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Judges 11:4

ESV After a time the Ammonites made war against Israel.
NIV Some time later, when the Ammonites were fighting against Israel,
NASB Now it came about, after a while, that the sons of Ammon fought against Israel.
CSB Some time later, the Ammonites fought against Israel.
NLT At about this time, the Ammonites began their war against Israel.
KJV And it came to pass in process of time, that the children of Ammon made war against Israel.

What does Judges 11:4 mean?

The previous chapter described how God subjected Israel under the Ammonites and Philistines. Israel had been crushed under the oppression of these two nations for the past 18 years (Judges 10:7–8). The Ammonites struck Israel from the east, especially the people of Gilead on the east side of the Jordan River. Now they were back making war against Israel once more.

In this case, Israel had made an important change. God's people had repented for their sin of serving the false gods of Canaan. They had cried out to the Lord to deliver them from their oppressors (Judges 10:10–16). God's willingness to let Israel suffer was reaching its limit. The people of Gilead had fashioned an army of sorts to stand against the Ammonites. The problem was they had nobody to lead them into battle. That's where Jephthah (Judges 11:1–3), an exiled hooligan, will soon come into the picture.
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