Judges 11:18 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Judges 11:18, NIV: Next they traveled through the wilderness, skirted the lands of Edom and Moab, passed along the eastern side of the country of Moab, and camped on the other side of the Arnon. They did not enter the territory of Moab, for the Arnon was its border.

Judges 11:18, ESV: “Then they journeyed through the wilderness and went around the land of Edom and the land of Moab and arrived on the east side of the land of Moab and camped on the other side of the Arnon. But they did not enter the territory of Moab, for the Arnon was the boundary of Moab.

Judges 11:18, KJV: Then they went along through the wilderness, and compassed the land of Edom, and the land of Moab, and came by the east side of the land of Moab, and pitched on the other side of Arnon, but came not within the border of Moab: for Arnon was the border of Moab.

Judges 11:18, NASB: Then they went through the wilderness and around the land of Edom and the land of Moab, and came to the east side of the land of Moab, and they camped beyond the Arnon; but they did not enter the territory of Moab, for the Arnon was the border of Moab.

Judges 11:18, NLT: 'Finally, they went around Edom and Moab through the wilderness. They traveled along Moab's eastern border and camped on the other side of the Arnon River. But they never once crossed the Arnon River into Moab, for the Arnon was the border of Moab.

Judges 11:18, CSB: "Then they traveled through the wilderness and around the lands of Edom and Moab. They came to the east side of the land of Moab and camped on the other side of the Arnon but did not enter into the territory of Moab, for the Arnon was the boundary of Moab.

What does Judges 11:18 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

The king of Ammon claimed Israel took their land back in the time of Moses (Judges 11:12–13). He refers to the land of Gilead, east of the Jordan between the Jabbok and Arnon Rivers. Jephthah has countered this, showing that the Israelites did not even walk across the lands of the Edomites or Moabites without their permission (Numbers 20:14–21). They certainly didn't steal their land (Judges 11:14–17).

Instead, the Israelites took the long way around to reach Gilead, arriving on the east side of the Jordan River to the north of Arnon River. This would allow them to avoid Moabite territory to the south. The point of this detail is to note that the Ammonites were not occupying this area at that time. The land of the Ammonites was still further east into the wilderness. It was also true that God had told the Israelites not to fight with the Ammonites, because they were also descendants of Lot (Deuteronomy 2:16–22). At that time, the Ammonites were not in the area now known as Gilead. There were other people in the region, however.