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DEBORAH (Heb. devorah, bee). 

1. Rebekah's beloved wet nurse (Gen 24:59; 35:8), who accompanied her to Palestine. She became attached to Jacob's household and died at great age (cf. 25:20; 35:8) near Bethel. The tree under which she was buried was called "oak of weeping." 

2. The fourth of Israel's judges, a prophetess, a wife of Lappidoth (Judg 4-5). Like most Hebrew "judges," however, Deborah served primarily as a divinely appointed deliverer and executive leader of Israel.  
After the death of Ehud, the people lapsed into apostasy, resulting in their subjection to the Canaanites. Then arose Deborah, "a mother in Israel" (Judg 5:7). Summoning Barak of Naphtali, she prophesied that an offensive from Tabor would lure Sisera and Jabin's army to annihilation on the plains, including Sisera's death by a woman (4:8-9). Deborah and Barak accomplished Israel's first united action (5:14-17) since the conquest, 175 years before.  

God fought against Sisera (5:20) in a providential storm (cf. 5:4), which turned the plain into a morass, rendering Sisera's chariotry unmaneuverable. They were cut to pieces by Israel's charging foot soldiers, and then swept away by a flash flood (5:21). Sisera fled alone and was killed by the woman Jael at Kedesh (4:11, 17-22). Jabin was destroyed (4:24), and the land rested 40 years (5:31), corresponding to the reign of Rameses III, the last great Pharaoh of Egypt's 20th Dynasty. After the battle Deborah and Barak sang Deborah's song of victory (5:2-31; cf. v. 7).

Excerpted from Compton's Interactive Bible NIV
Copyright (c) 1994, 1995, 1996 SoftKey Multimedia Inc. All Rights Reserved
DEBORAH (hornet, wasp, wild honey bee).

1. The nurse, 
  • to Rebekah (Ge 24:59). 
  • Buried beneath an oak under Bethel (Ge 35:8).

2. The prophetess, 
  • a judge of Israel (Jdg 4:4-5; 5:7). 
  • Inspires Barak to defeat Sisera (Jdg 4:6-16).
  • Triumphant song of (Jdg 5).

Excerpted from Compton's Interactive Bible NIV
Copyright (c) 1994, 1995, 1996 SoftKey Multimedia Inc. All Rights Reserved
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