And Jephthah the Gileadite hath been a mighty man of valour,
and he is son of a woman, a harlot; and Gilead begetteth Jephthah,
and the wife of Gilead beareth to him sons, and the wife's
sons grow up and cast out Jephthah, and say to him, 'Thou dost not inherit in
the house of our father; for son of another woman art thou.'
And Jephthah fleeth from the face of his brethren, and
dwelleth in the land of Tob; and vain men gather themselves together unto
Jephthah, and they go out with him.
And it cometh to pass, after a time, that the Bene-Ammon
fight with Israel,
and it cometh to pass, when the Bene-Ammon have fought with
Israel, that the elders of Gilead go to take Jephthah from the land of Tob;
and they say unto Jephthah, 'Come, and thou hast been to us
for captain, and we fight against the Bene-Ammon.'
And Jephthah saith to the elders of Gilead, 'Have not ye
hated me? and ye cast me out from the house of my father, and wherefore have ye
come unto me now when ye are in distress?'
and the elders of Gilead say unto Jephthah, 'Therefore, now,
we have turned back unto thee; and thou hast gone with us, and fought against
the Bene-Ammon, and thou hast been to us for head -- to all the inhabitants of
And Jephthah saith unto the elders of Gilead, 'If ye are
taking me back to fight against the Bene-Ammon, and Jehovah hath given them
before me -- I, am I to you for a head?'
And the elders of Gilead say unto Jephthah, 'Jehovah is
hearkening between us -- if according to thy word we do not so.'
And Jephthah goeth with the elders of Gilead, and the people
set him over them for head and for captain, and Jephthah speaketh all his words
before Jehovah in Mizpeh.
And Jephthah sendeth messengers unto the king of the Bene-Ammon,
saying, 'What -- to me and to thee, that thou hast come in unto me, to fight in
And the king of the Bene-Ammon saith unto the messengers of
Jephthah, 'Because Israel took my land in his coming up out of Egypt, from Arnon,
and unto the Jabbok, and unto the Jordan; and now, restore them in peace.'
And Jephthah addeth yet and sendeth messengers unto the king
of the Bene-Ammon,
and saith to him, 'Thus said Jephthah, Israel took not the
land of Moab, and the land of the Bene-Ammon,
for in their coming up out of Egypt, Israel goeth in the
wilderness unto the Red Sea, and cometh in to Kadesh,
and Israel sendeth messengers unto the king of Edom, saying,
Let me pass over, I pray thee, through thy land, and the king of Edom hearkened
not; and also unto the king of Moab hath Israel sent, and he hath not
been willing; and Israel abideth in Kadesh,
and he goeth through the wilderness, and compasseth the land
of Edom and the land of Moab, and cometh in at the rising of the sun of the
land of Moab, and they encamp beyond Arnon, and have not come into the border
of Moab, for Arnon is the border of Moab.
'And Israel sendeth messengers unto Sihon, king of the
Amorite, king of Heshbon, and Israel saith to him, Let us pass over, we pray
thee, through thy land, unto my place,
and Sihon hath not trusted Israel to pass over through his
border, and Sihon gathereth all his people, and they encamp in Jahaz, and fight
and Jehovah, God of Israel, giveth Sihon and all his people
into the hand of Israel, and they smite them, and Israel possesseth all the
land of the Amorite, the inhabitant of that land,
and they possess all the border of the Amorite from Arnon,
and unto the Jabbok, and from the wilderness, and unto the Jordan.
'And now, Jehovah, God of Israel, hath dispossessed the
Amorite from the presence of His people Israel, and thou wouldst possess it!
That which Chemosh thy god causeth thee to possess -- dost
thou not possess it? and all that which Jehovah our God hath dispossessed from
our presence, -- it we do possess.
'And now, art thou at all better than Balak son of
Zippor, king of Moab? did he at all strive with Israel? did he at all fight
In Israel's dwelling in Heshbon and in its towns, and in
Aroer and in its towns, and in all the cities which are by the sides of
Arnon three hundred years -- and wherefore have ye not delivered them in that
And I -- I have not sinned against thee, and thou art doing
with me evil -- to fight against me. Jehovah, the Judge, doth judge to-day
between the sons of Israel and the sons of Ammon.'
And the king of the Bene-Ammon hath not hearkened unto the
words of Jephthah which he sent unto him,
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.
And Jephthah voweth a vow to Jehovah, and saith, 'If Thou
dost at all give the Bene-Ammon into my hand --
then it hath been, that which at all cometh out from the
doors of my house to meet me in my turning back in peace from the Bene-Ammon --
it hath been to Jehovah, or I have offered up for it -- a burnt-offering.'
And Jephthah passeth over unto the Bene-Ammon to fight
against them, and Jehovah giveth them into his hand,
and he smiteth them from Aroer, and unto thy going in to
Minnith, twenty cities, and unto the meadow of the vineyards -- a very great
smiting; and the Bene-Ammon are humbled at the presence of the sons of Israel.
And Jephthah cometh into Mizpeh, unto his house, and lo, his
daughter is coming out to meet him with timbrels, and with choruses, and save
her alone, he hath none, son or daughter.
And it cometh to pass, when he seeth her, that he rendeth
his garments, and saith, 'Alas, my daughter, thou hast caused me greatly to
bend, and thou hast been among those troubling me; and I -- I have opened my
mouth unto Jehovah, and I am not able to turn back.'
And she saith unto him, 'My father -- thou hast opened thy
mouth unto Jehovah, do to me as it hath gone out from thy mouth, after that
Jehovah hath done for thee vengeance on thine enemies, on the Bene-Ammon.'
And she saith unto her father, 'Let this thing be done to
me; desist from me two months, and I go on, and have gone down on the hills, and
I weep for my virginity -- I and my friends.'
And he saith, 'Go;' and he sendeth her away two months, and
she goeth, she and her friends, and she weepeth for her virginity on the hills;
and it cometh to pass at the end of two months that she
turneth back unto her father, and he doth to her his vow which he hath vowed,
and she knew not a man; and it is a statute in Israel:
from time to time the daughters of Israel go to talk to the
daughter of Jephthah the Gileadite, four days in a year.