The men of Ephraim were called together and crossed [the Jordan] to Zaphon. They said to Jephthah, "Why have you crossed over to fight against the Ammonites but didn't call us to go with you? We will burn your house down with you [in it]!"
Then Jephthah said to them, "My people and I had a serious conflict with the Ammonites. So I called for you, but you didn't deliver me from their power.
When I saw that you weren't going to deliver me, I took my life in my own hands and crossed over to the Ammonites, and the Lord handed them over to me. Why then have you comea today to fight against me?"
Then Jephthah gathered all of the men of Gilead. They fought and defeated Ephraim, because Ephraim had said, "You Gileadites are Ephraimite fugitives in [the territories of] Ephraim and Manasseh."
The Gileadites captured the fords of the Jordan leading to Ephraim. Whenever a fugitive from Ephraim said, "Let me cross over," the Gileadites asked him, "Are you an Ephraimite?" If he answered, "No,"
they told him, "Please say Shibboleth." If he said, "Sibboleth," because he could not pronounce it correctly, they seized him and killed him at the fords of the Jordan. At that time, 42,000 from Ephraim died.
Jephthah judged Israel six years, and when he died, he was buried in one of the cities of Gilead.b