Judges 1 Incomplete Obedience: Many tribes of Israel did not drive out the Canaanites

But the children of Benjamin did not drive out the Jebusites who inhabited Jerusalem; so the Jebusites dwell with the children of Benjamin in Jerusalem to this day.  Judges 1:21

However, Manasseh did not drive out the inhabitants of Beth Shean and its villages, or Taanach and its villages, or the inhabitants of Dor and its villages, or the inhabitants of Ibleam and its villages, or the inhabitants of Megiddo and its villages; for the Canaanites were determined to dwell in that land. 28  And it came to pass, when Israel was strong, that they put the Canaanites under tribute, but did not completely drive them out. 29  Nor did Ephraim drive out the Canaanites who dwelt in Gezer; so the Canaanites dwelt in Gezer among them.

Nor did Zebulun drive out the inhabitants of Kitron or the inhabitants of Nahalol; so the Canaanites dwelt among them, and were put under tribute. 31  Nor did Asher drive out the inhabitants of Acco or the inhabitants of Sidon, or of Ahlab, Achzib, Helbah, Aphik, or Rehob. 32  So the Asherites dwelt among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land; for they did not drive them out. 33  Nor did Naphtali drive out the inhabitants of Beth Shemesh or the inhabitants of Beth Anath; but they dwelt among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land. Nevertheless the inhabitants of Beth Shemesh and Beth Anath were put under tribute to them. 34  And the Amorites forced the children of Dan into the mountains, for they would not allow them to come down to the valley; 35  and the Amorites were determined to dwell in Mount Heres, in Aijalon, and in Shaalbim; [3] yet when the strength of the house of Joseph became greater, they were put under tribute. 36  Now the boundary of the Amorites was from the Ascent of Akrabbim, from Sela, and upward.

Judges 1:1-3:6.  The Times Explained

The days of the judges were so disastrous that it is necessary to explain how God’s chosen people could be so crushed.  The answer is given:  sin.  God proved himself faithful in the conquest.  Now Israel proves herself unfaithful, and her suffering is deserved.

Incomplete obedience: 1:1-2:4.  The Israelis continue to win victories over the remaining Canaanites.  But enemies settled in plains areas have war chariots, and the tribes hesitate to attack.  Doubt is the first hesitant step toward decline.

Other Canaanite communities are subdued, but not destroyed.  Instead the conquered are set to forced labor.  This is a direct violation of God’s command through Moses.  The Canaanites were supposed to be driven out, lest they pollute the faith and morality of Israel.