Judges 12:1

Jephthah and Ephraim

1 The Ephraimite forces were called out, and they crossed over to Zaphon. They said to Jephthah, “Why did you go to fight the Ammonites without calling us to go with you? We’re going to burn down your house over your head.”

Read Judges 12:1 Using Other Translations

And the men of Ephraim gathered themselves together, and went northward, and said unto Jephthah, Wherefore passedst thou over to fight against the children of Ammon, and didst not call us to go with thee? we will burn thine house upon thee with fire.
The men of Ephraim were called to arms, and they crossed to Zaphon and said to Jephthah, "Why did you cross over to fight against the Ammonites and did not call us to go with you? We will burn your house over you with fire."
Then the people of Ephraim mobilized an army and crossed over the Jordan River to Zaphon. They sent this message to Jephthah: “Why didn’t you call for us to help you fight against the Ammonites? We are going to burn down your house with you in it!”

What does Judges 12:1 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Judges 12:1

And the men of Ephraim gathered themselves together
Or "cried" F18; got together by a cry or proclamation made: in the Hebrew text it is, "a man of Ephraim"; not a single man, but a body of men, who met together and joined as one man. It is highly probable that there were no less than 50,000 of them; for 42,000 of them were slain, ( Judges 12:6 )

and went northward;
or, "went over northward F19"; that is, over the river Jordan, which lay between Gilead and Ephraim; and when they had crossed the river, they turned northward; for Mizpeh, where Jephthah lived, was in the north of the land, near Hermon and Lebanon, ( Joshua 11:3 )

and said unto Jephthah, wherefore passedst thou over to fight against
the children of Ammon?
not over Jordan, but over that part of the land of Israel from the plain where Jephthah dwelt, to the country of the children of Ammon:

and didst not call us to go with thee?
they quarrel with him just in the same manner as they did with Gideon: these Ephraimites were a proud and turbulent people, and especially were very jealous of the tribe of Manasseh, of which both Gideon and Jephthah were; the one of the half tribe on this side Jordan, and the other of the half that was on the other side; and they were jealous of both, lest any honour and glory should accrue thereunto, and they should get any superiority in any respect over them, since Jacob their father had given the preference to Ephraim; and this seems to lie at the bottom of all their proceedings:

we will burn thine house upon thee with fire;
that is, burn him and his house, burn his house and him in it; which shows that they were in great wrath and fury, and argued not only the height of pride and envy, but wretched ingratitude, and a cruel disposition; who, instead of congratulating him as Israel's deliverer, and condoling him with respect to the case of his only child, threaten him in this brutish manner.


FOOTNOTES:

F18 (qeuy) (ebohsen) , Sept. "clamatus", i.e. "clamando convocatus", Piscator. "mnellius", Pimcator.
F19 (rbey) "transivit", Pagninus, Montanus; "transiverunt", Junius et Tremellius, Piscator.
California - Do Not Sell My Personal Information  California - CCPA Notice