Chapter 5

  1. And the children of Israel did evil again in the sight of the Lord, and served Baalim, and Ashtaroth, and the gods of Syria, and the gods of Sidon, and the gods of Moab, and the gods of the children of Ammon, and the gods of the Philistines, and forsook the Lord and served not him. And the anger of the Lord was hot against Israel, and he sold them into the hands of the Philistines and into the hands of the children of Ammon. And that year, they vexed and oppressed the children of Israel eighteen years, all the children of Israel that were on the other side of Jordan in the land of the Amorites, which is in Gilead. Moreover, the children of Ammon passed over Jordan to fight also against Judah, and against Benjamin, and against the house of Ephraim, so that Israel was severely distressed.
  2. And the children of Israel cried unto the Lord, saying, We have sinned against you, both because we have forsaken our God and also served Baalim. And the Lord said unto the children of Israel, Did not I deliver you from the Egyptians, and from the Amorites, from the children of Ammon, and from the Philistines? The Sidonians also, and the Amalekites, and the Maonites did oppress you, and you cried to me, and I delivered you out of their hand. Yet you have forsaken me and served other gods. Wherefore, I will deliver you no more. Go and cry unto the gods which you have chosen. Let them deliver you in the time of your tribulation. And the children of Israel said unto the Lord, We have sinned; do unto us whatever seems good unto you. Deliver us only, we pray you, this day. And they put away the strange gods from among them and served the Lord, and his soul was grieved for the misery of Israel.
  3. Then the children of Ammon were gathered together and encamped in Gilead. And the children of Israel assembled themselves together and encamped in Mizpeh. And the people and princes of Gilead said one to another, What man is he that will begin to fight against the children of Ammon? He shall be head over all the inhabitants of Gilead.
  4. Now Jephthah the Gileadite was a mighty man of valor; and he was the son of a harlot, and Gilead begot Jephthah. And Gilead’s wife bore him sons, and his wife’s sons grew up, and they thrust out Jephthah and said unto him, You shall not inherit in our father’s house, for you are the son of a strange woman. Then Jephthah fled from his brethren and dwelled in the land of Tob, and there were gathered vain men to Jephthah, and went out with him. And it came to pass, in process of time, that the children of Ammon made war against Israel. And it was so that when the children of Ammon made war against Israel, the elders of Gilead went to fetch Jephthah out of the land of Tob. And they said unto Jephthah, Come and be our captain, that we may fight with the children of Ammon. And Jephthah said unto the elders of Gilead, Did not you hate me and expel me out of my father’s house? And why are you come unto me now when you are in distress? And the elders of Gilead said unto Jephthah, That is why we return to you now, that you may go with us and fight against the children of Ammon, and be our head over all the inhabitants of Gilead. And Jephthah said unto the elders of Gilead, If you bring me home again to fight against the children of Ammon, and the Lord deliver them before me, shall I be your head? And the elders of Gilead said unto Jephthah, The Lord be witness between us if we do not so according to your words. Then Jephthah went with the elders of Gilead, and the people made him head and captain over them. And Jephthah uttered all his words before the Lord in Mizpeh.
  5. And Jephthah sent messengers unto the king of the children of Ammon, saying, What do you have to do with me, that you have come against me to fight in my land? And the king of the children of Ammon answered unto the messengers of Jephthah, Because Israel took away my land when they came up out of Egypt, from Arnon even unto Jabbok and unto Jordan. Now therefore restore those lands again peaceably. And Jephthah sent messengers again unto the king of the children of Ammon, and said unto him, Thus says Jephthah: Israel took not away the land of Moab, nor the land of the children of Ammon. But when Israel came up from Egypt, and walked through the wilderness unto the Red Sea, and came to Kadesh, then Israel sent messengers unto the king of Edom, saying, Let me, I pray you, pass through your land, but the king of Edom would not listen. And in like manner they sent unto the king of Moab, but he would not consent, and Israel stayed in Kadesh. Then they went along through the wilderness, and went around the land of Edom and the land of Moab, and came by the east side of the land of Moab, and pitched on the other side of Arnon, but came not within the border of Moab, for Arnon was the border of Moab. And Israel sent messengers unto Sihon king of the Amorites, the king of Heshbon, and Israel said unto him, Let us pass, we pray you, through your land into my place. But Sihon trusted not Israel to pass through his border, but Sihon gathered all his people together, and pitched in Jahaz, and fought against Israel. And the Lord God of Israel delivered Sihon and all his people into the hand of Israel, and they smote them. So Israel possessed all the land of the Amorites, the inhabitants of that country. And they possessed all the borders of the Amorites, from Arnon even unto Jabbok, and from the wilderness even unto Jordan. So now the Lord God of Israel has dispossessed the Amorites from before his people Israel, and should you possess it? Will not you possess that which Chemosh your god gives you to possess? So whomever the Lord our God shall drive out from before us, them will we possess. And now are you anything better than Balak the son of Zippor, king of Moab? Did he ever quarrel against Israel? Or did he ever fight against them while Israel dwelled in Heshbon and her towns, and in Aroer and her towns, and in all the cities that be along by the borders of Arnon, three hundred years? Why therefore did you not recover them within that time? Wherefore, I have not sinned against you, but you do me wrong to war against me. The Lord, the Judge, be judge this day between the children of Israel and the children of Ammon. Nevertheless, the king of the children of Ammon listened not unto the words of Jephthah which he sent him.
  6. Then the spirit of the Lord came upon Jephthah, and he passed over Gilead and Manasseh, and passed over Mizpeh of Gilead, and from Mizpeh of Gilead he passed over unto the children of Ammon. And Jephthah vowed a vow unto the Lord, and said, If you shall without fail deliver the children of Ammon into my hands, then it shall be that whatever comes forth of the doors of my house to meet me when I return in peace from the children of Ammon shall surely be the Lord’s, and I will offer it up for a burnt offering. So Jephthah passed over unto the children of Ammon to fight against them, and the Lord delivered them into his hands. And he smote them from Aroer even until you come to Minnith, even twenty cities, and unto the plain of the vineyards, with a very great slaughter. Thus, the children of Ammon were subdued before the children of Israel. And Jephthah came to Mizpeh, unto his house, and behold, his daughter came out to meet him with tambourines and with dances, and she was his only child. Besides her, he had neither son nor daughter. And it came to pass when he saw her that he rent his clothes and said, Alas, my daughter! You have brought me very low, and you are one of them that trouble me; for I have opened my mouth unto the Lord and I cannot go back. And she said unto him, My father, if you have opened your mouth unto the Lord, do to me according to that which has proceeded out of your mouth, forasmuch as the Lord has taken vengeance for you of your enemies, even of the children of Ammon. And she said unto her father, Let this thing be done for me: let me alone two months, that I may go up and down upon the mountains and bewail my virginity, I and my companions. And he said, Go. And he sent her away for two months. And she went with her companions and bewailed her virginity upon the mountains. And it came to pass at the end of two months that she returned unto her father, who did with her according to his vow which he had vowed, and she knew no man. And it was a custom in Israel that the daughters of Israel went yearly to lament the daughter of Jephthah the Gileadite, four days in a year.
  7. And the men of Ephraim gathered themselves together and went northward, and said unto Jephthah, Why did you pass over to fight against the children of Ammon and did not call us to go with you? We will burn your house upon you with fire. And Jephthah said unto them, I and my people were at great strife with the children of Ammon. And when I called you, you delivered me not out of their hands. And when I saw that you delivered me not, I put my life in my hands and passed over against the children of Ammon, and the Lord delivered them into my hand. Why then are you come up unto me this day to fight against me? Then Jephthah gathered together all the men of Gilead and fought with Ephraim, and the men of Gilead smote Ephraim because they said, You Gileadites are fugitives of Ephraim among the Ephraimites and among the Manassites. And the Gileadites took the passages of Jordan before the Ephraimites. And it was so that when those Ephraimites who were escaped said, Let me go over, that the men of Gilead said unto him, Are you an Ephraimite? If he said, Nay, then said they unto him, Say now, Shibboleth — and he said Sibboleth, for he could not frame to pronounce it right. Then they took him and slew him at the passages of Jordan, and there fell at that time of the Ephraimites forty-two thousand. And Jephthah judged Israel six years. Then Jephthah the Gileadite died, and was buried in one of the cities of Gilead.
  8. And after him, Ibzan of Bethlehem judged Israel. And he had thirty sons, and thirty daughters whom he sent abroad, and took in thirty daughters from abroad for his sons. And he judged Israel seven years. Then Ibzan died, and was buried at Bethlehem.
  9. And after him, Elon, a Zebulonite, judged Israel, and he judged Israel ten years. And Elon the Zebulonite died, and was buried in Aijalon in the country of Zebulun.
  10. And after him, Abdon the son of Hillel, a Pirathonite, judged Israel. And he had forty sons and thirty grandsons that rode on seventy ass colts, and he judged Israel eight years. And Abdon, the son of Hillel the Pirathonite, died, and was buried in Pirathon in the land of Ephraim, in the mount of the Amalekites.






Learn of Christ

Learn who He is and about his continued work in restoring his Gospel in our day.

Learn more »

Baptism

Come unto Christ by being baptized or re-baptized.

Learn more »

Fellowship

Worship and serve God with other believers in Christ.

Learn more »