Judges 12:6
New International Version
they said, "All right, say 'Shibboleth.'" If he said, "Sibboleth," because he could not pronounce the word correctly, they seized him and killed him at the fords of the Jordan. Forty-two thousand Ephraimites were killed at that time.

New Living Translation
they would tell him to say "Shibboleth." If he was from Ephraim, he would say "Sibboleth," because people from Ephraim cannot pronounce the word correctly. Then they would take him and kill him at the shallow crossings of the Jordan. In all, 42,000 Ephraimites were killed at that time.

English Standard Version
they said to him, “Then say Shibboleth,” and he said, “Sibboleth,” for he could not pronounce it right. Then they seized him and slaughtered him at the fords of the Jordan. At that time 42,000 of the Ephraimites fell.

Berean Study Bible
they told him, “Please say Shibboleth.” If he said, “Sibboleth,” because he could not pronounce it correctly, they seized him and killed him at the fords of the Jordan. So at that time 42,000 Ephraimites were killed.

New American Standard Bible
then they would say to him, "Say now, 'Shibboleth.'" But he said, "Sibboleth," for he could not pronounce it correctly. Then they seized him and slew him at the fords of the Jordan. Thus there fell at that time 42,000 of Ephraim.

King James Bible
Then said they unto him, Say now Shibboleth: and he said Sibboleth: for he could not frame to pronounce it right. Then they took him, and slew him at the passages of Jordan: and there fell at that time of the Ephraimites forty and two thousand.

Christian Standard Bible
they told him, "Please say Shibboleth." If he said, "Sibboleth," because he could not pronounce it correctly, they seized him and executed him at the fords of the Jordan. At that time forty-two thousand from Ephraim died.

Contemporary English Version
The guards would then tell them to say "Shibboleth," because they knew that people of Ephraim could say "Sibboleth," but not "Shibboleth." If the man said "Sibboleth," the guards would grab him and kill him right there. Altogether, 42,000 men from Ephraim were killed in the battle and at the Jordan.

Good News Translation
they would tell him to say "Shibboleth." But he would say "Sibboleth," because he could not pronounce it correctly. Then they would grab him and kill him there at one of the Jordan River crossings. At that time forty-two thousand of the Ephraimites were killed.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
they told him, "Please say Shibboleth." If he said, "Sibboleth," because he could not pronounce it correctly, they seized him and killed him at the fords of the Jordan. At that time 42,000 from Ephraim died.

International Standard Version
they would order him, "Pronounce the word 'Shibboleth' right now." If he said "Sibboleth," not being able to pronounce it correctly, they would seize him and slaughter him there at the fords of the Jordan River. During those days 42,000 descendants of Ephraim died that way.

NET Bible
then they said to him, "Say 'Shibboleth!'" If he said, "Sibboleth" (and could not pronounce the word correctly), they grabbed him and executed him right there at the fords of the Jordan. On that day forty-two thousand Ephraimites fell dead.

New Heart English Bible
then they said to him, "Now say 'Shibboleth;'" and he said "Sibboleth"; for he couldn't manage to pronounce it right: then they seized him, and killed him at the fords of the Jordan. There fell at that time of Ephraim forty-two thousand.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
they would tell him, "Say the word [shibboleth]." If the fugitive would say [sibboleth], because he couldn't pronounce the word correctly, they would grab him and kill him at the shallow crossings of the Jordan River. At that time 42,000 men from Ephraim died.

JPS Tanakh 1917
then said they unto him: 'Say now Shibboleth'; and he said 'Sibboleth'; for he could not frame to pronounce it right; then they laid hold on him, and slew him at the fords of the Jordan; and there fell at that time of Ephraim forty and two thousand.

New American Standard 1977
then they would say to him, “Say now, ‘Shibboleth.’” But he said, “Sibboleth,” for he could not pronounce it correctly. Then they seized him and slew him at the fords of the Jordan. Thus there fell at that time 42,000 of Ephraim.

Jubilee Bible 2000
then they would say unto him, Now say Shibboleth. {Heb. a flowing stream}. And he would say Sibboleth; {Heb. an ear of wheat}; for he could not pronounce it the same. Then they would take him and slay him at the passages of the Jordan. And at that time forty-two thousand of those of Ephraim fell.

King James 2000 Bible
Then said they unto him, Say now Shibboleth: and he said Sibboleth: for he could not pronounce it right. Then they took him, and slew him at the fords of Jordan: and there fell at that time of the Ephraimites forty and two thousand.

American King James Version
Then said they to him, Say now Shibboleth: and he said Sibboleth: for he could not frame to pronounce it right. Then they took him, and slew him at the passages of Jordan: and there fell at that time of the Ephraimites forty and two thousand.

American Standard Version
then said they unto him, Say now Shibboleth; and he said Sibboleth; for he could not frame to pronounce it right: then they laid hold on him, and slew him at the fords of the Jordan. And there fell at that time of Ephraim forty and two thousand.

Brenton Septuagint Translation
Then they said to him, Say now Stachys; and he did not rightly pronounce it so: and they took him, and slew him at the fords of Jordan; and there fell at that time of Ephraim two and forty thousand.

Douay-Rheims Bible
They asked him: Say then, Scibboleth, which is interpreted, An ear of corn. But he answered, Sibboleth, not being able to express an ear of corn by the same letter. Then presently they took him and killed him in the very passage of the Jordan. And there fell at that time of Ephraim two and forty thousand.

Darby Bible Translation
Then they said to him, Say now Shibboleth! and he said, Sibboleth, and did not manage to pronounce [it] rightly. Then they took him, and slaughtered him at the fords of the Jordan. And there fell at that time of Ephraim forty-two thousand.

English Revised Version
then said they unto him, Say now Shibboleth; and he said Sibboleth; for he could not frame to pronounce it right; then they laid hold on him, and slew him at the fords of Jordan: and there fell at that time of Ephraim forty and two thousand.

Webster's Bible Translation
Then said they to him, Say now Shibboleth: and he said Sibboleth: for he could not frame to pronounce it right. Then they took him, and slew him at the passages of Jordan. And there fell at that time of the Ephraimites forty and two thousand.

World English Bible
then they said to him, "Now say 'Shibboleth;'" and he said "Sibboleth;" for he couldn't manage to pronounce it right: then they laid hold of him, and killed him at the fords of the Jordan. At that time, forty-two thousand of Ephraim fell.

Young's Literal Translation
that they say to him, 'Say, I pray thee, Shibboleth;' and he saith, 'Sibboleth,' and is not prepared to speak right -- and they seize him, and slaughter him at the passages of the Jordan, and there fall at that time, of Ephraim, forty and two chiefs.
Study Bible
Jephthah Defeats Ephraim
5The Gileadites captured the fords of the Jordan leading to Ephraim, and whenever a fugitive from Ephraim would say, “Let me cross over,” the Gileadites would ask him, “Are you an Ephraimite?” If he answered, “No,” 6they told him, “Please say Shibboleth.” If he said, “Sibboleth,” because he could not pronounce it correctly, they seized him and killed him at the fords of the Jordan. So at that time 42,000 Ephraimites were killed. 7Jephthah judged Israel six years, and when he died, he was buried in one of the cities of Gilead.…
Cross References
Judges 12:5
The Gileadites captured the fords of the Jordan leading to Ephraim, and whenever a fugitive from Ephraim would say, "Let me cross over," the Gileadites would ask him, "Are you an Ephraimite?" If he answered, "No,"

Judges 12:7
Jephthah judged Israel six years, and when he died, he was buried in one of the cities of Gilead.

Treasury of Scripture

Then said they to him, Say now Shibboleth: and he said Sibboleth: for he could not frame to pronounce it right. Then they took him, and slew him at the passages of Jordan: and there fell at that time of the Ephraimites forty and two thousand.

Say now.

Matthew 26:73
And after a while came unto him they that stood by, and said to Peter, Surely thou also art one of them; for thy speech bewrayeth thee.

Mark 14:70
And he denied it again. And a little after, they that stood by said again to Peter, Surely thou art one of them: for thou art a Galilaean, and thy speech agreeth thereto.

Shibboleth.

Psalm 69:2,15
I sink in deep mire, where there is no standing: I am come into deep waters, where the floods overflow me…

Isaiah 27:12
And it shall come to pass in that day, that the LORD shall beat off from the channel of the river unto the stream of Egypt, and ye shall be gathered one by one, O ye children of Israel.

Shibboleth.

Job 24:24
They are exalted for a little while, but are gone and brought low; they are taken out of the way as all other, and cut off as the tops of the ears of corn.

and sibboleth signifies a burden.

Exodus 6:6
Wherefore say unto the children of Israel, I am the LORD, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will rid you out of their bondage, and I will redeem you with a stretched out arm, and with great judgments:

Proverbs 17:14
The beginning of strife is as when one letteth out water: therefore leave off contention, before it be meddled with.

Proverbs 18:19
A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city: and their contentions are like the bars of a castle.

Ecclesiastes 10:12
The words of a wise man's mouth are gracious; but the lips of a fool will swallow up himself.

forty.

#NAME?#NAME?

Numbers 26:37
These are the families of the sons of Ephraim according to those that were numbered of them, thirty and two thousand and five hundred. These are the sons of Joseph after their families.

#NAME?#NAME?






Lexicon
they told him,
וַיֹּ֣אמְרוּ (way·yō·mə·rū)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Consecutive imperfect - third person masculine plural
Strong's Hebrew 559: To utter, say

“Please
נָ֨א (nā)
Interjection
Strong's Hebrew 4994: I pray', 'now', 'then'

say
אֱמָר־ (’ĕ·mār-)
Verb - Qal - Imperative - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 559: To utter, say

Shibboleth.”
שִׁבֹּ֜לֶת (šib·bō·leṯ)
Noun - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 7641: A stream, an ear of grain, a branch

If he said,
וַיֹּ֣אמֶר (way·yō·mer)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Consecutive imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 559: To utter, say

“Sibboleth,”
סִבֹּ֗לֶת (sib·bō·leṯ)
Noun - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 5451: Probably an ear (of wheat, etcetera)

because he could
יָכִין֙ (yā·ḵîn)
Verb - Hifil - Imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3559: To be erect

not
וְלֹ֤א (wə·lō)
Conjunctive waw | Adverb - Negative particle
Strong's Hebrew 3808: Not, no

pronounce
לְדַבֵּ֣ר (lə·ḏab·bêr)
Preposition-l | Verb - Piel - Infinitive construct
Strong's Hebrew 1696: To arrange, to speak, to subdue

it correctly,
כֵּ֔ן (kên)
Adjective - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3651: So -- thus

they seized
וַיֹּאחֲז֣וּ (way·yō·ḥă·zū)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Consecutive imperfect - third person masculine plural
Strong's Hebrew 270: To grasp, take hold, take possession

him and killed
וַיִּשְׁחָט֖וּהוּ (way·yiš·ḥā·ṭū·hū)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Consecutive imperfect - third person masculine plural | third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 7819: To slaughter, beat

him at
אֶל־ (’el-)
Preposition
Strong's Hebrew 413: Near, with, among, to

the fords
מַעְבְּר֣וֹת (ma‘·bə·rō·wṯ)
Noun - feminine plural construct
Strong's Hebrew 4569: A crossing-place, a transit, overwhelming

of the Jordan.
הַיַּרְדֵּ֑ן (hay·yar·dên)
Article | Noun - proper - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3383: Jordan -- the principal river of Palestine

So at that
הַהִיא֙ (ha·hî)
Article | Pronoun - third person feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 1931: He, self, the same, this, that, as, are

time
בָּעֵ֤ת (bā·‘êṯ)
Preposition-b, Article | Noun - common singular
Strong's Hebrew 6256: Time, now, when

42,000
אַרְבָּעִ֥ים (’ar·bā·‘îm)
Number - common plural
Strong's Hebrew 705: Forty

Ephraimites
מֵֽאֶפְרַ֔יִם (mê·’ep̄·ra·yim)
Preposition-m | Noun - proper - masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 669: Ephraim -- a son of Joseph, also his descendants and their territory

were killed.
וַיִּפֹּ֞ל (way·yip·pōl)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Consecutive imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 5307: To fall, lie
(6) Say now Shibboleth.--The word means "ford;" (Psalm 69:2) "depth of waters;" (Judges 12:15) "water flood;" (Isaiah 27:12) "channel." The LXX. render it (Cod. B) "an ear of corn" ( Vulg., quod interpretatur spica), and the word might have this meaning also (as it has in Genesis 41:5), because the root from which it is derived means both "to flow" and "to spring." In the Alexandrian MS. of the LXX. the rendering is, "Tell us then the watchword;" but that is rather an explanation than a translation.

And he said Sibboleth.--

"And how ingrateful Ephraim

Had dealt with Jephthah--who by argument

Not worse than by his shield and spear

Defended Israel from the Ammonite

Had not his prowess quelled their pride

In that sore battle where so many died,

Without reprieve, adjudged to death

For want of well pronouncing Shibboleth."

Milton, Sams. Agon. 282-289.

The word Shibboleth has become a proverb for the minute differences which religious parties thrust into exaggerated prominence, and defend with internecine ferocity. In this instance, however, the defective pronunciation was not the reason for putting men to death, but only the sign that the man is an Ephraimite. In theological warfare the differences of watchword or utterance have sometimes been the actual cause of the hatred and persecution; and sometimes the two opposing parties have been in agreement in every single essential fact, but have simply preferred other formulae to express it, which has failed to cause any diminution in the fierceness of opinions. "It was," says South, "the very shibboleth of the party, nothing being so much in fashion with them as the name, nor more out of fashion, and out of sight too, as the thing itself" (Sermons, 6:128).

For he could not frame to pronounce it right.�--This is a most singular circumstance, and it is one which, if it stood alone, would have decisive weight in the question of chronology. Nothing is more natural or more analogous with common linguistic phenomena than that differences of dialect and pronunciation should develop themselves between tribes divided by the deep barrier of the Jordan valley; and these differences would arise all the more rapidly if the Eastern tribes were powerfully subjected to Syrian and other foreign influences. (Comp. Nehemiah 13:24.) Still, it must have required a certain lapse of time before a difference so marked as the inability of the Western tribes to pronounce the letter sh could have arisen ( Vulg., eadem litera spicam exprimere non valens). Cassel quotes an interesting parallel from the war of the Flemish against the French. On May 25, 1802, all the French were detected by their inability to pronounce the words Scilt ende friend. In the LXX. and Vulg. Shibboleth could not be reproduced, because the sound sh is unknown in Greek and Latin. Hence the LXX. use stachus, "wheat-ear," for Shibboleth, and leave out Sibboleth altogether.

Slew him.--We might wish that the meaning were that assigned to the word by the Arabic version, "they led him across." The word means, rather, massacred, butchered; Vulg., jugulabant. (Comp. Jeremiah 39:6.) The LXX. render it "sacrificed"--almost as though each Ephraimite were regarded as a human sacrifice.

Forty and two thousand.--This immense �slaughter effectually reduced the strength and arrogance of this overweening tribe. It is not, of course, meant that 42,000 were butchered at the fords, but only that that was the number of the invading army, or the number of those who fell in the campaign.

Verse 6. - Say now Shibboleth, etc. We have thus, as it were, accidentally preserved to us a curious dialectical difference between the Ephraimites and the inhabitants of Gilead. A similar difference exists at the present day between the pronunciation of the inhabitants of different parts of Germany. What the Hanoverians call stein, a stone, the other Germans call shtein. Shibboleth means both an ear of corn and a stream. Forty and two thousand. It is possible that the war between Jephthah and the Ephraimites may have lasted a considerable time, though only the single incident of the slaughter at the fords of Jordan is mentioned, so that the large number of 42,000 men may be less improbable than it seems at first sight. There is, however, always some doubt as to the correctness of numbers (see 1 Samuel 6:19). 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!
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Alphabetical: All and at because But correctly could Ephraim Ephraimites fell for fords Forty-two he him If it Jordan killed not now of pronounce right said say seized Shibboleth Sibboleth slew that the then there they thousand Thus time to were word would

OT History: Judges 12:6 Then said they to him Say now (Jd Judg. Jdg) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools
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