Judges 1; Judges 2

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Judges 1

1 After Joshua's death the Israelites asked the LORD, "Who will go first to fight the Canaanites for us?"
2 The LORD answered, "Judah's troops will go first. I am about to hand the Canaanites over to you."
3 The tribe of Judah said to the tribe of Simeon, "Come with us into the territory given to us when we drew lots, and together we will fight the people of Canaan. Then we'll go with you into your territory." So the tribe of Simeon went along with Judah.
4 Judah's troops went into battle, and the LORD handed the Canaanites and Perizzites over to them. They defeated 10,000 men at Bezek.
5 At Bezek they also caught up with Adoni Bezek. They fought him and defeated the Canaanites and Perizzites.
6 Adoni Bezek fled. Judah's troops chased him, caught him, and cut off his thumbs and big toes.
7 Adoni Bezek said, "Seventy kings who had their thumbs and big toes cut off used to pick up food under my table. God has paid me back for what I did to them." Judah's troops brought Adoni Bezek to Jerusalem, where he died.
8 The men of Judah attacked Jerusalem and captured it. They killed everyone there and set the city on fire.
9 After that, the men of Judah went to fight the Canaanites who lived in the mountains, the Negev, and the foothills.
10 Then they went to fight the Canaanites who lived at Hebron. (In the past Hebron was called Kiriath Arba.) There they killed Sheshai, Ahiman, and Talmai.
11 From there Judah's troops went to fight the people living at Debir. (In the past Debir was called Kiriath Sepher.)
12 Caleb said, "I will give my daughter Achsah as a wife to whoever defeats Kiriath Sepher and captures it."
13 Then Othniel, son of Caleb's younger brother Kenaz, captured it. So Caleb gave him his daughter Achsah as a wife.
14 When she came to Othniel, she persuaded him to ask her father for a field. When she got down from her donkey, Caleb asked her, "What do you want?"
15 She answered, "Give me a blessing. Since you've given me some dry land, also give me some springs." So Caleb gave her the upper and lower springs.
16 The descendants of Moses' father-in-law, the Kenite, went with the people of Judah from the City of Palms into the desert of Judah. There they lived with the people of Judah in the Negev near Arad.
17 The tribe of Judah went to fight along with the tribe of Simeon, their close relatives. They defeated the Canaanites who lived in Zephath and claimed it for the LORD by destroying it. So the city was called Hormah [Claimed for Destruction].
18 Judah also captured Gaza, Ashkelon, and Ekron with their territories.
19 The LORD was with the men of Judah so that they were able to take possession of the mountains. But they could not force out the people living in the valley who had chariots made of iron.
20 As Moses had promised, Hebron was given to Caleb, who forced out the three sons of Anak.
21 The men of Benjamin did not force out the Jebusites who lived in Jerusalem. The Jebusites still live with the tribe of Benjamin in Jerusalem today.
22 The descendants of Joseph also went into battle against Bethel, and the LORD was with them.
23 They sent men to spy on Bethel. (In the past the city was called Luz.)
24 The spies saw a man coming out of the city. They told him, "Show us how we can get into the city, and we'll treat you kindly."
25 He showed them. So they got into the city and killed everyone there. But they let that man and his whole family go free.
26 The man went to the land of the Hittites. There he built a city and called it Luz. The city still has that name today.
27 Now, the tribe of Manasseh did not force out the people of Beth Shean, Taanach, Dor, Ibleam, and Megiddo or their villages. The Canaanites were determined to live in this land.
28 When the Israelites were strong enough, they made the Canaanites do forced labor. But they did not force all of them out.
29 The tribe of Ephraim did not force out the Canaanites who lived in Gezer. So the Canaanites continued to live with them in Gezer.
30 The tribe of Zebulun did not force out those who lived at Kitron or Nahalol. So the Canaanites continued to live with them and were made to do forced labor.
31 The tribe of Asher did not force out those who lived at Acco or Sidon, Ahlab, Achzib, Helbah, Aphek, or Rehob.
32 So the tribe of Asher continued to live with the Canaanites because they did not force them out.
33 The tribe of Naphtali did not force out those who lived at Beth Shemesh or Beth Anath. So they continued to live with the Canaanites. But the people of Beth Shemesh and Beth Anath were made to do forced labor.
34 The Amorites forced the tribe of Dan into the mountains and would not let them come down into the valley.
35 The Amorites were determined to live at Har Heres, Aijalon, and Shaalbim. But when the tribes of Joseph became stronger, they made the Amorites do forced labor.
36 The territory of the Amorites extended from the Akrabbim Pass--from Selah northward.
GOD'S WORD® is a copyrighted work of God's Word to the Nations. Copyright © 1995 by God's Word to the Nations. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Judges 2

1 The Messenger of the LORD went from Gilgal to Bochim. He said, "I brought you out of Egypt into the land that I swore to give to your ancestors. I said, 'I will never break my promise to you.
2 You must never make a treaty with the people who live in this land. You must tear down their altars.' But you didn't obey me. What do you think you're doing?
3 So I have this to say, 'I will not force them out of your way. They will be like thorns in your sides, and their gods will become a trap for you.'"
4 While the Messenger of the LORD was saying this to all the people of Israel, they began to cry loudly.
5 So they called that place Bochim [Those Who Cry]. They offered sacrifices there to the LORD.
6 Now, Joshua sent the people of Israel home. So each family went to take possession of the territory they had inherited.
7 The people served the LORD throughout Joshua's lifetime and throughout the lifetimes of the leaders who had outlived him and who had seen all the spectacular works the LORD had done for Israel.
8 The LORD's servant Joshua, son of Nun, died at the age of 110.
9 He was buried at Timnath Heres within the territory he had inherited. This was in the mountains of Ephraim north of Mount Gaash.
10 That whole generation had joined their ancestors in death. So another generation grew up after them. They had no personal experience with the LORD or with what he had done for Israel.
11 The people of Israel did what the LORD considered evil. They began to serve other gods--the Baals.
12 The Israelites abandoned the LORD God of their ancestors, the God who brought them out of Egypt. They followed the other gods of the people around them. They worshiped these gods, and that made the LORD angry.
13 They abandoned the LORD to serve the god Baal and the goddess Astarte.
14 So the LORD became angry with the people of Israel. He handed them over to people who robbed them. He also used their enemies around them to defeat them. They could no longer stand up against their enemies.
15 Whenever the Israelites went to war, the power of the LORD brought disaster on them. This was what the LORD said he would do in an oath. So he made them suffer a great deal.
16 Then the LORD would send judges to rescue them from those who robbed them.
17 But the people wouldn't listen to the judges. The Israelites chased after other gods as though they were prostitutes and worshiped them. They quickly turned from the ways of their ancestors who had obeyed the LORD's commands. They refused to be like their ancestors.
18 But when the LORD appointed judges for the Israelites, he was with each judge. The LORD rescued them from their enemies as long as that judge was alive. The LORD was moved by the groaning of those who were tormented and oppressed.
19 But after each judge died, the people went back to their old ways and acted more corruptly than their parents. They followed, served, and worshiped other gods. They never gave up their evil practices and stubborn ways.
20 The LORD became angry with Israel. He said, "Because the people of this nation have rejected the promise I gave their ancestors and have not obeyed me,
21 I will no longer force out the nations Joshua left behind when he died.
22 I will test the people of Israel with these nations to see whether or not they will carefully follow the LORD's ways as their ancestors did."
23 So the LORD let these nations stay. He had not handed them over to Joshua or forced them out quickly.
GOD'S WORD® is a copyrighted work of God's Word to the Nations. Copyright © 1995 by God's Word to the Nations. All rights reserved. Used by permission.