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The Daughter of Jephthah

Happy April!

I was listening to my Bible app and this passage came across my ears. I thought, I need to stop and take some notes about this one. I hope you enjoy it.

Then the Spirit of the Lord came upon Jephthah, and he passed through Gilead and Manasseh, and passed through Mizpah of Gilead; and from Mizpah of Gilead he advanced toward the people of Ammon. And Jephthah made a vow to the Lord, and said, “If You will indeed deliver the people of Ammon into my hands, then it will be that whatever comes out of the doors of my house to meet me, when I return in peace from the people of Ammon, shall surely be the Lord’s, and I will offer it up as a burnt offering.” So Jephthah advanced toward the people of Ammon to fight against them, and the Lord delivered them into his hands. And he defeated them from Aroer as far as Minnith—twenty cities—and to Abel Keramim, with a very great slaughter. Thus the people of Ammon were subdued before the children of Israel. When Jephthah came to his house at Mizpah, there was his daughter, coming out to meet him with timbrels and dancing; and she was his only child. Besides her he had neither son nor daughter. And it came to pass, when he saw her, that he tore his clothes, and said, “Alas, my daughter! You have brought me very low! You are among those who trouble me! For I have given my word to the Lord, and I cannot go back on it.” So she said to him, “My father, if you have given your word to the Lord, do to me according to what has gone out of your mouth, because the Lord has avenged you of your enemies, the people of Ammon.” Then she said to her father, “Let this thing be done for me: let me alone for two months, that I may go and wander on the mountains and bewail my virginity, my friends and I.” So he said, “Go.” And he sent her away for two months; and she went with her friends, and bewailed her virginity on the mountains. And it was so at the end of two months that she returned to her father, and he carried out his vow with her which he had vowed. She knew no man. And it became a custom in Israel that the daughters of Israel went four days each year to lament the daughter of Jephthah the Gileadite.

-Judges 11:29-40 NKJV

What a story!! A father prayed and made maybe an unnecessary vow to the Lord out of desperation that later would cost him his own daughter. Yet, victory prevailed.

Could you imagine the blow he felt? He mentioned being low in spirit after seeing who came out of his home that day. His bloodline was no longer, all for the sake of victory that day. Yet, his daughter said “do to me according to what has gone out of your mouth. But let me go and grieve my virginity before I leave this earth completely.” Sometimes your parental decision can affect your future generations.

Something that you will notice the more you read the Bible is all the way through there are repeated stories and patterns of some happenings. Some may call them full circle moments. Here is an example. This story reminded me of another story in the New Testament about how a man named Jesus came to be with us. His Heavenly Father had to allow Him to be sacrificed for the greater good of humanity and access to our forever home in eternity.

The whole time writing this blog, all I could hear is the song Daughters by John Mayer. Here are a few of those lyrics.

In summary,

Fathers be good to your daughters

Daughters will love like you do


On behalf of every man

Looking out for every girl

You are the guide and the weight of her world.

So, fathers, keep weighing in with your daughter, for what you pour in matters! If you choose to grow them, then show them. Get to know them. Don’t just direct them with words. Go with them and do good deeds. For, the time you spend is priceless and memories they will cherish, especially if done through the eyes of nurturing fun (teachable moments without all the fussy expectations).

Well, this one came out of left field for me, but I have enjoyed processing this story with you here today.

Until next time,

Stay Tender

Connect to the Mender

Be a Sender

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Apr 05, 2022

Whoa... this story is heavy. Makes me really think about what vows we make to God. Also makes me thankful for the sacrifice of Jesus so we don't make our own offerings.


Mary JackO'Well
Mary JackO'Well
Apr 05, 2022

What unwavering faith in God and her father's word. This brings to mind Mary, the day the angel gave her the news of Jesus...Mary did not hesitate with God's will, she immediately agreed ..Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” And then the angel left her.

Luke 1:38 NLT

These women were selfless. They accepted out of faith God's plan to bring peace and unity to this broken world.

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