22 Abimelech ruled Israel for three years. 23 Then Elohim sent an evil spirit to cause problems between Abimelech and citizens of Shechem. So citizens of Shechem turned against Abimelech. 24 God did this so that the bloody violence committed against Jerubbaal’s 70 sons would happen to Abimelech and citizens of Shechem. Citizens of Shechem had helped Abimelech execute his brothers.
25 So citizens of Shechem set ambushes for Abimelech on top of the mountains. They also robbed everyone who passed by them on the road. This was reported to Abimelech.
26 Then Gaal (son of Ebed) and his brothers moved into Shechem. Citizens of Shechem trusted him. 27 They went into the country and harvested grapes in the vineyards to make wine. Then they made an offering of praise in the temple of their gods. They ate, drank, and cursed Abimelech. 28 Gaal (son of Ebed) said, “Who’s Abimelech, and who are we, the people of Shechem, that we should serve him? Isn’t he Jerubbaal’s son, and isn’t Zebul his officer? Serve the descendants of Hamor, Shechem’s father! Why should we serve Abimelech? 29 How I wish I controlled these people! Then I’d get rid of Abimelech. I would tell him,[a] ‘Get yourself a big army and come out.’”
30 Zebul, Shechem’s ruler, heard what Gaal (son of Ebed) had said, and he became angry. 31 He secretly sent messengers to Abimelech. “Watch out! Gaal (son of Ebed) and his brothers have come to Shechem. They have turned the city against you. 32 You and your men must start out tonight. Set an ambush for them in the fields around Shechem. 33 In the morning, when the sun rises, get up quickly and raid the city. When Gaal and his men come out to attack you, do whatever you want to him.”
34 Abimelech and all his troops started out at night. He used four companies to set ambushes around Shechem. 35 Gaal (son of Ebed) went out and stood at the entrance to the city. Then Abimelech and his troops rose from their ambush. 36 When Gaal saw the troops, he said to Zebul, “Look, troops are coming down from the mountaintops!”
Zebul replied, “The shadows of the mountains look like men to you.”
37 Gaal spoke again, “No, there are troops coming down from Tabbur Haares. One company is coming along the road by the Fortunetellers’ Tree.”
38 Then Zebul said to him, “Where is your big mouth now? You were the one who said, ‘Who’s Abimelech that we should serve him?’ Aren’t these the troops whose ruler you despised? Now go out and fight him.”
39 Then Gaal led citizens of Shechem out to fight Abimelech. 40 Abimelech chased Gaal so that he ran away from him. Many were killed at the entrance of the city. 41 Abimelech continued to live at Arumah. Zebul threw Gaal and his brothers out and would not let them live in Shechem.
42 The next day the people of Shechem went into the fields. Abimelech was told about it. 43 So he took his troops, divided them into three companies, and set an ambush in the fields. He watched and saw the people coming out of the city. Then he began to attack them. 44 Abimelech and his company charged the city and captured its entrance. The other two companies charged at everyone in the fields and attacked them. 45 Abimelech attacked the city all day long. He captured the city and killed the people in it. He also tore down the city and scattered salt all over the land.
46 All the citizens of Shechem’s Tower heard about it and went into the basement of the temple of El Berith. 47 When Abimelech was told that they had gathered there, 48 he and all his men went to Mount Zalmon. Abimelech took an ax, cut some brushwood, and carried it on his shoulder. He told his men, “Hurry and do what you’ve seen me do!” 49 So all his troops also cut brushwood and followed Abimelech. They piled the brushwood on top of the basement and set it on fire with the people inside. So all the people in Shechem’s Tower died too. There were about a thousand men and women.
50 Then Abimelech went to Thebez, camped there, and captured it. 51 Now, there was a strong tower inside the town. All the men, women, and leaders of the town fled to it. They locked the door behind them and went up on the roof of the tower. 52 Abimelech came to the tower. He began to fight against it and went near the entrance of the tower to burn it down. 53 Then a woman threw a small millstone that hit Abimelech on the head and cracked his skull. 54 He quickly called his armorbearer. He told him, “Take your sword and kill me! I don’t want anyone to say, ‘A woman killed Abimelech.’” His armorbearer did as he said, so Abimelech died. 55 When the people of Israel saw that Abimelech was dead, they all went home.
56 So Elohim paid back Abimelech for the evil he had done to his father when he killed his 70 brothers. 57 Elohim also paid back the men of Shechem for all their evil. So the curse of Jotham, son of Jerubbaal, came true.
Tola Serves as Judge
10 After Abimelech, Tola, who was the son of Puah and grandson of Dodo, came to rescue Israel. Tola was from Issachar and lived in Shamir in the mountains of Ephraim. 2 He judged Israel for 23 years. Tola died and was buried in Shamir.
Jair Serves as Judge
3 After Tola, Jair from Gilead became a judge. He judged Israel for 22 years. 4 Jair had 30 sons who rode on 30 donkeys. He also had 30 towns that are still called Havvoth Jair to this day. They are in the region of Gilead. 5 Jair died and was buried in Kamon.
Israel Sins Again
6 The people of Israel again did what Yahweh considered evil. They began to serve other gods and goddesses—the Baals and the Astartes—and the gods of Aram, Sidon, Moab, Ammon, and the gods of the Philistines. They abandoned Yahweh and did not serve him.
7 Yahweh became angry with the people of Israel. So he used the Philistines and Ammonites to defeat them. 8 They oppressed and crushed the people of Israel that year. For 18 years they oppressed all who lived east of the Jordan River in the land of the Amorites in Gilead. 9 Ammon also crossed the Jordan River to fight the tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Ephraim. So Israel suffered a great deal.
10 Then the people of Israel cried out to Yahweh for help. They said, “We have sinned against you. We have abandoned our Elohim and served other gods—the Baals.”
11 Yahweh said to the people of Israel, “When the Egyptians, the Amorites, the Ammonites, the Philistines, 12 the Sidonians, the Amalekites, and the Maonites oppressed you, you cried out to me for help. Didn’t I rescue you from them? 13 But you still abandoned me and served other gods. That’s why I won’t rescue you again. 14 Cry out for help to the gods you chose. Let them rescue you when you’re in trouble.”
15 The people of Israel said to Yahweh, “We have sinned. Do to us whatever you think is right. But please rescue us today!” 16 Then they got rid of the foreign gods they had and served Yahweh. So Yahweh could not bear to have Israel suffer any longer.
17 The troops of Ammon were summoned to fight, and they camped at Gilead. The people of Israel also gathered together and camped at Mizpah. 18 The leaders of the people of Gilead said to each other, “Whoever starts the fight against Ammon will rule everyone who lives in Gilead.”
- Judges 9:29 Greek; Masoretic Text “So he said to Abimelech.”
Jesus Appears to Disciples on a Road to Emmaus
13 On the same day, two of Yeshua’s disciples were going to a village called Emmaus. It was about seven miles from Jerusalem. 14 They were talking to each other about everything that had happened.
15 While they were talking, Yeshua approached them and began walking with them. 16 Although they saw him, they didn’t recognize him.
17 He asked them, “What are you discussing?”
They stopped and looked very sad. 18 One of them, Cleopas, replied, “Are you the only one in Jerusalem who doesn’t know what has happened recently?”
19 “What happened?” he asked.
They said to him, “We were discussing what happened to Yeshua from Nazareth. He was a powerful prophet in what he did and said in the sight of God and all the people. 20 Our chief priests and rulers had him condemned to death and crucified. 21 We were hoping that he was the one who would free Israel. What’s more, this is now the third day since everything happened. 22 Some of the women from our group startled us. They went to the tomb early this morning 23 and didn’t find his body. They told us that they had seen angels who said that he’s alive. 24 Some of our men went to the tomb and found it empty, as the women had said, but they didn’t see him.”
25 Then Yeshua said to them, “How foolish you are! You’re so slow to believe everything the prophets said! 26 Didn’t the Messiah have to suffer these things and enter into his glory?” 27 Then he began with Moses’ Teachings and the Prophets to explain to them what was said about him throughout the Scriptures.
28 When they came near the village where they were going, Yeshua acted as if he were going farther. 29 They urged him, “Stay with us! It’s getting late, and the day is almost over.” So he went to stay with them.
30 While he was at the table with them, he took bread and blessed it. He broke the bread and gave it to them. 31 Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. But he vanished from their sight.
32 They said to each other, “Weren’t we excited when he talked with us on the road and opened up the meaning of the Scriptures for us?”
33 That same hour they went back to Jerusalem. They found the eleven apostles and those who were with them gathered together. 34 They were saying, “The Lord has really come back to life and has appeared to Simon.”
35 Then the two disciples told what had happened on the road and how they had recognized Yeshua when he broke the bread.
Jesus Appears to the Apostles(A)
36 While they were talking about what had happened, Yeshua stood among them. He said to them, “Peace be with you!” 37 They were terrified, and thought they were seeing a ghost.
38 He asked them, “Why are you afraid? Why do you have doubts? 39 Look at my hands and feet, and see that it’s really me. Touch me, and see for yourselves. Ghosts don’t have flesh and bones, but you can see that I do.” 40 As he said this, he showed them his hands and feet.
41 The disciples were overcome with joy and amazement because this seemed too good to be true. Then Yeshua asked them, “Do you have anything to eat?” 42 They gave him a piece of broiled fish. 43 He took it and ate it while they watched him.
44 Then he said to them, “These are the words I spoke to you while I was still with you. I told you that everything written about me in Moses’ Teachings, the Prophets, and the Psalms had to come true.” 45 Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures. 46 He said to them, “Scripture says that the Messiah would suffer and that he would come back to life on the third day. 47 Scripture also says that by the authority of Yeshua people would be told to turn to God and change the way they think and act so that their sins will be forgiven. This would be told to people from all nations, beginning in the city of Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses to these things.
49 “I’m sending you what my Father promised. Wait here in the city until you receive power from heaven.”
50 Then Yeshua took them to a place near Bethany. There he raised his hands and blessed them. 51 While he was blessing them, he left them and was taken to heaven.
52 The disciples worshiped him and were overjoyed as they went back to Jerusalem. 53 They were always in the temple, where they praised God.
A psalm of thanksgiving.
1 Shout happily to Yahweh, all the earth.
2 Serve Yahweh cheerfully.
Come into his presence with a joyful song.
3 Realize that Yahweh alone is Elohim.
He made us, and we are his.[a]
We are his people and the sheep in his care.
4 Enter his gates with a song of thanksgiving.
Come into his courtyards with a song of praise.
Give thanks to him; praise his name.
5 Yahweh is good.
His mercy endures forever.
His faithfulness endures throughout every generation.
- Psalm 100:3 Many Hebrew manuscripts, Greek, Targum, Latin; other Hebrew manuscripts “and not we ourselves.”
11 The houses of wicked people will be destroyed,
but the tents of decent people will continue to expand.
12 There is a way that seems right to a person,
but eventually it ends in death.