Bible Tuitions by Rev. Arvind Mantode

Like all other nations, the nation of Israel had a similar history of development. She, too, built a nation and carved out a homeland in a hostile environment. The book of Judges takes us back to those early years of Israel's history, with its heroes and villains. But instead of the six-gun or the noose, the sword usually settled the dispute. 

 Israel was attacked and raided by the indigenous inhabitants of the land. Oppression was all too common, for it was directly related to the sin of the people. It was a lawless time. Although opportunity was unlimited, for most Israelites it was a time of missed opportunities.

 This period was called "the days when the judges ruled" (Ruth 1:1). These exciting days are the subject of this series of lessons. 

To understand this intriguing book of Judges, we must look at it in its setting. It tells us of a unique period of Israel's history, one which lasted more than three centuries. The books of Judges and Ruth are located in your Bible between the books of Joshua and 1 Samuel. The Book of Joshua records the entrance, conquest and division of the Promised Land (completed approximately 1400 B.C.). The book ends with the death of Joshua. This event is also recorded in Judges 1. The last judge described in Judges is Samson, who was contemporary of Samuel. Thus, Judges ends  approximately 1050 B.C. Overall, nearly 350 years of Israel's history are recorded in the book of Judges. That covers about one third of Israel's national history as recorded in the Old Testament!