THE BOOK OF
ABIMELECH JUDGES BIBLE EVENTS
ABIMELECH JUDGES BIBLE STUDY ON
ABIMELECH JUDGES BIBLE STORY WITH
ABIMELECH JUDGES BIBLE MESSAGE
Delighted you're back to share today's
Last time we shared, we studied the story of Gideon and how by God's hand,
He delivered Israel from the oppression of Midian. That ended the 4th cycle
of sin to deliverance for Israel. After Gideon's death, however, the
children of Israel were at it again, forsaking the Lord and worshipping
This story is about a son of
Gideon named Abimelech. Gideon had seventy sons with many wives, but
Abimelech was the son of his concubine, who lived in Shechem. After the
death of Gideon, Abimelech had the desire to rule over Shechem, so he asked
the men of Shechem if they wanted Gideon's seventy sons to rule over them
... Or one who was their own flesh and blood.
Just to refresh your memory a
bit, let's do a little background study on this place ... Shechem.
Shechem was originally occupied
by the Canaanites (Genesis
Jacob bought a field in Shechem. He
built an altar there and called it Elelohe-Israel which means: God, the God
of Israel (Genesis
The city of Shechem was named after Shechem (the son of Hamor) who defiled
Dinah, the daughter of Jacob, and Simeon and Levi killed all the males in
the land to avenge the shame of their sister (Genesis,
Shechem was a city of refuge (Joshua
The bones of Joseph were buried in Shechem (Joshua
Well, the people indicated that
they would support Abimelech, so he hired some thugs to go with him and
killed his seventy brothers ... All except for Jotham, the youngest, who hid
So they made Abimelech king, and
when Jotham learned of it, he went to the top of Mt. Gerizim and cried out,
Listen to me, men of Shechem, so that God may listen to you. Just a little
interesting side note here: Remember when Joshua was commanded to put the
blessings and curses on the two mountains? Mt. Gerizim was the mount that
the blessings were put upon. Sooooo, it would seem that whatever Jotham was
about to say, would bear one's attention, yes?
ABIMELECH JUDGES BIBLE EVENTS LESSON WITH ABIMELECH JUDGES
BIBLE EVENTS EXPLANATION AND ABIMELECH JUDGES BIBLE EVENTS
Here is what Jotham said to
Once upon a time, the trees
wanted something to rule over them, so they asked the olive tree. But the
olive tree refused, saying, Should I give up my richness by which they honor
God and man, and go to wave to and fro over the trees? Ah, but the trees
didn't give up ... They then asked the fig tree. But the fig tree said,
Should I leave my sweetness and bearing my good fruit to be promoted over
the trees? Well, the trees persisted, asking the vine next. But the vine
said, What ... Leave my wine, which cheers God and man to do what? Still the
trees wouldn't give up, and they asked the bramble, who accepted the office,
but under this condition: That the trees sit in it's shadow, and if they
didn't, fire would come out of the bramble and destroy the trees.
Jotham, finishing his parable of
the trees, said to the men of Shechem this:
My father risked his life for you and saved you from the oppression of
Midian, and you have attacked his family and killed his seventy sons, making
Abimelech, the son of his maidservant king over Shechem because he is your
brother. If today, you have acted sincerely and honorably with Gideon and
his family, then be happy with Abimelech and let him be happy with you ... you deserve one another!
But if not, Abimelech (represented
bramble in Jotham's parable) is nothing but a fire himself, and may you all
destroy one another. And having spoken that curse, Jotham fled and lived in
hiding for three years because he was afraid of what Abimelech might do.
After that, God sent an evil
spirit between Abimelech and the men of Shechem to revenge the blood of the
seventy sons of Gideon that were killed, but there were also those that
remained loyal to Abimelech. The men of Shechem laid ambushes for Abimelech
and robbed any of his followers that passed by.
Now, it so happened that there
was a man named Gaal and his brethren, that certain men of Shechem put their
trust in, and because of their strength and presence, they felt secure
enough to go out and harvest grapes and have a celebration, at which they
openly cursed Abimelech. And Gaal said to the people, Who does Abimelech
think he is, that we should serve him? If I ruled over this people, I would
do away with Abimelech. Let him build up his army and come out.
ABIMELECH JUDGES BIBLE EVENTS INFORMATION WITH ABIMELECH
JUDGES BIBLE EVENTS MEANING AND ABIMELECH JUDGES BIBLE
Well, all of this was heard by
Zebul, who was one of Abimelech's officials, and it made him angry, so Zebul
secretly sent word to Abimelech that Gaal was stirring up trouble against
him, and advised Abimelech to gather his followers and set up an ambush in
the field so that when Gaal came out against him, Abimelech would have the
advantage (the element of surprise).
So Abimelech divided his
followers into four groups round about the city and when Gaal saw the first
ones coming, he said to Zebul (unaware that Zebul's loyalty was with
Abimelech), Look, people are coming down from the mountains. And Zebul
replied, You're seeing the shadows of the mountains that look like men. Then
Gaal saw more people and said, See, more are coming by the middle of the
land, and some along the plain ... And Gaal then realized that they were
ambushes. Then Zebul said, Aren't you the one who said, Who is Abimelech,
and why should we serve him? Take your brave words then and fight with him.
But Gaal, being caught by
surprise, ran when Abimelech chased him and many who trusted in Gaal were
wounded or killed. Then Zebul ordered that Gaal and his brethren be thrown
out of the city.
Surprisingly enough, the next
day, even with Gaal gone, the people of Shechem came out once again to
gather their grapes, so Abimelech was told of this and he again laid
ambushes and his army took many lives of the people of Shechem. He then
destroyed the city and covered it with salt.
But the men of the tower of
Shechem were still alive and when they heard what had happened, they hid in
the house of a god that they worshipped.
Abimelech got news of this, so he
cut down a bough from the trees and laid in on his shoulder, ordering all
his followers to do the same. They took them to where the people of the
tower were in hiding and surrounded the place with the boughs, then set it
ablaze, killing all the persons (about 1000) inside.
As if Abimelech had not caused
enough destruction, he then went to Thebez and destroyed the city there, so
that all the people took refuge in the tower of that city. Then, as Abimelech
intended to set the door of the tower afire, a woman threw a piece of a
millstone on his head, but before he died, he quickly ordered that his armor
bearer draw his sword and kill him, so that it wouldn't be said that his
death was credited to a woman, and the armor bearer followed his order.
So, God repaid the wickedness of
Abimelech and the men of Shechem that they did to Gideon by killing his
seventy sons and returned their wickedness on their own heads, and the curse
of Jotham came to pass.
Join us again, as we find out
more about the time of the judges of Israel, and the history of God's
people, right here at Daily Bread.