Judges 2:18 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Judges 2:18, NIV: Whenever the LORD raised up a judge for them, he was with the judge and saved them out of the hands of their enemies as long as the judge lived; for the LORD relented because of their groaning under those who oppressed and afflicted them.

Judges 2:18, ESV: Whenever the LORD raised up judges for them, the LORD was with the judge, and he saved them from the hand of their enemies all the days of the judge. For the LORD was moved to pity by their groaning because of those who afflicted and oppressed them.

Judges 2:18, KJV: And when the LORD raised them up judges, then the LORD was with the judge, and delivered them out of the hand of their enemies all the days of the judge: for it repented the LORD because of their groanings by reason of them that oppressed them and vexed them.

Judges 2:18, NASB: And when the LORD raised up judges for them, the LORD was with the judge and saved them from the hand of their enemies all the days of the judge; for the LORD was moved to pity by their groaning because of those who tormented and oppressed them.

Judges 2:18, NLT: Whenever the LORD raised up a judge over Israel, he was with that judge and rescued the people from their enemies throughout the judge's lifetime. For the LORD took pity on his people, who were burdened by oppression and suffering.

Judges 2:18, CSB: Whenever the Lord raised up a judge for the Israelites, the Lord was with him and saved the people from the power of their enemies while the judge was still alive. The Lord was moved to pity whenever they groaned because of those who were oppressing and afflicting them.

What does Judges 2:18 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Showing great mercy, God pitied Israel when their suffering became great. This is despite their suffering being the result of their own sin; God was merely allowing them to experience the natural consequences of idolatry and depravity. Still, when their affliction was intense and they cried out for rescue, God would raise up "judges" (Judges 2:16) to save His people. The Lord would work powerfully through the judge, protecting and saving Israel through them.

The following verses explain the unfortunate pattern that emerged in Israel's early years in Canaan. When rescued, the people would repent, to a point, and be faithful to God for a time. That repentance was always short-lived, as they soon went back to their old ways (Judges 2:19). In fact, Israel's sin became worse and worse over time, spiraling downward into deeper darkness.