Judges 11:27 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Judges 11:27, NIV: I have not wronged you, but you are doing me wrong by waging war against me. Let the LORD, the Judge, decide the dispute this day between the Israelites and the Ammonites.'

Judges 11:27, ESV: I therefore have not sinned against you, and you do me wrong by making war on me. The LORD, the Judge, decide this day between the people of Israel and the people of Ammon.”

Judges 11:27, KJV: Wherefore I have not sinned against thee, but thou doest me wrong to war against me: the LORD the Judge be judge this day between the children of Israel and the children of Ammon.

Judges 11:27, NASB: So I have not sinned against you, but you are doing me wrong by making war against me. May the LORD, the Judge, judge today between the sons of Israel and the sons of Ammon.’?'

Judges 11:27, NLT: Therefore, I have not sinned against you. Rather, you have wronged me by attacking me. Let the LORD, who is judge, decide today which of us is right--Israel or Ammon.'

Judges 11:27, CSB: I have not sinned against you, but you are doing me wrong by fighting against me. Let the Lord who is the judge decide today between the Israelites and the Ammonites."

What does Judges 11:27 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Jephthah has made a clear case that the Ammonites have no valid reasons to attack the Israelites in Gilead. He sent messengers from his own military encampment in Mizpah to the king of Ammon, gathered with his own army for war not far away (Judges 11:4).

The king of Ammon claimed Israel took land that rightfully belonged to his people several centuries earlier. He even demanded Jephthah restore it "peaceably," a veiled threat that an invasion was imminent (Judges 11:13). Jephthah's long response offered at least four arguments for why the king of Ammon was wrong in this claim (Judges 11:14–26). Now he concludes his message with a simple statement: I've done nothing wrong to you. You do wrong by making war on me. This summarizes the Ammonite aggression as an unjust power grab for land and power at the expense of the Israelites.

Jephthah's message frames the entire conflict as a personal matter, though he has only become the leader of Gilead days earlier (Judges 11:5–11). His message pictures this war as a wrongful attack by the king of Ammon on his own person. As far as Jephthah is concerned, he is Gilead.

And yet, Jephthah concludes by clearly stating that God, not Jephthah himself, will decide the matter between the Israelites and the Ammonites. In this way, Jephthah expresses his trust in the Lord's power to save Israel. He trusts the Lord's justice in deciding the dispute, even on the battlefield.