8:5 He said to the men of Succoth, “Give 1 some loaves of bread to the men 2 who are following me, 3 because they are exhausted. I am chasing Zebah and Zalmunna, the kings of Midian.” 8:6 The officials of Succoth said, “You have not yet overpowered Zebah and Zalmunna. So why should we give 4 bread to your army?” 5
1 tn Or perhaps, “sell.”
2 tn Heb “people.” The translation uses “men” because these were warriors and in ancient Israelite culture would have been exclusively males.
3 tn Heb “who are at my feet.”
4 tn Or perhaps, “sell.”
5 tn Heb “Are the palms of Zebah and Zalmunna now in your hand, that we should give to your army bread?” Perhaps the reference to the kings’ “palms” should be taken literally. The officials of Succoth may be alluding to the practice of mutilating prisoners or enemy corpses (see R. G. Boling, Judges [AB], 155).
sn The officials of Succoth are hesitant to give (or sell) food to Gideon’s forces because they are not sure of the outcome of the battle. Perhaps they had made an alliance with the Midianites which demanded their loyalty.