About Jesus Steve Sweetman
And Ephraim (ch. 12:1 - 7)
we've seen before, verse 1 shows the dissension between the tribes of
the fractioning of Israel, there was the north south divide, and again, it was Ephraim in the
north that was the main tribe. There
was also the east west divide. Two
and a half tribes on the east side of the
see in verses 2 and 3 that Jephthah did indeed ask Ephraim for help but
Ephraim refused. Israel's fractured society caused a lack of cooperation among the tribes.
As I've said before, the book of Judges may be Israeli history,
but it is also a picture of the church over the centuries.
The church has been and still is very fractured and cooperation
among different church groups is few and far between.
verses 4 to 6 we see this division get worse. Jephthah's army fought
those from Ephraim and killed 42,000 men, and why?
It appears only because of what Ephraim said, not anything they
had done. We see in verse 4
that Ephraim called the Gileads "renegades", and for this, it
appears that Jephthah went to war.
the word "shibboleth". It
means "to cross over'. Jephthah
and his men asked those who came to the fords of the
point out the fact that Jephthah wasn't always the nicest of a person,
and this shows that. They
say he should not have taken things to this extreme.
Basically, it appears that he
killed 42,000 people over words spoken to him that he didn't like.
7 tells us that Jephthah led Israel
6 years, which wasn't many years compared to many of the other judges.
Maybe his time was shortened because of some of the things he had
need to note that though the Lord called men like Jephthah to be judges,
to save Israel, all these men have their faults. None
were perfect. Most were far
from perfect. God used them
is something to say about the progressive revelation of God and His will
here. Many people struggle
over many things that happened in the Old Testament.
They say, "how could God bless a man like this"?
Or, "why does God overlook certain sins, like the fact that
Israeli men had their concubines".
If you read the speech of the apostle Paul in Acts 17 you will
note that He said God "overlooked such ignorance", meaning,
that God overlooked certain things in the past.
Paul goes on to say that this has changed.
With the appearance of Jesus into humanity, all men everywhere
must repent. God no longer
overlooks such ignorance. God
throughout the Old Testament revealed Himself and His ways in a
progressive fashion, but in Jesus, He has revealed all we need to know
of Him. The progressive
revelation of God and His will ends with Jesus.
Elon, And Abdon (ch. 12:8 - 15)
verses 8 through 15 we see 3 more judges mentioned, probably only for
the historical record because little is said of them other than how long