Judges, book of

OT book setting out some of Israel's traditions from Joshua to Samuel, a period of about 300 years. The material was collected early in the monarchy, but the final edition was probably made after the Fall of Jerusalem in 587 BCE. The Deuteronomic editor has shaped the material to conform to his theology: after idolatry came the divine punishment; so there is a cry for divine assistance and a hero emerges who gives the land a time of rest under the judge. The book includes the story of the prophetess Deborah (Judg. 4) and the Song of Deborah and Barak (Judg. 5) and a war for the plain of Esdraelon (c.1200 BCE). Thus although the picture presented is of a contemporary record of late Bronze or Iron Age transition, it is rather an understanding of Israelite settlement held at the end of the period of the monarchy.
The first chapter of Judg. goes over ground covered by Josh. 14–15. The middle chapters describe an era of anarchy. The book ends with a cry for the monarchy, such was the chaos when ‘every man did what was right in his own eyes’ (Judg. 21:25): the tribe of Dan engaged in theft and massacre, and Benjamin was almost exterminated by other tribes.

Dictionary of the Bible.

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  • Judges, Book of — ▪ Bible       an Old Testament book that, along with Deuteronomy, Joshua, I and II Samuel, and I and II Kings, belongs to a specific historical tradition (Deuteronomic history) that was first committed to writing about 550 BC, during the… …   Universalium

  • Judges, Book of —    Is so called because it contains the history of the deliverance and government of Israel by the men who bore the title of the judges. The book of Ruth originally formed part of this book, but about A.D. 450 it was separated from it and placed… …   Easton's Bible Dictionary

  • JUDGES, BOOK OF —    a book of the Old Testament; gives an account of a series of deliverances achieved on behalf of Israel by ministers of God of the nation so called, when, after their occupation of the land, now this tribe and now that was threatened with… …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

  • Book of Judges — (Hebrew: Sefer Shoftim ספר שופטים) is a book of the Bible originally written in Hebrew. It appears in the Tanakh and in the Christian Old Testament. Its title refers to its contents; it contains the history of Biblical judges (not to be confused… …   Wikipedia

  • JUDGES (Heb. שׁוֹפְטִים), BOOK OF — JUDGES (Heb. שׁוֹפְטִים), BOOK OF, the second book in the second section of the Bible, called Prophets (Nevi im). (See Table: Book of Judges – Contents.) The Book of Judges is named for the series of charismatic leaders of the period between the… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Judges —     Judges     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► Judges     The seventh book of the Old Testament, second of the Early Prophets of the Hebrew canon.     I. TITLE     The Hebrew name of the book was transliterated by Origen Safateím, and by St. Jerome… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Book of Ruth —     Book of Ruth     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► Book of Ruth     One of the proto canonical writings of the Old Testament, which derives its name from the heroine of its exquisitely beautiful story.     I. CONTENTS     The incidents related in the …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Judges Guild — is a small game publisher in the business of creating and selling role playing game supplements, periodicals and related material, most notable as one of the leading publishers in the late 1970s and early 1980s of Dungeons Dragons related… …   Wikipedia

  • Judges, The Book of — • The seventh book of the Old Testament, second of the Early Prophets of the Hebrew canon Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006 …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Book — (b[oo^]k), n. [OE. book, bok, AS. b[=o]c; akin to Goth. b[=o]ka a letter, in pl. book, writing, Icel. b[=o]k, Sw. bok, Dan. bog, OS. b[=o]k, D. boek, OHG. puoh, G. buch; and fr. AS. b[=o]c, b[=e]ce, beech; because the ancient Saxons and Germans… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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