The Bramble King: Abimelek

Flawed Heroes Series Gfx_App WideWhat happens when the leaders who present themselves to us offer false hope and peace?

This past weekend at Eastbrook I delved into that question as we continued our series, “Flawed Heroes” from the book of Judges looking at the life of Abimelek in Judges 9. Abimelek, whose name means ‘son of the king’, is the illegitimate son of Gideon (also, Jerub-Baal), one of the most well-known of the judges. The hopeful beginnings of Gideon’s life and service as a judge leads to 40 years of peace for the land, but his final days lead back into the failures of idolatry and injustice (Judges 8:27). Abimelek leaps forth from this place of corruption into a misconstrued sense of leadership soaked with evil and violence. Abimelek’s life leads us to ponder the statement: be careful what sort of leader you look for…you just might get it.

You can watch the message here, following along with the outline below. You can also follow the entire series at our web-site, through the Eastbrook app, or through our audio podcast.


The Beginnings of the Bramble King (Judges 8:27-32; 9:1-6)

The end of Gideon/Jerub-Baal (8:27, 32)

What’s in a name? (8:31)

The aims of Abimelek (9:1-6)


A Voice Against the Bramble King (Judges 9:7-21)

A Parable of Trees (9:7-15)

The Curse of the Treacherous Trees (9:16-18)

The Curse of the Bramble King (9:19-21)


Rebellion Against the Bramble King (Judges 9:22-29)

God working behind the scenes (9:22-24)

The lords of Shechem as terrorists (9:25)

Gaal son of Ebed leading revolt (9:26-29)


The Wrath of the Bramble King (Judges 9:30-57)

Wrath against Gaal (9:30-41)

Wrath against the people of Shechem (9:42-49)

Wrath against Thebez (9:50-52)

The end of the Bramble King (9:53-57)


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