Book Notes:
Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Book Notes


JUDGES is the title given to the next book, from its containing the history of those non-regal rulers who governed the Hebrews from the time of Joshua to that of Eli, and whose functions in time of peace consisted chiefly in the administration of justice, although they occasionally led the people in their wars against their public enemies. The date and authorship of this book are not precisely known. It is certain, however, that it preceded the Second Book of Samuel (compare Judges 9:35 with II Samuel 11:21), as well as the conquest of Jerusalem by David (compare Judges 1:21 with II Samuel 5:6). Its author was in all probability Samuel, the last of the judges (see Judges 19:1; Judges 21:25), and the date of the first part of it is fixed in the reign of Saul, while the five chapters at the close might not have been written till after David's establishment as king in Israel (see Judges 18:31). It is a fragmentary history, being a collection of important facts and signal deliverances at different times and in various parts of the land, during the intermediate period of three hundred years between Joshua and the establishment of the monarchy. The inspired character of this book is confirmed by allusions to it in many passages of Scripture (compare Judges 4:2; Judges 6:14 with I Samuel 12:9-12; Judges 9:53 with II Samuel 11:21; Judges 7:25 with Psalms 83:11; compare Judges 5:4-5 with Psalms 7:5; Judges 13:5; Judges 16:17 with Matthew 2:13-23; Acts 13:20; Hebrews 11:32).

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