Who Are The Judges In The Bible

The Bible might be a book of faith and religion, but it includes many tales of justice, law and even judges. After Medo-Persia’s invasion of Jerusalem in 586 BC, the Israelites had no independent government, deserting Hebron and the territory of Judah. Communities resorted to various forms of independent justice. In the Bible, judges are described as individuals who aided and advised local communities in making legal decisions, reviewing past authority and specifying new rules.
Judges were viewed by people as the “savior” of the people who could lead them from oppression and chaos. Judges must be trusted, knowledgeable, and able to communicate well. It was said that if someone wanted to become a judge, their conscience must be pure, and their judgment sound, for the people depended on their decisions.
Throughout the Bible, some of the most important figures are the Judges, also known as prophets. Their accounts offer a great insight into God’s justice and mercy at the time, and many of the stories contained in the Bible are a testament to this.
One of the earliest Judges in the Bible was Othniel. He was known for being anointed by God to deliver Israel from the hand of an oppressor. Heis noted for being virtous and wise, and in his lifetime, he is credited with finding twelve tribes of Israel and settling them along the Jordan River. He was considered the ideal judge, for he was just and kind in his rulings, but stern when necessary to make sure the law was followed.
Gideon was another key figure in the Bible. He was a mighty warrior who was appointed by God to liberate the Israelites from the tyranny of the Midianites. He was also known for his humility and obedience, displaying great wisdom and discernment throughout his tenure. Gideon’s legacy as a judge is linked to the kindness he showed to the Israelites in the aftermath of their freedom. He was remembered as a kind and understanding judge who saw the value in the people’s suffering.
In later accounts, Samuel the prophet is mentioned as a judge. He was known to ask God for guidance in all his judgments. He went on to anoint Saul as King of Israel and, later, King David. As Samuel served as a prophet, he was seen as an example of justice, advocating for the oppressed and punishing the wicked.
Deborah is another important figure in the Bible as she was a woman judge. In her time, women were considered subservient to men, yet Deborah was able to transcend this limitation. Her contribution to justice still stands in the minds of many, for she was among the first female Judges to be recorded in the Bible.

The Legacy of the Judges in the Bible

The Judges in the Bible and their actions are seen as the expression of the principles of justice. Their stories still serve as examples for generations to come, for when the Israelites had no authoritative figure to go to, they turned to these Judges as a source of wisdom and guidance.
The stories of the Judges are a testament to the mercy and justice of God, as they showed time and time again that authority came from Him, as He was the ultimate source of judgement. Additionally, they demonstrate the importance of integrity and discernment, as the Judges exemplified these characteristics in their decisions.
The Jewish tradition of using Judges still persists today, in the form of a special court that reviews cases. In modern society, this system is used by religious Jews to resolve disputes without resorting to civil or criminal courts. This system is based on the same principles outlined in the Bible, where Judges must be righteous and impart justice fairly and objectively.

What Did The Judges Do?

The role of Judges in the Bible was to ensure that justice was carried out within their respective communities. As mentioned, Judges had to be fair in their decision-making, as any mistakes or indiscretions could have dire consequences.
Judge’s responsibilities ranged from settling disputes at the local level, such as those between neighbours, to resolving larger-scale issues of crime, like those involving theft or murder. They also acted as guides, councillors, and mediators, offering wisdom and advice to their people. In this way, Judges could bring peace and stability to communities by enforcing justice and preserving the law of the land.

Symbolic Meaning of Judges

In addition to their practical role, the Judges in the Bible are seen to symbolize God’s rule on earth. In their decisions, Judges set right what has been wrong, restoring justice and order to the communities they served.
These Judges are, therefore, symbolic of a divine power; their actions suggest a direct hand of God acting on earth through justice and mercy. The Judges can be seen as a metaphor for the importance of justice, fairness and humility in a world full of chaos and strife.

Modern Context of Judges in the Bible

In modern times, the Judges in the Bible are still seen as a symbol of justice. Their stories continue to be inspiring for many, reminding people of the importance of wise decisions in their lives.
The need for justice is a timeless issue, and the lessons to be learnt from the Judges of the Bible are still applicable in today’s world. Despite its ancient roots, the justice system established by the Judges has left a lasting impact, demonstrating the need for impartiality, mercy and humility in times of dispute.


In conclusion, the Judges in the Bible are seen as examples of justice and mercy. Their stories serve as a reminder of the importance of making wise and impartial decisions, especially in a world that is often filled with confusion and strife. What is certain is that the Judges of the Bible will continue to remain relevant and serve as a source of inspiration and guidance to many.

Hilda Scott is an avid explorer of the Bible and inteprator of its gospel. She is passionate about researching and uncovering the mysteries that lie in this sacred book. She hopes to use her knowledge and expertise to bring faith and God closer to people all around the world.

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