Judges Chapter 14  PDF  MSWord

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Go to Bible: Judges 14
Jdg 14:1

“And Samson went down to Timnah.” The original text had no chapter or verse breaks, and this sentence follows immediately after the line that God was stirring Samson, impelling him, troubling him (see commentary on Judg. 13:25). If Samson wanted a wife, why would he go to the Philistines to find one? The answer is that it was due to the stirring of the Lord inside him, and this fits with Judges14:4. The phrase “went down” is geographically accurate, because Timnah is downhill from where Samson lived.

Jdg 14:2(top)
Jdg 14:3(top)
Jdg 14:4(top)
Jdg 14:5(top)
Jdg 14:6(top)
Jdg 14:7

“she was right in Samson’s eyes.” This is idiomatic for the fact that she was pleasing to him.

Jdg 14:8

“After a while.” The Hebrew is an idiom, “from days,” and it means after a while (cp. Judg. 11:4).

“remains.” The Hebrew uses a word with the root of “fall.” It can refer to a ruin or an overthrow. The lion was fallen; Samson saw the ruins of it, the remains were there. And honey was in the carcass. With the fall of Israel’s enemies there would be sweetness for Israel.

Jdg 14:9(top)
Jdg 14:10(top)
Jdg 14:11(top)
Jdg 14:12

“tell you a riddle.” The Hebrew is “riddle you a riddle,” using “riddle” as a noun and verb.

“tell, yes, tell.” The Hebrew text uses the figure polyptoton and uses the verb “tell” in two different verbal aspects (see commentary on polyptoton in Gen. 2:16).

Jdg 14:13(top)
Jdg 14:14(top)
Jdg 14:15

“fourth.” Although the Hebrew text reads, “seventh,” that creates a contradiction in the text with such verses as Judges 14:17. The Septuagint and some Aramaic texts read “fourth,” and there is every reason to believe that was the original reading of the Hebrew. There is only a difference of one letter between the Hebrew word for “fourth” and “seventh,” and that could have been made by an accidental scribal error.

Jdg 14:16

“hate.” The word “hate” in the Bible does not always have the meaning it has in English, an intense feeling of animosity, anger, and hostility towards a person, group, or object. In Hebrew and Greek, the word “hate” has a large range of meanings, from actual “hate” to simply loving something less than something else, neglecting or ignoring something, or being disgusted by something. “Hate” can also mean “to ignore, to have nothing to do with; or to have a lack of love and kindly sentiment towards someone or something.” Especially in the context of “love” and “hate,” “hate” means you like something else better than the thing you “hate” (you ignore, you neglect). Samson’s wife was saying that Samson loved other things more than she, and was neglecting her. [For more on the large semantic range of “hate” and its use in the Bible, see commentary on Prov. 1:22, “hate”].

Jdg 14:17(top)
Jdg 14:18

“plowed with my heifer.” This refers to the common custom of plowing with a goad, a sharpened stick that was used in training and directing the animal pulling the plow. The goad comes up several times in Scripture (Judg. 3:31; 1 Sam. 13:21; Ecc. 12:11; Acts 26:14). The word “heifer,” referring to a young female cow, was a term used of women, like a woman might be called a “chick” today (or a “bird” in England). Cows were valuable and watched over, and the word “cow” is used of women in the Amos 4:1. Thus, in essence, Samson was saying, “If you have not threatened my young woman with pain, you would not have found out my riddle.”

Jdg 14:19(top)
Jdg 14:20(top)

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