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1 Samuel 14:16 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— And the watchmen of Saul in Gibeah of Benjamin looked; and, behold, the multitude melted away, and they went [hither] and thither.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— And the watchmen of Saul in Gibeah of Benjamin looked; and, behold, the multitude melted away, and they went on beating down [one another].
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— Now Saul’s watchmen in Gibeah of Benjamin looked, and behold, the multitude melted away; and they went here and [there].
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— And the watchmen of Saul in Gibeah of Benjamin looked; and behold, the multitude melted away, and they went on beating down [one another].
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— And the watchmen of Saul in Gibeah of Benjamin looked, and behold, the multitude melted away, and they went on slaying one another.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— And the scouts of Saul in Gibeah of Benjamin looked, and lo! the camp, melted away, hither and thither.
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— And the watchmen of Saul in Gibeah of Benjamin see, and lo, the multitude hath melted away, and it goeth on, and is beaten down.
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— And the watchmen of Saul, who were in Gabaa of Benjamin looked, and behold a multitude overthrown, and fleeing this way and that.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— And the watchmen of Saul in Gibeah of Beniamin looked: and behold, the multitude melted away, and they went on beating downe [one another].
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— And the watchmen of Saul beheld in Gibeah{gr.Gabaa} of Benjamin, and, behold, the army was thrown into confusion on every side.
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— And the watchmen of Shaul in Givah of Binyamin looked; and, behold, the multitude melted away, and they went on beating down [one another].

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
And the watchmen 6822
{6822} Prime
צָפָה
tsaphah
{tsaw-faw'}
A primitive root; properly to lean forward, that is, to peer into the distance; by implication to observe, await.
z8802
<8802> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Participle Active (See H8814)
Count - 5386
of l שָׁאוּל 7586
{7586} Prime
שָׁאוּל
Sha'uwl
{shaw-ool'}
Passive participle of H7592; asked; Shaul, the name of an Edomite and two Israelites.
in Giv` גִּבעָה 1390
{1390} Prime
גִּבְעָה
Gib`ah
{ghib-aw'}
The same as H1389; Gibah; the name of three places in Palestine.
of Binymn בִּניָמִין 1144
{1144} Prime
בִּנְיָמִן
Binyamiyn
{bin-yaw-mene'}
From H1121 and H3225; son of (the) right hand; Binjamin, youngest son of Jacob; also the tribe descended from him, and its territory.
looked; 7200
{7200} Prime
רָאָה
ra'ah
{raw-aw'}
A primitive root; to see, literally or figuratively (in numerous applications, direct and implied, transitively, intransitively and causatively).
z8799
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
and, behold, x2009
(2009) Complement
הִנֵּה
hinneh
{hin-nay'}
Prolonged for H2005; lo!.
the multitude 1995
{1995} Prime
הָמוֹן
hamown
{haw-mone'}
From H1993; a noise, tumult, crowd; also disquietude, wealth.
melted away, 4127
{4127} Prime
מוּג
muwg
{moog}
A primitive root; to melt, that is, literally (to soften, flow down, disappear), or figuratively (to fear, faint).
z8738
<8738> Grammar
Stem - Niphal (See H8833)
Mood - Perfect (See H8816)
Count - 1429
and they went y3212
[3212] Standard
יָלַך
yalak
{yaw-lak'}
A primitive root (compare H1980); to walk (literally or figuratively); causatively to carry (in various senses).
z8799
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
x1980
(1980) Complement
הָלַךְ
halak
{haw-lak'}
Akin to H3212; a primitive root; to walk (in a great variety of applications, literally and figuratively).
on beating down 1986
{1986} Prime
הָלַם
halam
{haw-lam'}
A primitive root; to strike down; by implication to hammer, stamp, conquer, disband.
z8800
<8800> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Infinitive (See H8812)
Count - 4888
[one another].
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

1 Samuel 14:16

_ _ the watchmen of Saul ... looked — The wild disorder in the enemies’ camp was described and the noise of dismay heard on the heights of Gibeah.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

1 Samuel 14:16-23

_ _ We have here the prosecution and improvement of the wonderful advantages which Jonathan and his armour-bearer gained against the Philistines.

_ _ I. The Philistines were, by the power of God, set against one another. They melted away like snow before the sun, and went on beating down one another (1 Samuel 14:16), for (1 Samuel 14:20) every man's sword was against his fellow. When they fled for fear, instead of turning back upon those that chased them, they reckoned those only their enemies that stood in their way, and treated them accordingly. The Philistines were very secure, because all the swords and spears were in their hands. Israel had none except what Saul and Jonathan had. But now God showed them the folly of that confidence, by making their own swords and spears the instruments of their own destruction, and more fatal in their own hands than if they had been in the hands of Israel. See the like done, Judges 7:22; 2 Chronicles 20:23.

_ _ II. The Israelites were hereby animated against them.

_ _ 1. Notice was soon taken of it by the watchmen of Saul, those that stood sentinel at Gibeah, 1 Samuel 14:16. They were aware that the host of the enemy was in great confusion, and that a great slaughter was made among them, and yet, upon search, they found none of their own forces absent, but only Jonathan and his servant (1 Samuel 14:17), which no doubt greatly animated them, and assured them that it could be no other than the Lord's doing, when there was no more of man's doing than what those two could do against a great host.

_ _ 2. Saul began to enquire of God, but soon desisted. His spirit had not come down so far as to allow him to consult Samuel, though, it is probable, he was near him; for we read (1 Samuel 13:15) that he had come to Gibeah of Benjamin; but he called for the ark (1 Samuel 14:18), desiring to know whether it would be safe for him to attack the Philistines, upon the disorder they perceived them to be in. Many will consult God about their safety that would never consult him about their duty. But, perceiving by his scouts that the noise in the enemy's camp increased, he commanded the priest that officiated to break off abruptly: “Withdraw thy hand (1 Samuel 14:19), consult no more, wait no longer for an answer.” He was very unwise indeed if (as some think) he forbade him to lift up his hands in prayer; for when Joshua was actually engaged with Amalek Moses continued still to lift up his hands. It is rather a prohibition to his enquiring of the Lord, either, (1.) Because now he thought he did not need an answer, the case was plain enough. And yet the more evident it was that God did all the more reason he had to enquire whether he would give him leave to do any thing. Or, (2.) Because now he would not stay for it; he was in such haste to fight a falling enemy that he would not stay to make and end of his devotions, nor hear what answer God would give him. A little thing will divert a vain and carnal mind from religious exercises. He that believeth will not make haste, such haste as this, nor reckon any business so urgent as not to allow time to take God along with him.

_ _ 3. He, and all the little force he had, made a vigorous attack upon the enemy; and all the people were cried together (so the word is, 1 Samuel 14:20), for want of the silver trumpets wherewith God appointed them to sound an alarm in the day of battle, Numbers 10:9. They summoned them together by shouting, and their number was not so great but that they might soon be got together. And now they seem bold and brave when the work is done to their hands. Our Lord Jesus had conquered our spiritual enemies, routed and dispersed them, so that we are cowards indeed if we will not stand to our arms when it is only to pursue the victory and to divide the spoil.

_ _ 4. Every Hebrew, even those from whom one would least have expected it, now turned his hand against the Philistines. (1.) Those that had deserted and gone over to the enemy, and were among them, now fought against them, 1 Samuel 14:21. Some think, they were such as had been taken prisoners by them, and now they were goads in their sides. It rather seems that they went in to them voluntarily, but, now that they saw them falling, recovered the hearts of Israelites, and did valiantly for their country. (2.) Those that had fled their colours, and hid themselves in the mountains, returned to their posts, and joined in with the pursuers (1 Samuel 14:22), hoping by their great zeal and officiousness, now that the danger was over and the victory sure, to atone for their former cowardice. It was not much to their praise to appear now, but it would have been more their reproach if they had not appeared. Those that are remiss and faint-hearted indeed that will not act in the cause of God when they see it victorious, as well as righteous. Thus all hands were at work against the Philistines, and every Israelite slew as many as he could, without sword or spear; yet it is said (1 Samuel 14:23), it was the Lord that saved Israel that day. He did it by them, for without him they could do nothing. Salvation is of the Lord.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

[[no comment]]

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

[[no comment]]

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
melted away:

Psalms 58:7 Let them melt away as waters [which] run continually: [when] he bendeth [his bow to shoot] his arrows, let them be as cut in pieces.
Psalms 68:2 As smoke is driven away, [so] drive [them] away: as wax melteth before the fire, [so] let the wicked perish at the presence of God.

beating down:

1 Samuel 14:20 And Saul and all the people that [were] with him assembled themselves, and they came to the battle: and, behold, every man's sword was against his fellow, [and there was] a very great discomfiture.
Judges 7:22 And the three hundred blew the trumpets, and the LORD set every man's sword against his fellow, even throughout all the host: and the host fled to Bethshittah in Zererath, [and] to the border of Abelmeholah, unto Tabbath.
2 Chronicles 20:22-25 And when they began to sing and to praise, the LORD set ambushments against the children of Ammon, Moab, and mount Seir, which were come against Judah; and they were smitten. ... And when Jehoshaphat and his people came to take away the spoil of them, they found among them in abundance both riches with the dead bodies, and precious jewels, which they stripped off for themselves, more than they could carry away: and they were three days in gathering of the spoil, it was so much.
Isaiah 19:2 And I will set the Egyptians against the Egyptians: and they shall fight every one against his brother, and every one against his neighbour; city against city, [and] kingdom against kingdom.
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Jg 7:22. 1S 14:20. 2Ch 20:22. Ps 58:7; 68:2. Is 19:2.

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