Judges 1-8, 17-21
1 Kings 1-11
CLASS NOTES FROM SINAI/KINGS (UNITED KINGDOM)
JOSHUA, JUDGES, RUTH, 1 AND 2 SAMUEL, 1 KINGS, 1 CHRONICLES, PSALMS, PROVERBS, ECCLESIASTES, SONG OF SOLOMON
~1450 TO 930 BC
Key Concepts (How to Read)
1. Incomplete Conquest - The root of Israel’s errors
2. King Yahweh
3. Cycle of Faith and Faithlessness
4. Rejection of God’s Kingship
5. A Personal Relationship
6. Davidic Covenant
7. Temple and Division
Key Sections (What it says)
Covenant renewal – Joshua 5, 8:30, 24
Why is this critical? We must be reminded of the covenant. This passage causes us to take a moment to “Remember.”
Root of Israel’s sorrows – failure to eliminate the Canaanites. Joshua 23:6-13. Danger of making accommodations with sin.
Tribal divisions in Joshua
High import of tribes – a confederacy after Joshua and Moses die.
Why doesn’t Joshua appoint a leader to follow him, as Moses did?
Judges – concept of Yahweh as king
Problem – Conquest begins to unravel
Judges 1:19, 21, 27-35
We have a role in this kingdom – and we have failed.
Cycle of faith and faithlessness begins - Judges 2:10-23
Judges: Major and Minor
Major Judges – Deborah, Gideon, Jephthah, Samson
Minor Judges – Othniel, Ehud, Shamgar, Tola, Jair, Ibzan, Elon, Abdon
Why is idolatry such a reoccurringissue? Seductively simple, mainstream, intuitive.
Why Ruth? Faithfulness of the non-Israelite. Ruth is from Moab.
Final Judge – 1 Samuel – Philistine enemies
God’s departure/displeasure with Israel – 1 Samuel 4-5. It is God who wins battles; it is not the Ark. Nor can God be manipulated by use of the Ark. Even orthodoxy can devolve to idolatry if it’s not personal.
Rejection of God as King – 1 Samuel 8
Selection of the first King of Israel, Saul – 1 Samuel 9
Saul was Selected by God, but unfaithful. Model of what the people wanted, not what God wanted. Reigns for unspecified amount of time (estimated 40 years).
Selection of David as King. - 1 Samuel 16. David was not the typical looking King. Rather than having the right look, he had the right character (see 16:7, 13:14). Thus, David was known as a man after God’s own heart.
Personal Relationship with God. - Psalm 51
New concept! Critical shift in thinking from a mediated covenant to a direct line.
Conflict simmers and grows between Saul and David, becomes a small war. Eventually, Saul and his son Jonathan die fighting Philistines. David refuses to raise a hand against Saul.
David reigns in Judah 7 years, then Jerusalem for 33.
God’s covenant with David – 1 Samuel 7
Like that with Abraham – it was unconditional. Jesus is the ultimate fulfillment of this covenant.
David’s sin – Bathsheba – 2 Samuel 11
Family brokenness in David’s life after Bathsheba – the family never recovers.
Reign of Solomon – 1 Kings.
1. Wisdom – 1 Kings 3
2. Creation of Temple – 1 Kings 8
3. Wives and idolatry – 1 Kings 11
Conversation: Discussion Questions
1. The conquest, absent God’s explicit command, seems simply like genocide. How do we reconcile this event with the God of mercy we’ve been discussing each week?
2. Why does covenant renewal happen primarily with Joshua and the unified tribes? What is the connection between covenant renewal and conquest?
3. The Israelites fail to keep up their end of the covenant – they do not drive out the other peoples. This leads to the root of most of their problems for hundreds of years. Do we make this mistake with sin in our lives? How often do we try to accommodate, compromise, or willfully ignore those things in our lives that keep us from a relationship with Jesus?
4. Does the cycle of faith/failure of the Israelites sound familiar? Where do you see this in the modern church? Where do you see this in your own life?
5. The Israelites fail to keep up their end of the covenant – they do not drive out the other peoples. This leads to the root of most of their problems for hundreds of years. Do we make this mistake with sin in our lives? How often do we try to accommodate, compromise, or willfully ignore those things in our lives that keep us from a relationship with Jesus?
6. Does the cycle of faith/failure of the Israelites sound familiar? Where do you see this in the modern church? Where do you see this in your own life?
7. Yahweh is supposed to be king, as well as God, for Israel. What changes might we expect for the Israelites now that they have human kings? What are the positive and negative aspects of this change?
8. The Israelites constantly relied upon armies and kings to bring them salvation, instead of trusting in the LORD. What “alternatives” do we rely upon, other than Jesus, for our salvation? (note that salvation doesn’t need to mean “eternal” – we just need to be saved in the moment).
9. David’s approach to a relationship with God in the Psalms is radical; it is the very model of a “personal relationship” that we preach today. In your mind, what is the difference between believing in God and obeying his laws, and having a relationship with him?
10. Despite his great love for Yahweh, David makes some colossal errors (the murder of Uriah and adultery with Bathsheba being two of the worst). Why do you suppose that these stories are recorded in Scripture about such an important spiritual leader? Do we learn from David even in his sin? Is this disappointing or encouraging to you, and why?
11. Why do you suppose the Bible so closely associates Solomon’s many wives of many nations and his descent into idolatry? What lessons are there for us in this story?
Next week we will focus on the Northern Kingdom of Israel. See you then!