It was another dark moment in the history of the Israelites. Gideon had died, and the people were again prostituting themselves by worshiping the images of Baal. They had forgotten their LORD and how He rescued them. And they had no loyalty toward Gideon’s family, despite all he had done. (Judges 8:33-35)
One of Gideon’s sons, Abimelech, greedy for power, convinced the people of Shechem to kill all sixty-nine of his brothers so that he alone could rule the people. Somehow the youngest brother, Jotham, escaped death. But Jotham’s response was not to rally an army to avenge the killing of his brothers. Like his father, he showed no greed for power and no interest in assuming a role as ruler of the people. He understood that the leader of the people was the Lord God Jehovah, so rather than seeking revenge, he chose to warn the people of Shechem of the consequences of their action.