|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
12:1-7 The Ephraimites had the same quarrel with Jephthah as with Gideon. Pride was at the bottom of the quarrel; only by that comes contention. It is ill to fasten names of reproach upon persons or countries, as is common, especially upon those under outward disadvantages. It often occasions quarrels that prove of ill consequence, as it did here. No contentions are so bitter as those between brethren or rivals for honour. What need we have to watch and pray against evil tempers! May the Lord incline all his people to follow after things which make for peace!
Verse 7. - Six years. Perhaps his sorrow for his daughter shortened his life. Then died Jephthah the Gileadite. Better, And Jephthah the Gileadite died. In one of the cities. His exact burial-place was perhaps unknown, and therefore the general phrase in the cities of Judah was used, as in Genesis 13:12. Lot is said to have dwelt in the cities of the plain, and in Nehemiah 6:2 San-ballat asked Nehemiah to meet him in the villages of the plain. Still the phrase is not what you would expect here, and it seems unlikely that Jephthah's burial-place should be unknown. The Septuagint, Vulgate, Syriac, and Arabic versions read, "in his city Gilead," as if Gilead had been the name of Jephthah's paternal city. Another conjecture is that there might have been an Ar of Gilead as well as the well-known Ar of Moab, or there might have been a collection of towns called Arey- Gilead (the towns of Gilead), after the analogy of Havoth-jair (Judges 10:4), but there is no evidence in support of these conjectures.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And Jephthah judged Israel six years,.... After the affair of the Ephraimites, he was acknowledged by all Israel as their judge and supreme governor, but did not live long; being perhaps depressed and worn away with grief, on account of his daughter, and other troubles that attended him:
then died Jephthah the Gileadite, and was buried in one of the cities of Gilead: it is not said in what city he was buried, but very probably it was in his own city Mizpeh, where he dwelt. Josephus (w) says it was in his own country, Sebee, a city of Gilead.
(w) Antiqu. l. 5. c. 7. sect. 12.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
7. Jephthah died—After a government of six years, this mighty man of valor died; and however difficult it may be for us to understand some passages in his history, he has been ranked by apostolic authority among the worthies of the ancient church. He was followed by a succession of minor judges, of whom the only memorials preserved relate to the number of their families and their state [Jud 12:8-15].
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