Verses 23–25

We have here the prosecution of this glorious victory. 1. Gideon’s soldiers that had been dismissed, and perhaps had begun to disperse themselves, upon notice of the enemies’ flight got together again, and vigorously pursued those whom they had not courage to face. The men of Israel out of Naphtali and Asher who did this (Jdg. 7:23) were not such as now came from those distant countries, but the same that had enlisted themselves (Jdg. 6:35), but had been cashiered. Those who were fearful and afraid to fight (Jdg. 7:3) now took heart, when the worst was over, and were ready enough to divide the spoil, though backward to make the onset. Those also that might not fight though they had a mind to it, and were disbanded by order from God, did not as those, 2 Chron. 25:10, 13, return in great anger, but waited for an opportunity of doing service in pursuing the victory, though they were denied the honour of helping to force the lines. 2. The Ephraimites, upon a summons from Gideon, came in unanimously, and secured the passes over Jordan, by the several fords, to cut off the enemies’ retreat into their own country, that they might be entirely destroyed, to prevent the like mischief to Israel another time. Now that they had begun to fall, it was easy to say, Down with them, Est. 6:13. They took the waters (Jdg. 7:24), that is, posted themselves along the river side, so that the Midianites, who fled from those who pursued them, fell into the hands of those that waited to intercept them. Here were fear, and the pit, and the snare, Isa. 24:17. 3. Two of the chief commanders of the host of Midian were taken and slain by the Ephraimites on this side Jordan, Jdg. 7:25. Their names perhaps signified their nature, Oreb signifies a raven, and Zeeb a wolf (corvus and lupus). These in their flight had taken shelter, one in a rock (Isa. 2:21; Rev. 6:15), the other by a wine-press, as Gideon for fear of them had lately hid his corn by a wine-press, Jdg. 6:11. But the places of their shelter were made the places of their slaughter, and the memory of it was preserved to posterity in the names of the places, to their perpetual infamy: Here fell the princes of Midian.