Jdg 2: "The sad circumstances of a nation which had lost its
spirituality is again recorded in these chapters. We are again reminded that we
read of men of like passions with ourselves. Its display of human passion, acts
of violence, and imperfections come as a shock. It demonstrates that though the
Truth is divine, the professors of it are all too human. The Sacred Historian
has faithfully recorded the imperfections, barbarities and irregularities of His
people -- it is our wisdom to no less faithfully study them (2Ti 3:16). In Jdg
2, Israel are reminded that they have not carried out the terms of the divine
covenant. So there is  a warning at the weepers (vv 1-5). Then  the
decline of the new generation (vv 6-10), showing that there is little difference
in human nature from that of the generation in the wilderness.  Apostasy in
Israel (vv 11-15), in which both the severity and goodness of Yahweh is shown.
 Divine judgment is expressed (vv 16-19).  Divine Anger expressed (vv
20-23). Abram was called out of the nations; Israel sold themselves back!"
ANGEL: "Messenger". Perhaps Joshua himself (Jos 23;
24), with his final warnings to the nation (cp Joshua in v 6 here).
"Who was this 'angel' of the Lord? Was it the angel of the
covenant who had given guidance to Joshua (eg, Josh 5:13)? Was it Eleazer or
Phinehas the high priest (see Mal 2:7)? Was it some unnamed prophet (cp Mal
3:6)? Or was it Joshua himself, and this remonstration a condensed version of
the exhortation he addressed to the elders of Israel at Shechem (Josh 24)? In
favour of this idea is the fact that Jdg 1 summarises much in the second half of
the Book of Joshua, and then Jdg 2:1-10 would correspond with the end of that
book. There is a good deal of similarity between the final exhortations of
Joshua (in Jdg 23; 24) and this warning in Judges, so that the latter may
readily be taken as a condensed version of the former. There is also the
continuation in v 6: 'And when Joshua had sent the people away...', as though
defining here who the 'messenger' was (cp Josh 1:28).
But in that case, why 'the angel of the Lord'? Surely because
Joshua was deliberately echoing the warning given to Israel by Moses about the
Angel of the Covenant in their midst. This is readily perceptible in Exo
Similar exhortations from a prophet come in Jdg 6:8..;
BOKIM: Sig "weeping". Location unsure. Could be Shiloh
"Then, where was Bochim, the place of Israel's weeping, for
Bochim was an eponym added because of this special occasion?
"One would naturally assume Shiloh, the place of the sanctuary
of the Lord (cp Josh 18:1). LXX adds 'Bethel', but this would not necessarily
rule out Shiloh, for it was in truth the House of God. But on other occasions
not long after this Bethel was a centre of assembly, sacrifice, and repentant
weeping (Jdg 20:18; 21:2,4 -- Shiloh being ruled out, here, as being too
remote). Also, there at Bethel was the altar of Abraham and Jacob, and close by
it 'the oak of weeping' (Gen 12:3,4; 28:11,22; 35:7,8)" (WJR).
I WILL NEVER BREAK MY COVENANT WITH YOU: But God cannot
keep His covenant with a people who are set on disowning it; ct Zec
Cp also Deu 7:2,5.
I WILL NOT DRIVE THEM OUT...: "You would not, therefore
I will not"; cp Rom 1:28.
SACRIFICES: Sacrifice is the only poss way of redeeming
what has been lost by disobedience. Tears that are not followed by self-denying
deeds are not very hot (Psa 51:17).
// Jos 24:28-31. So here marks the real beginning of the Book
"This section concludes with a repetition of the account given
in Joshua of the death and burial of the great leader, who shares with Moses,
David and the Messiah the high title of 'Servant of the Lord'. They buried him
in his own inheritance in Timnath-serah, within sight of the location of his
mighty victory on the day when the sun stood still" (WJR).
TIMNATH HERES: "In Jdg 2:9 the name is given as
Timnath-heres (the sun!). Is this just a textual corruption, or was the name
changed to remind the people of that day of outstanding triumph [ie, when Joshua
commanded the sun to stand still]?" (WJR).
Possible suggestion of resurrection?: "It [the sun] rises at
one end of the heavens and makes its circuit to the other" (Psa 19:6).
THEY FORSOOK HIM: The root cause: a neglect of Deu
BAAL AND THE ASHTORETHS: "The names are given as
samples of the male and female deities Israel became prone to reverence -- Baal
(Lord, Master), an equivalent of Adonai, also means Husband, and thus the name
served to emphasise the sexual character of the rites practised. Properly
understood, the name could be used significantly of the God of Israel (eg, Jer
31:32). Yet the time came when this use of it was proscribed because of its evil
associations (Hos 2:16,17)... 'Ashtaroth' (KJV) is the plural (or, rather, dual)
form of the name Ishtar, Venus, with reference to the appearances of that bright
shining planet as both morning and evening star. The fuller title
Ashtaroth-Karnaim (of the two horns) suggests that even without telescopes they
knew of the crescent appearance of Venus. This name Ashtaroth is not to be
confused with the Asherah (plural: Asheroth), commonly translated 'the groves'.
These were phallic symbols of the kind which have survived as a feature of
eastern architecture. The name means The Way to Happiness. It serves to
illustrate that the modern glorification of sex is only a revival in more
sophisticated form of the old nature religions, which rotted the nation life of
Israel. When the records say that Israel 'went a-whoring after other gods', this
is more than a mere figure of speech. 'Ships sink not by being in the water, but
by the water getting into them,' writes Fausset trenchantly. God 'of our
pleasant vices makes instruments to scourge us' " (WJR).
IN HIS ANGER: Psa 106:34-39 is followed by vv 40-42. Cp
v 20 here and also Jdg 3:8.
JUST AS HE HAD SWORN TO THEM: Lev 26:37, and ct Josh
THE LORD HAD COMPASSION: The AV has "it repented the
LORD", which is correct.
THIS NATION: "This people" (KJV). A phrase common in OT
as a term of contempt and reprobation; eg, Exo 32:9. More so here because the
usual "amim" is replaced by "goi", as though Israel had become
I WILL NO LONGER DRIVE OUT BEFORE THEM ANY...: Ct Deu
31:3; 7:23; 9:3; Josh 23:16.