As we have mentioned before, this chapter tells us about the pagan nations left in Israel and how they were used to test Israel. There were the five (number of responsibility) lords of the Philistines (“wallowers”..alluding to wallowing in the mire like pigs-2 Pet 2.22) and all the Canaanites (traffickers..in the things of God). There were the Sidonians (“hunters/fishers” and alludes to hunting men’s souls) and the Hivites (“livers”..but had no life) who lived in Mount Lebanon (white) from Mount Baal-hermon (“banned”) as far as Lebo-hamath (“enclosre of wrath”). The Canaanites included the Hittites (“terror”) and Amorites (“sayers”), the Parizzites (“squaters”) anf the Jebusites (“trodden down”). Israel began to intermarry with them and they began to worship the Baals and Asheroth. So, the Lord became angry and sold them into the hands of Cushanrishathaim (“blackness of double wicked”..he is a type of Satan) king of Mesopotamia. Israel served him for eight years. This alludes to what Paul did in 1 Cor 5.5 when he turned a person over to Satan for the destruction of his flesh.
In Judges 3.9-14 we have the first deliverer of Israel named Othniel (“God is might”) and he is a type of Yeshua and the son-in-law of the Caleb. The Ruach Ha Kodesh came upon him and he judged Israel He went out to war and he defeated Cushanrishathaim and prevailed. Yeshua is our deliverer and we will prevail over Satan. But Israel began to sin again, so the Lord raised up Eglon (“calf”) the king of Moab (“from father”) against Israel and he gathered Ammon (“people”) and Amalek (“People that lick, People of the fire god”) with him and they defeated Israel, and possessed Jericho. Amalek will never be at peace with Israel (Num 13.29; Judges 6.3). Israel served them for eighteen years before they cried out to God.
Then the Lord raised up Ehud (“I will give thanks”) and he will be another picture of Yeshua. He is from Benjamin (son of the right hand/last days) and he was left-handed. Israel would send tribute to Eglon through him. Eglon (“calf”) was prepared for the slaughter like a fatted calf. Ehud had a two-edged sword (the Word of God-Heb 4.12) and he bound it to his right leg (the right speaks of power and alludes to his walk in the Torah) and told the king he had a secret message for him. Not expecting him to be left-handed, Ehud took the sword (the Word of God) from his right thigh (right side speaks of power) and thrust it into Eglon’s belly (Satan is slain with the Word). It was a deadly blow, and Ehud went out of the room, shut the doors and locked them. On Yom Kippur there is a ceremony called Neilah (closing) and it is the shutting of the door of repentance. The gates of repentance are opened on Yom Teruah (Rosh Ha Shanah). When Yeshua returns on Yom Kippur the door will be shut on Satan and the unbeliever as well.
Ehud escaped to Seirah (“hairy she-goat”) and when he arrived he blew the horn in the mountain country of Ephraim (fruitful). Yeshua will have a great shofar blown when he returns (Matt 24.29-31). Ehud tells the people to follow him because the Lord has given the Moabites into their hands. They went down to the fords of the Jordan opposite Moab and did not let anyone cross over. This alludes to the fact that we should not let the flesh cross over. They struck down ten thousand (number of judgment) Moabites who were valiant men. With Moab subdued, the land was undisturbed for for eighty (new beginning) years. After him came Shamgar (“a stranger here”) the son of Anath (“answer, eye, fountain”) who struck down six (number of man) hundred Philistines (“wallowers”) with an ox-goad (type of the Torah) and he saved Israel. God can use anything to serve his purpose, like a shepherd’s staff or a sling shot.
Judges 4.1-24 is one of the most prophetic chapters in the Bible. The cycle of disobedience, then oppression and then calling on the Lord happens again. So the Lord sold them into the hands of Jabin (“he understands”- a type of Satan) the king of Canaan (merchant, trafficker) who reigned in Hazor (“village, trumpet, enclosure”) and the commander of his army was Sisera (“meditation, keen, swift”) and he is a picture of the False Messiah in this story. He lived in Harosheth-hagoyim (“work of the nations”-this is in the north so this alludes to worldly wisdom and intelligence). Israel cried out to God because Sisera had nine hundred chariots and he oppressed Israel for twenty years.
Now there was a woman named Deborah (“congregation” and the root for her name is “davar” meaning “the word”) who was a prophetess and she would sit under a palm tree (the tree of righteousness) between Ramah (height) and Bethel (house of God) and judge the people. She summoned Barak (“lightning”-he will attack Sisera from the east-Matt 24.27) and the son of Abinoam (“father of pleasantness”) from Kedesh-naphtali (“sanctuary of my wrestling”). She said that the Lord has said “Go and march to Mount Tabor (“you will purge) and take with you ten (number of judgment) thousand men from Naphtali (“my wrestling”) and from Zebulon (“to dwell”). The Lord will draw out Sisera with his chariots and his army to the river Kishon (“ensnared” as if by human wisdom) and the Lord will give Sisera into his hands.
Barak said that if Deborah went with him then he would go, but he won’t go if she doesn’t go with him. So, she agreed to go but the victory will not be his, for the Lord will sell Sisera (a type of Satan and the False Messiah) into the hands “of a woman.” She is a picture of the Kahal, the eschatological congregation of Yeshua who believe in him. The power of Satan and the False Messiah will not prevail against us (Gen 3.15; Matt 16.18). So Barak had his ten thousand men and he went up with Deborah.
Now Heber (“companion”) the Kenite (“a smith”) had separated himself from the Kenites, from the sons of Hobab (“beloved”) the father-in-law of Moses. This is a third name for Yitro (Jethro). He had camped as far away as as the oak of Zaanannim (“wanderings”) which is near Kedesh (sanctuary). Unbelievers wander close to the sanctuary even today. They told Sisera that Barak had gone to Mount Tabor, so Sisera summons his men and chariots. Deborah tells Barak that the Lord has given Sisera into his hand and that Yehovah was with him. The armies meet and the Lord routed Sisera and all his chariots and army. He attacked from the east. Sisera got off his chariot because it got stuck in the muddy terrain because it was springtime and rainy and he ran away on foot. Barak pursued the army and chariots as far as Harosheth-hagoyim and the army of Sisera fell by the sword and none was left. The enemy is not to be spared.
Sisera fled on foot to the tent of Jael (mountain goat). The word is in the masculine and it alludes to the goat on Yom Kippur when Yeshua comes and the False Messiah falls. She is the wife of Heber. There was peace between Jabin and the house of Heber. Jael went out to meet him and he followed her into the tent and she covered him with a rug. He asked for some water and she gave him milk, alluding to the Word of God. He told her to stand in the doorway, and if anyone came say that there is nobody here, and she agreed.
But Jael took a tent peg called a “yotaid’ in Hebrew. She took a hammer in her hand and drove the tent peg through his temple and it went right through his head because he was asleep, and he died. Now, this alludes to Gen 3.15 where it says the seed of the woman shall crush the head of Satan and the False Messiah. The tent peg (“yotaid”) is a picture of the Messiah (Rev 13.3; Exo 27.19, 35.18; Ezra 9.8; Isa 22.15-25; Hab 3.13; Num 24.17). The hammer is also a picture of the Messiah (Jer 23.29) and the heroes at Chanukah who defeated the enemies of God were called “Maccabees” which is related to the word for “hammer” (makav). So the Lord subdued Jabin on that day and Israel came upon Jabin until they destroyed him.
So we have a clear picture of the return of Yeshua here. The armies if the nations (Sisera lived in Harosheth-hagoyim or “work of the nations”) will attack Israel and the Lord by his word (Deborah) will raise up the Messiah (Barak meaning “lightning”) who will attack the False Messiah from the east (Matt 24.29-31) and defeat him. The Messiah (the tent peg and hammer) will crush the head of Satan (Gen 3.15) and he will be subdued in the end. Sisera (the false Messiah) was dead and his boss Jabin (Satan) was subdued (Rev 20.1-10).
In Part 4 we will pick up in Judges 5.