Judges 5:3 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Judges 5:3, NIV: Hear this, you kings! Listen, you rulers! I, even I, will sing to the LORD; I will praise the LORD, the God of Israel, in song.

Judges 5:3, ESV: “Hear, O kings; give ear, O princes; to the LORD I will sing; I will make melody to the LORD, the God of Israel.

Judges 5:3, KJV: Hear, O ye kings; give ear, O ye princes; I, even I, will sing unto the LORD; I will sing praise to the LORD God of Israel.

Judges 5:3, NASB: Hear, you kings; listen, you dignitaries! I myself—to the LORD, I myself will sing, I will sing praise to the LORD, the God of Israel!

Judges 5:3, NLT: 'Listen, you kings! Pay attention, you mighty rulers! For I will sing to the LORD. I will make music to the LORD, the God of Israel.

Judges 5:3, CSB: Listen, kings! Pay attention, princes! I will sing to the Lord; I will sing praise to the Lord God of Israel.

What does Judges 5:3 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

In this victory song (Judges 5:1), Deborah (Judges 4:4–5) and Barak (Judges 4:6) have blessed the Lord for the leadership of the leaders and the willing service of the people (Judges 5:2). Now they call to the kings and princes of the Canaanites, who have been defeated by the Lord. This could be seen as taunting a beaten enemy; to some extent, that's exactly what it is. At the same time, Deborah's song doesn't mock them so she can extol the strength or virility of a victorious king. That familiar pattern was followed by the victory songs and stories of other nations during this era.

Rather, Deborah's song declares she will sing to the Lord. She will make melody to the God of Israel. She wants the Canaanite kings to know that He is the one who ended their decades of oppressive rule over the people of Israel (Judges 4:1–3). Her bold declaration that the Lord, Yahweh, is the God of Israel stands out in the book of Judges. Even among the judges themselves, very few of God's people so explicitly declare that Yahweh is Lord.