Judges 17:1–21:25 (ESV)

1 There was a man of the hill country of Ephraim, whose name was Micah.

Though the epilogue follows the Samson narrative, this does not mean that its events follow chronologically. Rather, the narrative actually covers a different time, a time before most if not all of the events recorded in the main part of the book (Judges 3:7 – 16:31). The Levite of Judges 17:1 – 18:31 is identified as “Jonathan son of Gershom, son of Moses” (Judges 18:30), and Judges 19:1 – 21:25 describes a time when “Phinehas son of Eleazar, son of Aaron” (Judges 20:28) was high priest. Jonathan and Phinehas, the grandsons of Moses and Aaron, would have lived about the same time as Othniel, who was the first judge (see the lineages in Judges 1:13; Judges 3:9). Thus, the events in these chapters occurred near the beginning of the period of the judges, long before Samson. The epilogue breaks the chronological sequence of the book. As such, these final stories are here placed for thematic reasons. They wrap up two of the book’s central threads: idolatrous worship (Judges 17:1 – 18:31) and sexual immorality (Judges 19:1 – 21:25).