再思【耶弗他】愚蠢的誓言

Miles Van Pelt

Most Christians struggle to understand the narratives recorded in the book of Judges. Consider the opening account where Adonai Bezek is captured by the tribe of Judah, humiliated by having his thumbs and big toes cut off, and then dies in Jerusalem. What about Gideon’s fleece in Judges 6, or Samson’s repeated relationships with illicit women in Judges 14–16? How do we understand and explain such difficult texts? Do we ask, “Who are the Adonai Bezek’s in your life?” or “What would Samson do?” Maybe it would be better to “dare to be a Gideon,” but I don’t think so.

大多數的基督徒很難理解記錄在法官的書的敘述。考慮這樣阿多奈比色由猶大支派捕獲的開戶,羞辱有他手腳的大姆指切斷,然後在耶路撒冷去世。那麼基甸的羊毛在法官6,或參孫的非法女性法官14-16重複的關係?我們如何理解和解釋如此困難的文本?難道我們問:“誰是我主比色的在你的生活?”或者“你會參孫做什麼?”也許會更好“敢是一個基甸,”但我不這麼認為。

Another troubling episode recorded in the book of Judges appears in 11:29-40, when the judge Jephthah makes a vow that many have argued cost him the life of his daughter and only child—a human sacrifice. How could Jesus, in good conscience, proclaim that such a narrative testifies to him (John 5:39; Luke 24:44), or how could Paul understand this text as the gospel promised beforehand (Romans 1:2)? Did Jephthah really kill his daughter in order to fulfill a foolish vow made in the heat of battle? For many, the answer to this question is a troubling “yes.” But there is another option.

記錄在法官的書的另一個令人不安的事件出現在11:29-40,當法官讓耶弗他,很多人認為奪去了他的女兒和唯一的孩子,一個人犧牲生命誓言。怎麼能耶穌,良心,宣稱這樣的敘述證明了他(約五39;路加福音24:44),或怎麼可能保羅明白這個文本作為福音事先承諾(羅馬書1:2)?難道耶弗真的殺了自己的女兒,以滿足在激烈的戰鬥中犯了一個愚蠢的誓言?對於許多人來說,這個問題的答案是一個令人不安的“是的。”但是,還有另一種選擇。

It is also possible that Jephthah never intended to sacrificially kill anyone or anything that came out of his house after he had returned from battle. Rather, this vow may be symbolic of a full or complete offering to the LORD as an expression of thanks for his grace in delivering Israel from their oppressors. Let’s consider the evidence together.

還有一種可能是,當耶弗他從戰場回來,他從未打算把任何自己家中出來迎接的人或牲畜當作獻祭的祭物。相反,這個誓言可能是象徵性的完整或完全獻給耶和華為感謝他在從他們的壓迫者以色列提供寬限期的表達。讓我們考慮證據在一起。

六大理由重新考慮人的犧牲解讀

1.在法官的書提出的法官的新約的評價是積極的。考慮希伯來書11:32-34:“那更要我說什麼?時間會失敗我告訴基甸,巴拉,參孫,大衛和薩穆埃爾耶弗他和先知,誰憑信心征服王國,執行公正,獲得承諾,停止了獅子的口,滅了烈火的威力,躲過邊緣劍,已經作出了強烈的弱點,成為強大的戰爭,把外軍飛行。“請注意希伯來書的作者列出耶弗他與大衛喜歡,薩穆埃爾,和先知。此外,這些人曾“因信”和“執行正義”,而不是無辜的年輕女孩。可以希伯來書的作者正確地包括耶弗他在此列表中,如果他最後一次擔任法官包括非法和可怕的殺害自己的女兒?

2.除了新約,法官本身的書肯定這些人的電話和工作。例如,在士師記2:16-19,它記錄了耶和華興起這些人來拯救以色列,而不是殺死他們。此外,文本顯然,耶和華與他們的工作的法官。因此抨擊法官的工作是通過法官抨擊耶和華的工作。我不是說,法官無罪,完美的人。對於自己的召喚,但是,他們是忠實的上帝的恩典通過他的精神的力量。此外,要注意觀察,當上帝的任命領導人卻陷入罪,聖經是隨時指出來是很重要的。摩西獨中兩元,因此進入應許之地(民20)被取締的岩石。大衛通姦和謀殺,並獲得公眾譴責的預言(2山姆。11-12)。即使保羅責備彼得過食與外邦人的問題(加2)。有沒有這樣的譴責記錄耶弗他。

3.在法官11時29分,它記錄了耶和華的靈降在耶弗他,然後在接下來的詩句(11點30分),耶弗他讓他臭名昭著的誓言。語境而言,因此,這是誓言的精神,不是在反對聖靈的工作的影響下,未來的結果。這是法官的書的通用模式。例如,在法官6點34,耶和華的靈衣基甸,然後兩節經文後(6時36分),他提出了羊毛的標誌。此外,與參孫,當耶和華的靈趕到他,他殺死了獅子(14:6)打敗非利士人(14:9; 15:14,19)。

4.耶弗他的誓言,我們必須明白,他沒想到,從在他的回歸房子突發某種動物或家庭寵物等等。我們知道這是一對夫婦的原因是真實的。首先,在11點31分,動詞“,以滿足”始終是用於人,從來沒有一個人遇到的動物。其次,在古代世界,當人們從戰場回來,女人會習慣出來遊行,以參加慶祝舞蹈(比較出15:20;士5:28;撒上18:6)。讓文化背景中,這些事件蒸騰,耶弗他可能認為女人會出來從屋裡迎接他,也許是丫鬟,或者甚至更好,他的岳母,但肯定不是動物。更好的翻譯為11時31分將包括“誰出來”,而不是“什麼出來。”

5.耶弗他的誓言在11點31分,我們看到本次發行將屬於耶和華,並且將它提供了一個“[全]燔祭。”這種特殊的產品是不是象徵性地用在其他任何舊約。然而,產品一般,無論是在舊約和新約,可能會象徵性地使用,以表徵東西通過犧牲奉獻的方式提供給耶和華。例如,在出埃及記29和利未記8,亞倫和他兒子(利未人)被象徵性地提供給耶和華為搖祭(事用火完全消耗),全面和徹底奉獻給耶和華的服務姿態。在詩篇51:17,憂傷痛悔的心臟是耶和華慾望的犧牲。而在羅馬書12:1,保羅勸誡信徒提供自己的身體當作活祭獻給耶和華,精神崇拜的行為。因此,它顯然是可能的,而且更可能可能,即耶弗他,聖靈的引導下,用全面和徹底奉獻給耶和華的象徵犧牲的象徵性語言在此背景下,。

6.此誓言通過耶弗他的女兒(11:36)的願意履行似乎矛盾的孩子犧牲字面解釋。不僅是這樣的犧牲明確禁止和憎惡聖經(申12時31分; 18:9-12;參王下3時27分; 23時10; 57:5),但文字的擔憂是從來沒有死,但總是貞操。在11點37,耶弗他的女兒請求兩個月的休假,以便感嘆她的童貞。然後,在11:38,文字記錄,雖然與她的朋友,她哭了她的貞操的事實。話又說回來,在11時39分,它被記錄耶弗他履行了他的誓言耶和華,文字清楚地描述這個誓言是如何fulfilled-“,也就是她根本不知道一個男人。”看來,因此,耶弗他的誓言包括提供他家的一員,以耶和華的全時服務,並因此而不是一個家庭的正常職責,這樣的婚姻和生兒育女。這種服務類型並不陌生,在舊約(出38:8; 1薩姆2點22分;參1薩姆1點11分,22-28。)。

最終法官

這當然是一個困難的文字解釋,都選擇值得慎重考慮。但考慮到法官的書作為一個整體。它始於約書亞的一代忠誠和猶大支派,但終止與便雅憫支派成為迦南人,因為邪惡的所多瑪(參見創13猶19-20)。正如本書的發展,神的子民衰變成越來越大的邪惡(猶書2:19),但耶和華是仁慈的,繼續發送法官為了救自己的人。在人民的罪惡更大,通過每個法官更大的耶和華的拯救。

截至去年底,基甸必須放棄他的家庭,耶弗他必須提供他的獨子(參見創22:2),和參孫必須死,為了上帝的人從罪和壓迫體驗救贖。這難道不是聽起來像福音事先承諾,肯定見證耶穌的人,工作的?他離開了他的家人,神的獨生孩子。他死了,完成法官,他在年齡曾派過去,我們可能清楚地確定我們的目光在他身上,我們信心的作者和perfecter的工作。

 

Six Reasons to Reconsider the Human Sacrifice Interpretation

1. The New Testament evaluation of the judges presented in the book of Judges is positive. Consider Hebrews 11:32–34: “And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah of David and Samuel and the prophets—who by faith conquered kingdoms, enforced justice, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, were made strong out of weakness, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight.” Notice how the author of the book of Hebrews lists Jephthah with the likes of David, Samuel, and the prophets. Additionally, these men served “by faith” and “executed justice,” not innocent young girls. Could the author of Hebrews rightly include Jephthah in this list if his last act as Judge included the illegal and horrific slaying of his own daughter?

2. In addition to the New Testament, the book of Judges itself affirms the calling and work of these men. For example, in Judges 2:16–19, it is recorded that the LORD raised up these men to save Israel, not to kill them. Additionally, the text is clear that the LORD was with the judges in their work. So to impugn the work of the judge is to impugn the work of the LORD through that judge. I am not saying that the judges were sinless, perfect people. With regard to their callings, however, they were faithful by God’s grace through the power of his Spirit. Additionally, it is important to observe that when God’s appointed leaders do fall into sin, the Bible is always ready to point it out. Moses struck the rock twice and so was banned from entering the promised land (Num. 20). David committed adultery and murder and received public, prophetic condemnation (2 Sam. 11–12). Even Paul rebuked Peter over the issue of eating with Gentiles (Gal. 2). There is no such condemnation recorded for Jephthah.

3. In Judges 11:29, it is recorded that the Spirit of the LORD came upon Jephthah, and then in the next verse (11:30), Jephthah makes his infamous vow. Contextually speaking, therefore, this vow is the result of coming under the influence of the Spirit, not something in opposition to the work of the Spirit. This is a common pattern in the book of Judges. For example, in Judges 6:34, the Spirit of the LORD clothed Gideon, and then two verses later (6:36) he proposed the sign of the fleece. Additionally, with Samson, when the Spirit of the LORD rushed on him he killed a lion (14:6) and defeated the Philistines (14:9; 15:14, 19).

4. With Jephthah’s vow, we must understand that he did not expect some type of animal or household pet to burst forth from the house upon his return. We know this to be true for a couple of reasons. First, in 11:31, the verb “to meet” is always used for people, never for a person encountering an animal. Second, in the ancient world, when men returned from battle, women would customarily come forth in procession in order to participate in celebratory dancing (cf. Ex. 15:20; Jud. 5:28; 1 Sam. 18:6). Give the cultural context in which these events transpired, Jephthah likely assumed that a woman would come out from the house to meet him, perhaps a servant girl or, even better, his mother-in-law, but certainly not an animal. A better translation for 11:31 would include “whoever comes out,” not “whatever comes out.”

5. With Jephthah’s vow in 11:31, we read that this offering would belong to the LORD, and that it would be offered up as a “[whole] burnt offering.” This particular offering is not used symbolically in any other part of the Old Testament. However, offerings in general, both in the Old and New Testaments, may be used symbolically in order to characterize something offered to the LORD by way of sacrificial giving. For example, in Exodus 29 and Leviticus 8, Aaron and his sons (the Levites) were symbolically offered to the LORD as a wave offering (something completely consumed with fire), a gesture of complete and total dedication to the LORD’s service. In Psalm 51:17, a broken and contrite heart is the sacrifice that the LORD desires. And in Romans 12:1, Paul admonished believers to offer their bodies as living sacrifices to the LORD, an act of spiritual worship. Thus it is clearly possible, and more likely probable, that Jephthah, under the Spirit’s guidance, was using the language of sacrifice symbolically in this context, symbolic of complete and total dedication to the LORD.

6. The willing fulfillment of this vow by Jephthah’s daughter (11:36) appears to contradict the literal interpretation of a child sacrifice. Not only were such sacrifices clearly forbidden and abominated in Scripture (Deut. 12:31; 18:9–12; cf. 2 Kings 3:27; 23:10; Is. 57:5), but the concern of the text is never death, but always virginity. In 11:37, Jephthah’s daughter requests a two-month leave in order to lament her virginity. Then, in 11:38, the text records that while with her friends, she wept over the fact of her virginity. Then again, in 11:39, it is recorded that Jephthah fulfilled his vow to the LORD, and the text clearly describes how this vow was fulfilled—“that is, she did not know a man.” It appears, therefore, that Jephthah’s vow consisted of offering a member of his house to the full-time service of the LORD, and thus not to the normal duties of a household, such a marriage and having children. Service of this type in not unknown in the Old Testament (Ex. 38:8; 1 Sam. 2:22; cf. 1 Sam. 1:11, 22–28).

Ultimate Judge

This is certainly a difficult text to interpret, and both options deserve careful consideration. But consider the book of Judges as a whole. It begins with the faithfulness of Joshua’s generation and the tribe of Judah, but terminates with the tribe of Benjamin becoming Canaanite, as wicked as Sodom (cf. Gen. 13 with Jud. 19-20). As the book develops, God’s people decay into greater and greater wickedness (Jud. 2:19), but the LORD was merciful and continued to send judges in order to deliver his people. The greater the wickedness of the people, the greater the LORD’s salvation through each judge.

By the end, Gideon must forsake his family, Jephthah must offer up his only child (cf. Gen. 22:2), and Samson must die in order for God’s people to experience salvation from sin and oppression. Does this not sound like the gospel promised beforehand, a sure testimony to the person and work of Jesus? He left his family, the only begotten child of God. He died to finish the work of the judges that he had sent in ages past that we might keenly fix our eyes on him, the author and perfecter of our faith.

Copyright, the Gospel Coalition

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