1The people of Israel again did what was evil in the sight of the LORD 2and served the Baals and the Ashtaroth, the gods of Syria, 3the gods of Sidon, the gods of Moab, the gods of the Ammonites, and the gods of the Philistines. And they 4forsook the LORD and did not serve him.
So the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and 5he sold them into the hand of the Philistines and into the hand of the Ammonites,
and they crushed and oppressed the people of Israel that year. For eighteen years they oppressed all the people of Israel who were beyond the Jordan in the land of the Amorites, which is in Gilead.
And the Ammonites crossed the Jordan to fight also against Judah and against Benjamin and against the house of Ephraim, so that Israel was severely distressed.
And the people of Israel 6cried out to the LORD, saying, "We have sinned against you, because 7we have forsaken our God and have served the Baals."
And the LORD said to the people of Israel, "Did I not save you 8from the Egyptians and 9from the Amorites, 10from the Ammonites and 11from the Philistines?
The Sidonians also, and 12the Amalekites and the Maonites oppressed you, and you cried out to me, and I 13saved you out of their hand.
Yet you have 14forsaken me and served other gods; therefore I will save you no more.
Go and cry out 15to the gods whom you have chosen; let them save you in the time of your distress."
And the people of Israel said to the LORD, "We have sinned; do to us whatever seems good to you. Only please deliver us this day."
So they put away the foreign gods from among them and served the LORD, and 16he became impatient over the misery of Israel.
Then the Ammonites were called to arms, and they encamped in Gilead. And the people of Israel came together, and they encamped at 17Mizpah.
And the people, the leaders of Gilead, said one to another, "Who is the man who will begin to fight against the Ammonites? 18He shall be head over all the inhabitants of Gilead."