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Jephthah's vow

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  • Jephthah's vow

    Was Jephthah's daughter really sacrificed in that she was killed or does this "sacrifice" refer to something else?



    Now the Spirit of the Lord came upon Jephthah, so that he passed through Gilead and Manasseh; then he passed through Mizpah of Gilead, and from Mizpah of Gilead he went on to the sons of Ammon. Jephthah made a vow to the Lord and said, “If You will indeed give the sons of Ammon into my hand, then it shall be that whatever comes out of the doors of my house to meet me when I return in peace from the sons of Ammon, it shall be the Lord’s, and I will offer it up as a burnt offering.” So Jephthah crossed over to the sons of Ammon to fight against them; and the Lord gave them into his hand. He struck them with a very great slaughter from Aroer to the entrance of Minnith, twenty cities, and as far as Abel-keramim. So the sons of Ammon were subdued before the sons of Israel. When Jephthah came to his house at Mizpah, behold, his daughter was coming out to meet him with tambourines and with dancing. Now she was his one and only child; besides her he had no son or daughter. When he saw her, he tore his clothes and said, “Alas, my daughter! You have brought me very low, and you are among those who trouble me; for I have given my word to the Lord, and I cannot take it back.” So she said to him, “My father, you have given your word to the Lord; do to me as you have said, since the Lord has avenged you of your enemies, the sons of Ammon.” She said to her father, “Let this thing be done for me; let me alone two months, that I may go to the mountains and weep because of my virginity, I and my companions.” Then he said, “Go.” So he sent her away for two months; and she left with her companions, and wept on the mountains because of her virginity. At the end of two months she returned to her father, who did to her according to the vow which he had made; and she had no relations with a man. Thus it became a custom in Israel, that the daughters of Israel went yearly to commemorate the daughter of Jephthah the Gileadite four days in the year. (Judges 11:29-40, NASB)

  • #2
    JP holds to the thesis that she wasn't sacrificed, but devoted to a life of temple service which would mean she was a virgin for her entire life

    http://www.tektonics.org/gk/jepthah.php <-- page has an error at the moment.

    Last edited by Raphael; 04-15-2014, 09:47 PM.
    "If you can ever make any major religion look absolutely ludicrous, chances are you haven't understood it"
    -Ravi Zacharias, The New Age: A foreign bird with a local walk

    Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.
    1 Corinthians 16:13

    "...he [Doherty] is no historian and he is not even conversant with the historical discussions of the very matters he wants to pontificate on."
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    • #3
      Having said that, Paul Copan indicates that most scholars do hold that it was a literal human sacrifice.
      "I am not angered that the Moral Majority boys campaign against abortion. I am angry when the same men who say, "Save OUR children" bellow "Build more and bigger bombers." That's right! Blast the children in other nations into eternity, or limbless misery as they lay crippled from "OUR" bombers! This does not jell." - Leonard Ravenhill

      Comment


      • #4
        Saying that it was "temple service" basically assumes that God approves of nuns, and I disagree with that premise. Further, there's just nothing in the text to support it.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Obsidian View Post
          Saying that it was "temple service" basically assumes that God approves of nuns, and I disagree with that premise. Further, there's just nothing in the text to support it.
          Wouldn't what Hannah did seem like temple service as well?
          "I am not angered that the Moral Majority boys campaign against abortion. I am angry when the same men who say, "Save OUR children" bellow "Build more and bigger bombers." That's right! Blast the children in other nations into eternity, or limbless misery as they lay crippled from "OUR" bombers! This does not jell." - Leonard Ravenhill

          Comment


          • #6
            The point is that these Catholic sympathizers try to use the "virginity" of Jephthah's daughter to advocate the vow of celibacy. The Bible makes it clear that Samuel both worked in the tabernacle, and had sons.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Obsidian View Post
              Saying that it was "temple service" basically assumes that God approves of nuns, and I disagree with that premise. Further, there's just nothing in the text to support it.
              How do you know that God disapproves of nuns?

              Comment


              • #8
                The only vows that God accepted are found in Numbers 6 and Leviticus 27. Do not add to his word, lest you be found a liar. They all involve giving something to God, not taking something from yourself for its own sake. And at least indirectly, they all relate in some way to killing animals, strongly suggesting that they are no longer applicable anyway.

                1 Timothy 4
                4 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
                2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
                3 Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.

                Deuteronomy 23
                1 He that is wounded in the stones, or hath his privy member cut off, shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord.

                1 Corinthians 7
                9 But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.

                1 Corinthians 9
                5 Have we not power to lead about a sister, a wife, as well as other apostles, and as the brethren of the Lord, and Cephas?

                1 Timothy 5
                14 I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully.
                15 For some are already turned aside after Satan.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Obsidian View Post
                  The point is that these Catholic sympathizers try to use the "virginity" of Jephthah's daughter to advocate the vow of celibacy. The Bible makes it clear that Samuel both worked in the tabernacle, and had sons.
                  I'm sure JP will be thrilled to learn he's a Catholic sympathizer.
                  Enter the Church and wash away your sins. For here there is a hospital and not a court of law. Do not be ashamed to enter the Church; be ashamed when you sin, but not when you repent. – St. John Chrysostom

                  Veritas vos Liberabit<>< Learn Greek <>< Look here for an Orthodox Church in America<><Ancient Faith Radio
                  sigpic
                  I recommend you do not try too hard and ...research as little as possible. Such weighty things give me a headache. - Shunyadragon, Baha'i apologist

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Obsidian View Post
                    The only vows that God accepted are found in Numbers 6 and Leviticus 27. Do not add to his word, lest you be found a liar. They all involve giving something to God, not taking something from yourself for its own sake. And at least indirectly, they all relate in some way to killing animals, strongly suggesting that they are no longer applicable anyway.

                    1 Timothy 4
                    4 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
                    2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
                    3 Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.

                    Deuteronomy 23
                    1 He that is wounded in the stones, or hath his privy member cut off, shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord.

                    1 Corinthians 7
                    9 But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.

                    1 Corinthians 9
                    5 Have we not power to lead about a sister, a wife, as well as other apostles, and as the brethren of the Lord, and Cephas?

                    1 Timothy 5
                    14 I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully.
                    15 For some are already turned aside after Satan.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Bad Pig
                      I'm sure JP will be thrilled to learn he's a Catholic sympathizer.
                      He also promotes works-salvation with his "Semitic Totality Concept" salvation. And I would not exactly call him Orthodox on the doctrine of hell. Not my ideal theologian.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Obsidian View Post
                        The only vows that God accepted are found in Numbers 6 and Leviticus 27. Do not add to his word, lest you be found a liar. They all involve giving something to God, not taking something from yourself for its own sake. And at least indirectly, they all relate in some way to killing animals, strongly suggesting that they are no longer applicable anyway.
                        Everything in the Mosaic Covenant related at least indirectly in some way to killing animals.
                        1 Timothy 4
                        4 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
                        2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
                        3 Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.
                        This is talking about forbidding everyone to marry, not people voluntarily not marrying.
                        Deuteronomy 23
                        1 He that is wounded in the stones, or hath his privy member cut off, shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord.
                        This has nothing to do with marriage, and nobody is advocating that monastics mutilate themselves first.
                        1 Corinthians 7
                        9 But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.
                        It takes a certain amount of chutzpah to invoke a passage that begins, "It is good for a man not to touch a woman" against the idea of voluntary celibacy.
                        1 Corinthians 9
                        5 Have we not power to lead about a sister, a wife, as well as other apostles, and as the brethren of the Lord, and Cephas?
                        What does this have do to with voluntary celibacy?
                        1 Timothy 5
                        14 I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully.
                        15 For some are already turned aside after Satan.
                        The word "women" is not in the Greek, but is supplied for clarity. However, the whole passage is talking about widows specifically, not women in general. Most translations, like the NASB you also approve, have "widows" there.
                        Enter the Church and wash away your sins. For here there is a hospital and not a court of law. Do not be ashamed to enter the Church; be ashamed when you sin, but not when you repent. – St. John Chrysostom

                        Veritas vos Liberabit<>< Learn Greek <>< Look here for an Orthodox Church in America<><Ancient Faith Radio
                        sigpic
                        I recommend you do not try too hard and ...research as little as possible. Such weighty things give me a headache. - Shunyadragon, Baha'i apologist

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Obsidian View Post
                          He also promotes works-salvation with his "Semitic Totality Concept" salvation.
                          I'm sure he'd find this allegation amusing.
                          And I would not exactly call him Orthodox on the doctrine of hell. Not my ideal theologian.
                          His explanation of hell is quite compatible with Orthodoxy, even though he isn't Orthodox. I'm guessing you didn't mean to capitalize that, however.
                          Enter the Church and wash away your sins. For here there is a hospital and not a court of law. Do not be ashamed to enter the Church; be ashamed when you sin, but not when you repent. – St. John Chrysostom

                          Veritas vos Liberabit<>< Learn Greek <>< Look here for an Orthodox Church in America<><Ancient Faith Radio
                          sigpic
                          I recommend you do not try too hard and ...research as little as possible. Such weighty things give me a headache. - Shunyadragon, Baha'i apologist

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Bad Pig
                            The word "women" is not in the Greek, but is supplied for clarity. However, the whole passage is talking about widows specifically, not women in general. Most translations, like the NASB you also approve, have "widows" there.
                            So only widows should avoid becoming nuns?

                            It takes a certain amount of chutzpah to invoke a passage that begins, "It is good for a man not to touch a woman" against the idea of voluntary celibacy.
                            How is it voluntary if they're under bondage? What is the point of the vow, if it's "voluntary"?

                            This has nothing to do with marriage, and nobody is advocating that monastics mutilate themselves first.
                            Didn't one of the holy "Church Fathers" do just that? Anyway, the point is that standing in the way of marriage is a pagan concept.

                            Everything in the Mosaic Covenant related at least indirectly in some way to killing animals.
                            It would be my position that all vows, which were implemented to support the aaronic temple priesthood, are now invalid because the Bible classifies all new testament believers as priests. But that is a side issue to this discussion. The point is that even the old testament law, under which Jephthah operated, did not allow for vows of celibacy. So the idea proposed in JP Holding's video is incorrect.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Obsidian View Post
                              So only widows should avoid becoming nuns?
                              Paul is not arguing for or against celibacy in the passage. The church was enjoined to support widows. Young widows were taking license with that and being idle busybodies. As a solution to that problem, Paul recommends that they get married instead of being freeloaders. Nuns are typically not idle busybodies, and so are not being addressed here.
                              How is it voluntary if they're under bondage? What is the point of the vow, if it's "voluntary"?
                              What the heck are you talking about? All vows are voluntary.
                              Didn't one of the holy "Church Fathers" do just that?
                              Origen apparently did that, and was roundly castigated for doing so. He is regarded as a Church Father, but not as a saint.
                              Anyway, the point is that standing in the way of marriage is a pagan concept.
                              Who's standing in the way of marriage? And how is that pagan?
                              It would be my position that all vows, which were implemented to support the aaronic temple priesthood, are now invalid because the Bible classifies all new testament believers as priests. But that is a side issue to this discussion. The point is that even the old testament law, under which Jephthah operated, did not allow for vows of celibacy. So the idea proposed in JP Holding's video is incorrect.
                              Old Testament law did no such thing. There are examples of certain vows made as part of the Mosaic covenant, but that doesn't mean other vows were not allowed. Numbers 30 regulates other vows, which were not restricted in scope.
                              Enter the Church and wash away your sins. For here there is a hospital and not a court of law. Do not be ashamed to enter the Church; be ashamed when you sin, but not when you repent. – St. John Chrysostom

                              Veritas vos Liberabit<>< Learn Greek <>< Look here for an Orthodox Church in America<><Ancient Faith Radio
                              sigpic
                              I recommend you do not try too hard and ...research as little as possible. Such weighty things give me a headache. - Shunyadragon, Baha'i apologist

                              Comment

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