Dave Burnette's Commentary

Judges Chapter 17

Written By: God through Inspiration
Penned By: Samuel 
Date Penned: (550 BC)
Overview: A Record of Israel's Compromise in the Promised Land (c 1-21)
Theme: The Moral Failure of Israel (c 17-21)
Message: Idolatry in the Tribe of Dan (v 1-13)

Judges 17 Commentary

(17:1-3) Micah Disobeys God - Micah and his mother seemed to have good intentions and may have sincerely desired to worship God, but they disobeyed God by following their own desires instead of doing what God wanted. The attitude that prevailed in Micah's day was this: "Every man did that which was right in his own eyes" (17:6). This is remarkably similar to the attitude we often see prevailing today. But God has given us standards. He has not left our conduct up to us and our opinions. We can avoid conforming to worldly standards by taking God's words seriously and applying them to life. Independence and self-reliance are positive traits, but only within the framework of God's standards.

(17:4-5) Micah Sets Up His Own Religious System - Micah may have felt religious because of his initial confession of sin to his mother, the way he instituted practices to worship the idols he made, and the appointment of his son as a priest. He obviously wanted to maintain a religious influence in his home, but he went about it the wrong way. His apparently sood intentions were not enough: he needed to follow God's laws and not his own ideas of what was right. If Micah truly loved God, he would have desired to know what God had communicated to his people and what he should do about it. Instead, Micah set up his own religious system for his own benefit. Don't think sincerity and good intentions are enough. You may be in danger of thinking that you need no instruction from God's Word or anyone else.

(17:6) False Worship - Today, as in Micah's day, everyone seems to put his or her own interests first. Time has not changed human nature. Most people still reject God's way of living. The people in Micah's time replaced the true worship of God with a homemade version of worship. Gideon made a similar mistake (8:27). As a result of Gideon's sin, justice was soon replaced by revenge and chaos. Ignoring God's direction led to confusion and destruction. Anyone who has not submitted to God will end up doing whatever seems right to them at the time. This tendency is present in all of us. To know what is really right and to have the strength to do it, we need to draw closer to God and his Word.

(17:7-12) Israel Fails to Support its Religious Leaders -  Apparently the Israelites no longer supported the priests and Levites with their tithes because so many of the people no longer worshiped God. The young Levite in this story probably left his home in Bethlehem because the money he received through gifts from the people was not enough to live on. But Israel's moral decay affected even the priests and Levites. This man accepted money (17:10-1), idols (18:20), and position (172) in a way inconsistent with God's laws. While Micah revealed the religious downfall of individual Israelites, this priest illustrated the religious downfall of the entire community of priests and Levites.



Dave Burnette's Life Application

Christ Alone


Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter making an application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today we Continue in the book of Judges with Chapter 17 and we enter into the 3rd section of this book, The Moral Failure of Israel. We started in this book looking at the Military failure of Israel, then the Rescue of Israel by the Judges to transition to this section of the Book where Micah collects idols in the Idolatry in the tribe of Dan. Here we see a reoccurring theme stated in verse 6 where "every man did what was right in his own eyes" creating his own brand of religion. In making application we see that times have not changed. Man is still doing what is right in his own eyes and believing his own lies. God is clear on your only way to heaven and it is ONLY JESUS-CHRIST. It is not Christ plus something or minus something. Only Jesus-Christ can forgive your sins and make you acceptable in the Eyes of a Holy God. Your works, your gods, your manipulation of the truth of the Word of God will not be sufficient to satisfy the wrath of the  Holy God of the Bible. How about you? Are you relying on Christ, and Christ alone, to forgive your sins and make a home in Heaven when you die? Let us learn form the life of Micah which reminds us that only Jesus Christ can forgive your sins. 


Judges 17

Judges 17

 1And there was a man of mount Ephraim, whose name was Micah.

 2And he said unto his mother, The eleven hundred shekels of silver that were taken from thee, about which thou cursedst, and spakest of also in mine ears, behold, the silver is with me; I took it. And his mother said, Blessed be thou of the LORD, my son.

 3And when he had restored the eleven hundred shekels of silver to his mother, his mother said, I had wholly dedicated the silver unto the LORD from my hand for my son, to make a graven image and a molten image: now therefore I will restore it unto thee.

 4Yet he restored the money unto his mother; and his mother took two hundred shekels of silver, and gave them to the founder, who made thereof a graven image and a molten image: and they were in the house of Micah.

 5And the man Micah had an house of gods, and made an ephod, and teraphim, and consecrated one of his sons, who became his priest.

 6In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes.

 7And there was a young man out of Bethlehemjudah of the family of Judah, who was a Levite, and he sojourned there.

 8And the man departed out of the city from Bethlehemjudah to sojourn where he could find a place: and he came to mount Ephraim to the house of Micah, as he journeyed.

 9And Micah said unto him, Whence comest thou? And he said unto him, I am a Levite of Bethlehemjudah, and I go to sojourn where I may find a place.

 10And Micah said unto him, Dwell with me, and be unto me a father and a priest, and I will give thee ten shekels of silver by the year, and a suit of apparel, and thy victuals. So the Levite went in.

 11And the Levite was content to dwell with the man; and the young man was unto him as one of his sons.

 12And Micah consecrated the Levite; and the young man became his priest, and was in the house of Micah.

 13Then said Micah, Now know I that the LORD will do me good, seeing I have a Levite to my priest.