Judges 17-21 serve as sort of an epilogue to the entire book. If in Joshua we see God’s faithfulness to his people in giving them promise land then in Judges we see the faithlessness of his people in possessing the land. Indeed, the children of Israel came into the land of Canaan to possess it and tragically Canaan ended up possessing them!
In these last 5 chapters we read a few horrific illustrations of this general truth. Some of the most “R” rated material found in the bible is found here. There is a reason why these 5 chapters are never featured in a VBS with each day of the week highlighting a different chapter. It is a tragic depiction of a people who have lost their spiritual moorings. What is the reason for all this?
It is hard to read these last chapters and not pick up on the constant refrain, indeed it is the statement that closes the book, “In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in his own eyes.” (Judges 21:25 see also 17:6;18:1;19:1) This nation is in desperate need of a King on a throne full of power who will be able to govern the hearts of the people to fear the Lord always. Come to think of it, we are in desperate need of this as well. All of us, left to ourselves, do only what is right in our own eyes. We need someone to rule our souls and rule rightly. We need a King! The book of Judges closes with the reader longing for that king. The king was not found in Saul, and only in picture form was he found in David. The True King did not come until the entire Old Testament came to a close. Do you know His Name? Better yet, do you know His rule?