JEPHTHAH AND HIS DAUGHTER
Dr. Miles Seaborn
INTRO. "Prosperity," says Bacon, "is the blessing of
the Old Testament, but adversity if the blessing of
the New Testament."
Long ago Dr. Law questioned, "How many saints has
adversity and hard times sent to heaven, and how many
poor sinners has prosperity plunged into everlasting
ILL. How many men would never have been brought
low had they not been prospered and/or a woman
who is envied for her beauty may owe all her
misery and problems to it and another may be
forever happy because she doesn't have many
admirers of her beauty.
Albert Bengal, preacher of old, said, "Adversity
transfers our affections to Christ."
Caius was a great Greek philosopher, raised an orphan.
He said, "There are many disadvantages to being raised
an orphan, but it does not hinder a man from becoming
honest and excelling in every virtue."
In Bible commentaries, no man is more infamous the
Jepthah. His life and his story are recorded in the
11 Chapter of Judges. Someone said, he was the most
ill-used man in all the Old Testament, and that he
continues to be the most completely misunderstood,
misrepresented, and ill-used man down to this present
From his life and that of his nameless daughter, there
are great truths and practical application to be
I. HIS SITUATION. Judges 11:1-3
1. His mother was a harlot. Deut. 23:2. God's
Word told of this "portion" of a child born out
of wedlock - (an attempt to keep pure the
children of God). Then of his life - buffeted
about from his birth by his brothers. Trampled
on by all men, but most of all by the men in his
father's house. Called all kinds of names. His
mother dead; a situation of sorrow and potential
self-pit and rebellion.
2. He was an outcast. - If at the death of his
father, Jephthah had gotten his proper portion of
his father's goods, then he might have become as
great a prodigal as his brother became, but the
law of an earthly inheritance was to Jephthah as
it has been to many men since his day, "The
gaining of an inheritance incorruptible and
undefiled, eternal in the heavens."
We don't glorify injustice here, we try to
manifest faith! i.e. "looking at life situations,
experiences as God sees them," Joseph's words
ring out, "you meant it for evil, but God meant
or turned it to good.
So he was thrust out (forceful word - thrown out
as a young frightened man).
What was his situation? He could have cursed
God, others, spent his life living on "the
perimeter of the family, rebellious, bitter,
counting for nothing. Like some who would rather
"curse the darkness than light a candle."
II. HIS SERVICE - 11:3-10
1. Gathered vain fellows, light or ill-thought
of - 1 Sam. 22:2, but Biblical description of
"vain fellows," the neurotics of the kingdom.
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