41:4 On the day after Gedaliah had been murdered, before anyone even knew about it, 41:5 eighty men arrived from Shechem, Shiloh, and Samaria. 1 They had shaved off their beards, torn their clothes, and cut themselves to show they were mourning. 2 They were carrying grain offerings and incense to present at the temple of the Lord in Jerusalem. 3 41:6 Ishmael son of Nethaniah went out from Mizpah to meet them. He was pretending to cry 4 as he walked along. When he met them, he said to them, “Come with me to meet Gedaliah son of Ahikam.” 5 41:7 But as soon as they were inside the city, Ishmael son of Nethaniah and the men who were with him slaughtered them and threw their bodies 6 in a cistern. 41:8 But there were ten men among them who said 7 to Ishmael, “Do not kill us. For we will give you the stores of wheat, barley, olive oil, and honey we have hidden in a field. 8 So he spared their lives and did not kill 9 them along with the rest. 10 41:9 Now the cistern where Ishmael threw all the dead bodies of those he had killed was a large one 11 that King Asa had constructed as part of his defenses against King Baasha of Israel. 12 Ishmael son of Nethaniah filled it with dead bodies. 13
1 sn Shechem, Shiloh, and Samaria were all cities in the northern kingdom of Israel with important religious and political histories. When Israel was destroyed in 722
2 tn The words “to show they were mourning” are not in the text but are implicit in the acts. They are supplied in the translation for clarification for readers who may not be familiar with ancient mourning customs.
3 tn The words “in Jerusalem” are not in the text but are implicit. They are supplied in the translation for clarity.
4 tn Heb “he was weeping/crying.” The translation is intended to better reflect the situation.
5 tn Heb “Come to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam.” The words that are supplied in the translation are implicit to the situation and are added for clarity.
6 tn The words “and threw their bodies” result from the significant use of the preposition אֶל (’el, so GKC 384 §119.gg and BDB 39 s.v. אֶל 1). Hence the suggestion in BHS (fn a) that the Syriac and two Greek
8 tn This sentence is a good example of the elliptical nature of some of the causal connections in the Hebrew Bible. All the Hebrew says literally is “For we have hidden stores of wheat, barley, olive oil, and honey in a field.” However, it is obvious that they are using this as their bargaining chip to prevent Ishmael and his men from killing them. For the use of “for” (כִּי, ki) for such elliptical thoughts see BDB 473-74 s.v. כִּי 3.c.
9 tn Or “So he refrained from killing them”; Heb “he refrained and did not kill them.”
10 tn Heb “in the midst of their brothers/fellow countrymen.”
11 tc The translation here follows the reading of the Greek version. The meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain; some understand it to mean “because of Gedaliah [i.e., to cover up the affair with Gedaliah]” and others understand it to mean “alongside of Gedaliah.” The translation presupposes that the Hebrew text reads בּוֹר גָּדוֹל הוּא (bor gadol hu’) in place of בְּיַד־גְּדַלְיָהוּ הוּא (bÿyad-gÿdalyahu). The meaning of בְּיַד (bÿyad) does not fit any of the normal ones given for this expression and those who retain the Hebrew text normally explain it as an unparalleled use of “because” or “in the affair of” (so NJPS) or a rare use meaning “near, by the side of “ (see BDB 391 s.v. יָד 5.d where only Ps 141:6 and Zech 4:12 are cited. BDB themselves suggest reading with the Greek version as the present translation does [so BDB 391 s.v. יָד 5.c(3)]). For the syntax presupposed by the Greek text which has been followed consult IBHS 298 §16.3.3d and 133 §8.4.2b. The first clause is a classifying clause with normal order of subject-predicate-copulative pronoun and it is followed by a further qualifying relative clause.
13 tn Or “with corpses”; Heb “with the slain.”