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Bible Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Judges 11

Overview

Judges 11:1, The covenant between Jephthah and the Gileadites, that he should be their head; Judges 11:12, The treaty of peace between him and the Ammonites is in vain; Judges 11:29, Jephthah’s vow; Judges 11:32, His conquest of the Ammonites; Judges 11:34, He performs his vow on his daughter.

Verse 1

Jephthah: Hebrews 11:32, called Jephthae

a mighty: Judges 6:12, 2 Kings 5:1

an harlot: Heb. a woman

an harlot: Probably zonah should be rendered as in Joshua 2:1, a hostess, or inn-keeper, so Targum of Jonathan, wehoo bar ittetha pundekeetha, "and he was the son of a woman, a tavern-keeper." She was very probably a Canaanite, as she is called, Judges 11:2, a strange woman, ishah achereth, "a woman of another race;" and on this account his brethren drove him from the family, as not having a full right to the inheritance.

Reciprocal: Genesis 19:38 - children 1 Samuel 12:11 - Jephthah 1 Kings 3:16 - harlots

Verse 2

thrust out: Genesis 12:10, Deuteronomy 23:2, Galatians 4:30

a strange: Proverbs 2:16, Proverbs 5:3, Proverbs 5:20, Proverbs 6:24-26

Reciprocal: Judges 11:1 - an harlot Acts 7:39 - but

Verse 3

from his brethren: Heb. from the face of

Tob: Probably the same as Ish-Tob; and appears to have been a part of Syria, near Zobah, Rehob, and Maachah, east of Jordan, and in the most northern part of the portion of Manasseh. If so, it could not be far from Gilead, the country of Jephthah. This country is called Tobie or Tubin, 1; Mac Hebrews 5:13, and the Jews who inhabited this district Tubieni, 2; Mac Hebrews 12:17. 2 Samuel 10:6.

vain men: Judges 9:4, 1 Samuel 22:2, 1 Samuel 27:2, 1 Samuel 30:22-24, Job 30:1-10, Acts 17:5

Reciprocal: 2 Chronicles 13:7 - vain men

Verse 4

am 2817, bc 1187, An, Ex, Is, 304

in process of time: Heb. after days. Judges 11:4

Reciprocal: Judges 3:31 - Israel 2 Chronicles 27:5 - the king of the Ammonites

Verse 5

made war: Judges 10:9, Judges 10:17, Judges 10:18

to fetch: 1 Samuel 10:27, 1 Samuel 11:6, 1 Samuel 11:7, 1 Samuel 11:12, Psalms 118:22, Psalms 118:23, Acts 7:35-39, 1 Corinthians 1:27-29

Reciprocal: 2 Samuel 10:6 - Ishtob

Verse 6

Reciprocal: Isaiah 3:6 - a man

Verse 7

Did not ye hate: Genesis 26:27, Genesis 37:27, Genesis 45:4, Genesis 45:5, Proverbs 17:17, Isaiah 60:14, Acts 7:9-14, Revelation 3:9

Verse 8

the elders: Exodus 8:8, Exodus 8:28, Exodus 9:28, Exodus 10:17, 1 Kings 13:6, Luke 17:3, Luke 17:4

we turn: Judges 10:18

Reciprocal: Judges 11:11 - head 1 Samuel 11:1 - Nahash Job 29:25 - chose out

Verse 9

If ye bring: Numbers 32:20-29

Reciprocal: Judges 8:23 - I will

Verse 10

The Lord: Genesis 21:23, Genesis 31:50, 1 Samuel 12:5, Jeremiah 29:23, Jeremiah 42:5, Romans 1:9, 2 Corinthians 11:31

be witness: be the hearer, Genesis 16:5, Genesis 31:53, Deuteronomy 1:16, 1 Samuel 24:12

if we do: Exodus 20:7, Zechariah 5:4, Malachi 3:5

Reciprocal: Judges 12:4 - and the men Malachi 2:14 - the Lord

Verse 11

head: Judges 11:8

uttered: 1 Samuel 23:9-12, 1 Kings 3:7-9, 2 Corinthians 3:5, James 1:5, James 1:17

Jephthah uttered: That is, upon his elevation, he immediately retired to his devotion, and in prayer spread the whole matter before God, both his choice to the office, and his execution of the office, as one that had his eye ever toward the Lord, and would do nothing without him; that leaned not to his own understanding or courage, but depended on the Almighty God, and his favour. This is an ensample worthy of universal imitation; in All Our Ways, whether great or apparently subordinate, let us acknowledge God and seek his direction. So shall we make our way prosperous, and obtain that peace which passeth all understanding. Jephthah opened his campaign with prayer.

before: Judges 10:17, Judges 20:1, 1 Samuel 10:17, 1 Samuel 11:15

Mizpeh: This Mizpeh was east of Jordan in the mountains of Gilead - Genesis 31:49,and hence called Mizpeh of Gilead - Judges 11:29,to distinguish it from another place of the same name, west of Jordan, in the tribe of Judah. Joshua 15:38

Reciprocal: Numbers 30:2 - vow a vow Joshua 13:26 - Ramathmizpeh Judges 10:18 - he shall be Judges 11:34 - Mizpeh 1 Samuel 8:21 - he rehearsed 2 Samuel 5:3 - before 1 Chronicles 11:3 - before

Verse 12

sent messengers: In this Jephthah acted in accordance with the law of Moses; and hence the justice of his cause would appear more forcibly to the people. Numbers 20:14, Numbers 21:21, Deuteronomy 2:26, Deuteronomy 20:10, Deuteronomy 20:11, Proverbs 25:8, Proverbs 25:9, Matthew 18:15, Matthew 18:16

What hast: 2 Kings 14:8-12

Reciprocal: Judges 12:2 - I and my 2 Samuel 10:1 - king Nehemiah 4:7 - the Ammonites Joel 3:4 - and what

Verse 13

Because Israel: Numbers 21:24-26, Proverbs 19:5, Proverbs 19:9

from Arnon: That is, all the land which had belonged to the Amorites and Moabites.

Jabbok: Genesis 32:22, Deuteronomy 2:37, Deuteronomy 3:16

Reciprocal: Deuteronomy 2:19 - General Joshua 12:2 - Jabbok Joshua 13:25 - half 2 Kings 8:6 - Restore all Jeremiah 49:1 - their king

Verse 14

again unto: Psalms 120:7, Romans 12:18, Hebrews 12:14, 1 Peter 3:11

Verse 15

Israel took: Numbers 21:13-15, Numbers 21:27-30, Deuteronomy 2:9, Deuteronomy 2:19, 2 Chronicles 20:10, Acts 24:12, Acts 24:13

Reciprocal: Deuteronomy 2:37 - unto the land 2 Chronicles 26:8 - the Ammonites Amos 1:13 - and for

Verse 16

But when: The whole of these messages shew, Jephthah had well studied the book of Moses. His arguments also are very clear and cogent, and his demands reasonable; for he only required that the Ammonites should cease to harass a people who had neither injured them, nor intended to do so.

walked: Numbers 14:25, Deuteronomy 1:40, Joshua 5:6

came: Genesis 14:7, Numbers 13:26, Numbers 20:1, Deuteronomy 1:46

Reciprocal: Numbers 20:14 - Moses Zechariah 1:20 - four

Verse 17

sent messengers: Numbers 20:14-21, Deuteronomy 2:4-8, Deuteronomy 2:29

the king: Deuteronomy 2:9

abode: Numbers 20:1, Numbers 20:16

Reciprocal: Numbers 20:20 - Thou shalt Deuteronomy 1:46 - General

Verse 18

went: Numbers 20:22, Numbers 21:10-13, Numbers 33:37-44, Deuteronomy 2:1-8

compassed: Numbers 21:4-9

came by: Numbers 21:11

pitched: Numbers 21:13, Numbers 22:36

Reciprocal: Numbers 20:21 - wherefore Deuteronomy 2:8 - And when Deuteronomy 2:24 - the river Arnon Deuteronomy 2:29 - As the children Joshua 12:1 - from the Isaiah 16:2 - the fords Jeremiah 48:20 - Arnon Zechariah 1:20 - four

Verse 19

Numbers 21:21-35, Deuteronomy 2:26-34, Deuteronomy 3:1-17, Joshua 13:8-12

Reciprocal: Deuteronomy 2:27 - General

Verse 20

Numbers 21:23, Deuteronomy 2:32, Lord God, Nehemiah 9:22, Psalms 135:10-12, Psalms 136:17-21, they smote, Numbers 21:24, Numbers 21:25, Deuteronomy 2:33, Deuteronomy 2:34, so Israel, Joshua 13:15-32

Reciprocal: Numbers 20:20 - Thou shalt Deuteronomy 2:30 - for the Lord Isaiah 15:4 - Jahaz

Verse 21

Reciprocal: Exodus 23:31 - deliver the Numbers 21:24 - Israel Joshua 6:2 - I have 2 Chronicles 13:5 - the Lord 2 Chronicles 13:16 - God delivered Amos 2:9 - I the

Verse 22

And they: Deuteronomy 2:36

from the wilderness: From Arabia Deserta on the east, to Jordan on the west.

Reciprocal: Joshua 12:2 - Jabbok

Verse 23

Jephthah shews that the Israelites did not take the land of the Moabites or Ammonites, but that of the Amorites, which they had conquered from Sihon their king; and although the Amorites had taken the lands in question from the Ammonites, yet the title by which Israel held them was good, because they took them, not from the Ammonites, but from the Amorites.

Reciprocal: Genesis 48:22 - Amorite Joshua 5:1 - all the kings 2 Chronicles 20:11 - to cast us

Verse 24

Wilt not thou possess: This is simply an argumentum ad hominem; in which Jephthah argues on this principles recognized by the king of Ammon. As if he had said, "You suppose that the land which you possess was given you by your god Chemosh; and therefore will not relinquish what you believe you hold by a divine right. Now we know that Jehovah, our God, has given us the land of the Israelites; and therefore we will not give it up."

Chemosh: Numbers 21:29, 1 Kings 11:7, Jeremiah 48:7, Jeremiah 48:46

whomsoever: Deuteronomy 9:4, Deuteronomy 9:5, Deuteronomy 18:12, Joshua 3:10, Psalms 44:2, Psalms 78:55, Micah 4:5

Reciprocal: Numbers 20:21 - wherefore Deuteronomy 2:21 - but the Lord Joshua 6:2 - the king Ruth 1:15 - her gods 2 Kings 1:2 - god 2 Kings 23:13 - Chemosh 2 Chronicles 20:11 - to cast us Jeremiah 48:13 - ashamed

Verse 25

Balak: Numbers 22:2-21, Deuteronomy 23:3, Deuteronomy 23:4, Joshua 24:9, Joshua 24:10, Micah 6:5

Reciprocal: Numbers 22:4 - And Balak

Verse 26

Heshbon: Numbers 21:25-30, Deuteronomy 2:24, Deuteronomy 3:2, Deuteronomy 3:6, Joshua 12:2, Joshua 12:5, Joshua 13:10

Aroer: Deuteronomy 2:36

three hundred: Judges 3:11, Judges 3:30, Judges 5:31, Judges 8:28, Judges 9:22, Judges 10:2, Judges 10:3, Judges 10:8, Joshua 11:18, Joshua 23:1

Reciprocal: Numbers 32:3 - Heshbon 1 Kings 6:1 - And it came

Verse 27

the Judge: Genesis 18:25, 1 Samuel 2:10, Job 9:15, Job 23:7, Psalms 7:11, Psalms 50:6, Psalms 75:7, Psalms 82:8, Psalms 94:2, Psalms 98:9, Ecclesiastes 11:9, Ecclesiastes 12:14, John 5:22, John 5:23, Romans 14:10-12, 2 Corinthians 5:10, 2 Timothy 4:8, Hebrews 12:23

be judge: Genesis 16:5, Genesis 31:53, 1 Samuel 24:12, 1 Samuel 24:15, Psalms 7:8, Psalms 7:9, 2 Corinthians 11:11

Reciprocal: Judges 12:3 - wherefore 2 Chronicles 20:12 - wilt Job 31:28 - an

Verse 28

2 Kings 14:11, Proverbs 16:18

Verse 29

the spirit: Judges 3:10, Judges 6:34, Judges 13:25, Numbers 11:25, 1 Samuel 10:10, 1 Samuel 16:13-15, 1 Chronicles 12:18

Jephthah: "Jephthah seems to have been judge only of north-east Israel."

over Mizpeh: Judges 10:17

Reciprocal: Genesis 31:49 - Mizpah Numbers 27:18 - a man Joshua 13:26 - Ramathmizpeh Judges 11:11 - Mizpeh Judges 11:39 - did with Judges 14:6 - the Spirit 1 Samuel 11:6 - Spirit of God 1 Samuel 22:3 - Mizpeh

Verse 30

Genesis 28:20, Numbers 30:2-16, 1 Samuel 1:11, Ecclesiastes 5:1, Ecclesiastes 5:2, Ecclesiastes 5:4, Ecclesiastes 5:5

Reciprocal: Leviticus 27:2 - When Leviticus 27:28 - no devoted Numbers 21:2 - vowed Numbers 21:34 - for I have Deuteronomy 23:23 - That which Judges 21:1 - There 1 Samuel 14:24 - Cursed Matthew 14:9 - the oath's

Verse 31

whatsoever: etc. Heb. that which cometh forth, which shall come forth

shall surely: Leviticus 27:2, Leviticus 27:3, Leviticus 27:28, Leviticus 27:29, 1 Samuel 1:11, 1 Samuel 1:28, 1 Samuel 2:18, 1 Samuel 14:24, 1 Samuel 14:44, Psalms 66:13, Psalms 66:14

and I will: or, or I will, etc. Wehaaleetheehoo olah, rather, as Dr. Randolph and others contend, "and I will offer Him (or to Him, i.e., Jehovah) a burnt offering;" for hoo may with much more propriety be referred to the person to whom the sacrifice was to be made, than to the thing to be sacrificed. Unless understood in this way, or as the marginal reading, it must have been the vow of a heathen or a madman. If a dog, or other uncleaned animal had met him, he could not have made it a burnt offering; or if his neighbour's wife, sons, etc., his vow gave him no right over them. Leviticus 27:11, Leviticus 27:12, Deuteronomy 23:18, Psalms 66:13, Isaiah 66:3

Reciprocal: Genesis 22:2 - and offer Genesis 28:20 - vowed Genesis 28:21 - I come Leviticus 5:4 - to do evil Numbers 30:2 - vow a vow Deuteronomy 23:23 - That which Judges 11:39 - did with Judges 21:1 - There 2 Kings 3:27 - offered him Micah 6:7 - shall Matthew 14:9 - the oath's

Verse 32

the Lord: Judges 1:4, Judges 2:18, Judges 3:10

Verse 33

Aroer: Deuteronomy 2:36

Minnith: Situated, according to Eusebius, four miles from Heshbon, towards Philadelphia or Rabbath. Ezekiel 27:17

the plain: or, Abel

Verse 34

Mizpeh: Judges 11:11, Judges 10:17

his daughter: Judges 5:1-31, Exodus 15:20, 1 Samuel 18:6, 1 Samuel 18:7, Psalms 68:25, Psalms 148:11, Psalms 148:12, Psalms 150:4, Jeremiah 31:4, Jeremiah 31:13

beside her: or, he had not of his own either son or daughter, Heb. of himself

neither: Zechariah 12:10, Luke 7:12, Luke 8:42, Luke 9:38

Reciprocal: Genesis 14:17 - to Exodus 18:7 - went Judges 21:21 - dance 2 Samuel 1:20 - Philistines 2 Samuel 6:14 - danced Psalms 149:3 - in the dance

Verse 35

rent his clothes: Genesis 37:29, Genesis 37:30, Genesis 37:34, Genesis 37:35, Genesis 42:36-38, 2 Samuel 13:30, 2 Samuel 13:31, 2 Samuel 18:33, Job 1:20

have opened: Leviticus 27:28, Leviticus 27:29, Numbers 30:2-5, Psalms 15:4, Ecclesiastes 5:2-6

I cannot: Judges 21:1-7, 1 Samuel 14:44, 1 Samuel 14:45, Matthew 14:7-9, Acts 23:14

Reciprocal: Genesis 14:22 - unto Numbers 14:6 - rent their clothes Deuteronomy 23:23 - That which Judges 21:6 - repented them Judges 21:18 - sworn 2 Samuel 3:31 - Rend Psalms 66:14 - uttered Proverbs 18:7 - his lips

Verse 36

forasmuch: Judges 16:28-30, 2 Samuel 18:19, 2 Samuel 18:31, 2 Samuel 19:30, Acts 20:24, Acts 21:13, Romans 16:4, Philippians 2:30

Reciprocal: Numbers 30:2 - vow a vow Psalms 66:14 - uttered Jeremiah 44:17 - whatsoever

Verse 37

go up and down: Heb. go and go down

bewail: 1 Samuel 1:6, Luke 1:25

Verse 38

Reciprocal: Song of Solomon 8:13 - the companions

Verse 39

did with: That Jephthah did not sacrifice his daughter, but consecrated her to the service of God in the tabernacle, in a state of celibacy, will we imagine be evident from the following consideration -

1. Human sacrifices were ever an abomination to Jehovah, of which Jephthah could not be ignorant; and consequently he would neither have made such a vow, nor carried it into execution.

2. We are expressly told - Judges 11:29 that Jephthah was under the influence of the Spirit of God, which would effectually prevent him from embruing his hands in the blood of his own child.

3. He had it in his power to redeem his daughter - Leviticus 27:4, and surely his only child must have been of more value than thirty shekles.

4. Besides, who was to perform the horrid rite? Not Jephthah himself, who was no priest, and in whom it would have been most unnatural and inhuman; and the priests would certainly have dissuaded him from it.

5. The sacred historian informs us, that she bewailed her virginity, that she knew no man, and that the Israelitish women went yearly to comfort or lament with her. Judges 11:31, Leviticus 27:28, Leviticus 27:29, Deuteronomy 12:31, Isaiah 66:3

to his vow: 1 Samuel 1:11, 1 Samuel 1:22, 1 Samuel 1:24, 1 Samuel 1:28, 1 Samuel 2:18

custom: or, ordinance

Reciprocal: Genesis 22:2 - and offer Numbers 30:2 - vow a vow 2 Kings 3:27 - offered him Micah 6:7 - shall Matthew 14:9 - the oath's

Verse 40

yearly: Heb. from year to year

lament: or, to talk with, Judges 5:11

four days: 1 Kings 9:25

Reciprocal: Genesis 49:19 - General

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Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Judges 11". "Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/tsk/judges-11.html.