12The men of Ephraim were called to arms, and they crossed to Zaphon and said to Jephthah, Why did you cross over to fight against the Ammonites, and did not call us to go with you? We will burn your house down over you! 2Jephthah said to them, My people and I were engaged in conflict with the Ammonites who oppressed us* severely. But when I called you, you did not deliver me from their hand. 3When I saw that you would not deliver me, I took my life in my hand, and crossed over against the Ammonites, and the Lord gave them into my hand. Why then have you come up to me this day, to fight against me? 4Then Jephthah gathered all the men of Gilead and fought with Ephraim; and the men of Gilead defeated Ephraim, because they said, You are fugitives from Ephraim, you Gileaditesin the heart of Ephraim and Manasseh.* 5Then the Gileadites took the fords of the Jordan against the Ephraimites. Whenever one of the fugitives of Ephraim said, Let me go over, the men of Gilead would say to him, Are you an Ephraimite? When he said, No, 6they said to him, Then say Shibboleth, and he said, Sibboleth, for he could not pronounce it right. Then they seized him and killed him at the fords of the Jordan. Forty-two thousand of the Ephraimites fell at that time.
7 Jephthah judged Israel for six years. Then Jephthah the Gileadite died, and was buried in his town in Gilead.*
The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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10 February 2011