Judges 17:1 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Judges 17:1, NIV: Now a man named Micah from the hill country of Ephraim

Judges 17:1, ESV: There was a man of the hill country of Ephraim, whose name was Micah.

Judges 17:1, KJV: And there was a man of mount Ephraim, whose name was Micah.

Judges 17:1, NASB: Now there was a man of the hill country of Ephraim whose name was Micah.

Judges 17:1, NLT: There was a man named Micah, who lived in the hill country of Ephraim.

Judges 17:1, CSB: There was a man from the hill country of Ephraim named Micah.

What does Judges 17:1 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

This chapter begins the third part of the book of Judges. Some commentators think of this as epilogue. Samson (Judges 16:28–31) is the last of the true judges (Judges 2:16–19), or deliverers, to serve Israel. What follows Samson's death are stories from the heart of Israel. These show how far the Israelites had moved away from the will of God. They had become as spiritually senseless and reckless as their Canaanite neighbors and oppressors.

The first of these stories is about an Israelite man named Micah. In early references, his name is provided in a longer form: Mikāyehu. This literally means "Who is like Yahweh?" In later verses (Judges 17:5) he is known by the shorter version, Mikāh'. The name suggests parents who had some respect for the Lord. The actions taken by Micah and his mother in the following verses challenge this, however. His story is not an example of sincere devotion to God. Rather, it's a picture of confused and selfish superstition while borrowing elements from legitimate faith. This spiritual corruption is deeply rooted at the family level, leading to inevitable disaster (Psalm 11:3).