Workers For Jesus Online Bible Study Table of Contents

About this Bible Study........The King James Version of the Bible is written in a beautiful form of the English language. It can be hard for modern English readers to understand.  In this study, you will find notes and summaries in brown just above the the verses from the Bible. We recommend that you read the notes and summaries first, and then read the verses in their KJV form. 

The Book of Judges

The Israelites moved into Canaan. They had wars with the groups of people who lived in Canaan. They won the wars, and most of the other groups of people died or left Canaan. But some of the other people continued to live in Canaan.

In the book of Joshua, the Israelites obeyed God. They did not worship the other people's false gods. But in the book of Judges, the Israelites do not always obey God. Sometimes they worship false gods. Then God punishes them. Other people come and have wars with the Israelites.

The Israelite judges were leaders. Many of them were leaders of the army. They led the Israelites to win in wars.  This book covers 350 years from the year 1390 B.C. to 1050 B.C.
There were 14 judges in these years.  Some of the judges were Deborah, Gideon, and Samson.

Bible Timeline
Here is a good timeline to see the book of Judges in the history of the Bible


Judges 16 - 18
Samson falls in love with a woman named Delilah.
Delilah tells the Philistines how to defeat Samson.
Samson destroys the Philistine temple.
A man named Micah finds a priest for his family.
The tribe of Dan take some land.

Judges 16

Samson carries away a city gate.

Samson went to the place called Gaza.  He saw a prostitute. He went to her house to stay all night.
[1] Then went Samson to Gaza, and saw there an harlot, and went in unto her.


An example of a city gate.
From the web site:


Someone told the people in Gaza that Samson was there. They planned to wait all night for him. Then they would kill him in the morning.  They were quiet all night. They were hiding in the city gate.
[2] And it was told the Gazites, saying, Samson is come hither. And they compassed him in, and laid wait for him all night in the gate of the city, and were quiet all the night, saying, In the morning, when it is day, we shall kill him.

Samson got up about 12:00 midnight.  He picked up the whole city gate--the doors and the posts (poles). He carried the whole gate on his shoulders. He carried it up to the top of the hill in the place called Hebron.

[3] And Samson lay till midnight, and arose at midnight, and took the doors of the gate of the city, and the two posts, and went away with them, bar and all, and put them upon his shoulders, and carried them up to the top of an hill that is before Hebron.

Samson falls in love with a woman named Delilah.
Delilah tries to find out why Samson is strong.

Later, Samson fell in love with a woman named Delilah. She lived in the place called Sorek.
[4] And it came to pass afterward, that he loved a woman in the valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah.



The Philistine leaders came to Delilah. They wanted Delilah to ask Samson why he was so strong. They wanted to know how they could tie him up and hurt him.  They said they would pay Delilah 1,100 pieces of silver if she can find out.
[5] And the lords of the Philistines came up unto her, and said unto her, Entice him, and see wherein his great strength lieth, and by what means we may prevail against him, that we may bind him to afflict him: and we will give thee every one of us eleven hundred pieces of silver.

Delilah asked Samson why he was so strong. She asked him how someone could tie him up.
[6] And Delilah said to Samson, Tell me, I pray thee, wherein thy great strength lieth, and wherewith thou mightest be bound to afflict thee.

Samson told her that if someone tied him up with 7 green bowstrings (strings used for a bow and arrow), he would be weak. He said he would be the same as any other man.

[7] And Samson said unto her, If they bind me with seven green withs that were never dried, then shall I be weak, and be as another man.

The Philistine men brought 7 green bowstrings. They gave them to Delilah. Delilah tied up Samson with the strings.
[8] Then the lords of the Philistines brought up to her seven green withs which had not been dried, and she bound him with them.

Some Philistine men hid in a room near Delilah's room. They planned to catch Samson.  Delilah yelled and told Samson that the Philistines were coming to get him. Samson broke free. He broke the bowstrings easy like fire burning thread.  So no one really knew why Samson was strong.
[9] Now there were men lying in wait, abiding with her in the chamber. And she said unto him, The Philistines be upon thee, Samson. And he brake the withs, as a thread of tow is broken when it toucheth the fire. So his strength was not known.

Delilah was upset with Samson. She told him that he lied to her. She felt foolish. She asked him again how someone could tie him up.
[10] And Delilah said unto Samson, Behold, thou hast mocked me, and told me lies: now tell me, I pray thee, wherewith thou mightest be bound.

Samson said that if someone tied him with new ropes (ropes that had never been used), he would be weak. He said he would be the same as any other man.
[11] And he said unto her, If they bind me fast with new ropes that never were occupied, then shall I be weak, and be as another man.

Delilah got some new ropes and tied up Samson. The Philistine men were waiting in the other room again. Then Delilah yelled and said that the Philistines were coming. Samson broke the ropes off his arms easy like they were threads.
[12] Delilah therefore took new ropes, and bound him therewith, and said unto him, The Philistines be upon thee, Samson. And there were liers in wait abiding in the chamber. And he brake them from off his arms like a thread.

Delilah talked to Samson.  She said that he has made her look foolish. She said he told her lies. She asked him again how he could be tied up.  He said she could weave his 7 long braids of hair in the loom (wood frame with strings used for weaving).
[13] And Delilah said unto Samson, Hitherto thou hast mocked me, and told me lies: tell me wherewith thou mightest be bound. And he said unto her, If thou weavest the seven locks of my head with the web.

Delilah weaves Samson's hair into her loom
From the Women in the Bible web site.

Delilah wove Samson's hair into the loom. She nailed the loom to the wall. She yelled and said that the Philistines were coming. Samson woke up.  He got up and walked away with the loom and the wood from the wall.
[14] And she fastened it with the pin, and said unto him, The Philistines be upon thee, Samson. And he awaked out of his sleep, and went away with the pin of the beam, and with the web.


Samson tells Delilah the truth about his strength.

Delilah continued to try and learn why Samson was so strong.  She said that Samson told her that he loved her. But he lied to her 3 times. He did not tell her why he is so strong.  Delilah asked him everyday why he was so strong. Samson couldn't take it anymore.

[15] And she said unto him, How canst thou say, I love thee, when thine heart is not with me? thou hast mocked me these three times, and hast not told me wherein thy great strength lieth.
[16] And it came to pass, when she pressed him daily with her words, and urged him, so that his soul was vexed unto death;


Finally, Samson told her the truth. He said that his hair has never been cut. He has been a Nazarite for God since he was born. He said that if his hair gets cut, he will not be strong anymore.  He will be the same as all other men.
[17] That he told her all his heart, and said unto her. There hath not come a rasor upon mine head; for I have been a Nazarite unto God from my mother's womb: if I be shaven, then my strength will go from me, and I shall become weak, and be like any other man.

Delilah could see that he was telling her the truth.  She called the Philistine men to come. She told them that Samson finally told her the truth. The Philistine men came and brought money to her.
[18] And when Delilah saw that he had told her all his heart, she sent and called for the lords of the Philistines, saying, Come up this once, for he hath shewed me all his heart. Then the lords of the Philistines came up unto her, and brought money in their hand.

Delilah made Samson fall asleep on her knees. Then she called another man to come. The other man cut off Samson's hair. Then Samson was not strong anymore. 
[19] And she made him sleep upon her knees; and she called for a man, and she caused him to shave off the seven locks of his head; and she began to afflict him, and his strength went from him.

Delilah yelled that the Philistines were coming. Samson woke up, and he started to get up like he did before. He did not know that he wasn't strong anymore.
[20] And she said, The Philistines be upon thee, Samson. And he awoke out of his sleep, and said, I will go out as at other times before, and shake myself. And he wist not that the LORD was departed from him.

"Samson in Prison"
The Story of the Bible by Charles Foster (Illustrations by F.B. Schell and others) 

The Philistines got Samson. They made him blind. Then they took him to the place called Gaza. They tied him up with brass (metal) chains. They forced him to work. He walked around and made a big rock grind corn.
[21] But the Philistines took him, and put out his eyes, and brought him down to Gaza, and bound him with fetters of brass; and he did grind in the prison house.


God makes Samson strong again, and Samson kills many Philistines.

Later, Samson's hair began to grow again.
[22] Howbeit the hair of his head began to grow again after he was shaven.

The Philistine leaders were happy because they caught Samson. They had a big celebration. They made sacrifices to their false god named Dagon. They said Dagon helped them catch Samson.
[23] Then the lords of the Philistines gathered them together for to offer a great sacrifice unto Dagon their god, and to rejoice: for they said, Our god hath delivered Samson our enemy into our hand.


When the Philistines saw Samson, they praised Dagon. They said Dagon helped them catch Samson. In the past, Samson killed many Philistines.
[24] And when the people saw him, they praised their god: for they said, Our god hath delivered into our hands our enemy, and the destroyer of our country, which slew many of us.

Later in the party, they wanted Samson to come out. They wanted to make fun of him.  They brought Samson from prison and made him stand between the pillars (poles that support the building).
[25] And it came to pass, when their hearts were merry, that they said, Call for Samson, that he may make us sport. And they called for Samson out of the prison house; and he made them sport: and they set him between the pillars.

A boy was holding Samson's hand and leading him. Samson asked the boy to lead him by the pillars. Samson wanted to touch the pillars and lean against them.
[26] And Samson said unto the lad that held him by the hand, Suffer me that I may feel the pillars whereupon the house standeth, that I may lean upon them.

The building was full of men and women. The Philistine leaders were all there. About 3,000 people were sitting on the roof. They all watched Samson and made fun of him.
[27] Now the house was full of men and women; and all the lords of the Philistines were there; and there were upon the roof about three thousand men and women, that beheld while Samson made sport.

Samson prayed to God. He asked God to remember him. He prayed for God to make him strong again one more time. He wanted to punish the Philistines for making him blind.
[28] And Samson called unto the LORD, and said, O Lord GOD, remember me, I pray thee, and strengthen me, I pray thee, only this once, O God, that I may be at once avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes.

Samson took a pillar in each hand. They were the pillars that supported the building.
[29] And Samson took hold of the two middle pillars upon which the house stood, and on which it was borne up, of the one with his right hand, and of the other with his left.

The Story of the Bible by Charles Foster (Illustrations by F.B. Schell and others) 

Samson prayed that he would die with the Philistines. He pulled on the pillars as hard as he could. They building fell down and killed all of the Philistine leaders and people. Samson died, too. More Philistines died that day than before. Samson killed more Philistines when he died than when he was alive.
[30] And Samson said, Let me die with the Philistines. And he bowed himself with all his might; and the house fell upon the lords, and upon all the people that were therein. So the dead which he slew at his death were more than they which he slew in his life.

Samson's brothers and the rest of his family came and took his body.  They buried him in his father's tomb (cemetery). This was located between the areas of Zorah and Eshtaol. Samson was Israel's judge for 20 years.
[31] Then his brethren and all the house of his father came down, and took him, and brought him up, and buried him between Zorah and Eshtaol in the burying place of Manoah his father. And he judged Israel twenty years.




Judges 17

A man named Micah makes a confession to his mother.

Micah was a man who lived in the mountain area of the tribe of Ephraim.
[1] And there was a man of mount Ephraim, whose name was Micah.

Micah made a confession (told the truth about something he did wrong). He took some silver from his mother.  He stole 1,100 shekels (coins) of silver. At first, Micah's mother didn't know who stole her silver. She cursed whoever took the silver. She wanted something bad to happen to that person.  Now, Micah confessed.  He said he is the person who stole his mother's silver. His mother now asked God to bless him so that good things will happen to him.
[2] And he said unto his mother, The eleven hundred shekels of silver that were taken from thee, about which thou cursedst, and spakest of also in mine ears, behold, the silver is with me; I took it. And his mother said, Blessed be thou of the LORD, my son.

Micah gave the silver back to his mother. His mother said the silver is for God. She gave the silver back to Micah. She wanted the silver used to make a idol (statue).
[3] And when he had restored the eleven hundred shekels of silver to his mother, his mother said, I had wholly dedicated the silver unto the LORD from my hand for my son, to make a graven image and a molten image: now therefore I will restore it unto thee.

Micah gave the silver back to his mother again. His mother took 200 pieces of the silver. She gave them to a silver worker. The silver worker made the idol. The idol was in Micah's house.
[4] Yet he restored the money unto his mother; and his mother took two hundred shekels of silver, and gave them to the founder, who made thereof a graven image and a molten image: and they were in the house of Micah.

Micah had other statues in his house.  He also had an ephod (priest's vest). He decided that one of his sons would be a priest.
[5] And the man Micah had an house of gods, and made an ephod, and teraphim, and consecrated one of his sons, who became his priest.

 At that time in history, the Israelites did not have a king. All of the Israelites did what they thought was right.
[6] In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes.

A young Levite man begins to work for Micah.

Levites were descendants of Jacob's son, Levi.  God picked this tribe to serve as priests.

A young Levite man traveled to Micah's area. The young man was from the place called Bethlehemjudah. This was in the tribe of Judah's land. The young man was looking for a new place to live.
[7] And there was a young man out of Bethlehemjudah of the family of Judah, who was a Levite, and he sojourned there.
[8] And the man departed out of the city from Bethlehemjudah to sojourn where he could find a place: and he came to mount Ephraim to the house of Micah, as he journeyed.

Micah talked to the young Levite man. He invited him to live at his house. He wanted the young man to be the priest. He said he will pay the man 10 coins of silver every year.  He will also give him clothes and food. The Levite decided to stay at Micah's home.
[9] And Micah said unto him, Whence comest thou? And he said unto him, I am a Levite of Bethlehemjudah, and I go to sojourn where I may find a place.
[10] And Micah said unto him, Dwell with me, and be unto me a father and a priest, and I will give thee ten shekels of silver by the year, and a suit of apparel, and thy victuals. So the Levite went in.

The Levite lived at Micah's home. He was like one of Micah's sons.
[11] And the Levite was content to dwell with the man; and the young man was unto him as one of his sons.

Micah made the Levite a priest. He was the priest for Micah and his family.
[12] And Micah consecrated the Levite; and the young man became his priest, and was in the house of Micah.

Micah was happy that he had a Levite priest. He said that God will see that and God will bless him.
[13] Then said Micah, Now know I that the LORD will do me good, seeing I have a Levite to my priest.

Judges 18

The tribe of Dan looks for some land. Their men visit Micah's house.

At that time in history, Israel did not have a king. The people in the tribe of Dan did not have any land yet.  They were looking for some land.
[1] In those days there was no king in Israel: and in those days the tribe of the Danites sought them an inheritance to dwell in; for unto that day all their inheritance had not fallen unto them among the tribes of Israel.

The tribe of Dan was living in the areas called Zorah and Eshtaol. They picked 5 brave men to go look for some land. The 5 men traveled to the area of Mt. Ephraim. They went to Micah's house and stayed there.
[2] And the children of Dan sent of their family five men from their coasts, men of valour, from Zorah, and from Eshtaol, to spy out the land, and to search it; and they said unto them, Go, search the land: who when they came to mount Ephraim, to the house of Micah, they lodged there.

When the 5 men from Dan were at Micah's house, they heard the young Levite priest talking.  They heard that he talked with an accent. They knew he came from another place.  They asked him what he was doing there and how he got to Micah's house.
[3] When they were by the house of Micah, they knew the voice of the young man the Levite: and they turned in thither, and said unto him, Who brought thee hither? and what makest thou in this place? and what hast thou here?

The young Levite priest told the 5 men from Dan his story. He told them that Micah hired him. He works for Micah. He is Micah's priest.

[4] And he said unto them, Thus and thus dealeth Micah with me, and hath hired me, and I am his priest.

The 5 men from Dan wanted to know if their trip will be successful. They asked the Levite priest to ask God.  The priest told them that God is with them. They should continue their travels. God will help them.
[5] And they said unto him, Ask counsel, we pray thee, of God, that we may know whether our way which we go shall be prosperous.
[6] And the priest said unto them, Go in peace: before the LORD is your way wherein ye go.


The tribe of Dan attacks the city of Laish and the men steal Micah's statues and priest.

The 5 men from Dan left Micah's house. They traveled to the city named Laish. The people in Laish were not Israelites. They were Zidonians.  This city was far away from the other Zidonian cities. The people in Laish did not have any other city to help them. They did not worry. They did not think any other people would attack them.

[7] Then the five men departed, and came to Laish, and saw the people that were therein, how they dwelt careless, after the manner of the Zidonians, quiet and secure; and there was no magistrate in the land, that might put them to shame in any thing; and they were far from the Zidonians, and had no business with any man.

The 5 men from Dan went back to their homes in Zorah and Eshtaol.  The people in the tribe wanted to know what they found.
[8] And they came unto their brethren to Zorah and Eshtaol: and their brethren said unto them, What say ye?


The 5 men said they found some good land. They said it was time for the tribe to go and get the land.
[9] And they said, Arise, that we may go up against them: for we have seen the land, and, behold, it is very good: and are ye still? be not slothful to go, and to enter to possess the land.

The 5 men told them about the city of Laish. They told them that the people in Laish were not ready for a war. They said that God was giving them the city and the land. They said it is good land with everything they need.
[10] When ye go, ye shall come unto a people secure, and to a large land: for God hath given it into your hands; a place where there is no want of any thing that is in the earth.

The tribe of Dan sent 600 soldiers to go attack the city of Laish.  They first camped in a place in Judah. The place was near Kirjath-jearim.  They named the place where they camped Mahaneh-dan.
[11] And there went from thence of the family of the Danites, out of Zorah and out of Eshtaol, six hundred men appointed with weapons of war.
[12] And they went up, and pitched in Kirjath-jearim, in Judah: wherefore they called that place Mahaneh-dan unto this day: behold, it is behind Kirjath-jearim.

The army passed Micah's home at Mt. Ephraim.
[13] And they passed thence unto mount Ephraim, and came unto the house of Micah.

The 5 men who visited Micah's house before talked. They told the other men in the army about Micah's ephod (priest's vest) and Micah's statue. They asked them what they should do about it.
[14] Then answered the five men that went to spy out the country of Laish, and said unto their brethren, Do ye know that there is in these houses an ephod, and teraphim, and a graven image, and a molten image? now therefore consider what ye have to do.

The 5 men went to the young Levite priest's house and Micah's house. The other 600 men waited by the gate.
[15] And they turned thitherward, and came to the house of the young man the Levite, even unto the house of Micah, and saluted him.
[16] And the six hundred men appointed with their weapons of war, which were of the children of Dan, stood by the entering of the gate.

The 5 men went into the houses and stole the statues and priest's vest. The priest was by the gate with the 600 men.  He asked the 5 men what they were doing.
[17] And the five men that went to spy out the land went up, and came in thither, and took the graven image, and the ephod, and the teraphim, and the molten image: and the priest stood in the entering of the gate with the six hundred men that were appointed with weapons of war.
[18] And these went into Micah's house, and fetched the carved image, the ephod, and the teraphim, and the molten image. Then said the priest unto them, What do ye?

The 5 men told him to be quiet. They wanted him to go with them. They wanted him to be their priest. They asked him if it was better to be the priest for one family or to be the priest for a whole tribe of people.
[19] And they said unto him, Hold thy peace, lay thine hand upon thy mouth, and go with us, and be to us a father and a priest: is it better for thee to be a priest unto the house of one man, or that thou be a priest unto a tribe and a family in Israel?

The priest was happy. He decided to go with them.
[20] And the priest's heart was glad, and he took the ephod, and the teraphim, and the graven image, and went in the midst of the people.

They all left Micah's house. They had children, cattle, and carriages (carts holding their things). They put all of them in the front.
[21] So they turned and departed, and put the little ones and the cattle and the carriage before them.

Micah and his men chased the Dan army. When the army was far from Micah's house, Micah and his army caught them. They yelled, and the Dan army turned around and looked at them. They asked Micah why he was chasing them with a large group of his men.
[22] And when they were a good way from the house of Micah, the men that were in the houses near to Micah's house were gathered together, and overtook the children of Dan.
[23] And they cried unto the children of Dan. And they turned their faces, and said unto Micah, What aileth thee, that thou comest with such a company?

Micah said they knew why he was chasing them. They stole his statues and the priest and ran away.
[24] And he said, Ye have taken away my gods which I made, and the priest, and ye are gone away: and what have I more? and what is this that ye say unto me, What aileth thee?

The army of Dan told Micah to be quiet. They said if he was not quiet, some of them would get mad and kill him and his family.
[25] And the children of Dan said unto him, Let not thy voice be heard among us, lest angry fellows run upon thee, and thou lose thy life, with the lives of thy household.

Micah could see that the army of Dan was too big and strong. He knew he could not defeat them. He turned around and went back home.
[26] And the children of Dan went their way: and when Micah saw that they were too strong for him, he turned and went back unto his house.

The army of Dan continued to the city of Laish. They had Micah's statues, and the priest was with them. The people in Laish thought they were safe. They were not ready for a war. The army of Dan killed them and burned the city.
[27] And they took the things which Micah had made, and the priest which he had, and came unto Laish, unto a people that were at quiet and secure: and they smote them with the edge of the sword, and burnt the city with fire.

No one came to help the people of Laish. They were far from the other Zidonian cities. They didn't have other people who could warn them or protect them. Laish was in the valley near the place called Beth-rehob. The tribe of Dan took the city. They built the city again. They named the city Dan. This was the name of Jacob's son who was the first one of their tribe.
[28] And there was no deliverer, because it was far from Zidon, and they had no business with any man; and it was in the valley that lieth by Beth-rehob. And they built a city, and dwelt therein.
[29] And they called the name of the city Dan, after the name of Dan their father, who was born unto Israel: howbeit the name of the city was Laish at the first.

People who study the Bible have different opinions about the priest, Jonathan. Some people think that "Manasseh" really means Moses. So they think Jonathan is Moses' grandson. But other people think it may be a different person named Manasseh.

God's house was in a different place.  It was at the place called Shiloh. But the tribe of Dan set up Micah's statues in their land. Jonathan and his sons were the priests. Jonathan's father's name was Gershom. His grandfather's name was Manasseh.
[30] And the children of Dan set up the graven image: and Jonathan, the son of Gershom, the son of Manasseh, he and his sons were priests to the tribe of Dan until the day of the captivity of the land.
[31] And they set them up Micah's graven image, which he made, all the time that the house of God was in Shiloh.


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