Judges 9

Judges 9 has Abimelech, an evil son of Giddeon, taking power. He goes to the leaders and asks “’Which is better for you, that all seventy of the sons of Jerubbaal rule over you, or that one rule over you”?  He is positioning himself to become leader, and it worked as “their hearts inclined to follow Abimelech”.  They gave their blessing and also “they gave him seventy pieces of silver” and put their money where their mouth was.  But they had no idea how evil he really was.

So “Abimelech hired worthless and reckless fellows, who followed him” with the money the leaders had given him.  And then he decides to get rid of any potential competition.  “He went to his father’s house….killed his brothers the sons of Jerubbaal, seventy men, on one stone”.  He was ruthless and wiped out the entire family.  “But Jotham the youngest son….hid himself”.  No one realized it at the time, but it would soon some to light.  “All the leaders of Shechem….went and made Abimelech king”.  They didn’t waste much time setting themselves up with power.

Jotham challenges their actions.  “If you acted in good faith and integrity when you made Abimelech king” he tells them to proceed.  But since they hadn’t, he calls them out and warns them of God’s wrath.  “Jotham ran away and fled and went to Beer and lived there”.  So “Abimelech ruled over Israel three years….God sent an evil spirit between Abimelech and the leaders of Shechem….and the blood of his brothers be laid on Abimelech….who killed them”.  He is guilty of murder.

After a little time some began to question “who is Abimelech, and who are we of Shechem, that we should serve him”.  He really didn’t have the rights to the throne.  He stole those.  But he had a group of hired thugs and they went around silencing his detractors.  But then God acted and a “certain woman threw an upper millstone on Abimelech’s head and crushed his skull”.  He didn’t want to die at a woman’s hand so asked his body guard to kill him.  God evened the score and took Abimelech out.  Evil never pays!

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