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Judges 16:1-3

Context
Samson’s Downfall

16:1 Samson went to Gaza. There he saw a prostitute and went in to have sex with her. 1  16:2 The Gazites were told, 2  “Samson has come here!” So they surrounded the town 3  and hid all night at the city gate, waiting for him to leave. 4  They relaxed 5  all night, thinking, 6  “He will not leave 7  until morning comes; 8  then we will kill him!” 16:3 Samson spent half the night with the prostitute; then he got up in the middle of the night and left. 9  He grabbed the doors of the city gate, as well as the two posts, and pulled them right off, bar and all. 10  He put them on his shoulders and carried them up to the top of a hill east of Hebron. 11 

1 tn Heb “and he went in to her.” The idiom בּוֹא אֶל (bo’ ’el, “to go to”) often has sexual connotations.

2 tc Heb “To the Gazites, saying.” A verb is missing from the MT; some ancient Greek witnesses add “it was reported.”

3 tn Heb “And they surrounded.” The rest of the verse suggests that “the town” is the object, not “the house.” Though the Gazites knew Samson was in the town, apparently they did not know exactly where he had gone. Otherwise, they would could have just gone into or surrounded the house and would not have needed to post guards at the city gate.

4 tn Heb “and they lay in wait for him all night in the city gate.”

5 tn Heb “were silent.”

6 tn Heb “saying.”

7 tn The words “He will not leave” are supplied in the translation for clarification.

8 tn Heb “until the light of the morning.”

9 tn Heb “And Samson lay until the middle of the night and arose in the middle of the night.”

10 tn Heb “with the bar.”

11 tn Heb “which is upon the face of Hebron.”



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