Danites Attack Laish – Replacing God With Idols

Bible Study Lesson from Judges 18:1-31

All through the book of Judges, we see how the people of Israel wandered away from God. They only called on Him when they were in trouble.

When the Danites attack Laish and stop to steal Micah’s idols, they had lost trust in God.

Micah hired his own priest to do his bidding. Along with the priest came the idols – which were stolen.


As Dr. Phil would say; “How did that work out for Micah?“.

Micah Loses Everything

Then the five men who went to spy out the country of Laish said to their kinsmen, “Do you know that there are in these houses an ephod and household idols and a graven image and a molten image?

Now therefore, consider what you should do.”

They turned aside there and came to the house of the young man, the Levite, to the house of Micah, and asked him of his welfare.

The six hundred men armed with their weapons of war, who were of the sons of Dan, stood by the entrance of the gate.

Now the five men who went to spy out the land went up and entered there, and took the graven image and the ephod and household idols and the molten image, while the priest stood by the entrance of the gate with the six hundred men armed with weapons of war.

When these went into Micah’s house and took the graven image, the ephod and household idols and the molten image, the priest said to them, “What are you doing?”

They said to him, “Be silent, put your hand over your mouth and come with us, and be to us a father and a priest.

Is it better for you to be a priest to the house of one man, or to be priest to a tribe and a family in Israel?”

The priest’s heart was glad, and he took the ephod and household idols and the graven image and went among the people.

Then they turned and departed, and put the little ones and the livestock and the valuables in front of them.

When they had gone some distance from the house of Micah, the men who were in the houses near Micah’s house assembled and overtook the sons of Dan.

They cried to the sons of Dan, who turned around and said to Micah, “What is the matter with you, that you have assembled together?”

He said, “You have taken away my gods which I made, and the priest, and have gone away, and what do I have besides? So how can you say to me, ‘What is the matter with you?’”

The sons of Dan said to him, “Do not let your voice be heard among us, or else fierce men will fall upon you and you will lose your life, with the lives of your household.”

So the sons of Dan went on their way; and when Micah saw that they were too strong for him, he turned and went back to his house. Judges 18:14-26 NASB

Who Were the Danites?

The Danites came from the tribe of Dan. In Joshua 19:40-48 they were given enough land to flourish.

As happens all through the Book of Judges, they did not trust what God promised. As a result, the Amorites drove them into the hill country, taking them away from the land they were supposed to settle.

If the Danites would have renewed their trust in God, He would have helped them fight for land that was rightfully theirs.

Instead, they chose to attack  the country of Laish because they assumed victory would be assured.

This was one of the tribes of Israel who would disobey God’s will and attack a peaceful people because it was “easy” to do.

On their way, the Danites came to Micah’s house.

Micah Loses His Idols – And His Priest

Have you ever known people who started their own religion? I’ve seen it a few times on TV. There have been those who thought they could have their own following – basically leaving the true God out of the picture.

And, it seemed to work for them.

Micah Was Only Missing One Thing

The method of hiring his own priest and putting him in charge of the false gods worked for Micah too – for a while.

The only thing missing from this system was God. Micah felt he had everything he needed. He had an ephod which was a vest worn by priests for religious ceremonies.

He also had household idols to pray to for protection. But, we know this is just empty worship and idols have no power.

The Worst is Yet to Come

The idols mentioned above were the main interest of the Danites when they went on their raiding party. They wanted these things to worship in their camp.

In Micah’s case, since the false gods were all he worshiped, had absolutely nothing left when his idols were taken away. All that was really left was emptiness.

What About Our Idols?

You may say; “I don’t worship idols.” and really mean it. But, let’s take a moment and understand what an idol is.

According to Wikipedia, an idol is:

An idol is an image or other material object representing a deity to which religious worship is addressed or any person or thing regarded with admiration, adoration, or devotion.

 In other words, anything that takes God’s place can be considered an idol. Some people “worship” sports and devote a giant part of their life to the teams they follow.

[easyazon_image align=”left” height=”160″ identifier=”1500121940″ locale=”US” src=”http://www.makingchristknown.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/51u1IRjV31L.SL160.jpg” tag=”bobpardphot-20″ width=”107″]Some spend most of their time and energy following the dollar to become wealthy. In and of themselves, these things are not evil.

But, when we cherish them more than God they become idols in our lives.

Let’s play a quick “fill in the blank” game. Just substitute the first word (s) that comes to mind when the statement is:

I spend most of my time thinking of or working toward ________________ .

I hope this was as eye-opening for you as it was for me.

In Christ,


If you would like to discover more about the love and life-changing experience of Jesus Christ, please take a moment to read John 3:16 here.


Read Today’s Passage Here:

New American Standard Bible

New King James Version


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