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Yahweh Raises Up Deborah and Barak

Then (A)the sons of Israel again did what was evil in the eyes of Yahweh. Now Ehud had died. And Yahweh sold them into the hand of (B)Jabin king of Canaan, who reigned in Hazor; and the commander of his army was Sisera, who lived in (C)Harosheth-hagoyim. Then the sons of Israel cried to Yahweh; for he had 900 (D)iron chariots, and he oppressed the sons of Israel severely for twenty years.

Now Deborah, a [a]prophetess, the wife of Lappidoth, was judging Israel at that time. And she used to [b]sit under the (E)palm tree of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim; and the sons of Israel came up to her for judgment. Then she sent and summoned (F)Barak the son of Abinoam from Kedesh-naphtali and said to him, “Has not Yahweh, the God of Israel, commanded, ‘Go and march to Mount Tabor, and take with you 10,000 men from the sons of Naphtali and from the sons of Zebulun? And I will draw out to you Sisera, the commander of Jabin’s army, with his chariots and his [c]many troops to the river Kishon, and (G)I will give him into your hand.’” Then Barak said to her, “If you will go with me, then I will go; but if you will not go with me, I will not go.” So she said, “I will surely go with you; nevertheless, the honor shall not be yours on the journey that you are about to take, (H)for Yahweh will sell Sisera into the hand of a woman.” Then Deborah arose and went with Barak to Kedesh. 10 Then Barak called (I)Zebulun and Naphtali together to Kedesh, and 10,000 men went up [d](J)with him; Deborah also went up with him.

11 Now Heber (K)the Kenite had separated himself from the Kenites, from the sons of Hobab the father-in-law of Moses, and had pitched his tent as far away as the [e]oak in (L)Zaanannim, which is near Kedesh.

12 Then they told Sisera that Barak the son of Abinoam had gone up to Mount Tabor. 13 So Sisera called together all his chariots, (M)900 iron chariots, and all the people who were with him, from (N)Harosheth-hagoyim to the river Kishon. 14 And Deborah said to Barak, “Arise! For this is the day in which Yahweh has given Sisera into your hand; has not (O)Yahweh gone out before you?” So Barak went down from Mount Tabor with 10,000 men following him. 15 (P)And Yahweh threw Sisera and all his chariots and all his camp into confusion with the edge of the sword before Barak; and Sisera came down from his chariot and fled away on foot. 16 But Barak pursued the chariots and all those in the camp as far as Harosheth-hagoyim, and all the camp of Sisera fell by the edge of the sword; (Q)not even one remained.

17 Now Sisera fled away on foot to the tent of Jael the wife of Heber the Kenite, for there was peace between Jabin the king of Hazor and the house of Heber the Kenite. 18 And Jael went out to meet Sisera and said to him, “Turn aside, my master, turn aside to me! Do not be afraid.” And he turned aside to her into the tent, and she covered him with a [f]rug. 19 (R)Then he said to her, “Please give me a little water to drink, for I am thirsty.” So she opened a [g]bottle of milk and gave him a drink; then she covered him. 20 And he said to her, “Stand in the doorway of the tent, and it shall be if anyone comes and asks of you and says, ‘Is there a man here?’ that you shall say, ‘No.’” 21 Then Jael, Heber’s wife, (S)took a tent peg and placed a hammer in her hand and went secretly to him and drove the peg into his temple, and it went through into the ground; for he was sound asleep and exhausted. So he died. 22 Now behold, Barak was pursuing Sisera, and Jael came out to meet him and said to him, “Come, and I will show you the man whom you are seeking.” And he entered [h]with her, and behold, Sisera was lying dead with the tent peg in his temple.

23 So (T)God subdued on that day Jabin the king of Canaan before the sons of Israel. 24 And the hand of the sons of Israel went forth heavier and heavier against Jabin the king of Canaan, until they had cut off Jabin the king of Canaan.


  1. Judges 4:4 Lit woman prophetess
  2. Judges 4:5 Or live
  3. Judges 4:7 Lit multitude
  4. Judges 4:10 Lit at his feet
  5. Judges 4:11 Or terebinth
  6. Judges 4:18 Or blanket
  7. Judges 4:19 A leather container
  8. Judges 4:22 Lit to