And it came to pass in process of time, that the children of Ammon made war against Israel.…
In the behaviour of Jephthah on this occasion we have a noble illustration of the blending of the religious and the patriotic spirit.
I. PERSONAL WRONGS ARE FORGIVEN. He might have brooded over them, sulked, and rejoiced over the elders in their trouble. But he felt that his country's distress was not a time or occasion for revenging the contumely and wrong that were past. This is the true spirit of the patriot. The individual is lost in the commonwealth.
II. HIS COUNTRY'S NEED IS GENEROUSLY RESPONDED TO. What an opportunity for an. unprincipled, irreligious man! He might have turned Israel's loss to his own gain.
III. HIS OWN FORTUNES ARE LOST SIGHT OF IN THE GREATER AMBITION Of BEING THE SAVIOUR OF HIS COUNTRY. Rank he does not value. He refuses leadership until it is shown that he is the Divinely revealed leader. He gives all the honour to Jehovah. From that moment he was at the service of his people, and the unselfish "servant of Jehovah." Men are found who will behave thus for earthly fatherlands and temporal attachments. Often the human tie and the Divine conflict. Jephthah was serving God and country at once. The Christian will serve his friends and his country best by serving God first. How dear should the Church and kingdom of God on earth be to us! All other considerations should be lost sight of in the zeal for our Master's glory. - M.
Parallel VersesKJV: And it came to pass in process of time, that the children of Ammon made war against Israel.