Tola and Jair. 1 After Abimelech, a certain Tola, the son of Puah, the son of Dodo, an Issacharite, rose up to deliver Israel. He dwelt in Shamir in the hill country of Ephraim. 2 He was judge over Israel for twenty-three years, and when he died, he was buried at Shamir.
3 After him Jair, the Gileadite, rose up and he was judge over Israel for twenty-two years. 4 He had thirty sons who rode on thirty donkeys, and they also possessed thirty towns. These are called Havvoth-jair up to the present, and they are in the land of Gilead. 5 Jair died and was buried in Kamon.
Israelites Subject to the Ammonites. 6 The Israelites again did what was evil in the sight of the Lord. They served the Baals and the Ashtoreths, the gods of Syria, the gods of Sidon, the gods of the Ammonites, and the gods of the Philistines. They abandoned the Lord and did not serve him. 7 The anger of the Lord blazed out against Israel, and he sold them into the hands of the Philistines and the hands of the Ammonites. 8 From that year on they oppressed and afflicted them for eighteen years, that is, all of the Israelites who were on the other side of the Jordan in the land of the Amorites, that is, in Gilead.
9 The Ammonites also crossed over the Jordan to fight against Judah, against Benjamin, and against the house of Ephraim, so that Israel was sorely distressed. 10 The Israelites called upon the Lord saying, “We have sinned against you because we have abandoned our God and served the Baals.”
11 The Lord said to the Israelites, “When the Egyptians, the Amorites, the Ammonites, the Philistines, 12 the Sidonians, the Amalekites, and the Midianites oppressed you, and you cried out to me, did I not save you from out of their hands? 13 But you have abandoned me for other gods, therefore I will not save you anymore. 14 Go and cry out to the gods that you have chosen. Let them save you in the hour of your desperation.”[a]
15 The Israelites said to the Lord, “We have sinned. Do with us however you see fit, but please rescue us today.” 16 They removed their foreign gods from their midst, and they served the Lord. Finally, he could no longer bear Israel’s misery.[b] 17 The Ammonites gathered together and they camped in Gilead. The Israelites also gathered together, and they camped at Mizpah. 18 The people and the leaders of Gilead said to one another, “Who will begin the battle against the Ammonites? That man will be the leader of all of those who live in Gilead.”
- Judges 10:14 Deeply distressed over their plight, the unfaithful Israelites were further humiliated when they realized how ineffective the false gods were in helping them.
- Judges 10:16 Downtrodden and finally repentant, the Israelites turned once again to the true God who relented and delivered them through another judge named Jephthah. God’s mercy is without end.