D A 10:1-5. Rulers. (Tola and Jair). B 10:6–12:7. Ammonites and Jephthah. A 12:8-15. Rulers. (Ibzan, Elon, Abdon). B 13:1–16:31. Philistines and Samson.
1178 to 1155 B.C.
1: And after Abimelech there arose to save (or deliver) Israel Tola (= scarlet, worm) the son of Puah, the son of Dodo, a man of Issachar; and he dwelt in Shamir in the hill country Ephraim.
2: And he ruled Israel twenty and three years (see 9:22), and died, and was buried in Shamir.
1155 to 1151 B.C.
3: And after him arose Jair (= enlightner), a Gileadite, and judged Israel twenty and two years (As the Philistines "vexed" and "oppressed" the sons of Israel "on the other side of Jordan" [v.8] for 18 years out of Jairs 22, this obviously leaves him only 4 clear years of "ruling").
4: And he had thirty sons that rode on thirty ass colts, and they had thirty cities (#30 = dedication), which are called Havoth-jair unto this day, which are in the land of Gilead.
5: And Jair died, and was buried in Camon.
B C 10:6. The evil wrought. D 10:7. Selling to Philistines and Ammonites. E 10:8,9. Oppression (18 years). C 10:10-16. Evil repented of. D 10:17–12:6. Deliverance by Jephthah. E 12:7. Government by Jephthah (6 years).
6: And the sons of Israel did evil again in the sight of the Lord (cp. 2:11; 3:7; 4:1; 6:1; 13:1), and served Baalim, and the Ashtaroths (cp. 2:11-13), and the gods of Syria (see Gen.35:3-6), and the gods of Zidon (see 1 Kings 11:5 [Baal, Astarte]), and the gods of Moab (see 11:24 [Chemosh]. 1 Kings 11:35 [Milcom or Molech), and the gods of the sons of Ammon, and the gods of the Philistines (e.g. Dagon [16:23]), and forsook the Lord, and served not Him.
7: And the anger of the Lord was hot against Israel, and He sold them into the hands of the Philistines, and into the hands of the sons of Ammon.
8: And that year they broke and crushed the sons of Israel (see note on v. 3 above): eighteen years (#18 = bondage), all the sons of Israel that were on the other side Jordan in the land of the Amorites, which is in Gilead.
9: Moreover the sons of Ammon passed over Jordan to fight also against Judah, and against Benjamin, and against the house of Ephraim; so that Israel was sore distressed.
C a 10. Confession. b 11-14. Reproach. a 15,16-. Confession. b -16. Pity.
10: And the sons of Israel cried to the Lord, saying, “We have sinned against You, both because we have forsaken the Lord our God, and also served Baalim.”
11: And the Lord said to the sons of Israel, “Did not I deliver you from the Egyptians, and from the Amorites, from the children of Ammon, and from the Philistines?
12: The Zidonians also, and the Amalekites, and the Maonites (cp. 2 Chron.26:7,8. A mixture of Moabites and Ammonites = the two words combined), did oppress you; and you all cried to Me, and I delivered you out of their hand.
13: Yet you all have forsaken Me, and served other gods: wherefore I will deliver you no more.
14: Go and cry to the gods which you all have chosen (cp. Deut. 32:37,38); let them deliver you in the time of your tribulation.”
15: And the sons of Israel said to the Lord, “We have sinned: You do to us whatsoever seems good to You; deliver us only, we pray You, this day.”
16: And they put away the gods of strangers (or foreigners) from among them, and served the Lord:
and His soul (= He [emphatic]. Heb. Nephesh. Attributed by Fig., to God) was grieved for the misery of Israel.
D F¹ G¹ 10:17. Ammonite invasion. H¹ c¹ 10:18. A Leader needed. d¹ 11:1-3. Leader rejected. F² G² 11:4. Ammonite war. H² c² 11:5,6. Jephthah called. d² 11:7-11. Jephthah appointed. F³ G³ 11:12-28. Ammonite negotiation. H³ c³ 11:29. Jephthah inspired. d³ 11:30,31. Jephthah's vow made. F4 G4 11:32,33. Ammonite defeat. H4 c4 11:34-. Jephthah's return. d4 11:-34-40. Jephthah's vow performed. F5 G5 12:1. Ephraimite dispute. H5 c5 12:2,3. Jephthah's answer. d5 12:4-6. Jephthah's action.
17: Then the sons of Ammon were gathered by proclamation, and encamped in Gilead. And the sons of Israel assembled themselves together, and encamped in Mizpeh.
18: And the people and princes of Gilead said one to another, “What man is he that will begin to fight against the children of Ammon? he shall be head over all the inhabitants of Gilead.”