“And Jephthah vowed a vow unto the Lord, and said, if thou shalt without fail deliver the children of Ammon into mine hands, then it shall be, that whatsoever cometh forth of the doors of my house to meet me, when I return in peace from the children of Ammon, shall surely be the Lord’s, and I will offer it up for a burn offering.” (Judges 11 vs 30-31)
What happened to Jephthah was devastating. I cannot even begin to imagine the feeling he must have felt when his daughter came out to meet him. The Bible said he rented his clothes and told his daughter that he had opened his mouth unto the Lord, and he cannot go back (Judges 11 vs 35). The previous verses in this chapter tells us that Jephthah was the son of a harlot who was rejected by his brethren. But the Bible described Jephthah as a mighty man of valor, so because of his skill, when the children of Ammon came to fight against Israel, the elders went and asked him to come and be their captain. But Jephthah made a mistake, he was so eager to be a part of this family again and to feel accepted by his brethren that he made God a promise that would have changed his life forever.
Jephthah did not need to make God any promise to win the war against the children of Ammon. God was already fighting for Israel, that is how they got the land that the children of Ammon came to fight for! all he needed was to pray and trust God, they would have won the battle anyway. But he allowed his eagerness and his anxieties to become his driving force and so he made God a promise. The Bible says, “keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools, for they consider not that they do evil, be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter anything before God, for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth, therefore, let thy words be few.” (Ecclesiastes 5 vs 1-2).
How many times we have found ourselves in situations and we prayed to God and make promises to him that we have not kept? The bible calls us fools when we do that. Can you remember making a promise to God? did you keep that promise? If that is you, like Jephthah, you must deliver on your promise no matter how devastating it may be. Even though it caused him pain to sacrifice his only daughter, who was his only child, he rather suffers that loss than to go back on his word to God. What a great price to pay when we are too hasty to speak! The Bible says, “When you make a vow to God, do not delay to fulfill it. He has no pleasure in fools; fulfill your vow. It is better not to make a vow than to make one and not fulfill it. (Ecclesiastes chapter 5 verses 4-5).
Today let us be careful what we say when we are in a crisis because even though we are under the great dispensation of God’s grace, if you make a promise to God, he is expecting you to deliver. Let your yes be yes, and your no be no, because it is evil to break your promises (Matthew 5 vs 37).
Let us pray: Lord please forgive me of my sins. Thank you for your word. Please remind me Lord if I have broken any vows made unto to you and help me to make good on my promises both to you and my fellow brethren in Jesus name. Amen. Until next time. God bless you.
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