raises up to deliver Israel. The judges are of two types with a leading group of seven former judges and a group of five latter judges. The major judges are Othniel, Ehud, Deborah, Gideon, Jephthah, Samson. The minor judges in the book of Judge’s bible were Shamgar, Tola, Jair, Ibzan, Elon, Abdon. The first and final major judges experience God’s spirit and the final major judges are announced by Angels.

Book of judges summary

The events of this book of judges bible cover the period in Israel’s history from Palestine to the beginning of the monarchy. Before the death of Joshua, the land of Canaan had been conquered and occupied leaving Israel vulnerable. Then God set up a system of judges to rule His people. The judges ruled over regions.

Who wrote judges

The author of the judges is unknown but ancient suggests it was Samuel. The book of judges tells the story of the individual tribes that became Israelites from the death of Joshua to the birth of Samuel.

When Israel starts worshipping the idols, the lord revokes his protection and then God sends a deliverer known as a judge to give the nation peace. Judges make clear that everything depends upon the faithful obedience to the lord. The key lesson of this book was disobedience brings judgment. The above judges summary will deepen your understanding of God’s will.