Judges 11 As we stop and ponder the story and the vow of Jephthah we are left scratching our heads and wondering about him and his rash vow. Surely God has a purpose for including this in scripture so let’s try to unpack it with the help of Hebrews 11. It is there that we find out what God really thought of this man who could spout scripture but seemed to have forgotten the rule about vows. And yet we find that God lists him in the chapter of the faithful because God sees the heart of the man, not the exterior.
Jephthah was an illegitimate child. He was told emphatically that he didn’t belong in the family and couldn’t claim any of his father’s inheritance. We too don’t belong in the family of God, but He redeems us so we can. He lived amongst lawless men, the Robin Hoods of that day. Maybe you can relate.
The brothers found themselves in a catch 22 situation and decided it was better to include him and let the chips fall where they may. To them, Jephthah was dispensable so they could be lily white. As today there are people who use others up and toss them away. Maybe you can relate.
But, interestingly it is not those brothers that are commended by God but Jephthah! God takes what the world sees as rubbish and turns them into leaders and conquerors.
Yes, Jephthah made a rash vow and God does not take that lightly. Scholars down through the centuries have tossed various ideas as to what he did with Daughter #1 but God has not a word of condemnation of him and thus why he fits in Hebrews 11.
You may have an undesirable past but God can and will use you for His work if you let Him.
What does God think about your past? He considers it gone. He is only interested in your future. Take that to the bank and invest your future for him.