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by Matthew Poole
THE BOOK OF JUDGES
THE author of this book is not certainly known, whether it was Samuel, or Ezra, or some other prophet; nor is it material to know.
1. It matters not who was the king's secretary, or with what pen it was written, if it be once known that it was. the king who made the order or decree: it is sufficient that unto the Jews were committed to the oracles of God, Romans 3:2, i.e. the Holy Scriptures of the Old Testament, one part of which this was, by confession of all; and that the Jews did not falsify their trust therein, but kept those holy books themselves, and delivered them to the world, entire, without addition or diminution; for neither Christ nor his apostles, who severely rebuke them for their mistakes and misunderstandings of some passages of Scripture, ever charge them with any perfidiousness about the canon or books of the Scripture. This book is called the Book of Judges, because it treats of the judges, or of the state of the commonwealth of Israel under all the judges, except Eli and Samuel, who being the last of the judges, and the occasions or instruments of the change of this government, are omitted in this book. The judges were a sort of magistrates inferior to kings, and could neither make new laws, nor impose any tributes, but were the supreme executors of God's laws and commands, and the generals of their armies.
the First Week of Advent