Parallel Bible VersionsHebrew Bible Study Tools

Judges 11:29 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— Then the Spirit of Jehovah 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.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— 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.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— Now the Spirit of the LORD came upon Jephthah, so that he passed through Gilead and Manasseh; then he passed through Mizpah of Gilead, and from Mizpah of Gilead he went on to the sons of Ammon.
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— 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 [to] the children of Ammon.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— Then the Spirit of Jehovah came upon Jephthah, and he passed through Gilead and Manasseh, and passed to Mizpeh of Gilead, and from Mizpeh of Gilead he passed over to the children of Ammon.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— Then came upon Jephthah the spirit of Yahweh, and he passed through Gilead and Manasseh,—and passed through Mizpeh of Gilead, and, from Mizpeh of Gilead, he passed through [unto] the sons of Ammon.
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— and the Spirit of Jehovah is on Jephthah, and he passeth over Gilead and Manasseh, and passeth over Mizpeh of Gilead, and from Mizpeh of Gilead he hath passed over to the Bene-Ammon.
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— Therefore the spirit of the Lord came upon Jephte, and going round Galaad, and Manasses, and Maspha of Galaad, and passing over from thence to the children of Ammon,
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— Then the Spirit of the LORD came vpon Iephthah, and he passed ouer Gilead and Manasseh, and passed ouer Mizpeh of Gilead, and from Mizpeh of Gilead hee passed ouer vnto the children of Ammon.
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— And the spirit of the Lord came upon Jephthah{gr.Jephthae}, and he passed over Gilead{gr.Galaad}, and Manasseh{gr.Manasse}, and passed by the watch-tower of Gilead{gr.Galaad} to the other side of the children of Ammon.
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— Then the Spirit of Yahweh came upon Yiftach, and he passed over Gilad, and Menashsheh, and passed over Mitzpah of Gilad, and from Mitzpah of Gilad he passed over [unto] the children of Ammon.

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
Then the Spirit 7307
{7307} Prime
רוּחַ
ruwach
{roo'-akh}
From H7306; wind; by resemblance breath, that is, a sensible (or even violent) exhalation; figuratively life, anger, unsubstantiality; by extension a region of the sky; by resemblance spirit, but only of a rational being (including its expression and functions).
of Yhw יָהוֶה 3068
{3068} Prime
יְהֹוָה
Y@hovah
{yeh-ho-vaw'}
From H1961; (the) self Existent or eternal; Jehovah, Jewish national name of God.
came x1961
(1961) Complement
הָיָה
hayah
{haw-yaw'}
A primitive root (compare H1933); to exist, that is, be or become, come to pass (always emphatic, and not a mere copula or auxiliary).
upon x5921
(5921) Complement
עַל
`al
{al}
Properly the same as H5920 used as a preposition (in the singular or plural, often with prefix, or as conjugation with a particle following); above, over, upon, or against (yet always in this last relation with a downward aspect) in a great variety of applications.
Yift יִפתָּח, 3316
{3316} Prime
יִפְתָּח
Yiphtach
{yif-tawkh'}
From H6605; he will open; Jiphtach, an Israelite; also a place in Palestine.
and he passed over 5674
{5674} Prime
עָבַר
`abar
{aw-bar'}
A primitive root; to cross over; used very widely of any transition (literally or figuratively; transitively, intransitively, intensively or causatively); specifically to cover (in copulation).
z8799
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
x853
(0853) Complement
אֵת
'eth
{ayth}
Apparently contracted from H0226 in the demonstrative sense of entity; properly self (but generally used to point out more definitely the object of a verb or preposition, even or namely).
Gil` גִּלעָד, 1568
{1568} Prime
גִּלְעָד
Gil`ad
{ghil-awd'}
Probably from H1567; Gilad, a region East of the Jordan; also the name of three Israelites.
and Mna מְנַשֶּׁה, 4519
{4519} Prime
מְנַשֶּׁה
M@nashsheh
{men-ash-sheh'}
From H5382; causing to forget; Menashsheh, a grandson of jacob, also the tribe descendant from him, and its territory.
and passed over 5674
{5674} Prime
עָבַר
`abar
{aw-bar'}
A primitive root; to cross over; used very widely of any transition (literally or figuratively; transitively, intransitively, intensively or causatively); specifically to cover (in copulation).
z8799
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
x853
(0853) Complement
אֵת
'eth
{ayth}
Apparently contracted from H0226 in the demonstrative sense of entity; properly self (but generally used to point out more definitely the object of a verb or preposition, even or namely).
Mixp מִצפָּה 4708
{4708} Prime
מִצְפֶּה
Mitspeh
{mits-peh'}
The same as H4707; Mitspeh, the name of five places in Palestine.
of Gil` גִּלעָד, 1568
{1568} Prime
גִּלְעָד
Gil`ad
{ghil-awd'}
Probably from H1567; Gilad, a region East of the Jordan; also the name of three Israelites.
and from Mixp מִצפָּה 4708
{4708} Prime
מִצְפֶּה
Mitspeh
{mits-peh'}
The same as H4707; Mitspeh, the name of five places in Palestine.
x4480
(4480) Complement
מִן
min
{min}
For H4482; properly a part of; hence (prepositionally), from or out of in many senses.
of Gil` גִּלעָד 1568
{1568} Prime
גִּלְעָד
Gil`ad
{ghil-awd'}
Probably from H1567; Gilad, a region East of the Jordan; also the name of three Israelites.
he passed over 5674
{5674} Prime
עָבַר
`abar
{aw-bar'}
A primitive root; to cross over; used very widely of any transition (literally or figuratively; transitively, intransitively, intensively or causatively); specifically to cover (in copulation).
z8804
<8804> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Perfect (See H8816)
Count - 12562
[unto] the children 1121
{1121} Prime
בֵּן
ben
{bane}
From H1129; a son (as a builder of the family name), in the widest sense (of literal and figurative relationship, including grandson, subject, nation, quality or condition, etc., (like H0001, H0251, etc.).
of `Ammn עַמּוֹן. 5983
{5983} Prime
עַמּוֹן
`Ammown
{am-mone'}
From H5971; tribal, that is, inbred; Ammon, a son of Lot; also his posterity and their country.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Judges 11:29-30

_ _ Judges 11:29-31. His vow.

_ _ Then the Spirit of the Lord came upon Jephthah — The calm wisdom, sagacious forethought, and indomitable energy which he was enabled to display, were a pledge to himself and a convincing evidence to his countrymen, that he was qualified by higher resources than his own for the momentous duties of his office.

_ _ he passed over Gilead, and Manasseh — the provinces most exposed and in danger, for the purpose of levying troops, and exciting by his presence a widespread interest in the national cause. Returning to the camp at Mizpeh, he then began his march against the enemy. There he made his celebrated vow, in accordance with an ancient custom for generals at the outbreak of a war, or on the eve of a battle, to promise the god of their worship a costly oblation, or dedication of some valuable booty, in the event of victory. Vows were in common practice also among the Israelites. They were encouraged by the divine approval as emanating from a spirit of piety and gratitude; and rules were laid down in the law for regulating the performance. But it is difficult to bring Jephthah’s vow within the legitimate range (see on Leviticus 27:28).

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Judges 11:29-40

_ _ We have here Jephthah triumphing in a glorious victory, but, as an alloy to his joy, troubled and distressed by an unadvised vow.

_ _ I. Jephthah's victory was clear, and shines very brightly, both to his honour and to the honour of God, his in pleading and God's in owning a righteous cause. 1. God gave him an excellent spirit, and he improved it bravely, Judges 11:29. When it appeared by the people's unanimous choice of him for their leader that he had so clear a call to engage, and by the obstinate deafness of the king of Ammon to the proposals of accommodation that he had so just a cause to engage in, then the Spirit of the Lord came upon him, and very much advanced his natural faculties, enduing him with power from on high, and making him more bold and more wise than ever he had been, and more fired with a holy zeal against the enemies of his people. Hereby God confirmed him in his office, and assured him of success in his undertaking. Thus animated, he loses no time, but with an undaunted resolution takes the field. Particular notice is taken of the way by which he advanced towards the enemy's camp, probably because the choice of it was an instance of that extraordinary discretion with which the Spirit of the Lord had furnished him; for those who sincerely walk after the Spirit shall be led forth the right way. 2. God gave him eminent success, and he bravely improved that too (Judges 11:32): The Lord delivered the Ammonites into his hand, and so gave judgment upon the appeal in favour of the righteous cause, and made those feel the force of war that would not yield to the force of reason; for he sits in the throne, judging right. Jephthah lost not the advantages given him, but pursued and completed his victory. Having routed their forces in the field, he pursued them to their cities, where he put to the sword all he found in arms, so as utterly to disable them from giving Israel any molestation, Judges 11:33. But it does not appear that he utterly destroyed the people, as Joshua had destroyed the devoted nations, nor that he offered to make himself master of the country, though their pretensions to the land of Israel might have given him colour to do so: only he took care that they should be effectually subdued. Though others' attempting wrong to us will justify us in the defence of our own right, yet it will not authorize us to do them wrong.

_ _ II. Jephthah's vow is dark, and much in the clouds. When he was going out from his own house upon this hazardous undertaking, in prayer to God for his presence with him he makes a secret but solemn vow or religious promise to God, that, if God would graciously bring him back a conqueror, whosoever or whatsoever should first come out of his house to meet him it should be devoted to God, and offered up for a burnt-offering. At his return, tidings of his victory coming home before him, his own and only daughter meets him with the seasonable expressions of joy. This puts him into a great confusion; but there was no remedy: after she had taken some time to lament her own infelicity, she cheerfully submitted to the performance of his vow. Now,

_ _ 1. There are several good lessons to be learnt out of this story. (1.) That there may be remainders of distrust and doubting even in the hearts of true and great believers. Jephthah had reason enough to be confident of success, especially when he found the Spirit of the Lord come upon him, and yet, now that it comes to the settling, he seems to hesitate (v. 30): If thou wilt without fail deliver them into my hand, then I will do so and so. And perhaps the snare into which his vow brought him was designed to correct the weakness of his faith, and a fond conceit he had that he could not promise himself a victory unless he proffered something considerable to be given to God in lieu of it. (2.) That yet it is very good, when we are in the pursuit or expectation of any mercy, to make vows to God of some instance of acceptable service to him, not as a purchase of the favour we desire, but as an expression of our gratitude to him and the deep sense we have of our obligations to render according to the benefit done to us. The matter of such a singular vow (Leviticus 27:2) must be something that has a plain and direct tendency either to the advancement of God's glory, and the interests of his kingdom among men, or to the furtherance of ourselves in his service, and in that which is antecedently our duty. (3.) That we have great need to be very cautious and well advised in the making of such vows, lest, by indulging a present emotion even of pious zeal, we entangle our own consciences, involve ourselves in perplexities, and are forced at last to say before the angel that it was an error, Ecclesiastes 5:2-6. It is a snare to a man hastily to devour that which is holy, without due consideration quid valeant humeri, quid ferre recusentwhat we are able or unable to effect, and without inserting the needful provisos and limitations which might prevent the entanglement, and then after vows to make the enquiry which should have been made before, Proverbs 20:25. Let Jephthah's harm be our warning in this matter. See Deuteronomy 23:22. (4.) That what we have solemnly vowed to God we must conscientiously perform, if it be possible and lawful, though it be ever so difficult and grievous to us. Jephthah's sense of the powerful obligation of his vow must always be ours (Judges 11:35): “I have opened my mouth unto the Lord in a solemn vow, and I cannot go back,” that is, “I cannot recall the vow myself, it is too late, nor can any power on earth dispense with it, or give me up my bond.” The thing was my own, and in my own power (Acts 5:4), but now it is not. Vow and pay, Psalms 76:11. We deceive ourselves if we think to mock God. If we apply this to the consent we have solemnly given, in our sacramental vows, to the covenant of grace made with poor sinners in Christ, what a powerful argument will it be against the sins we have by those vows bound ourselves out from, what a strong inducement to the duties we have hereby bound ourselves up to, and what a ready answer to every temptation! “I have opened my mouth to the Lord, and I cannot go back; I must therefore go forward. I have sworn, and I must, I will, perform it. Let me not dare to play fast and loose with God.” (5.) That it well becomes children obediently and cheerfully to submit to their parents in the Lord, and particularly to comply with their pious resolutions for the honour of God and the keeping up of religion in their families, though they be harsh and severe, as the Rechabites, who for many generations religiously observed the commands of Jonadab their father in forbearing wine, and Jephthah's daughter here, who, for the satisfying of her father's conscience, and for the honour of God and her country, yielded herself as one devoted (Judges 11:36): “Do to me according to that which hath proceeded out of thy mouth; I know I am dear to thee, but am well content that God should be dearer.” The father might disallow any vow made by the daughter (Numbers 30:5), but the daughter could not disallow or disannul, no, not such a vow as this, made by the father. This magnifies the law of the fifth commandment. (6.) That our friends' grievances should be our griefs. Where she went to bewail her hard fate the virgins, her companions, joined with her in her lamentations, Judges 11:38. With those of her own sex and age she used to associate, who no doubt, now that her father had on a sudden grown so great, expected, shortly after his return, to dance at her wedding, but were heavily disappointed when they were called to retire to the mountains with her and share in her griefs. Those are unworthy the name of friends that will only rejoice with us, and not weep with us. (7.) That heroic zeal for the honour of God and Israel, though alloyed with infirmity and indiscretion, is worthy to be had in perpetual remembrance. It well became the daughters of Israel by an annual solemnity to preserve the honourable memory of Jephthah's daughter, who made light even of her own life like a noble heroine, when God had taken vengeance on Israel's enemies, Judges 11:36. Such a rare instance of one that preferred the public interest before life itself was never to be forgotten. Her sex forbade her to follow to the war, and so to expose her life in battle, in lieu of which she hazards it much more (and perhaps apprehended that she did so, having some intimation of his vow, and did it designedly; for he tells her, Judges 11:35, Thou hast brought me very low) to grace his triumphs. So transported was she with the victory as a common benefit that she was willing to be herself offered up as a thank-offering for it, and would think her life well bestowed when laid down on so great an occasion. She thinks it an honour to die, not as a sacrifice of atonement for the people's sins (that honour was reserved for Christ only), but as a sacrifice of acknowledgment for the people's mercies. (8.) From Jephthah's concern on this occasion, we must learn not to think it strange if the day of our triumphs in this world prove upon some account or other the day of our griefs, and therefore must always rejoice with trembling; we hope for a day of triumph hereafter which will have no alloy.

_ _ 2. Yet there are some difficult questions that do arise upon this story which have very much employed the pens of learned men. I will say but little respecting them, because Mr. Poole has discussed them very fully in his English annotations.

_ _ (1.) It is hard to say what Jephthah did to his daughter in performance of his vow. [1.] Some think he only shut her up for a nun, and that it being unlawful, according to one part of his vow (for they make it disjunctive), to offer her up for a burnt-offering, he thus, according to the other part, engaged her to be the Lord's, that is, totally to sequester herself from all the affairs of this life, and consequently from marriage, and to employ herself wholly in the acts of devotion all her days. That which countenances this opinion is that she is said to bewail her virginity (Judges 11:37, Judges 11:38) and that she knew no man, Judges 11:39. But, if he sacrificed her, it was proper enough for her to bewail, not her death, because that was intended to be for the honour of God, and she would undergo it cheerfully, but that unhappy circumstance of it which made it more grievous to her than any other, because she was her father's only child, in whom he hoped his name and family would be built up, that she was unmarried, and so left no issue to inherit her father's honour and estate; therefore it is particularly taken notice of (Judges 11:34) that besides her he had neither son nor daughter. But that which makes me think Jephthah did not go about thus to satisfy his vow, or evade it rather, is that we do not find any law, usage, or custom, in all the Old Testament, which does in the least intimate that a single life was any branch or article of religion, or that any person, man or woman, was looked upon as the more holy, more the Lord's, or devoted to him, for living unmarried: it was no part of the law either of the priests or of the Nazarites. Deborah and Huldah, both prophetesses, are both of them particularly recorded to have been married women. Besides, had she only been confined to a single life, she needed not to have desired these two months to bewail it in: she had her whole life before her to do that, if she saw cause. Nor needed she to take such a sad leave of her companions; for those that are of that opinion understand what is said in Judges 11:40 of their coming to talk with her, as our margin reads it, four days in a year. Therefore, [2.] It seems more probable that he offered her up for a sacrifice, according to the letter of his vow, misunderstanding that law which spoke of persons devoted by the curse of God as if it were to be applied to such as were devoted by men's vows (Leviticus 27:29, None devoted shall be redeemed, but shall surely be put to death), and wanting to be better informed of the power the law gave him in this case to redeem her. Abraham's attempt to offer up Isaac perhaps encouraged him, and made him think, if God would not accept this sacrifice which he had vowed, he would send an angel to stay his hand, as he did Abraham's. If she came out designedly to be made a sacrifice, as who knows but she might? perhaps he thought that would make the case the plainer. Volenti non sit injuriaNo injury is done to a person by that to which he himself consents. He imagined, it may be, that where there was neither anger nor malice there was no murder, and that his good intention would sanctify this bad action; and, since he had made such a vow, he thought better to kill his daughter than break his vow, and let Providence bear the blame, that brought her forth to meet him.

_ _ (2.) But, supposing that Jephthah did sacrifice his daughter, the question is whether he did well. [1.] Some justify him in it, and think he did well, and as became one that preferred the honour of God before that which was dearest to him in this world. He is mentioned among the eminent believers who by faith did great things, Hebrews 11:32. And this was one of the great things he did. It was done deliberately, and upon two months' consideration and consultation. He is never blamed for it by any inspired writer. Though it highly exalts the paternal authority, yet it cannot justify any in doing the like. He was an extraordinary person. The Spirit of the Lord came upon him. Many circumstances, now unknown to us, might make this altogether extraordinary, and justify it, yet not so as that it might justify the like. Some learned men have made this sacrifice a figure of Christ the great sacrifice: he was of unspotted purity and innocency, as she a chaste virgin; he was devoted to death by his Father, and so made a curse, or an anathema, for us; he submitted himself, as she did, to his Father's will: Not as I will, but as thou wilt. But, [2.] Most condemn Jephthah; he did ill to make so rash a vow, and worse to perform it. He could not be bound by his vow to that which God had forbidden by the letter of the sixth commandment: Thou shalt not kill. God had forbidden human sacrifices, so that it was (says Dr. Lightfoot) in effect a sacrifice to Moloch. And, probably, the reason why it is left dubious by the inspired penman whether he sacrificed her or no was that those who did afterwards offer their children might not take any encouragement from this instance. Concerning this and some other such passages in the sacred story, which learned men are in the dark, divided, and in doubt about, we need not much perplex ourselves; what is necessary to our salvation, thanks be to God, is plain enough.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Judges 11:29

Spirit came — Indued him with a more than ordinary courage and resolution. Manasseh — That is, Bashan, which the half tribe of Manasseh beyond Jordan inhabited. Mizpeh of Gilead — So called to distinguish it from other cities of the same name, having gathered what forces he suddenly could, he came hither to the borders of the Ammonites.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Judges 11:29

Then the (l) 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.

(l) That is, the spirit of strength and zeal.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
the spirit:

Judges 3:10 And the Spirit of the LORD came upon him, and he judged Israel, and went out to war: and the LORD delivered Chushanrishathaim king of Mesopotamia into his hand; and his hand prevailed against Chushanrishathaim.
Judges 6:34 But the Spirit of the LORD came upon Gideon, and he blew a trumpet; and Abiezer was gathered after him.
Judges 13:25 And the Spirit of the LORD began to move him at times in the camp of Dan between Zorah and Eshtaol.
Numbers 11:25 And the LORD came down in a cloud, and spake unto him, and took of the spirit that [was] upon him, and gave [it] unto the seventy elders: and it came to pass, [that], when the spirit rested upon them, they prophesied, and did not cease.
1 Samuel 10:10 And when they came thither to the hill, behold, a company of prophets met him; and the Spirit of God came upon him, and he prophesied among them.
1 Samuel 16:13-15 Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren: and the Spirit of the LORD came upon David from that day forward. So Samuel rose up, and went to Ramah. ... And Saul's servants said unto him, Behold now, an evil spirit from God troubleth thee.
1 Chronicles 12:18 Then the spirit came upon Amasai, [who was] chief of the captains, [and he said], Thine [are we], David, and on thy side, thou son of Jesse: peace, peace [be] unto thee, and peace [be] to thine helpers; for thy God helpeth thee. Then David received them, and made them captains of the band.

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

over Mizpeh:

Judges 10:17 Then the children of Ammon were gathered together, and encamped in Gilead. And the children of Israel assembled themselves together, and encamped in Mizpeh.
Random Bible VersesNew Quotes



Chain-Reference Bible Search

Nu 11:25. Jg 3:10; 6:34; 10:17; 13:25. 1S 10:10; 16:13. 1Ch 12:18.

Newest Chat Bible Comment
Comment HereComplete Biblical ResearchComplete Chat Bible Commentary
Please post your comment on Judges 11:29.
Name:

WWW Chat Bible Commentary

User-Posted Comments on Judges 11:29


Recent Chat Bible Comments