Judges is about the gradual failure of God’s people, and what happens when we forget God and adapt to the surrounding culture. It shows our need for a deliverer.

Judges depicts the downward spiral of Israel's people during pre-kingship days. It demonstrates that situations can worsen and even godly individuals can contribute to problems rather than the solution.

The book highlights just how bad things can become, with each situation seemingly worse than the last. This occurs within God's people, not outsiders like Canaanites. By the end of the book, it feels as though there is no hope.

Judges also reveals that even leaders struggle with controlling their desires. For instance, Samson performs incredible feats through God but succumbs to temptation and becomes a victim of his passions. This shows that those who wish to serve God may fall prey to their own lack of self-discipline.

Judges portrays a cautionary tale about becoming part of the problem instead of faithfully serving God in difficult times.

Prologue (1:1-3:10)


S: Where do our problems begin?
C/BI: Our problems begin with a failure to believe the gospel.


S: What happens when we disobey God?
C: God disciplines his people, and rescues them as they return to him.
BI: God disciplines his people to repentance.

Cycles (3:7-16:31)


S: Who does God use?
C: Surprising people.
BI: God uses unlikely people to do his work in unlikely ways.


S: How does God work?
C/BI: God chooses the uncertain to do the unlikely so that he gets all the glory.


S: What happens to effective, ungodly leaders?
C: Their character undermines their effectiveness.
BI: Character matters more than competence.


S: What happens when we persist in our rebellion?
C: God will refuse to deliver us.
BI: If we persist in our rebellion, God will refuse to deliver us.


S: Where did Jephthah go wrong?
C: Wrong theology and wounded pride undermined his leadership.
BI: Wrong theology and wounded pride lead to ruin.


S: Where did Samson go wrong?
C: He squandered his gifts and calling rather than delivering Israel.
BI: When you live for yourself you’ll waste your life and run your calling.

Epilogue (17-21)


S: What happens when we worship idols?
C: We end up in a gradual slide to emptiness and destruction.
BI: When we turn from God to idols, it leads to emptiness and destruction.


S: When God’s people disobey, how bad can things get?
C: There’s no limit.
BI: When God’s people disobey, there’s no limit to how bad things can get.

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