Wednesday, December 3, 2008

[Judges]

The book of Judges is a fun read. One of my favorite parts has to be when our pal Ehud goes in to evil king Eglon and tells him he has a special message from God for his kingship. All of Eglon's cool kingly people leave and Ehud give Eglon God's special message - a razor harp sword right in his gut. Eglon was so fat that the whole sword and the handle disappeared. What a cute message.



On a more thought-provoking note, I read something very helpful about Judges yesterday. First off, "judges" might not be the best term. I know that I think of Judge Judy and other afternoon redneck Fox Network court shows when I hear the term. In the LXX, it is the same word as savior, deliverer, and/or rescuer. So, here's that lovely insight. It's from David Howard:
No individual is called a "judge" in the book; the only time the term is used in that way it refers to God [11.27]. This is a significant part of the book's message: It is YHWH who is the true Judge of His people, and He controls their fortunes, both for blessing and for punishment.
The noun "judge" is used six times in 2.16-19 to refer to the judges that are to come in the book. None are named specifically in this passage because this text serves as an overview of much of the book's content.

All of this, though, is beautiful. Samuel, or whoever wrote Judges, is fully aware that YHWH and YHWH alone is the just and justifying Judge over His covenant people.

2 comments:

Matt @ The Church of No People said...

The book of Judges is a completely underrated book. To me, I like it when a single verse or two can sum up a whole book. To me, Judges' verse is "In those days, Israel had no king. Everyone did as he saw fit." Amazing implications.

jim thompson said...

yeah, we just did a Judges overview in my class. and the two broad-stroke verses i gave them were 2.16-17 and 21.25. both are really huge.