Judges 12:7 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Judges 12:7, NIV: Jephthah led Israel six years. Then Jephthah the Gileadite died and was buried in a town in Gilead.

Judges 12:7, ESV: Jephthah judged Israel six years. Then Jephthah the Gileadite died and was buried in his city in Gilead.

Judges 12:7, KJV: And Jephthah judged Israel six years. Then died Jephthah the Gileadite, and was buried in one of the cities of Gilead.

Judges 12:7, NASB: Jephthah judged Israel for six years. Then Jephthah the Gileadite died and was buried in one of the cities of Gilead.

Judges 12:7, NLT: Jephthah judged Israel for six years. When he died, he was buried in one of the towns of Gilead.

Judges 12:7, CSB: Jephthah judged Israel six years, and when he died, he was buried in one of the cities of Gilead.

What does Judges 12:7 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Jephthah's rule as a judge (Judges 2:16) ends after only six years. This is a brief stint when compared to most of the other judges (Judges 8:28; 10:2, 3). While Jephthah is labelled as a judge of Israel, it seems most of God's rescuers acted in regions, rather than over the entire nation at once. Jephthah's influence seems limited to Gilead and perhaps the nearby regions. When he dies, he is buried in his city in the territory of Gilead.

Jephthah, a complex figure, was nevertheless fully used by God to defeat Israel's oppressors, the Ammonites (Judges 11:32–33). However, his life was also marked by questionable ethics (Judges 11:1–3), and recklessness which cost him his only child (Judges 11:30–31, 34–35). In addition, he engaged in a brief-but-brutal civil war with his own Israelite brothers, resulting in catastrophic deaths (Judges 12:1–6).

Despite those flaws, Jephthah's words represented faith (Hebrews 11:32–34) and reliance on the Lord, rather than on false gods. That was a welcome change in Israel; it led to great victory over their enemies.