The Good Old USA Is Not Honor Bound Like Jephthah's Daughter
" 'I have made a promise before Yahweh which I cannot retract.' 36 She replied. 'Father, you have made a promise to Yahweh; treat me as the promise that you have made requires, since Yahweh has granted you vengeance on your enemies the Ammonites.'" Judges 11,35e-36 Jer. Bible
"Swear not at all; neither by heaven; for it is God's throne. Nor by earth for it is his footstool: neither by Jerusalem; for it is the city of the great king." Matthew 5,34-35 KJ
Rapidly unfolding events in the Mid-East call all of us, especially us Christians in the good old USA, to search the scriptures for help in guiding our nation in this time of decision, or non-decision.
The case of Jephthah and his daughter comes to mind.
Because he was considered by his half kith and kin "illigitimate" and therefore unworthy of his daddy's patrimony, Jephthah was driven out of Gilead, only to become a bandido leader in Tob on the Jordan-Syria border.
But faced with the already victorious invasion of the Ammonites into Judah, Benjamin, and Ephraim, the very elders who had run him off solicited him as their military king, in the time when "Judges" ruled each territorial tribe of Israel, sometime before the monarchy took hold, around 1000BC.
Part of Jephthah's side of closing the deal with the elders included his personal vow to the Lord to kill the first living creature he saw upon his return from any victorious campaign (Judges 11,30-31):
"If you deliver the Ammonites into my grasp, the first thing to come out of the doors of my house to meet me when I return in triumph from fighting the Ammonites shall belong to Yahweh, and I shall sacrifice it as a burnt offering." Judges 11,30b-31.
Jepthah won in a rout.
His daughter ran out to meet him.
She could have let her father off the hook, but instead she chose to die upholding his honor.
Mr. President we realize that you are asked to say many things on our behalf- and that you will defend our nation and people if the need arises.
But most of us will release you from any promises you have made about lines in the sand in Syria.
It's our country and we're saying "It's Ok to backtrack once in awhile in the good old USA."
We are not an honor bound culture.
We are a freedom bound culture.
And part of our freedom includes freedom from too many international entanglements, and the decrees of foreign kings (and what, parliments?) and despots, and foreign saber rattlers, who apparently hasten matters best left to the timetable of God Himself.
Mr. President, with all due respect to your office and to you as Commander in Chief and to our beloved nation, please let it go.
We have diplomats and diplomacy, and the United Nations for just this type of thing.
(Not to mention, I haven't heard Jesus ever say "Bombs Away" nor has He fulfilled his last word regarding the various issues in play, here and now.)
Harper Collins Bible Dictionary, P. Achtmeier. 1996 "Jephthah", Roger S. Boraas, p. 488-89.
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Tobin Hitt is the founder of the Zion Pentecost Mission. He is open to gospel partnership with all, and identifies with Paul's description of our mission as ambassadors for our king, Jesus, urging all to reconcile with God (2Cor.20-21). He resides in Cheshire, Connecticut.read more...