Judges 11:12-40 The Foolish Promise

“For I have given my word to the LORD, and I cannot go back on it.” Judges 11:35

In our text this week we will see the great victory given to Jephthah and the Israelites. This is a clear picture of spiritual power and victory achieved through the presence of the Lord. The Scripture describes how Jephthah went about making preparations for the war and briefly describes the victory won.

Preparations were made to fight the war. The Lord’s Spirit came upon Jephthah and empowered him to command the army as they advanced against the Ammonites. Notice what happened someplace along the way: Jephthah made a special vow to the Lord. If the Lord gave him victory, he promised to dedicate to the Lord the very first person that came out of his house to greet him when he returned in triumph. He promised to give the person as a gift to the Lord and to offer a very special sacrifice in a burnt offering. Exactly what happened will be discussed during the message as some lengthy explanation is necessary.

The Lord gave the Israelites a great, stunning victory over the Ammonites, and the victory involved the destruction of 20 cities and the utter defeat of the enemy. This astonishing conquest brought peace to the East Jordan tribes in the land of Gilead, allowing the Israelites to live in the security and peace for which their hearts so longed. It was the Lord who gave victory to Jephthah and the Israelites. And the Lord will give victory to us – victory over all the enemies who oppose us. There are enemies who attack us, strong enemies who attempt to defeat and destroy us.

There are physical and spiritual enemies such as grief, gluttony, addictions, loneliness, depression, abuse, persecution and a host of others. There is no limit to the list of enemies who oppose us, trying to defeat and destroy us. But there is glorious, wonderful news: the Lord can give us the power to conquer all enemies. We can be triumphant throughout life, conquering whatever it is that opposes us. But we must remember victory is in the Lord. It is the Lord and the Lord alone who can give us the power to walk through life as conquerors and victors. Triumphant victory is ours through the Lord.

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