Deborah and Barak

Aug 6, 2020

Yet another biblical story on Mount Tabor…

The first major event in the history of the Bible which took place in the surroundings of Mount Tabor was the victory of Deborah and Barak in their battle against the Canaanites. 

Before Israel became a monarchy, their leaders were the so-called judges. The fourth to carry out this role was Deborah, who was also a prophetess. This story goes back to the 13th century BC and the victory was led by two women. 

View of the valley from Mount Tabor

Deborah sent for Barak, commander of the Israelite army, and ordered him to confront, with ten thousand men, the troops of Sisera, a fearsome Canaanite general. Barak hesitated and set as a condition that Deborah should go with them. The prophetess accepts, but warns the commander that the credit for the victory will go to a woman. 

As God had revealed to Deborah, the Israelites led by Barak win, but Sisera manages to escape from the battlefield alive. The Canaanite general arrives exhausted at the tent of a Kenite woman named Jael, who welcomes him and offers him to lie down to rest. Jael was the wife of Heber the Kenite, descendant of the father-in-law of Moses. Although Jael’s household found peace with the Canaanites, Jael sided with the Israelites because of the severe oppression they suffered from the king of Canaan. Thus, when the general fells asleep, Jael killed him by putting a stake through his head. 

This is how Deborah’s prophecy was fulfilled, since the glory of defeating the leader of the Canaanite armies belonged to the intrepid Jael. 


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