Judges 2:4 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Judges 2:4, NIV: When the angel of the LORD had spoken these things to all the Israelites, the people wept aloud,

Judges 2:4, ESV: As soon as the angel of the LORD spoke these words to all the people of Israel, the people lifted up their voices and wept.

Judges 2:4, KJV: And it came to pass, when the angel of the LORD spake these words unto all the children of Israel, that the people lifted up their voice, and wept.

Judges 2:4, NASB: Now when the angel of the LORD spoke these words to all the sons of Israel, the people raised their voices and wept.

Judges 2:4, NLT: When the angel of the LORD finished speaking to all the Israelites, the people wept loudly.

Judges 2:4, CSB: When the angel of the Lord had spoken these words to all the Israelites, the people wept loudly.

What does Judges 2:4 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

This is the right and proper response to hearing from the Lord that you have been disobedient, that He has noticed, and that you will suffer the painful and tragic consequences of your sin: tears, crying, and weeping.

The people mourned and sobbed over this rebuke from God (Judges 2:1–3). When no consequences immediately followed their refusal to drive the Canaanites out of their territories, they may have thought that God did not truly care. They had taken the easier path, and God had seemingly responded with silence. Perhaps they even took the Lord's silence and the temporary peace that came with not fighting God's enemies as evidence of His supposed approval.

Now, though, the Lord has graciously shown that His commands are meaningful. The consequence for breaking them is that He will act against Israel instead of acting for His people. Weeping is the most rational response to such news. Sadly, this incident highlights the difference between worldly, ultimately fruitless sorrow and the godly sorrow which leads to genuine change (2 Corinthians 7:10). Israel is saddened and unhappy, but the rest of the book of Judges shows they are not truly repentant. Over and over, they will ignore God's will and suffer the promised consequences (Judges 2:11–15).