Israel at the time of
the Judges large map

Submit questions  -  New Articles
Large map of Holy Land before Israel had a king

Ancient Israel's Judges

Judge

Years served

Notes

Joshua
18
The book of Joshua found in the Bible was actually written by the prophet Samuel, who also penned the book of Judges.

Joshua was 85 years old when the Israelites crossed the Jordan river to enter the Promised Land. According to Jewish historian Josephus, He governed for twenty-five years, from the time of entering the Land of Canaan to his death at the age of 110 (1405 to 1380 B.C.). A case can be made, however, that Joshua did not begin as a true Judge of Israel until the division of the promised land occurred seven years after the people entered it (1398 to 1380).

Othniel

40

Othniel's wife Achsah (his first cousin) was given to him by Caleb after he defeated the Canaanite city of Kirjath-sepher (Joshua 15:16 - 17).

Ehud

80

Ehud was from the tribe of Benjamin and was a rare left-handed warrior (Judges 3:15). His weapon of choice used during battles was an 18 inch (46 centimeters) dagger.

Deborah and Barak

40

Deborah was a prophetess who was the wife of Lapidoth. Barak came from the tribe of Naphtali and lived in the city of Kedesh.

Eli

40

Eli was a fairly large man. At the age of 98 he died after falling backwards on his chair and breaking his neck.

Gideon

40

Gideon, who came from the tribe of Manasseh, fathered at least seventy sons. Two of his sons he named Abimelech and Jotham.

Life spans of the Biblical Patriarchs

Kings of Ancient Israel and Judah

Important People in the Old Testament

Map showing division of promised land

Timeline of the Old Testament

Judge

Years served

Notes

Abimelech
(in the North)

3

Abimelech was a rather vain individual with illusions of greatness. He became a Judge, in part, because he convinced the people of Shechem he deserved the job. He used money given to him to hire 'thugs' who aided him killing almost ALL his seventy brothers except for Jotham.

Tola
(in the North)

23

Tola lived in a city within Ephraim. After serving as Judge for twenty-three years he was buried in his hometown (Judges 10:1 - 2).

Jephthah
(in the East)

6

For more detailed information about the fascinating life of Jephthah, please see our short article on his life.

Samson
(South and West)

20

Samson's downfall came when he divulged to the Philistine whore Delilah the secret of his strength.

Samuel

32

Samuel Judged Israel a good part of his life (1Samuel 7:15).

Ibzan
(in the East)

7

Not much is revealed in Scripture regarding Ibzan. The city he grew up in is Bethlehem.

Jair
(in the North)

22

Jair has a city and a region named after him in Israel called Havvoth - Jair. He was a Gileadite who governed for 22 years (Judges 10:3).

Elon
(in the East)

10

Not much is revealed in the Bible regarding Elon. He was a Zebulunite who was buried in the city of Aijalon.

Abdon
(in the East)

8

Abdon was a Pirathonite who was the son of Hillel.

Samuel's sons

3

When Samuel was advanced in age he mistakenly placed his sons as Judges over the people (1Samuel 8:1). They served from 1053 to 1050 B.C. It is in 1050 that Samuel, at the request of the people and elders of Israel, anoints Saul as King.

Additional Study Materials
Why did King Saul try to contact a DEAD Samuel?
Map of the seven hills of Jerusalem
© The Bible Study Site