SV: The daughter of Jeftah died?

Christian M. M. Brady cbrady at
Sat Jun 1 23:04:51 EDT 2002

On 6/1/02 7:47 PM, "Lawrence May" <lgmay at> wrote:

> Jdg 11:29-40 - Several important lessons are to be learned from Jephthah's
> vow. 
>     1. There may be remainders of distrust and doubting, even in the hearts of
> true and great believers.
>     2. Our vows to God should not be as a purchase of the favor we desire, but
> to express gratitude to him.
>     3. We need to be very well advised in making vows, lest we entangle
> ourselves. 
>     4. What we have solemnly vowed to God, we must perform, if it be possible
> and lawful, though it be difficult and grievous to us.
>     5. It well becomes children, obediently and cheerfully to submit to their
> parents in the Lord. It is hard to say what Jephthah did in performance of his
> vow; but it is thought that he did not offer his daughter as a burnt offering.
> Such a sacrifice would have been an abomination to the Lord; it is supposed
> she was obliged to remain unmarried, and apart from her family. Concerning
> this and some other such passages in the sacred history, about which learned
> men are divided and in doubt, we need not perplex ourselves; what is necessary
> to our salvation, thanks be to God, is plain enough. If the reader recollects
> the promise of Christ concerning the teaching of the Holy Spirit, and places
> himself under this heavenly Teacher, the Holy Ghost will guide to all truth in
> every passage, so far as it is needful to be understood.

Well, avoiding the doctrinal and faith issues raised in 5b (such things are
against list rules) I will offer a couple of comments, following the numbers

1. Is Jephthah a ³true and great believer²? I rather thank that he was not a
nice man, nor a very ³godly² man by biblical standards. Remember, just
because the Bible tells us a story doesn¹t mean that the Bible is endorsing
the actions of the central figures.

5a. I don¹t think that it is very hard to say what he did at all. 11.30
> And Jephthah made a vow to the LORD, and said, ³If you will give the Ammonites
> into my hand,  31 then whoever comes out of the doors of my house to meet me,
> when I return victorious from the Ammonites, shall be the LORD¹S, to be
> offered up by me as a burnt offering.²
And 11.39 says
> 39 At the end of two months, she returned to her father, who did with her
> according to the vow he had made.
It is reasonable to assume that, as far as the narrator is concerned,
Jephthah did as he had vowed he would. That is, he offered his daughter up
the Lord as a burnt offering. It may not be a pleasant thought to us, some
might even say it is inexplicable, but the simple and most logical reading
of the text is that he sacrificed his daughter.

cbrady @

(Below is a quote that was randomly selected by Entourage.)

Of making many books there is no end,
and much study is a weariness of the flesh.
                         Ecclesiastes 12:12 

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