1 Samuel 13-14
New English Translation
Saul Fails the Lord
13 Saul was [thirty][a] years old when he began to reign; he ruled over Israel for [forty][b] years. 2 Saul selected for himself 3,000 men from Israel. Of these 2,000 were with Saul at Micmash and in the hill country of Bethel; the remaining 1,000 were with Jonathan at Gibeah in the territory of Benjamin.[c] He sent all the rest of the people back home.[d]
3 Jonathan attacked the Philistine outpost[e] that was at Geba and the Philistines heard about it. Then Saul alerted[f] all the land saying, “Let the Hebrews pay attention!” 4 All Israel heard this message,[g] “Saul has attacked the Philistine outpost, and now Israel is repulsive[h] to the Philistines!” So the people were summoned to join[i] Saul at Gilgal.
5 Meanwhile the Philistines gathered to battle with Israel. Then they went up against Israel[j] with 3,000 chariots,[k] 6,000 horsemen, and an army as numerous as the sand on the seashore. They went up and camped at Micmash, east of Beth Aven. 6 The men of Israel realized they had a problem because their army was hard pressed. So the army hid in caves, thickets, cliffs, strongholds,[l] and cisterns. 7 Some of the Hebrews crossed over the Jordan River[m] to the land of Gad and Gilead. But Saul stayed at Gilgal; the entire army that was with him was terrified. 8 He waited for seven days, the time period indicated by Samuel.[n] But Samuel did not come to Gilgal, and the army began to abandon Saul.[o]
9 So Saul said, “Bring me the burnt offering and the peace offerings.” Then he offered a burnt offering. 10 Just when he had finished offering the burnt offering, Samuel appeared on the scene. Saul went out to meet him and to greet him.[p]
11 But Samuel said, “What have you done?” Saul replied, “When I saw that the army had started to abandon me,[q] and that you didn’t come at the appointed time, and that the Philistines had assembled at Micmash, 12 I thought,[r] ‘Now the Philistines will come down on me at Gilgal and I have not sought the Lord’s favor.’ So I felt obligated[s] to offer the burnt offering.”
13 Then Samuel said to Saul, “You have made a foolish choice! You have not obeyed[t] the commandment that the Lord your God gave[u] you. Had you done that, the Lord would have established your kingdom over Israel forever. 14 But now your kingdom will not continue. The Lord has sought out[v] for himself a man who is loyal to him,[w] and the Lord has appointed[x] him to be leader over his people, for you have not obeyed what the Lord commanded you.”
15 Then Samuel set out and went up from Gilgal[y] to Gibeah in the territory of Benjamin.[z] Saul mustered the army that remained with him; there were about 600 men. 16 Saul, his son Jonathan, and the army that remained with them stayed in Gibeah in the territory of Benjamin, while the Philistines camped in Micmash.[aa] 17 Raiding bands went out from the camp of the Philistines in three groups. One band turned toward the road leading to Ophrah by the land of Shual; 18 another band turned toward the road leading to Beth Horon; and yet another band turned toward the road leading to the border that overlooks the valley of Zeboyim in the direction of the desert.
19 A blacksmith could not be found in all the land of Israel, for the Philistines had said, “This will prevent the Hebrews from making swords and spears.” 20 So all Israel had to go down to the Philistines in order to get their plowshares, cutting instruments, axes, and sickles[ab] sharpened. 21 They charged[ac] two-thirds of a shekel[ad] to sharpen plowshares and cutting instruments, and one-third of a shekel[ae] to sharpen picks and axes, and to set ox goads. 22 So on the day of the battle no sword or spear was to be found in the hand of anyone in the army that was with Saul and Jonathan. No one but Saul and his son Jonathan had them.
Jonathan Ignites a Battle
23 A garrison of the Philistines had gone out to the pass at Micmash.
14 Then one day Jonathan son of Saul said to his armor-bearer,[af] “Come on, let’s go over to the Philistine garrison that is opposite us.” But he did not let his father know.
2 Now Saul was sitting under a pomegranate tree in Migron, on the outskirts of Gibeah. The army that was with him numbered about 600 men. 3 Now Ahijah was carrying[ag] an ephod. He was the son of Ahitub, who was the brother of Ichabod and a son of Phinehas, son of Eli, the priest of the Lord in Shiloh. The army was unaware that Jonathan had left.
4 Now there was a steep cliff on each side of the pass through which Jonathan intended to go to reach the Philistine garrison. One cliff was named Bozez, the other Seneh. 5 The cliff to the north was closer to Micmash, the one to the south closer to Geba.
6 Jonathan said to his armor-bearer, “Come on, let’s go over to the garrison of these uncircumcised men. Perhaps the Lord will intervene[ah] for us. Nothing can prevent the Lord from delivering, whether by many or by a few.” 7 His armor-bearer said to him, “Do everything that is on your mind.[ai] Do as you’re inclined. I’m with you all the way!”[aj]
8 Jonathan replied, “All right.[ak] We’ll go over to these men and fight them. 9 If they say to us, ‘Stay put until we approach you,’ we will stay[al] right there and not go up to them. 10 But if they say, ‘Come up against us,’ we will go up. For in that case the Lord has given them into our hand—it will be a sign to us.”
11 When they[am] made themselves known to the Philistine garrison, the Philistines said, “Look! The Hebrews are coming out of the holes in which they hid themselves.” 12 Then the men of the garrison said to Jonathan and his armor-bearer, “Come on up to us so we can teach you a thing or two!”[an] Then Jonathan said to his armor-bearer, “Come up behind me, for the Lord has given[ao] them into the hand of Israel!”
13 Jonathan crawled up on his hands and feet, with his armor-bearer following behind him. Jonathan struck down the Philistines,[ap] while his armor-bearer came along behind him and killed them.[aq] 14 In this initial skirmish Jonathan and his armor-bearer struck down about twenty men in an area that measured half an acre.
15 Then fear overwhelmed[ar] those who were in the camp, those who were in the field, all the army in the garrison, and the raiding bands. They trembled and the ground shook. This fear was caused by God.[as]
16 Saul’s watchmen at Gibeah in the territory of Benjamin[at] looked on[au] as the crowd of soldiers seemed to melt away first in one direction and then in another.[av] 17 So Saul said to the army that was with him, “Muster the troops and see who is no longer with us.” When they mustered the troops,[aw] Jonathan and his armor-bearer were not there. 18 So Saul said to Ahijah, “Bring near the ephod,”[ax] for he was at that time wearing the ephod in front of the Israelites.[ay] 19 While[az] Saul spoke to the priest, the panic in the Philistines’ camp was becoming greater and greater. So Saul said to the priest, “Withdraw your hand.”
20 Saul and all the army assembled and marched into battle, where they found[ba] the Philistines in total panic killing one another with their swords.[bb] 21 The Hebrews who had earlier gone over to the Philistine side[bc] joined the Israelites who were with Saul and Jonathan. 22 When all the Israelites who had hidden themselves in the hill country of Ephraim heard that the Philistines had fled, they too pursued them in battle. 23 So the Lord delivered Israel that day, and the battle shifted over to Beth Aven.[bd]
Jonathan Violates Saul’s Oath
24 Now the men of Israel were hard pressed that day, for Saul had made the army agree to this oath: “Cursed be the man who eats food before evening. I will get my vengeance on my enemies!” So no one in the army ate anything.
25 Now the whole army[be] entered the forest, and there was honey on the ground.[bf] 26 When the army entered the forest, they saw[bg] the honey flowing, but no one ate any of it,[bh] for the army was afraid of the oath. 27 But Jonathan had not heard about the oath his father had made the army take. He extended the end of his staff that was in his hand and dipped it in the honeycomb. When he ate it,[bi] his eyes gleamed.[bj] 28 Then someone from the army informed him, “Your father put the army under a strict oath[bk] saying, ‘Cursed be the man who eats food today.’ That is why the army is tired.” 29 Then Jonathan said, “My father has caused trouble for the land. See how my eyes gleamed[bl] when I tasted just a little of this honey. 30 Certainly if the army had eaten some of the enemies’ provisions that they came across today, would not the slaughter of the Philistines have been even greater?”
31 On that day the army struck down the Philistines from Micmash to Aijalon, and they became very tired. 32 So the army rushed greedily on[bm] the[bn] plunder, confiscating sheep, cattle, and calves. They slaughtered them right on the ground, and the army ate them, blood and all.
33 Now it was reported to Saul, “Look, the army is sinning against the Lord by eating even the blood.” He said, “All of you have broken the covenant![bo] Roll a large stone over here[bp] to me.” 34 Then Saul said, “Scatter out among the army and say to them, ‘Each of you bring to me your ox and sheep and slaughter them in this spot and eat. But don’t sin against the Lord by eating the blood.” So that night each one brought his ox and slaughtered it there.[bq] 35 Then Saul built an altar for the Lord; it was the first time he had built an altar for the Lord.
36 Saul said, “Let’s go down after the Philistines at night; we will rout[br] them until the break of day.[bs] We won’t leave any of them alive!”[bt] They replied, “Do whatever seems best to you.”[bu] But the priest said, “Let’s approach God here.” 37 So Saul asked God, “Should I go down after the Philistines? Will you deliver them into the hand of Israel?” But he did not answer him that day.
38 Then Saul said, “All you leaders of the army come here. Find out[bv] how this sin occurred today. 39 For as surely as the Lord, the deliverer of Israel, lives, even if it turns out to be my own son Jonathan, he will certainly die!” But no one from the army said anything.[bw]
40 Then he said to all Israel, “You will be on one side, and I and my son Jonathan will be on the other side.” The army replied to Saul, “Do whatever you think is best.”
41 Then Saul said, “O Lord God of Israel! If this sin has been committed by me or by my son Jonathan, then, O Lord God of Israel, respond with Urim. But if this sin has been committed by your people Israel, respond with Thummim.”[bx] Then Jonathan and Saul were indicated by lot, while the army was exonerated.[by] 42 Then Saul said, “Cast the lot between me and my son Jonathan!”[bz] Jonathan was indicated by lot.
43 So Saul said to Jonathan, “Tell me what you have done.” Jonathan told him, “I used the end of the staff that was in my hand to taste a little honey. I must die!”[ca] 44 Saul said, “God will punish me severely if Jonathan doesn’t die!”[cb]
45 But the army said to Saul, “Should Jonathan, who won this great victory in Israel, die? May it never be! As surely as the Lord lives, not a single hair of his head will fall to the ground, for it is with the help of God that he has acted today.” So the army rescued Jonathan from death.[cc]
46 Then Saul stopped chasing the Philistines, and the Philistines went back home.[cd] 47 After Saul had secured his royal position over Israel, he fought against all their[ce] enemies on all sides—the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, the kings of Zobah, and the Philistines. In every direction that he turned, he was victorious.[cf] 48 He fought bravely, striking down the Amalekites and delivering Israel from the hand of its enemies.[cg]
Members of Saul’s Family
49 The sons of Saul were Jonathan, Ishvi, and Malki-Shua.[ch] He had two daughters; the older one was named Merab and the younger Michal. 50 The name of Saul’s wife was Ahinoam, the daughter of Ahimaaz. The name of the general in command of his army was Abner son of Ner, Saul’s uncle.[ci] 51 Kish was the father of Saul, and Ner the father of Abner was the son[cj] of Abiel.
52 There was fierce war with the Philistines all the days of Saul. So whenever Saul saw anyone who was a warrior or a brave individual, he would conscript him.
- 1 Samuel 13:1 tc The MT does not have “thirty.” A number appears to have dropped out of the Hebrew text here, since as it stands the MT (literally, “a son of a year”) must mean that Saul was only one year old when he began to reign! The KJV, attempting to resolve this, reads “Saul reigned one year,” but that is not the normal meaning of the Hebrew text represented by the MT. Although most LXX mss lack the entire verse, some Greek mss have “thirty years” here (while others have “one year” like the MT). The Syriac Peshitta has Saul’s age as twenty-one. But this seems impossible to harmonize with the implied age of Saul’s son Jonathan in the following verse. Taking into account the fact that in v. 2 Jonathan was old enough to be a military leader, some scholars prefer to supply in v. 1 the number forty (cf. ASV, NASB). The present translation (“thirty”) is a possible but admittedly uncertain proposal based on a few Greek mss and followed by a number of English versions (e.g., NIV, NCV, NLT). Other English versions simply supply ellipsis marks for the missing number (e.g., NAB, NRSV).
- 1 Samuel 13:1 tc The MT has “two years” here. If this number is to be accepted as correct, the meaning apparently would be that after a lapse of two years at the beginning of Saul’s reign, he then went about the task of consolidating an army as described in what follows (cf. KJV, ASV, CEV). But if the statement in v. 1 is intended to be a comprehensive report on the length of Saul’s reign, the number is too small. According to Acts 13:21 Saul reigned for forty years. Some English versions (e.g., NIV, NCV, NLT), taking this forty to be a round number, add it to the “two years” of the MT and translate the number here as “forty-two years.” While this is an acceptable option, the present translation instead replaces the MT’s “two” with the figure “forty.” Admittedly the textual evidence for this decision is weak, but the same can be said of any attempt to restore sense to this difficult text (note the ellipsis marks at this point in NAB, NRSV). The Syriac Peshitta lacks this part of v. 1.
- 1 Samuel 13:2 tn Heb “at Gibeah of Benjamin.” The words “in the territory” are supplied in the translation for clarity.
- 1 Samuel 13:2 tn Heb “each one to his tents.”
- 1 Samuel 13:3 tn Or perhaps “struck down the Philistine official.” See the note at 1 Sam 10:5. Cf. TEV “killed the Philistine commander.”
- 1 Samuel 13:3 tn Heb “blew the ram’s horn in.”
- 1 Samuel 13:4 tn The words “this message” are supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons.
- 1 Samuel 13:4 tn Heb “stinks.” The figurative language indicates that Israel had become repulsive to the Philistines.
- 1 Samuel 13:4 tn Heb “were summoned after.”
- 1 Samuel 13:5 tc The MT omits “they went up against Israel” in a case of homoioteleuton, but these words are preserved in LXX.
- 1 Samuel 13:5 tc The translation follows the Lucianic Greek rescension and the Syriac. Many English versions follow the MT (e.g., KJV, NASB, NRSV, TEV) reading “30,000” here. One expects there to be more horsemen than chariots, cf. 2 Kgs 13:7; 2 Chr 12:3.
- 1 Samuel 13:6 tn Or perhaps “vaults.” This rare term also occurs in Judg 9:46, 49. Cf. KJV “high places”; ASV “coverts”; NAB “caverns”; NASB “cellars”; NIV, NCV, TEV “pits”; NRSV, NLT “tombs.”
- 1 Samuel 13:7 tn The word “River” is not in the Hebrew text, but has been supplied in the translation for clarity.
- 1 Samuel 13:8 tn This apparently refers to the instructions given by Samuel in 1 Sam 10:8. If so, several years had passed. On the relationship between chs. 10 and 13, see V. P. Long, The Art of Biblical History (FCI), 201-23.
- 1 Samuel 13:8 tn Heb “dispersed from upon him”; NAB, NRSV “began to slip away.”
- 1 Samuel 13:10 tn Heb “to bless him.”
- 1 Samuel 13:11 tn Heb “dispersed from upon me.”
- 1 Samuel 13:12 tn Heb “said.”
- 1 Samuel 13:12 tn Or “I forced myself” (so KJV, NASB, NRSV, CEV); NAB “So in my anxiety I offered”; NIV “I felt compelled.”
- 1 Samuel 13:13 tn Or “kept.”
- 1 Samuel 13:13 tn Heb “commanded.”
- 1 Samuel 13:14 tn This verb form, as well as the one that follows (“appointed”), indicates completed action from the standpoint of the speaker. This does not necessarily mean that the Lord had already conducted his search and made his choice, however. The forms may be used for rhetorical effect to emphasize the certainty of the action. The divine search for a new king is as good as done, emphasizing that the days of Saul’s dynasty are numbered.
- 1 Samuel 13:14 tn Heb “according to his heart.” The idiomatic expression means to be like-minded with another, as its use in 1 Sam 14:7 indicates.
- 1 Samuel 13:14 tn Heb “commanded.”
- 1 Samuel 13:15 tc The LXX and two Old Latin mss include the following words here: “on his way. And the rest of the people went up after Saul to meet the warring army. When they arrived from Gilgal….”
- 1 Samuel 13:15 tn Heb “at Gibeah of Benjamin.” The words “in the territory” are supplied in the translation for clarity (likewise in the following verse).
- 1 Samuel 13:16 tn The juxtaposition of disjunctive clauses in v. 16 indicates synchronic action.
- 1 Samuel 13:20 tc The translation follows the LXX (“their sickle”) here, rather than the MT “plowshares,” which is due to dittography from the word earlier in the verse.
- 1 Samuel 13:21 tn Heb “the price was.” The meaning of the Hebrew word פְּצִירָה (petsirah) is uncertain. This is the only place it occurs in the OT. Some propose the meaning “sharpening,” but “price” is a more likely meaning if the following term refers to a weight (see the following note on the word “shekel”). See P. K. McCarter, I Samuel (AB), 238.
- 1 Samuel 13:21 tn This word, which appears only here in the OT, probably refers to a stone weight. Stones marked פִּים (pim) have been found in excavations of Palestinian sites. The average weight of such stones is 0.268 ounces, which is equivalent to about two-thirds of a shekel. This probably refers to the price charged by the Philistines for the services listed. See P. K. McCarter, I Samuel (AB), 238; DNWSI 2:910; and G. I. Davies, Ancient Hebrew Inscriptions, 259.
- 1 Samuel 13:21 tc Heb “and for a third, a pick.” The Hebrew text suffers from haplography at this point. The translation follows the textual reconstruction offered by P. K. McCarter, I Samuel (AB), 235.
- 1 Samuel 14:1 tn Or “the servant who was carrying his military equipment” (likewise in vv. 6, 7, 12, 13, 14).
- 1 Samuel 14:3 tn Heb “bearing.” Many English versions understand this verb to mean “wearing” (cf. KJV, NAB, NASB, NIV, NLT). The ephod could be used for consulting the Lord’s will (1 Sam 23:9-10; 30:7-8) and is not always worn (1 Sam 23:6). The significance in this context is probably not that Ahijah was dressed for sacrificial duties or to appear before God at the tabernacle, but rather that the ephod was available for consulting God, given the people’s ignorance about Jonathan’s activities. (Cf. the note at 1 Sam 2:28.)
- 1 Samuel 14:6 tn Heb “act.”
- 1 Samuel 14:7 tn Heb “in your heart.”
- 1 Samuel 14:7 tn Heb “Look, I am with you, according to your heart.” See the note at 13:14.
- 1 Samuel 14:8 tn Heb “Look!”
- 1 Samuel 14:9 tn Heb “stand.”
- 1 Samuel 14:11 tn Heb “the two of them.”
- 1 Samuel 14:12 tn Heb “a thing.”
- 1 Samuel 14:12 tn The perfect verbal form is used rhetorically here to express Jonathan’s certitude. As far as he is concerned, the victory is as good as won and can be described as such.
- 1 Samuel 14:13 tn Heb “and they fell before Jonathan.”
- 1 Samuel 14:13 tn Heb “and the one carrying his equipment was killing after him.”
- 1 Samuel 14:15 tn Heb “fell upon.”
- 1 Samuel 14:15 tn Heb “and it was by the fear of God.” The translation understands this to mean that God was the source or cause of the fear experienced by the Philistines. This seems to be the most straightforward reading of the sentence. It is possible, however, that the word “God” functions here simply to intensify the accompanying word “fear,” in which one might translate “a very great fear” (cf. NAB, NRSV). It is clear that on some occasions that the divine name carries such a superlative nuance. For examples see Joüon 2:525 §141.n.
- 1 Samuel 14:16 tn Heb “at Gibeah of Benjamin.” The words “in the territory” are supplied in the translation for clarity.
- 1 Samuel 14:16 tn Heb “saw, and look!”
- 1 Samuel 14:16 tn Heb “the crowd melted and went, even here.”
- 1 Samuel 14:17 tn Heb “and they mustered the troops, and look!”
- 1 Samuel 14:18 tc Heb “the ark of God.” It seems unlikely that Saul would call for the ark, which was several miles away in Kiriath Jearim (see 1 Sam 7:2). The LXX and an Old Latin ms have “ephod” here, a reading which harmonizes better with v. 3 and fits better with the verb “bring near” (see 1 Sam 23:9; 30:7) and with the expression “withdraw your hand” in v. 19. There are also quotations of this reading in rabbinic literature and medieval Jewish literature according to V. Aptowitzer, The Scripture in the Rabbinic Literature and Medieval Jewish Literature, Prolegomena (3 parts, Vindobonae, 1906, 1908, 1911). It is followed in the present translation (cf. NAB, NJB, GWN, TEV, NLT, CEB, BBE).
- 1 Samuel 14:18 tc Heb “for the ark of God was in that day, and the sons of Israel.” The translation follows the text of some Greek manuscripts. See the previous note.
- 1 Samuel 14:19 tn Or perhaps “until.”
- 1 Samuel 14:20 tn Heb “and look, there was.”
- 1 Samuel 14:20 tn Heb “the sword of a man against his companion, a very great panic.”
- 1 Samuel 14:21 tn Heb “and the Hebrews were to the Philistines formerly, who went up with them in the camp all around.”
- 1 Samuel 14:23 tc The LXX includes the following words: “And all the people were with Saul, about ten thousand men. And the battle extended to the entire city on mount Ephraim.”
- 1 Samuel 14:25 tn Heb “all the land.”
- 1 Samuel 14:25 tn Heb “the surface of the field.”
- 1 Samuel 14:26 tn Heb “and the army entered the forest, and look!”
- 1 Samuel 14:26 tn Heb “and there was no one putting his hand to his mouth.”
- 1 Samuel 14:27 tn Heb “and he returned his hand to his mouth.”
- 1 Samuel 14:27 tc The translation follows the Qere and several medieval Hebrew mss in reading “gleamed,” rather than the Kethib, “saw.”
- 1 Samuel 14:28 tn Heb “your father surely put the army under an oath.” The infinitive absolute is used before the finite verb to emphasize the solemn nature of the oath.
- 1 Samuel 14:29 tc The LXX reads “saw.” See v. 27.
- 1 Samuel 14:32 tc The translation follows the Qere and many medieval Hebrew mss in reading “and they rushed greedily upon,” rather than the Kethib, “and they did.”
- 1 Samuel 14:32 tc The translation reads with the Qere and many medieval Hebrew mss הַשָּׁלָל (hashalal, “the spoil”) rather than following the Kethib reading, שָׁלָל (shalal, “spoil”).
- 1 Samuel 14:33 tn Heb “You have acted deceptively.” In this context the verb refers to violating an agreement, in this case the dietary and sacrificial regulations of the Mosaic law. The verb form is second masculine plural; apparently Saul here addresses those who are eating the animals.
- 1 Samuel 14:33 tc The translation follows the LXX reading ἐνταῦθα (entautha, “here”) for הֲלֹם (halom, “here”) rather than the MT’s הַיּוֹם (hayyom, “today”).
- 1 Samuel 14:34 tn Heb “and all the army brought near, each his ox by his hand, and they slaughtered there.”
- 1 Samuel 14:36 tn Heb “plunder.”
- 1 Samuel 14:36 tn Heb “until the light of the morning.”
- 1 Samuel 14:36 tn Heb “and there will not be left among them a man.”
- 1 Samuel 14:36 tn Heb “all that is good in your eyes.” So also in v. 40.
- 1 Samuel 14:38 tn Heb “know and see.”
- 1 Samuel 14:39 tn Heb “and there was no one answering from all the army.”
- 1 Samuel 14:41 tc Heb “to the Lord God of Israel: ‘Give what is perfect.’” The Hebrew textual tradition has accidentally omitted several words here. The present translation follows the LXX (as do several English versions, cf. NAB, NRSV, TEV). See P. K. McCarter, I Samuel (AB), 247-48, and R. W. Klein, 1 Samuel (WBC), 132.sn The Urim and Thummim were used for lot casting in ancient Israel. Their exact identity is uncertain; they may have been specially marked stones drawn from a bag. See Exod 28:30; Lev 8:8, and Deut 33:8, as well as the discussion in R. W. Klein, 1 Samuel (WBC), 140.
- 1 Samuel 14:41 tn Heb “went out.”
- 1 Samuel 14:42 tc The LXX includes the following words: “Whomever the Lord will indicate by the lot, let him die! And the people said to Saul, ‘It is not this word.’ But Saul prevailed over the people, and they cast lots between him and between Jonathan his son.”
- 1 Samuel 14:43 tn Heb “Look, I, I will die.” Apparently Jonathan is acquiescing to his anticipated fate of death. However, the words may be taken as sarcastic (“Here I am about to die!”) or as a question, “Must I now die?” (cf. NAB, NIV, NCV, NLT).
- 1 Samuel 14:44 tn Heb “So God will do and so he will add, surely you will certainly die, Jonathan.”
- 1 Samuel 14:45 tn Heb “and he did not die.”
- 1 Samuel 14:46 tn Heb “to their place.”
- 1 Samuel 14:47 tn Heb “his,” which could refer to Israel or to Saul.
- 1 Samuel 14:47 tc The translation follows the LXX (“he was delivered”), rather than the MT, which reads, “he acted wickedly.”
- 1 Samuel 14:48 tn Heb “plunderers.”
- 1 Samuel 14:49 sn The list differs from others. In 1 Sam 31:2 (= 1 Chr 10:2), Jonathan, Abinadab, and Malki-Shua are listed as Saul’s sons, while 1 Chr 8:33 and 9:39 list Jonathan, Malki-Shua, Abinadab, and Eshbaal.
- 1 Samuel 14:50 sn The word “uncle” can modify either Abner or Ner. See the note on the word “son” in v. 51 for further discussion.
- 1 Samuel 14:51 tn 1 Chr 9:35-36 indicates that Jeiel (= Abiel?) had two sons (among others) named Ner and Kish (see also 1 Sam 9:1 and 1 Chr 8:30, where some Greek manuscripts include the name Ner, though it is absent in the Hebrew text). If this Kish was the father of Saul and Ner was the father of Abner, then Saul and Abner were cousins. However, according to 1 Chr 8:33 and 9:39, Ner, not Abiel, was the father of Kish. In this case, Kish and Abner were brothers and Abner was Saul’s uncle. The simplest solution to the problem is to see two men named Kish in the genealogy: Abiel (Jeiel) was the father of Ner and Kish I. Ner was the father of Abner and Kish II. Kish II was the father of Saul. The Kish mentioned in 1 Sam 9:1 was the father of Saul (v. 2) and must be identified as Kish II. In this case the genealogy is “gapped,” with Ner being omitted. Abiel was the grandfather of Kish II.
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