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Judges 15:14-20

Context
15:14 When he arrived in Lehi, the Philistines shouted as they approached him. But the Lord’s spirit empowered 1  him. The ropes around his arms were like flax dissolving in 2  fire, and they 3  melted away from his hands. 15:15 He happened to see 4  a solid 5  jawbone of a donkey. He grabbed it 6  and struck down 7  a thousand men. 15:16 Samson then said,

“With the jawbone of a donkey

I have left them in heaps; 8 

with the jawbone of a donkey

I have struck down a thousand men!”

15:17 When he finished speaking, he threw the jawbone down 9  and named that place Ramath Lehi. 10 

15:18 He was very thirsty, so he cried out to the Lord and said, “You have given your servant 11  this great victory. But now must I die of thirst and fall into hands of the Philistines?” 12  15:19 So God split open the basin 13  at Lehi and water flowed out from it. When he took a drink, his strength 14  was restored and he revived. For this reason he named the spring 15  En Hakkore. 16  It remains in Lehi to this very day. 15:20 Samson led 17  Israel for twenty years during the days of Philistine prominence. 18 

1 tn Heb “rushed on.”

2 tn Heb “burned with.”

3 tn Heb “his bonds.”

4 tn Heb “he found.”

5 tn Heb “fresh,” i.e., not decayed and brittle.

6 tn Heb “he reached out his hand and took it.”

7 tn The Hebrew text adds “with it.” This has not been included in the translation for stylistic reasons.

8 tn The precise meaning of the second half of the line (חֲמוֹר חֲמֹרָתָיִם, khamor khamoratayim) is uncertain. The present translation assumes that the phrase means, “a heap, two heaps” and refers to the heaps of corpses littering the battlefield. Other options include: (a) “I have made donkeys of them” (cf. NIV; see C. F. Burney, Judges, 373, for a discussion of this view, which understands a denominative verb from the noun “donkey”); (b) “I have thoroughly skinned them” (see HALOT 330 s.v. IV cj. חמר, which appeals to an Arabic cognate for support); (c) “I have stormed mightily against them,” which assumes the verb חָמַר (khamar, “to ferment; to foam; to boil up”).

9 tn Heb “from his hand.”

10 sn The name Ramath Lehi means “Height of the Jawbone.”

11 tn Heb “you have placed into the hand of your servant.”

12 tn Heb “the uncircumcised,” which in context refers to the Philistines.

13 tn The word translated “basin” refers to a circular-shaped depression in the land’s surface.

14 tn Heb “spirit.”

15 tn Heb “named it”; the referent (the spring) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

16 sn The name En Hakkore means “Spring of the one who cries out.”

17 tn Traditionally, “judged.”

18 tn Heb “in the days of the Philistines.”



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