21- Judges

“Speak, you that ride on white donkeys, you that sit in judgment and walk along the road. Instead of the shouting of archers among the wells, there they laud the righteous acts of Jehova. The righteous acts of His rule over Israel. Awake, awake, Deborah! Awake, awake, sing a song! Arise, Barak, and lead your captives away!” The Song of Deborah, Judges 5:10-12

Music Credit: Michael Levy – Firn Di Mekhutonim Aheym









Tribal Allotments of Israel. Good map!

Kingdoms around Israel. The map shows a divided Israelite nation, which won’t happen until post-Solomon.

Ehud about to strike down Eglon

Deborah woodcut by Gustave Dore…but where’s the palm tree?

Samson and Delilah by Guercino (note that she is depicted holding the scissors, when it’s the soldiers who do the cutting!)

Medieval woodcut of Samson and Delilah (note again she’s holding the scissors – but look at the anachronism! Samson looks like a weenie!)

The Blinding of Samson by Rembrandt

  3 comments for “21- Judges

  1. January 4, 2013 at 11:58 AM

    Happy New Year–love the podcast. I do have one question though about the recent turn of the show, however. In considering the Akkadians, Egyptians Babylonians and so on, their gods, legends and folktales were handled with a good-natured scholarly detachment (your entertaining take on Gilgamesh is a fine example). The Hebrews seem to get a pass and the Old Testament and its events–even things that are obviously supernatural/impossible come in for no examination. In short, the Bible is being treated as a document of historical record–do you believe it is?

    • January 4, 2013 at 7:28 PM

      Thanks for stopping by! First off your username is awesome. Let’s just get that out of the way.

      Ok, it’s not so much that the stories of the Old Testament get a pass, as it is they’re integral to telling the story of the Ancient Hebrews. The traditions of Moses and the Judges really shape how the Israelites and later generations shaped the region, and we can’t talk about Judaism, Monotheism, political conflicts in Palestine/Canaan, Christianity, The Roman Empire, Islam, etc. without addressing these stories. Now in regards to supernatural events, I definitely put a disclaimer out there in ep 15 that these things may or may not have happened. Do I believe the Red Sea magically parted and drowned the armies of Pharaoh? No, but what I believe in is irrelevant to the story that needs to be presented. I’m aware that the Old Testament was written by the exiled Jews in Babylon, around the 500’s BC, but if they wanted to just write a storybook, why include so much unnecessary detail? Regional tribes, political decisions, the names of lesser officials…why include these things just to tell a myth? It doesn’t add up.

      As I’m sure you also know, we’re talking about events that are fundamental to religions currently being followed by nearly a third of the world. I’m not about to alienate listeners of those faiths by declaring that what they believe in never happened. C’mon, you must know that would be pretty low of me. And yet, despite doing my best to tell these stories, I’m also criticized for not putting enough emphasis on God. I’m damned either way I do this, Mr./Ms. LoMein, so the best I can do is carefully walk the middle line. I just pray to Marduk that I make it out in one piece.

  2. Sam the Man
    September 23, 2015 at 2:27 AM

    Why include 5 or 6 entries of biblical mumbo jumbo not supported by archaeology or credible history in your ostensibly “serious” series?

    If you were Canadian would you devote 4 episodes to the history of hockey and one to world war 2?

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