From our lesson of Deborah (Judges 4-5), here are some important points. The points do not directly answer the questions on pages 63-66 of the text, but may help you in our discussion at the Saturday Bible Study 06/28/2014.
1. The Judges were God’s chosen to lead the Israelites during the period from the death of Joshua to the establishment of the monarchy starting with King Saul.(2, page 323)
2. Judges not only held court of mediation(Judges 4:5), but they were also God’s moral conscience and military leadership in a land inhabited by multiple nations (Judges 3:12-15; 4:1-3, 6-7).
3. Deborah was a prophetess and Judge (Judges 4:4) known for her faithfulness in following God (Judges 4:4) and her charismatic leadership of Israel (1, page 712).
4. Deborah held court to settle disputes in the hill country of Ephraim (Judges 4:5).
5. The Israelites did evil in God’s sight and were punished through captivity by Jabin, a king of Canaan. The commander of the Canaanite army was Sisera with nine hundred chariots. After twenty years of captivity and oppression the Israelites cried to the Lord for liberation (Judges 4:1-3).
6. Following God’s instructions, Deborah sent for Barak to carry out a plan she had for the defeat of Sisera’s troops at the Kishon River (Judges 4:6-7).
7. Barak refused to go to war without Deborah, and she consented (Judges 4:8-10).
8. Despite Heber the Kenite’s warning to Sisera (Judges 4:11-13), the Lord provided a victory for Deborah and Barak (Judges 4:14-16) by flooding the Kishon River and eliminating the effectiveness of the chariots (Judges 5:20-21).
9. Sisera, in fleeing on foot (Judges 4:17) upon the total annihilation of his army (Judges 4:16), took refuge in the tent of Jael the wife of Heber the Kenite. Jael offered Sisera sanctuary through drink and a hiding place (4:18-20)., but as soon as he fell asleep she drove a tent-peg through him temple killing him (4:21-22).
10. Deborah and Barak sang praises to the Lord for Him giving them the victory (Judges 5).
1. The Interpreter’s Bible, Volume II, Abingdon-Cokesbury Press, New York.
2. The NIV Study Bible, Zondervan, 1995.
3. Jean E Syswerda, Women of the Bible, Zondervan, 1999.