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Judges 14 New King James Version (NKJV)

Samson’s Philistine Wife

14 Now Samson went down to Timnah, and saw a woman in Timnah of the daughters of the Philistines. So he went up and told his father and mother, saying, “I have seen a woman in Timnah of the daughters of the Philistines; now therefore, get her for me as a wife.”

Then his father and mother said to him, “Is there no woman among the daughters of your brethren, or among all my people, that you must go and get a wife from the uncircumcised Philistines?”

And Samson said to his father, “Get her for me, for [a]she pleases me well.”

But his father and mother did not know that it was of the Lord—that He was seeking an occasion to move against the Philistines. For at that time the Philistines had dominion over Israel.

So Samson went down to Timnah with his father and mother, and came to the vineyards of Timnah.

Now to his surprise, a young lion came roaring against him. And the Spirit of the Lord came mightily upon him, and he tore the lion apart as one would have torn apart a young goat, though he had nothing in his hand. But he did not tell his father or his mother what he had done.

Then he went down and talked with the woman; and she pleased Samson well. After some time, when he returned to get her, he turned aside to see the carcass of the lion. And behold, a swarm of bees and honey were in the carcass of the lion. He took some of it in his hands and went along, eating. When he came to his father and mother, he gave some to them, and they also ate. But he did not tell them that he had taken the honey out of the carcass of the lion.

10 So his father went down to the woman. And Samson gave a feast there, for young men used to do so. 11 And it happened, when they saw him, that they brought thirty companions to be with him.

12 Then Samson said to them, “Let me pose a riddle to you. If you can correctly solve and explain it to me within the seven days of the feast, then I will give you thirty linen garments and thirty changes of clothing. 13 But if you cannot explain it to me, then you shall give me thirty linen garments and thirty changes of clothing.”

And they said to him, “Pose your riddle, that we may hear it.”

14 So he said to them:

“Out of the eater came something to eat,
And out of the strong came something sweet.”

Now for three days they could not explain the riddle.

15 But it came to pass on the [b]seventh day that they said to Samson’s wife, “Entice your husband, that he may explain the riddle to us, or else we will burn you and your father’s house with fire. Have you invited us in order to take what is ours? Is that not so?

16 Then Samson’s wife wept on him, and said, “You only hate me! You do not love me! You have posed a riddle to the sons of my people, but you have not explained it to me.”

And he said to her, “Look, I have not explained it to my father or my mother; so should I explain it to you?” 17 Now she had wept on him the seven days while their feast lasted. And it happened on the seventh day that he told her, because she pressed him so much. Then she explained the riddle to the sons of her people. 18 So the men of the city said to him on the seventh day before the sun went down:

“What is sweeter than honey?
And what is stronger than a lion?”

And he said to them:

“If you had not plowed with my heifer,
You would not have solved my riddle!”

19 Then the Spirit of the Lord came upon him mightily, and he went down to Ashkelon and killed thirty of their men, took their apparel, and gave the changes of clothing to those who had explained the riddle. So his anger was aroused, and he went back up to his father’s house. 20 And Samson’s wife was given to his companion, who had been his best man.

Footnotes:

  1. Judges 14:3 Lit. she is right in my eyes
  2. Judges 14:15 So with MT, Tg., Vg.; LXX, Syr. fourth
New King James Version (NKJV)

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

שופטים 14 The Westminster Leningrad Codex (WLC)

14 וַיֵּ֥רֶד שִׁמְשׁ֖וֹן תִּמְנָ֑תָה וַיַּ֥רְא אִשָּׁ֛ה בְּתִמְנָ֖תָה מִבְּנ֥וֹת פְּלִשְׁתִּֽים׃

וַיַּ֗עַל וַיַּגֵּד֙ לְאָבִ֣יו וּלְאִמּ֔וֹ וַיֹּ֗אמֶר אִשָּׁ֛ה רָאִ֥יתִי בְתִמְנָ֖תָה מִבְּנ֣וֹת פְּלִשְׁתִּ֑ים וְעַתָּ֕ה קְחוּ־אוֹתָ֥הּ לִּ֖י לְאִשָּֽׁה׃

וַיֹּ֨אמֶר ל֜וֹ אָבִ֣יו וְאִמּ֗וֹ הַאֵין֩ בִּבְנ֨וֹת אַחֶ֤יךָ וּבְכָל־עַמִּי֙ אִשָּׁ֔ה כִּֽי־אַתָּ֤ה הוֹלֵךְ֙ לָקַ֣חַת אִשָּׁ֔ה מִפְּלִשְׁתִּ֖ים הָעֲרֵלִ֑ים וַיֹּ֨אמֶר שִׁמְשׁ֤וֹן אֶל־אָבִיו֙ אוֹתָ֣הּ קַֽח־לִ֔י כִּֽי־הִ֖יא יָשְׁרָ֥ה בְעֵינָֽי׃

וְאָבִ֨יו וְאִמּ֜וֹ לֹ֣א יָדְע֗וּ כִּ֤י מֵיְהוָה֙ הִ֔יא כִּי־תֹאֲנָ֥ה הֽוּא־מְבַקֵּ֖שׁ מִפְּלִשְׁתִּ֑ים וּבָעֵ֣ת הַהִ֔יא פְּלִשְׁתִּ֖ים מֹשְׁלִ֥ים בְּיִשְׂרָאֵֽל׃ פ

וַיֵּ֧רֶד שִׁמְשׁ֛וֹן וְאָבִ֥יו וְאִמּ֖וֹ תִּמְנָ֑תָה וַיָּבֹ֙אוּ֙ עַד־כַּרְמֵ֣י תִמְנָ֔תָה וְהִנֵּה֙ כְּפִ֣יר אֲרָי֔וֹת שֹׁאֵ֖ג לִקְרָאתֽוֹ׃

וַתִּצְלַ֨ח עָלָ֜יו ר֣וּחַ יְהוָ֗ה וַֽיְשַׁסְּעֵ֙הוּ֙ כְּשַׁסַּ֣ע הַגְּדִ֔י וּמְא֖וּמָה אֵ֣ין בְּיָד֑וֹ וְלֹ֤א הִגִּיד֙ לְאָבִ֣יו וּלְאִמּ֔וֹ אֵ֖ת אֲשֶׁ֥ר עָשָֽׂה׃

וַיֵּ֖רֶד וַיְדַבֵּ֣ר לָאִשָּׁ֑ה וַתִּישַׁ֖ר בְּעֵינֵ֥י שִׁמְשֽׁוֹן׃

וַיָּ֤שָׁב מִיָּמִים֙ לְקַחְתָּ֔הּ וַיָּ֣סַר לִרְא֔וֹת אֵ֖ת מַפֶּ֣לֶת הָאַרְיֵ֑ה וְהִנֵּ֨ה עֲדַ֧ת דְּבוֹרִ֛ים בִּגְוִיַּ֥ת הָאַרְיֵ֖ה וּדְבָֽשׁ׃

וַיִּרְדֵּ֣הוּ אֶל־כַּפָּ֗יו וַיֵּ֤לֶךְ הָלוֹךְ֙ וְאָכֹ֔ל וַיֵּ֙לֶךְ֙ אֶל־אָבִ֣יו וְאֶל־אִמּ֔וֹ וַיִּתֵּ֥ן לָהֶ֖ם וַיֹּאכֵ֑לוּ וְלֹֽא־הִגִּ֣יד לָהֶ֔ם כִּ֛י מִגְּוִיַּ֥ת הָאַרְיֵ֖ה רָדָ֥ה הַדְּבָֽשׁ׃

10 וַיֵּ֥רֶד אָבִ֖יהוּ אֶל־הָאִשָּׁ֑ה וַיַּ֨עַשׂ שָׁ֤ם שִׁמְשׁוֹן֙ מִשְׁתֶּ֔ה כִּ֛י כֵּ֥ן יַעֲשׂ֖וּ הַבַּחוּרִֽים׃

11 וַיְהִ֖י כִּרְאוֹתָ֣ם אוֹת֑וֹ וַיִּקְחוּ֙ שְׁלֹשִׁ֣ים מֵֽרֵעִ֔ים וַיִּהְי֖וּ אִתּֽוֹ׃

12 וַיֹּ֤אמֶר לָהֶם֙ שִׁמְשׁ֔וֹן אָחֽוּדָה־נָּ֥א לָכֶ֖ם חִידָ֑ה אִם־הַגֵּ֣ד תַּגִּידוּ֩ אוֹתָ֨הּ לִ֜י שִׁבְעַ֨ת יְמֵ֤י הַמִּשְׁתֶּה֙ וּמְצָאתֶ֔ם וְנָתַתִּ֤י לָכֶם֙ שְׁלֹשִׁ֣ים סְדִינִ֔ים וּשְׁלֹשִׁ֖ים חֲלִפֹ֥ת בְּגָדִֽים׃

13 וְאִם־לֹ֣א תוּכְלוּ֮ לְהַגִּ֣יד לִי֒ וּנְתַתֶּ֨ם אַתֶּ֥ם לִי֙ שְׁלֹשִׁ֣ים סְדִינִ֔ים וּשְׁלֹשִׁ֖ים חֲלִיפ֣וֹת בְּגָדִ֑ים וַיֹּ֣אמְרוּ ל֔וֹ ח֥וּדָה חִידָתְךָ֖ וְנִשְׁמָעֶֽנָּה׃

14 וַיֹּ֣אמֶר לָהֶ֗ם מֵהָֽאֹכֵל֙ יָצָ֣א מַאֲכָ֔ל וּמֵעַ֖ז יָצָ֣א מָת֑וֹק וְלֹ֥א יָכְל֛וּ לְהַגִּ֥יד הַחִידָ֖ה שְׁלֹ֥שֶׁת יָמִֽים׃

15 וַיְהִ֣י׀ בַּיּ֣וֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִ֗י וַיֹּאמְר֤וּ לְאֵֽשֶׁת־שִׁמְשׁוֹן֙ פַּתִּ֣י אֶת־אִישֵׁ֗ךְ וְיַגֶּד־לָ֙נוּ֙ אֶת־הַ֣חִידָ֔ה פֶּן־נִשְׂרֹ֥ף אוֹתָ֛ךְ וְאֶת־בֵּ֥ית אָבִ֖יךְ בָּאֵ֑שׁ הַלְיָרְשֵׁ֕נוּ קְרָאתֶ֥ם לָ֖נוּ הֲלֹֽא׃

16 וַתֵּבְךְּ֩ אֵ֨שֶׁת שִׁמְשׁ֜וֹן עָלָ֗יו וַתֹּ֙אמֶר֙ רַק־שְׂנֵאתַ֙נִי֙ וְלֹ֣א אֲהַבְתָּ֔נִי הַֽחִידָ֥ה חַ֙דְתָּ֙ לִבְנֵ֣י עַמִּ֔י וְלִ֖י לֹ֣א הִגַּ֑דְתָּה וַיֹּ֣אמֶר לָ֗הּ הִנֵּ֨ה לְאָבִ֧י וּלְאִמִּ֛י לֹ֥א הִגַּ֖דְתִּי וְלָ֥ךְ אַגִּֽיד׃

17 וַתֵּ֤בְךְּ עָלָיו֙ שִׁבְעַ֣ת הַיָּמִ֔ים אֲשֶׁר־הָיָ֥ה לָהֶ֖ם הַמִּשְׁתֶּ֑ה וַיְהִ֣י׀ בַּיּ֣וֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִ֗י וַיַּגֶּד־לָהּ֙ כִּ֣י הֱצִיקַ֔תְהוּ וַתַּגֵּ֥ד הַחִידָ֖ה לִבְנֵ֥י עַמָּֽהּ׃

18 וַיֹּ֣אמְרוּ לוֹ֩ אַנְשֵׁ֨י הָעִ֜יר בַּיּ֣וֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִ֗י בְּטֶ֙רֶם֙ יָבֹ֣א הַחַ֔רְסָה מַה־מָּת֣וֹק מִדְּבַ֔שׁ וּמֶ֥ה עַ֖ז מֵאֲרִ֑י וַיֹּ֣אמֶר לָהֶ֔ם לוּלֵא֙ חֲרַשְׁתֶּ֣ם בְּעֶגְלָתִ֔י לֹ֥א מְצָאתֶ֖ם חִידָתִֽי׃

19 וַתִּצְלַ֨ח עָלָ֜יו ר֣וּחַ יְהוָ֗ה וַיֵּ֨רֶד אַשְׁקְל֜וֹן וַיַּ֥ךְ מֵהֶ֣ם׀ שְׁלֹשִׁ֣ים אִ֗ישׁ וַיִּקַּח֙ אֶת־חֲלִ֣יצוֹתָ֔ם וַיִּתֵּן֙ הַחֲלִיפ֔וֹת לְמַגִּידֵ֖י הַחִידָ֑ה וַיִּ֣חַר אַפּ֔וֹ וַיַּ֖עַל בֵּ֥ית אָבִֽיהוּ׃ פ

20 וַתְּהִ֖י אֵ֣שֶׁת שִׁמְשׁ֑וֹן לְמֵ֣רֵעֵ֔הוּ אֲשֶׁ֥ר רֵעָ֖ה לֽוֹ׃

Judges 14 Young's Literal Translation (YLT)

14 And Samson goeth down to Timnath, and seeth a woman in Timnath of the daughters of the Philistines,

and cometh up and declareth to his father, and to his mother, and saith, `A woman I have seen in Timnath, of the daughters of the Philistines; and now, take her for me for a wife.'

And his father saith to him -- also his mother, `Is there not among the daughters of thy brethren, and among all my people, a woman, that thou art going to take a woman from the uncircumcised Philistines?' and Samson saith unto his father, `Take her for me, for she is right in mine eyes.'

And his father and his mother have not known that from Jehovah it [is], that a meeting he is seeking of the Philistines; and at that time the Philistines are ruling over Israel.

And Samson goeth down -- also his father and his mother, to Timnath, and they come unto the vineyards of Timnath, and lo, a lion's whelp roareth at meeting him,

and the Spirit of Jehovah prospereth over him, and he rendeth it as the rending of a kid, and there is nothing in his hand, and he hath not declared to his father and to his mother that which he hath done.

And he goeth down and speaketh to the woman, and she is right in the eyes of Samson;

and he turneth back after [some] days to take her, and turneth aside to see the carcase of the lion, and lo, a company of bees [are] in the body of the lion -- and honey.

And he taketh it down on to his hands, and goeth on, going and eating; and he goeth unto his father, and unto his mother, and giveth to them, and they eat, and he hath not declared to them that from the body of the lion he took down the honey.

10 And his father goeth down unto the woman, and Samson maketh there a banquet, for so the young men do;

11 and it cometh to pass when they see him, that they take thirty companions, and they are with him.

12 And Samson saith to them, `Let me, I pray you, put forth to you a riddle; if ye certainly declare it to me [in] the seven days of the banquet, and have found [it] out, then I have given to you thirty linen shirts, and thirty changes of garments;

13 and if ye are not able to declare [it] to me, then ye have given to me thirty linen shirts, and thirty changes of garments.' And they say to him, `Put forth thy riddle, and we hear it!'

14 And he saith to them: `Out of the eater came forth meat, And out of the strong came forth sweetness;' and they were not able to declare the riddle [in] three days.

15 And it cometh to pass, on the seventh day, that they say to Samson's wife, `Entice thy husband, that he declare to us the riddle, lest we burn thee and the house of thy father with fire; to possess us have ye called for us? is it not?'

16 And Samson's wife weepeth for it, and saith, `Thou hast only hated me, and hast not loved me; the riddle thou hast put forth to the sons of my people -- and to me thou hast not declared it;' and he saith to her, `Lo, to my father and to my mother I have not declared [it] -- and to thee I declare [it]!'

17 And she weepeth for it the seven days [in] which their banquet hath been, and it cometh to pass on the seventh day that he declareth [it] to her, for she hath distressed him; and she declareth the riddle to the sons of her people.

18 And the men of the city say to him on the seventh day, before the sun goeth in: -- `What [is] sweeter than honey? And what stronger than a lion?' And he saith to them: `Unless ye had ploughed with my heifer, Ye had not found out my riddle.'

19 And the Spirit of Jehovah prospereth over him, and he goeth down to Ashkelon, and smiteth of them thirty men, and taketh their armour, and giveth the changes to those declaring the riddle; and his anger burneth, and he goeth up to the house of his father;

20 and Samson's wife becometh his companion's, who [is] his friend.

Judges 14 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Samson’s Marriage

14 Then Samson went down to Timnah and saw a woman in Timnah, one of the daughters of the Philistines. So he came [a]back and told his father and [b]mother, “I saw a woman in Timnah, one of the daughters of the Philistines; now therefore, get her for me as a wife.” Then his father and his mother said to him, “Is there no woman among the daughters of your [c]relatives, or among all [d]our people, that you go to take a wife from the uncircumcised Philistines?” But Samson said to his father, “Get her for me, for she [e]looks good to me.” However, his father and mother did not know that it was of the Lord, for He was seeking an occasion against the Philistines. Now at that time the Philistines were ruling over Israel.

Then Samson went down to Timnah with his father and mother, and came as far as the vineyards of Timnah; and behold, a young lion came roaring toward him. The Spirit of the Lord [f]came upon him mightily, so that he tore him as one tears a young goat though he had nothing in his hand; but he did not tell his father or mother what he had done. So he went down and talked to the woman; and she [g]looked good to Samson. When he returned later to take her, he turned aside to look at the carcass of the lion; and behold, a swarm of bees and honey were in the body of the lion. So he scraped [h]the honey into his [i]hands and went on, eating as he went. When he came to his father and mother, he gave some to them and they ate it; but he did not tell them that he had scraped the honey out of the body of the lion.

10 Then his father went down to the woman; and Samson made a feast there, for the young men customarily did this. 11 When they saw him, they brought thirty companions to be with him.

Samson’s Riddle

12 Then Samson said to them, “Let me now propound a riddle to you; if you will indeed tell it to me within the seven days of the feast, and find it out, then I will give you thirty linen wraps and thirty changes of clothes. 13 But if you are unable to tell me, then you shall give me thirty linen wraps and thirty changes of clothes.” And they said to him, “Propound your riddle, that we may hear it.” 14 So he said to them,

“Out of the eater came something to eat,
And out of the strong came something sweet.”

But they could not tell the riddle in three days.

15 Then it came about on the [j]fourth day that they said to Samson’s wife, “Entice your husband, so that he will tell us the riddle, or we will burn you and your father’s house with fire. Have you invited us to impoverish us? Is this not so?” 16 Samson’s wife wept before him and said, “You only hate me, and you do not love me; you have propounded a riddle to the sons of my people, and have not told it to me.” And he said to her, “Behold, I have not told it to my father or mother; so should I tell you?” 17 However she wept before him seven days while their feast lasted. And on the seventh day he told her because she pressed him so hard. She then told the riddle to the sons of her people. 18 So the men of the city said to him on the seventh day before the sun went down,

“What is sweeter than honey?
And what is stronger than a lion?”

And he said to them,

“If you had not plowed with my heifer,
You would not have found out my riddle.”

19 Then the Spirit of the Lord [k]came upon him mightily, and he went down to Ashkelon and killed thirty of them and took their spoil and gave the changes of clothes to those who told the riddle. And his anger burned, and he went up to his father’s house. 20 But Samson’s wife was given to his companion who had been his [l]friend.

Footnotes:

  1. Judges 14:2 Lit up
  2. Judges 14:2 Lit mother, saying,
  3. Judges 14:3 Lit brothers
  4. Judges 14:3 Lit my
  5. Judges 14:3 Lit is right in my eyes
  6. Judges 14:6 Lit rushed upon
  7. Judges 14:7 Lit was right in Samson’s eyes
  8. Judges 14:9 Lit it
  9. Judges 14:9 Lit palms
  10. Judges 14:15 So with some ancient versions; Heb seventh
  11. Judges 14:19 Lit rushed upon
  12. Judges 14:20 Or best man
New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation

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