Judges 19:30 And it was so, that all that saw it said, There was no such deed done nor seen from the day that the children of Israel came up out of the land of Egypt unto this day: consider of it, take advice, and speak your minds.
Judges 19-21 is the climax of the sinfulness of God’s people, as our verse above says. The particular deed spoken of is of a such morbid nature that it is hard to speak of, but God shares it with us for a purpose. In short, a Levite man finds lodging in Gibeah, a city in Benjamin. That night a group of perverts come to take him but instead, he gives them his concubine, and as a result of their abuse she dies. The Levite takes her home divides her into 12 pieces and sends them to the heads of the 12 tribes of Israel, which throws the country into a civil war with the tribe of Benjamin. Nearly exterminating the tribe of Benjamin.
The book of Judges as a whole shows us the decay of a society that does not abide by the law of God but does what is right in its own eyes. Israel did not start this way, they started as a people delivered, redeemed and at least attempting to live according to God’s law. As time progressed they left God and his rule and devolved into the very culture that God hated, and no wonder he hated it, if this was the result of it.
The Book of Judges is split into three parts all harmonizing with the same end goal, to show us the downfall of a nation without God. Judges 17-21 are the results of a nation or person who does what is right in their own eyes, Judges 3-16 are the record of their falling away, but chapters 1-2 are the reason for their falling away. Chapter one has a reoccurring sentence “Neither did ____________ drive out the inhabitants.” Chapter 2 is marked by the statement “And they forsook the LORD, and served Baal and Ashtaroth.” There is the beginning of their downfall, and where does it take us? To Judges 17-18 where idolatry was set up in the house of Dan and institutionalized and Judges 19-21, how abuse, death, and war entrench the nation in their own immorality.
As I read these chapters, the question I asked was why did God see fit to share this with us? The reason this story is here is to show us the result of a nation that forgets God and does what is right in their own eyes as marked by the closing words of the book: “In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.” We are sickened as we read this account but this is the society that America now has. Sexual crimes top the list, and babies are dismembered in their mother's wombs by the thousands, daily. We are living in this hour right now. Homosexuals are free to parade their perversions in the street and read to our children in the Libraries and they have even begun fighting for the “rights” of “minor-attracted people,” that is pedophiles. How did our “One nation under God” reach such low depths of depravity? Depths that make Judges 19 read like a bedtime story? In the same way, Israel reached this point. Every man did what was right in his own eyes.
Oh that we would follow our verse's instruction, “consider of it, take advice, and speak your minds!” Is this not a clear enough picture of the ends of sin? What else could portray the horrendous nature of sin? Look where it takes individuals, look where it takes a nation! Look at it in horror and be warned that this is where it is going, even if you have not arrived there yet!
“A nation that forgets God will be turned into hell.” What a hellish state we find Israel in in these chapters and our nation in in this hour. Like our story today, this is not the result of yesterday’s sins but generations of godlessness and morality that has decayed over long periods. Is there any hope? Thankfully the light of Ruth’s story is coming, there may be mass chaos and sin at every hand, but there is a Boaz still walking the hills of a sin-cursed nation, ready to redeem the penitent. To call out a gentile bride, through which this sin-wrecked nation may have their King. Hallelujah, what a Savior!