1 tn Heb “God listened to the voice of Manoah.”
1 tn Heb “the woman.” For clarity this has been specified in the translation as “Manoah’s wife.”
2 tn Heb “To everything I said to the woman she should pay attention.” The Hebrew word order emphasizes “to everything,” probably because Manoah’s wife did not tell her husband everything the angel had said to her (cf. vv. 3-5 with v. 7). If she had, Manoah probably would not have been so confused about the child’s mission.
2 tn The words “he said this” are supplied in the translation for clarification. Manoah should have known from these words that the angel represented the Lord. In the preceding narrative the narrator has informed the reader that the visitor is the angel of the Lord, but Manoah and his wife did not perceive this. In vv. 5 and 7 the angel refers to “God” (אֱלֹהִים, ʾelohim), not the Lord (יְהוַה, yehvah). Manoah’s wife calls the visitor “a man sent from God” and “God’s angel” (v. 6), while Manoah prays to the “Lord” (אֲדוֹנָי, ʾadonay) and calls the visitor “a man sent from God” (v. 8).
1 tn Or “seen God.” Some take the Hebrew term אֱלֹהִים (ʾelohim) as the divine name (“God”) here, but this seems unlikely since v. 21 informs us that Manoah realized this was the Lord’s messenger, not God himself. Of course, he may be exaggerating for the sake of emphasis. Another option, the one followed in the translation, understands Manoah to be referring to a lesser deity. The term אֱלֹהִים (ʾelohim) is sometimes used of an individual deity other than the Lord (see BDB 43 s.v. 2.a). One cannot assume that Manoah was a theologically sophisticated monotheist.
1 sn This is a vague allusion to people described in scripture and extra-biblical literature and may include Abraham and Sarah (Gen 18:2-15), Lot (Gen 19:1-14), Gideon (Judg 6:11-18), Manoah (Judg 13:3-22), and possibly Tobit (Tob 12:1-20).
1 tn Heb “Who your name? For [when] your word comes [to pass], we will honor you.” Manoah apparently gets tongue-tied and uses the wrong pronoun (“who” instead of “what”). He starts to say, “Who are you?” But then he switches to “your name” as if he began the sentence with “what.” See R. G. Boling, Judges (AB), 222.
1 tn Heb “went.” Samson apparently went home to his parents before going to Timnah for the marriage. Seeing and tasting the honey appears to encourage Manoah to go with his son to Timnah. Perhaps both Samson and his father viewed the honey as a good omen of future blessing. Possibly Samson considered it a symbol of sexual pleasure or an aphrodisiac. Note the use of honey imagery in Song 4:11 and 5:1.
1 tc Heb “Doing an extraordinary deed while Manoah and his wife were watching.” The subject of the participle is missing. The translation assumes that the phrase “the Lord’s messenger” was lost by homoioteleuton. If the text originally read לַיהוָה מַלְאַךְ יְהוָה (layhvah malʾakh yehvah), the scribe’s eye could have jumped from the first יְהוָה to the second, accidentally omitting two of the three words. Later the conjunction וּ (shureq) would have been added to the following מַפְלִא (mafliʾ) for syntactical reasons. Another possibility is that a pronominal subject (הוּא, huʾ) has been lost in the MT due to haplography.