Daily Devotional for October 16, 2020
Then the Spirit of Yahweh came upon Jephthah. He crossed Gilead and Manasseh, passed through Mizpah of Gilead, and from there he advanced against the Ammonites. And Jephthah made a vow to Yahweh : “If you give the Ammonites into my hands, whatever comes out of the door of my house to meet me when I return in triumph from the Ammonites will be Yahweh’s, and I will sacrifice it as a burnt offering.”…When Jephthah returned to his home in Mizpah, who should come out to meet him but his daughter, dancing to the sound of tambourines! She was an only child. Except for her he had neither son nor daughter. When he saw her, he tore his clothes and cried, “Oh! My daughter! You have made me miserable and wretched, because I have made a vow to Yahweh that I cannot break.” Judges 11:29-31, 34-35
Jephthah asked Yahweh for a victory over the Ammonites and vowed to offer a special sacrifice if Yahweh answered His prayer but he did not consider the specific words of his vow. We too often rashly make vows when in distress. We promise to change some behavior or to take some specific action if Yahweh will intercede on our behalf. We are in panic mode are doing what we believe will save us from the dilemma we experience at that moment. And, just He did for Jephthah, Yahweh usually answers. However, unlike Jephthah, we normally fail to live up to the oath that we made.
Jephthah went as far to cut off his own lineage in order to fulfill his word. He sacrificed his daughter’s life through her lifelong service to Yahweh.
How many times during periods of jubilation or stress have you vowed to Yahweh and failed to repay Him according your word? How often have you promised Him to make changes to do begin doing certain things for Him and then neglected to follow through? We cannot go back and change the past, but we can determine to change our future. When you make a promise to Yahweh, be like Jephthah. It will go a long way to having Him answer your future calls of distress.