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Intertribal Dissension

12 The men of E′phraim were called to arms, and they crossed to Zaphon and said to Jephthah, “Why did you cross over to fight against the Ammonites, and did not call us to go with you? We will burn your house over you with fire.” And Jephthah said to them, “I and my people had a great feud with the Ammonites; and when I called you, you did not deliver me from their hand. And when I saw that you would not deliver me, I took my life in my hand, and crossed over against the Ammonites, and the Lord gave them into my hand; why then have you come up to me this day, to fight against me?” Then Jephthah gathered all the men of Gilead and fought with E′phraim; and the men of Gilead smote E′phraim, because they said, “You are fugitives of E′phraim, you Gileadites, in the midst of E′phraim and Manas′seh.” And the Gileadites took the fords of the Jordan against the E′phraimites. And when any of the fugitives of E′phraim said, “Let me go over,” the men of Gilead said to him, “Are you an E′phraimite?” When he said, “No,” they said to him, “Then say Shibboleth,” and he said, “Sibboleth,” for he could not pronounce it right; then they seized him and slew him at the fords of the Jordan. And there fell at that time forty-two thousand of the E′phraimites.

Jephthah judged Israel six years. Then Jephthah the Gileadite died, and was buried in his city in Gilead.[a]

Ibzan, Elon, and Abdon

After him Ibzan of Bethlehem judged Israel. He had thirty sons; and thirty daughters he gave in marriage outside his clan, and thirty daughters he brought in from outside for his sons. And he judged Israel seven years. 10 Then Ibzan died, and was buried at Bethlehem.

11 After him Elon the Zeb′ulunite judged Israel; and he judged Israel ten years. 12 Then Elon the Zeb′ulunite died, and was buried at Ai′jalon in the land of Zeb′ulun.

13 After him Abdon the son of Hillel the Pir′athonite judged Israel. 14 He had forty sons and thirty grandsons, who rode on seventy asses; and he judged Israel eight years. 15 Then Abdon the son of Hillel the Pir′athonite died, and was buried at Pir′athon in the land of E′phraim, in the hill country of the Amal′ekites.


  1. Judges 12:7 Gk: Heb in the cities of Gilead

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