Jephthah - The Broken Saviour

February 26, 2021 Preacher: Gareth Franks Series: The Book of Judges

Topic: The Gospel, Christian Living Scripture: Judges 10:1– 12:15

In this sermon, Pastor Gareth continues our study in the book of Judges by looking at Jephthah’s deliverance of Israel from their Ammonite oppression. 

In the beginning of Judges 10 we read about the sad state of affairs in Israel. Chapter 10:6 sums it all up: 

"The people of Israel again did what was evil in the sight of the Lord and served the Baals and the Ashtaroth, the gods of Syria, the gods of Sidon, the gods of Moab, the gods of the Ammonites, and the gods of the Philistines. And they forsook the Lord and did not serve him."

Israel once again did evil in God’s sight. Unfortunately, these are familiar words to the reader. If you were counting, 7 gods are listed.The effect of listing these gods is to emphasize just how bad things have gotten in Israel, and this explains the severity of Israel’s judgment and God’s reluctance to come rushing to their aid, once again.

The familiar pattern of sin/ oppression/ crying out to God is again repeated in this chapter. Finally Isreal was remorseful for their actions but remorse isn’t repentance. Israel needed to repent for idol worship and turn their hearts back to the Lord. After they do that we read about our next leader; Jephthah. Jephthah is proof that God can use anyone for His holy purposes. 

In this sermon, we learn about the Israelite rebellion, Jephthah’s victory as judge, and Jephthah’s tragic vow. We don’t always keep our promises. Sometimes it’s easier to go back on our word instead of following through. The story in our text today centers around a rash vow made by a judge who didn’t quite understand God. After we understand the narrative of the text, Pastor Gareth helps us to apply this passage to our lives as Christians today.

Discussion Questions

1. The way leaders are chosen is done in a variety of ways. Read Judges 11:1-11. What were some of the top reasons that Jephthah was chosen to lead Israel? Would Jephthah be your first choice? Why or Why not? 

2. When we think about sin we have to remember its a human condition and a human issue. Read Romans 3:23, 5:8, 10:9-10. Does sin hurt our walk with Jesus? Why? Does sin prevent us from reconciling back to God? Why?  

3. We read that Jephthah made a vow to the Lord if he would win the battle he would make a sacrifice to the Lord (read Judges 11:29-33). Human sacrifice is strictly prohibited in Scripture (read Deut 10:18, Leviticus 18:21). Why did Jephthah make a vow that was so in contrast to God’s Word? 

4. Jephthah had a form of faith and horrible theology. If you had to describe the quality of your theology, how would you rank it? How can you keep a strong faith and a solid theology? Read Romans 12:1-2, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Titus 3:3-7 for reference.  

More in The Book of Judges

April 9, 2021

The Canaanite Within Us

March 26, 2021

Judges 17-18: Israel’s Ultimate Sin

March 19, 2021

Samson: The Unwanted Saviour