Judges Chapter 21
Verses 1-23: The tribes of Israel had sought the Lord’s counsel and obediently battled Benjamin, yet they later “grieved” at the “void” caused by Benjamin’s near obliteration. This section details their ill-conceived plan to preserve the tribe, apparently without divine counsel. When God’s people make a habit of failing to consult Him, they end up confused about right and wrong, wisdom and foolishness.
Judges 21:1 Now the men of Israel had sworn in Mizpeh, saying, There shall not any of us give his daughter unto Benjamin to wife.
“Sworn in Mizpeh”: The Israelites made an oath not to “give” their daughters to the 600 surviving Benjamites (20:47). But they realized that the latter would fade as a tribe unless they had wives (compare 21:6-7), since the Benjamite women had died in the total sack of Gibeah (20:37; compare verse 9).
Because only six hundred males were left to “Benjamin” from the previous warfare (compare chapter 20), and because the other tribes had “sworn” not to allow their daughters to marry a Benjamite, the tribe faced possible extinction. The immoral solutions to the problem (verses 11-12, 23), demonstrate the closing observation of the book (verse 25). The following narratives concerning Ruth and Samuel, both set in the period of the Judges, thus form a welcome contrast to the widespread conditions of increasing national degeneracy in the era of the judges. Whenever God and His Word are not honored, the degenerate spiritual and moral standards, debased social conditions, and disordered civil authority pictured in these closing chapters are a likely result, a portrait often drawn by the Old Testament prophets.
It appears that the men of Israel had taken oaths, when they met at Mizpeh. They were so revolted by the terrible crime these men of Gibeah committed, that they refused to let their daughters marry a man of Benjamin. They undoubtedly took an oath also, that anyone who did not come against this terrible sin, by fighting against the Benjamites would be killed. This was to show their total disgust of this sin.
Judges 21:2 “And the people came to the house of God, and abode there till even before God, and lifted up their voices, and wept sore;”
Not to the city Bethel, as the Targum, Septuagint, and other versions, but to Shiloh. Where the tabernacle and ark were. And this is to be understood of the army after they had utterly destroyed the Benjamites. Hence we read of the camp in Shiloh (Judges 21:12), here they came not so much to rejoice, and be glad, and to return thanks for the victory they had at last obtained. But as to lament the unhappy case of the tribe of Benjamin, and to have counsel and advice, and consider of ways and means to repair their loss.
“And abode there till even before God”: Fasting and praying, instead of feasting and rejoicing.
“And lifted up their voices, and wept sore”: Not so much, or at least not only for the 40,000 Israelites that were slain, but for the tribe of Benjamin. In danger of being lost, as follows in the next verse.
This is speaking of the Israelites, who were very sad about the destruction of the tribe of Benjamin. They were one of the twelve tribes. Their grief was for the fact that one of their own had gone bad. It was also, grief that the tribe of Benjamin might not survive this.
Judges 21:3 “And said, O LORD God of Israel, why is this come to pass in Israel, that there should be to day one tribe lacking in Israel?”
Jehovah, the only living and true God, the Being of beings, eternal, immutable, omnipotent and omnipresent. The God of all Israel, of the twelve tribes of Israel, their covenant God and Father. Who had shown favor to them in such a peculiar and gracious manner, as he had not to other nations, and therefore hoped he would still have a kind regard unto them, and suffer them to expostulate with him in the following manner.
“Why is this come to pass in Israel”: Expressing, as Abarbinel thinks, a concern for the 40,000 men of Israel which fell in the two first battles. But it manifestly refers to the case in the next words.
“That there should be today one tribe lacking in Israel”: Meaning the tribe of Benjamin, which was all destroyed, excepting six hundred men, and these had no wives to propagate the tribe. And therefore, unless some provision could be made for that, it must in a short time be totally extinct. For which they express great concern, it not being their intention when they made the above oath to destroy them. But such were now the circumstances of things in Providence that it must perish unless some way could be found to relieve it, and which their oath seemed to preclude. And this threw them into great perplexity.
The 12 tribes were all of Israel. The covenant that God made was with all 12 tribes. There was such a destruction of the Benjamites that their tribe might die out altogether. They are asking God for the reason.
Judges 21:4 “And it came to pass on the morrow, that the people rose early, and built there an altar, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings.”
The day after their fasting and prayer, and a sense of their present case and circumstances being deeply impressed upon their minds. They rose early in the morning to acts of devotion, and exercises of religion. Hoping that being in the way of their duty, the difficulties with which they were perplexed would be removed.
“And built there an altar”: If this place was Beth-el, as Kimchi reasons, there Jacob had built an altar. But that in such a course of years might have been demolished. And if it was Shiloh, there was the tabernacle, and so the altar of the Lord there. Wherefore this either signifies the repairing of that, being in ruins, which is not likely, since it was but lately used (Judges 20:26). Or the building of a new one, which to do in the tabernacle was not unlawful, especially when the number of sacrifices required it. Which it is highly probable was the case now, as it was at the dedication of the temple (1 Kings 8:64). Though the above-mentioned writer thinks, that building an altar signifies, as in many places, only seeking the Lord. But the use for which it was built is expressed.
“And offered burnt offerings and peace offerings”: Both to atone for the sins they had been guilty of in the prosecution of the war, and to return thanks for victory given, and to implore fresh favors to be bestowed upon them.
This is the same thing they had done before this last battle. They are thankful the war is over, and this terrible sin has been removed from their people, but they are sad for the loss of the tribe of Benjamin.
Judges 21:5 “And the children of Israel said, Who [is there] among all the tribes of Israel that came not up with the congregation unto the LORD? For they had made a great oath concerning him that came not up to the LORD to Mizpeh, saying, He shall surely be put to death.”
One to another, after they had offered their sacrifices, and while they were together in Shiloh.
“Who is there among all the tribes of Israel, that came not up with the congregation unto the Lord?” When they were summoned to come to Mizpeh, to consult together about the affair of the Levite’s concubine, as appears by what follows.
“For they had made a great oath”: In a very awful and solemn manner, with a curse annexed to it, as that about not giving a wife to Benjamin (Judges 21:18).
“Concerning him that came not up to the Lord to Mizpeh”: Not about him who did not go out to battle against Benjamin, nor about every individual that did not come to consult about it. But every city that did not send their proper representatives or quota to assist in that affair.
“He shall surely be put to death”: This was sent along with the summons, in order to quicken their attention to them.
It appears that this is an idea for furnishing wives to the 600 men of the tribe of Benjamin that are hid out. They had sworn at Mizpeh they would die, if they did not go to this battle against this terrible evil.
Judges 21:6 “And the children of Israel repented them for Benjamin their brother, and said, There is one tribe cut off from Israel this day.”
Not that they went to war with them, as if their cause was not good. But for the severity they had exercised towards them, especially in destroying their women and children, and for the fatal consequences like to follow here after. Particularly the dissolution of the whole tribe.
“And said, there is one tribe cut off from Israel this day”: That is, there is a likelihood or great danger of it.
It seems in the destruction of the cities of Benjamin, they had killed all of the women and children, as well as the men. They would like to find wives for the 600 men to start the tribe of Benjamin again.
Judges 21:7 “How shall we do for wives for them that remain, seeing we have sworn by the LORD that we will not give them of our daughters to wives?”
By which it seems, as well as by what is after related, that they knew of the six hundred men hid in the rock Rimmon.
“Seeing we have sworn by the Lord. By the Word of the Lord, as the Targum. And such an oath with them was a sacred thing, and to be kept inviolable, even to their own hurt.
“That we will not give them of our daughters to wives (as in Judges 21:1). And therefore they must either marry among the Heathens, which was forbidden, or they must make void their oath, or the tribe in a little time would be extinct. These were difficulties they knew not how to surmount, and this was the object of their inquiry.
They cannot break their oath, and give them of their daughters to wife. Where will these men of Benjamin find Hebrew women to marry and have children, so the tribe will not be totally annihilated?
Verses 8-16: “Jabesh-gilead”: Israelites placed such a premium on the unity of their tribes that they saw this city’s non-cooperation in battle as worthy of widespread death. The passage does not give God’s approval to this destruction of men, women and children (verses 10-11). It is another of the bizarre actions of men when they do what is right in their own eyes, which is the point that both begins and ends this dark final section (17:6; 21:25).
Judges 21:8 “And they said, What one [is there] of the tribes of Israel that came not up to Mizpeh to the LORD? And, behold, there came none to the camp from Jabesh-gilead to the assembly.”
No one had come from Jabesh-gilead, so the Israelites conquered Jabesh-gilead, which did not help against the Benjamites, and gave 400 virgins from there to the tribe (verses 12-14).
There is very little known of this Jabesh-gilead. They lived on the eastern side of Jordan. They were the only ones that did not come to fight against Gibeah.
Judges 21:9 “For the people were numbered, and, behold, [there were] none of the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead there.”
To know who did come up, and who did not. And particularly to know whether the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead did or not. Against whom information was brought.
“And, behold, there were none of the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead there. For as yet none that came had returned home. All came to Shiloh first, to pay their devotion to the Lord. And as none were found among the living, it did not appear they were among the slain. And very probably the muster roll was taken before they went to battle, and they were not on that.
It seems, they had taken a census to see who was there and there was no one from Jabesh-gilead there.
Judges 21:10 “And the congregation sent thither twelve thousand men of the valiantest, and commanded them, saying, Go and smite the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead with the edge of the sword, with the women and the children.”
That were in their army. In the Vulgate Latin version it is only 10,000; but the Targum, Septuagint, Syriac, and Arabic versions, and Josephus, agree with the Hebrew text. This place, according to Bunting, to which this army was sent, was fifty two miles from Shiloh.
“And commanded them, saying”: These were the orders they gave them, when they marched out.
“Go and smite the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead with the edge of the sword, with the women and the children. Which it seems was according to the oath they had made (Judges 21:5).
Judges 21:11 “And this [is] the thing that ye shall do, Ye shall utterly destroy every male, and every woman that hath lain by man.”
Which they gave them in charge to execute.
“Ye shall utterly destroy every male”: Without any reserve, young or old, married or unmarried.
“And every woman that hath lain by man”: Whether lawfully or unlawfully, in a married or unmarried state.
This must have been a small group at Jabesh-gilead, because they sent 12,000 of their bravest men to kill them. All the men were to be killed, and all the women who were not virgins were to be killed. Even the children were to be slain. This is an effort to find wives for the 600 men of Benjamin that were left. It was also to fulfill the oath they had taken before God, to kill those who did not come to fight.
Judges 21:12 “And they found among the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead four hundred young virgins, that had known no man by lying with any male: and they brought them unto the camp to Shiloh, which [is] in the land of Canaan.”
Or damsel virgins; damsels that were virgins. That had known no man by lying with any male. Which was judged of by their age, and by their unmarried state, and by common report. Unless it can be thought they were examined by matrons. But how it was that they were not obliged, or did not think themselves obliged by their oath to put these to death, as well as others, is not easy to say. Whether they thought the necessity of the case would excuse it, or they had a dispensation from the Lord for it, on consulting him. However, so it was.
“And they brought them unto the camp to Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan”: This is observed because that Jabesh-gilead was not in the land of Canaan, from whence they were brought, but in the land of Og, king of Bashan. Only what was on this side Jordan was the land of Canaan, and in that Shiloh was, to which they were brought. And this shows that not the city Beth-el, but Shiloh, was the place whither the people or army of Israel came to offer sacrifice after the war was ended.
They had probably gone to Shiloh to seek help from God. This group of 400 virgins would be a start, to finding wives for the 600 Benjamites who remained alive.
Judges 21:13 “And the whole congregation sent [some] to speak to the children of Benjamin that [were] in the rock Rimmon, and to call peaceably unto them.”
Sent some messengers to them, to call them, and desire them to come to them.
“That were in the rock Rimmon”: The six hundred men who had hid themselves in a cave in it, of which the people of Israel were informed.
“And to call peaceably unto them”: To proclaim peace to them, and assure them of it, and to let them know that they had no ill design against them, that they might come safely to them, and would be kindly received and protected by them.
Israel was trying to make peace with the remnant of 600 men of Benjamin. They did not want to kill the Benjamites. Instead, they were trying to find them wives, so the tribe of Benjamin could live on.
Judges 21:14 “And Benjamin came again at that time; and they gave them wives which they had saved alive of the women of Jabesh-gilead: and yet so they sufficed them not.”
The six hundred Benjamites returned with the messengers at the same time to the people of Israel. Putting confidence in the assurances they had given them of peace and safety.
“And they gave them wives which they had saved alive of the women of Jabesh-gilead. In doing which they supposed they had not violated their oath, since though they had sworn that they would not give their own daughters. They had not sworn they would not give the daughters of others. And besides, as the men of Jabesh-gilead were not at Mizpeh when the oaths were made, they had taken none. And so their daughters might be given in marriage to the Benjamites, notwithstanding that oath.
“And yet so they sufficed them not”: There were not wives enough for them all. For they were six hundred men, whereas the daughters of the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead were but four hundred. So that there were two hundred more needed. Abarbinel interprets the word we render “so” in a different manner, by “right”, as in (Num. 27:7). And gives the sense thus, that it was not a point of justice and judgment to do this to the daughters of Jabesh-gilead. Namely, to save and give them in marriage. But they did this because the people repented for Benjamin, as follows.
We see that there were not enough of these virgins for the 600 men of Benjamin. “Sufficed”, in this verse, is speaking of being enough. They were 200 women short.
Judges 21:15 “And the people repented them for Benjamin, because that the LORD had made a breach in the tribes of Israel.”
That they had destroyed all their women, and that they had saved no more of the daughters of Jabesh-gilead. Not a sufficient number to be wives to the Benjamites.
“Because the Lord had made a breach in the tribes of Israel”: By almost destroying one of them; for though this was done by the Israelites, yet by the permission and according to the will of God, and through his overruling providence.
The people here, are speaking of the Israelites. The LORD had caused a division among Benjamin and the other tribes. All of the other tribes were wanting the tribe of Benjamin to again, be part of the 12 tribes.
Judges 21:16 “Then the elders of the congregation said, How shall we do for wives for them that remain, seeing the women are destroyed out of Benjamin?”
“Wives for them that remain”: Having recognized that the 200 others needed wives (verses 17-18), they decided to allow them to snatch brides on their own at a dance in Shiloh (verses 16-22), not believing that this violated their oath of not directly “giving” their daughters.
They are trying to think of some way for the other 200 men of Benjamin to have wives. They do not want the tribe of Benjamin to stop existing. They would give their daughters to the Benjamites, were it not for the oath they took.
Judges 21:17 “And they said, [There must be] an inheritance for them that be escaped of Benjamin, that a tribe be not destroyed out of Israel.”
The escaped are the six hundred men in the rock Rimmon. Four hundred of them were supplied with wives, the other two hundred needed wives. And as there was an inheritance divided by lot to the tribe of Benjamin, to that tribe and to that only it belonged, and they must have it and no other. It now of right devolved on these six hundred men, and them only. And therefore provision must be made to increase their number. That they may occupy the inheritance they have a right to, rebuild their cities, till their land, cultivate their vineyards and oliveyards, and enjoy all the advantages of their possessions.
“That a tribe be not destroyed out of Israel”: But the full number of the tribes be preserved, and their inheritances belonging to them, according to the predictions of Jacob and Moses. And the assignment of them by lot unto them by Joshua.
There must be descendants for Benjamin.
Judges 21:18 “Howbeit we may not give them wives of our daughters: for the children of Israel have sworn, saying, Cursed [be] he that giveth a wife to Benjamin.”
Though their case was so very necessitous and desperate.
“For the children of Israel have sworn, saying, cursed be he that giveth a wife to Benjamin”: (Judges 21:1). And therefore, without the violation of their oath could not give any of their daughters in marriage to them. Wherefore some other way must be devised to help them.
If they broke their oath they made to God at Mizpeh, they would be cursed of God.
Judges 21:19 “Then they said, Behold, [there is] a feast of the LORD in Shiloh yearly [in a place] which [is] on the north side of Beth-el, on the east side of the highway that goeth up from Beth-el to Shechem, and on the south of Lebonah.”
“Shiloh”: Which was so known a place, that it was frivolous to describe it by such circumstances, even by places much less known than itself.
“Feast”: Which as to that part or exercise of the feast here especially concerned and mentioned. To wit, the dancing of the virgins, was not celebrated in Shiloh, but in a neighboring place more convenient for that purpose.
“Yearly”: On the three solemn feasts, in which they used some honest and holy recreations. Among which dancing was one (Exodus 15:20; 1 Sam. 18:6; 2 Sam. 6:14). And probably it was the feast of tabernacles, which they did celebrate with more than ordinary joy (Deut. 16:13-15).
“In a place”: For the intention is not to describe the situation of Shiloh, which was well known, but a place not far from it, where at this festival the daughters of Shiloh used to dance.
“Which is on the north side of Beth-el, on the east side of the highway that goeth up from Beth-el to Shechem”: This place lay to the east of a public road that led from Beth-el to Shechem:
There were several times a year they had great celebrations where all of the men, and most of the women, came to the tabernacle. One of these was Passover. The feast of Tabernacles was a feast with much joy and happiness. If it had been important to know what feast, the Bible would have stated it. The directions given were so there would be no doubt where they were to come to.
Judges 21:20 “Therefore they commanded the children of Benjamin, saying, Go and lie in wait in the vineyards;”
The two hundred men of the tribe that wanted wives. They ordered them as follows, and which they spake with authority, being the elders of the congregation (Judges 21:16).
“Saying, go and lie in wait in the vineyards”: which might belong to Shiloh, or it may be to Lebonah, which perhaps is the same with Beth-laban, famous for its wine with the Misnic writers. Who say the second places for wine are Beth-rimah and Beth-laban. And I suspect that Beth-rimah is the same with Beth-rimmon, near which was the rock Rimmon these men were in. Now this being the time of year when the vintage was just over, the vines were full of branches and leaves, under which the men might the better hide themselves. And the grapes being gathered, there were no men in the vineyards, and so might lie in wait safely, and under cover.
Judges 21:21 “And see, and, behold, if the daughters of Shiloh come out to dance in dances, then come ye out of the vineyards, and catch you every man his wife of the daughters of Shiloh, and go to the land of Benjamin.”
As they used to do at this festival, not along with men, but by themselves. And so might the more easily be taken and carried off. And though only males were obliged to appear from all parts at this feast, yet females might come if they would. And, no doubt, from neighboring places, at least many did. However, the daughters of Shiloh, who dwelt where the tabernacle was, these always attended the feast with demonstrations of joy, and among the rest with dancing. And that as expressive of spiritual and religious joy. As in the case of Miriam, and the Israelite women (Exodus 15:20). And as in latter times the most religious men used to express their joy at this feast. Now the two hundred men in the vineyards, which lay near the field where these virgins used to dance at this time, were to watch and observe when they came out of the city there, and were engaged in such an exercise.
“Then come ye out of the yards, and catch you every man his wife of the daughters of Shiloh, and go to the land of Benjamin”: They are directed to rush out at once upon them. As they were dancing, secure, as they thought, from molestation and danger. And they were to take each man one woman, not more, and go off directly with them to their own tribe.
The Jewish maidens danced at the feast of Tabernacles, so some of the scholars believe this to be that feast. They would kidnap themselves wives, and take them home with them to the land of Benjamin. This was a prepared encounter. The fathers could not give their daughters to them, without being cursed. The Benjamites could kidnap them, and the father would not be held accountable.
Judges 21:22 “And it shall be, when their fathers or their brethren come unto us to complain, that we will say unto them, Be favorable unto them for our sakes: because we reserved not to each man his wife in the war: for ye did not give unto them at this time, [that] ye should be guilty.”
Of this rape of their daughters or sisters, or to bring an action against them. And desire they might be summoned before them, the elders of the people, and be tried and judged according to law for what they had done. Or to put them upon going to war with them again for such treatment of them.
“That we will say unto them, be favorable unto them for our sakes”: For the sake of the elders, who advised them to do what they did. Or for the sake of us Israelites, your sake and ours, who were too severe upon them, and prosecuted the war with too much vigor. Which made what they have done necessary, or otherwise a tribe must have been lost in Israel.
“Because we reserved not to each man his wife in the war”: Either in the war with Benjamin, which they carried on with such wrath and fury as to destroy all the women, so that there were no wives left for the men that remained, which they now repented of. Or in the war with Jabesh-gilead, they did not reserve enough of the women taken, only four hundred virgins, whereas there were six hundred men. But the first seems best.
“For ye did not give unto them at this time, that you should be guilty”: The meaning is, that if they had any uneasiness upon their minds about the oath which they had taken, not to give any of their daughters in marriage to Benjamin. They need not be disturbed at that, since they did not “give” them to them, but these “took” them by force. Which was the scheme these elders contrived to secure from the violation of the oath. This they proposed to say to quiet them, and make them easy, to which other things might have been added as that these were their brethren, and not strangers they were married to. And not to the poorer men, but to men of large estates, having the whole inheritance of the tribe of Benjamin entrusted upon them. And their daughters would be the original mothers of the posterity of that tribe in succeeding ages.
It appears from this, that Israel was feeling guilty that they did not spare the wives of these 600 men. This is a plan that will please Benjamin. It will also help the conscience of the other Israelites. Best of all, it will be pleasing unto the LORD.
Judges 21:23 “And the children of Benjamin did so, and took [them] wives, according to their number, of them that danced, whom they caught: and they went and returned unto their inheritance, and repaired the cities, and dwelt in them.”
Went and laid wait in the vineyards, and when the daughters of Shiloh came out to dance, they rushed upon them.
“And took them wives according to their number”: Two hundred of them, each man a wife, and no more. For though polygamy was in use in those times, and if at any time necessary, and could be excused, it might seem now. Yet it was not indulged in, either by the elders, or by the children of Benjamin.
“Of them that danced whom they caught”: The rape of the Sabine virgins by Romulus, at the arena plays and shows, mentioned by various authors, and the carrying off of fifteen Spartan virgins from the dances by Aristomenes the Messenian, are sometimes observed as parallel cases to this, and justified by it, particularly that of Romulus.
“And they went and returned unto their inheritance”: The six hundred Benjamites, with their wives, returned to their own tribe, which was their inheritance by lot. And these, being the only survivors, had a right to the whole.
“And repaired the cities, and dwelt in them”: In process of time they rebuilt the cities the Israelites had burnt in the late war. And re-peopled them as their posterity increased. And the Jewish writers say, that in later times they were allowed to marry with other tribes as before. Since the oath only bound those present at Mizpeh; for they observe, that it ran only there etc. So in time they became numerous again.
It appears that the cities had not been totally destroyed. There was enough left of them to repair. The 600 men, now have wives and have returned to their inheritance. Their cities are restored, and now they can raise a family and keep the tribe of Benjamin alive.
Judges 21:24 “And the children of Israel departed thence at that time, every man to his tribe and to his family, and they went out from thence every man to his inheritance.”
The war being ended, and things settled as well as circumstances would admit of. For the preservation of the tribe of Benjamin, who was the cause of it, and had suffered so much in it. The Israelites that had met at Mizpeh, and who had not fallen in the war, returned to their respective countries, to their wives and children, and the business of their callings.
“And they went out from thence every man to his inheritance”: Divided by lot to them, to their estates and possessions, which each had a right to.
After the feast, the families of all the tribes went home and lived peaceably.
Judges 21:25 “In those days [there was] no king in Israel: every man did [that which was] right in his own eyes.”
This verse, which repeats the despairing words of 17:6, serves as a summary of the period of the judges. The stage was set for the arrival of God’s chosen king, David. He would not only seek to do right in the Lord’s eyes but lead Israel in the same pursuit.
Judges (Chapters 17 to 21), vividly demonstrates how bizarre and deep sin can become when people throw off the authority of God as mediated through the king (compare 17:6). This was the appropriate, but tragic, conclusion to a bleak period of Israelite history (compare Deut. 12:8).
It is a dangerous thing for a people to do what is right in their own sight. In the case of Israel, they have the law of God to guide them, if they will keep it. Their welfare depended on them keeping the commandments of God. In Judges, we see a people who are blessed beyond measure, but who will not be thankful to the LORD, who is their blessing.
Judges Chapter 21 Questions
1. What had the men of Israel sworn in Mizpeh?
2. Why had they sworn such a thing?
3. In verse 2, who is weeping?
4. Why were the Israelites so sad?
5. Who was God’s covenant with?
6. What did the people of Israel do in verse 4?
7. What had they sworn to do to anyone, who did not come and fight against the Benjamites?
8. Who had the Israelites killed in the cities of Benjamin?
9. Where will these 600 men of Benjamin find wives?
10. Who had not come to fight with Israel against Benjamin?
11. How did the Israelites know they were not there?
12. Who did Israel send to destroy Jabesh-gilead?
13. Who was to be killed?
14. Why did they keep the virgins alive?
15. How many virgins did they find in Jabesh-gilead?
16. Where did Israel take the virgins?
17. Where were the 600 men of Benjamin?
18. Who went to talk to them?
19. What did they do for the Benjamites?
20. How many more women did they need, for each man to have a wife?
21. Why could the tribes of Israel not give their daughters to them to wife?
22. Where do they have this great feast?
23. Where were the Benjamites to hide?
24. At what festival, did the maidens dance?
25. What would the Benjamites do, that would ordinarily have been terribly wrong?
26. How did the Israelites make it alright?