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The chronology of the period of the judges is difficult to decipher, but this statement of Jepthah's, inserted more or less incidentally in his polemic against the king of Ammon, provides an important constraint on such estimates. The children of Israel conquered Heshbon, Aroer and Arnon, and "dwelt in the cities of the Amorites" (Numbers 21:24-26) shortly before they crossed the Jordan into Canaan. Thus, the time from the beginning of the conquest under Joshua until the judgeship of Jepthah was about 300 years. Judges of this period included Othniel (40 years), Ehud (80 years), Deborah (40 years), Gideon (40 years), Abimelech (3 years), Tola (23 years), and Jair (22 years). (Judges 3:11,30; 5:31; 8:28; 9:22; 10:2,3). In addition, a total of 53 years of "oppression" are listed (Judges 3:8,14; 4:3; 6:1), plus 18 years just before Jepthah.
KJV Defenders Study Bible, by Dr. Henry Morris, Ph.D.
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
DEF 10 ISBN 0-529-10444-x
DEF 10-1 ISBN 0-529-10445-8