Judges part 4, A study of Judges 1:21, Judges 1:22 - 26, Judges 1:27 & 28, and Judges 1:29 featuring our Common Man's Commentary

Judges 1:21

"The Benjamites, however, did not drive out the Jebusites, who were living in Jerusalem; to this day the Jebusites live there with the Benjamites." NIV translation

Here, we see the failure of the men of Benjamin as they did not completely control the city of Jerusalem. They had victory over the city but it would not be totally occupied until the time of King David.

Judges 1:22 - 26

"Now the tribes of Joseph attacked Bethel, and the Lord was with them. When they sent men to spy out Bethel (formerly called Luz), the spies saw a man coming out of the city and they said to him, 'Show us how to get into the city and we will see that you are treated well.' So he showed them, and they put the city to the sword but spared the man and his whole family. He then went to the land of the Hittites, where he built a city and called it Luz, which is the name to this day." NIV translation

The tribes of Joseph were Ephraim and the western part of Manasseh. We see that they attacked Bethel after sending a spy to check it out. They trusted in the eyes of men instead of the wisdom of God but God allowed them to take the city. They spared a man and his family in exchange for telling them how to get into the city and we see that the man went on to establish another city. This man named it Luz which was the old name for Bethel.

Judges 1:27 & 28

"But Manasseh did not drive out the people of Beth Shan or Taanach or Dor or Ibleam or Megiddo and their surrounding settlements, for the Canaanites were determined to live in that land. When Israel became strong, they pressed the Canaanites into forced labor but never drove them out completely." NIV translation

In their own strength and wisdom, the tribe of Manasseh failed to fully take the land. They would compromise and justify it in their own minds by making the Canaanites slaves but it would cause problems on down the line.

Judges 1:29

"Neither did Ephraim drive out the Canaanites living in Gezer but the Canaanites continue to live there among them." NIV translation

The parade of failures of men continues with Ephraim. We are reminded that Ephraim would be the first tribe to turn to idolatry and it started here with their failure.