Read the actual text of Judges
of the Thorn Bush
"One day the trees went out to anoint a king for
themselves. They said to the olive tree, 'Be our king.' But the olive tree
answered, 'Should I give up my oil, by which both gods and men are honored,
to hold sway over the trees?'
Next, the trees said to the fig tree, 'Come and be our king.' But
the fig tree replied, 'Should I give up my fruit, so good and sweet, to hold
sway over the trees?'
Then the trees said to the vine, 'Come and be our king.' But the
vine answered, 'Should I give up my wine, which cheers both gods and men, to
hold sway over the trees?'
Finally all the trees said to the thornbush, 'Come and be our
king.' The thornbush said to the trees, 'If you really want to anoint me
king over you, come and take refuge in my shade; but if not, then let fire
come out of the thornbush and consume the cedars of Lebanon!'"
Jotham's IF challenge to the
"Now if you have acted honorably and in good
faith when you made Abimelech king, and if you have been fair to
Jerub-Baal and his family, and if you have treated him as he
deserves- and to think that my father fought for you, risked his life to
rescue you from the hand of Midian (but today you have revolted against my
father's family, murdered his seventy sons on a single stone, and made
Abimelech, the son of his slave girl, king over the citizens of Shechem
because he is your brother)- if then you have acted honorably and in
good faith toward Jerub-Baal and his family today, may Abimelech be your
joy, and may you be his, too! But if you have not, let fire come out
from Abimelech and consume you, citizens of Shechem and Beth Millo, and let
fire come out from you, citizens of Shechem and Beth Millo, and consume
The Consuming Fire:
"Abimelech went to the tower and stormed it. But as he
approached the entrance to the tower to set it on fire, a woman dropped an
upper millstone on his head and cracked his skull.
Hurriedly he called to his armor-bearer, 'Draw your sword and kill me, so
that they can't say, A woman killed him.' So his servant ran him
through, and he died. When the Israelites saw that Abimelech was dead, they
Thus God repaid the wickedness that Abimelech had done to his father by
murdering his seventy brothers. God also made the men of Shechem pay for all
their wickedness. The curse of Jotham son of Jerub-Baal came on them."
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