1 After Abimelech's death, Tola, the son of Puah and descendant of Dodo, came to rescue Israel. He was from the tribe of Issachar but lived in the town of Shamir in the hill country of Ephraim.
2 He was Israel's judge for twenty-three years. When he died, he was buried in Shamir.
3 After Tola died, a man from Gilead named Jair judged Israel for twenty-two years.
4 His thirty sons rode around on thirty donkeys, and they owned thirty towns in the land of Gilead, which are still called the Towns of Jair.*1
5 When Jair died, he was buried in Kamon.
6 Again the Israelites did evil in the LORD's sight. They worshiped images of Baal and Ashtoreth, and the gods of Aram, Sidon, Moab, Ammon, and Philistia. Not only this, but they abandoned the LORD and no longer served him at all.
7 So the LORD burned with anger against Israel, and he handed them over to the Philistines and the Ammonites,
8 who began to oppress them that year. For eighteen years they oppressed all the Israelites east of the Jordan River in the land of the Amorites (that is, in Gilead).
9 The Ammonites also crossed to the west side of the Jordan and attacked Judah, Benjamin, and Ephraim. The Israelites were in great distress.
10 Finally, they cried out to the LORD, saying, "We have sinned against you because we have abandoned you as our God and have served the images of Baal."
11 The LORD replied, "Did I not rescue you from the Egyptians, the Amorites, the Ammonites, the Philistines,
12 the Sidonians, the Amalekites, and the Maonites? When they oppressed you, you cried out to me, and I rescued you.
13 Yet you have abandoned me and served other gods. So I will not rescue you anymore.
14 Go and cry out to the gods you have chosen! Let them rescue you in your hour of distress!"
15 But the Israelites pleaded with the LORD and said, "We have sinned. Punish us as you see fit, only rescue us today from our enemies."
16 Then the Israelites put aside their foreign gods and served the LORD. And he was grieved by their misery.
17 At that time the armies of Ammon had gathered for war and were camped in Gilead, preparing to attack Israel's army at Mizpah.
18 The leaders of Gilead said to each other, "Whoever attacks the Ammonites first will become ruler over all the people of Gilead."
Read Judges 11