Apr. 13. War with Benjamin and its Consequences

Judg. 20:1-21:25

Israel prepared themselves for war with the tribe of Benjamin after they had failed to deliver the men who had murdered the Levite’s concubine. They selected ten percent of their men of war. After three bloody battles, they had destroyed the complete tribe of Benjamin except for six hundred men who escaped.

What had they done? Sometimes in one’s eagerness to act, he fails to recognize unintended consequences. The Israelites had destroyed the men, women and children of their brother, Benjamin. Only the six hundred men had survived. Because of a vow that they had taken earlier to not allow their daughters to be wives of the Benjaminites, they supposed that Benjamin had been destroyed.

The Israelites devised other schemes that allowed the six hundred Benjaminites to have wives. The tribe of Benjamin had been salvaged and they took their new wives and returned to rebuild their inheritance.

Israel’s existence is summed up in this statement. “In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.”