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Judges 4:21 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— Then Jael Heber's wife took a tent-pin, and took a hammer in her hand, and went softly unto him, and smote the pin into his temples, and it pierced through into the ground; for he was in a deep sleep; so he swooned and died.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— Then Jael Heber's wife took a nail of the tent, and took an hammer in her hand, and went softly unto him, and smote the nail into his temples, and fastened it into the ground: for he was fast asleep and weary. So he died.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— But Jael, Heber’s wife, took a tent peg and seized a hammer in her hand, and went secretly to him and drove the peg into his temple, and it went through into the ground; for he was sound asleep and exhausted. So he died.
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— Then Jael, Heber's wife, took a nail of the tent, and took a hammer in her hand, and went softly to him, and smote the nail into his temples, and fastened it into the ground: for he was fast asleep, and weary. So he died.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— And Jael Heber's wife took a tent-pin, and took the hammer in her hand, and went softly to him, and smote the pin into his temples, and it penetrated into the ground; for he had fallen into a deep sleep and was faint; and he died.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— Then took Jael, wife of Heber, the tent-pin, and put the mallet in her hand, and went in unto him, softly, and smote the tent-pin into his temples, and it pierced through into the ground,—he being fast asleep and shrouded in darkness, and he died.
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— And Jael wife of Heber taketh the pin of the tent, and taketh the hammer in her hand, and goeth unto him gently, and striketh the pin into his temples, and it fasteneth in the earth—and he hath been fast asleep, and is weary—and he dieth.
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— So Jahel, Haber's wife, took a nail of the tent, and taking also a hammer: and going in softly, and with silence, she put the nail upon the temples of his head, and striking it with the hammer, drove it through his brain fast into the ground: and so passing from deep sleep to death, he fainted away and died.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— Then Iael Hebers wife, tooke a naile of the tent, and tooke an hammer in her hand, and went softly vnto him, and smote the naile into his temples, and fastened it into the ground: (for he was fast asleepe, and weary;) so he died.
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— And Jael the wife of Heber{gr.Chaber} took a pin of the tent, and took a hammer in her hand, and went secretly to him, and fastened the pin in his temple, and it went through to the earth, and he fainted away, and darkness fell upon him and he died.
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— Then Yael Chever's wife took a nail of the tent, and took an hammer in her hand, and went softly unto him, and smote the nail into his temples, and fastened it into the ground: for he was fast asleep and weary. So he died.

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
Then Y`l יָעֵל 3278
{3278} Prime
יָעֵל
Ya`el
{yaw-ale'}
The same as H3277; Jael, a Canaanite.
ever's חֶבֶר 2268
{2268} Prime
חֶבֶר
Cheber
{kheh'-ber}
The same as H2267; community; Cheber, the name of a Kenite and of three Israelites.
wife 802
{0802} Prime
אִשָּׁה
'ishshah
{ish-shaw'}
The first form is the feminine of H0376 or H0582; the second form is an irregular plural; a woman (used in the same wide sense as H0582).
took 3947
{3947} Prime
לָקַח
laqach
{law-kakh'}
A primitive root; to take (in the widest variety of applications).
z8799
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
x853
(0853) Complement
אֵת
'eth
{ayth}
Apparently contracted from H0226 in the demonstrative sense of entity; properly self (but generally used to point out more definitely the object of a verb or preposition, even or namely).
a nail 3489
{3489} Prime
יָתֵד
yathed
{yaw-thade'}
From an unused root meaning to pin through or fast; a peg.
of the tent, 168
{0168} Prime
אֹהֶל
'ohel
{o'-hel}
From H0166; a tent (as clearly conspicuous from a distance).
and took 7760
{7760} Prime
שׂוּם
suwm
{soom}
A primitive root; to put (used in a great variety of applications, literally, figuratively, inferentially and elliptically).
z8799
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
x853
(0853) Complement
אֵת
'eth
{ayth}
Apparently contracted from H0226 in the demonstrative sense of entity; properly self (but generally used to point out more definitely the object of a verb or preposition, even or namely).
an hammer 4718
{4718} Prime
מַקֶּבֶת
maqqebeth
{mak-keh'-beth}
From H5344; properly a perforator, that is, a hammer (as piercing); also (intransitively) a perforation, that is, a quarry.
in her hand, 3027
{3027} Prime
יָד
yad
{yawd}
A primitive word; a hand (the open one (indicating power, means, direction, etc.), in distinction from H3709, the closed one); used (as noun, adverb, etc.) in a great variety of applications, both literally and figuratively, both proximate and remote.
and went 935
{0935} Prime
בּוֹא
bow'
{bo}
A primitive root; to go or come (in a wide variety of applications).
z8799
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
softly 3814
{3814} Prime
לָט
la't
{lawt}
From H3813 (or perhaps for active participle of H3874); properly muffled, that is, silently.
unto x413
(0413) Complement
אֵל
'el
{ale}
(Used only in the shortened constructive form (the second form)); a primitive particle, properly denoting motion towards, but occasionally used of a quiescent position, that is, near, with or among; often in general, to.
him, and smote 8628
{8628} Prime
תָּקַע
taqa`
{taw-kah'}
A primitive root; to clatter, that is, slap (the hands together), clang (an instrument); by analogy to drive (a nail or tent pin, a dart, etc.); by implication to become bondsman (by handclasping).
z8799
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
x853
(0853) Complement
אֵת
'eth
{ayth}
Apparently contracted from H0226 in the demonstrative sense of entity; properly self (but generally used to point out more definitely the object of a verb or preposition, even or namely).
the nail 3489
{3489} Prime
יָתֵד
yathed
{yaw-thade'}
From an unused root meaning to pin through or fast; a peg.
into his temples, y7541
[7541] Standard
רַקָּה
raqqah
{rak-kaw'}
Feminine of H7534; properly thinness, that is, the side of the head.
x7451
(7451) Complement
רָע
ra`
{rah}
From H7489; bad or (as noun) evil (naturally or morally). This includes the second (feminine) form; as adjective or noun.
and fastened 6795
{6795} Prime
צָנַח
tsanach
{tsaw-nakh'}
A primitive root; to alight; (transitively) to cause to descend, that is, drive down.
z8799
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
it into the ground: 776
{0776} Prime
אֶרֶץ
'erets
{eh'-rets}
From an unused root probably meaning to be firm; the earth (at large, or partitively a land).
for he x1931
(1931) Complement
הוּא
huw'
{hoo}
The second form is the feminine beyond the Pentateuch; a primitive word, the third person pronoun singular, he (she or it); only expressed when emphatic or without a verb; also (intensively) self, or (especially with the article) the same; sometimes (as demonstrative) this or that; occasionally (instead of copula) as or are.
was fast asleep 7290
{7290} Prime
רָדַם
radam
{raw-dam'}
A primitive root; to stun, that is, stupefy (with sleep or death).
z8738
<8738> Grammar
Stem - Niphal (See H8833)
Mood - Perfect (See H8816)
Count - 1429
and weary. 5774
{5774} Prime
עוּף
`uwph
{oof}
A primitive root; to cover (with wings or obscurity); hence (as denominative from H5775) to fly; also (by implication of dimness) to faint (from the darkness of swooning).
z8799
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
So he died. 4191
{4191} Prime
מָמוֹת
muwth
{mooth}
A primitive root; to die (literally or figuratively); causatively to kill.
z8799
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Judges 4:21

_ _ Then Jael took a nail of the tent — most probably one of the pins with which the tent ropes are fastened to the ground. Escape was almost impossible for Sisera. But the taking of his life by the hand of Jael was murder. It was a direct violation of all the notions of honor and friendship that are usually held sacred among pastoral people, and for which it is impossible to conceive a woman in Jael’s circumstances to have had any motive, except that of gaining favor with the victors. Though predicted by Deborah [Judges 4:9], it was the result of divine foreknowledge only — not the divine appointment or sanction; and though it is praised in the song [Judges 5:24-27], the eulogy must be considered as pronounced not on the moral character of the woman and her deed, but on the public benefits which, in the overruling providence of God, would flow from it.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

See commentary on Judges 4:17-24.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Judges 4:21

A nail of the tent — Wherewith they used to fasten the tent, which consequently was long and sharp. This might seem a very bold attempt, but it must be considered, that she was encouraged to it, by observing that the heavens and all the elements conspired against him, as one devoted to destruction. In the following son, Deborah doth not commend Jael's words, Judges 4:18. Turn in my Lord, fear not; but only her action: touching which, this one consideration may abundantly suffice to stop the mouths of objectors. It cannot be denied, that every discourse which is recorded in scripture, is not divinely inspired, because some of them were uttered by the devil, and others by holy men, but mistaken. This being so, the worst that any can infer from this place is, that this song, tho' indited by a good woman, was not divinely inspired, but only composed by a person transported with joy for the deliverance of God's people, but subject to mistake; who therefore, out of zeal to commend the instrument of so great a deliverance, might overlook the indirectness of the means, and commend that which should have been disliked, And if they farther object, that it was composed by a prophetess, and therefore must be divinely inspired; it may be replied, that every expression of a true prophet was not divinely inspired; as is evident from Samuel's mistake concerning Eliab, whom he thought to be the Lord's anointed, 1 Samuel 16:6. This is said upon supposition that Jael acted deceitfully in this affair; but if we suppose, which is much more likely, that Jael fully intended to afford Sisera the shelter and protection which he sought of her, but was afterwards by the immediate direction of heaven ordered to kill him, the whole difficulty vanishes, and the character both of Jael and of Deborah remains unimpeached.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Judges 4:21

Then Jael Heber's wife took a (k) nail of the tent, and took an hammer in her hand, and went softly unto him, and smote the nail into his temples, and fastened it into the ground: for he was fast asleep and weary. So he died.

(k) That is, the pin or stake, by which it was fastened to the ground.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
took:

Judges 3:21 And Ehud put forth his left hand, and took the dagger from his right thigh, and thrust it into his belly:
Judges 3:31 And after him was Shamgar the son of Anath, which slew of the Philistines six hundred men with an ox goad: and he also delivered Israel.
Judges 5:26 She put her hand to the nail, and her right hand to the workmen's hammer; and with the hammer she smote Sisera, she smote off his head, when she had pierced and stricken through his temples.
Judges 15:15 And he found a new jawbone of an ass, and put forth his hand, and took it, and slew a thousand men therewith.
1 Samuel 17:43 And the Philistine said unto David, [Am] I a dog, that thou comest to me with staves? And the Philistine cursed David by his gods.
1 Samuel 17:49-50 And David put his hand in his bag, and took thence a stone, and slang [it], and smote the Philistine in his forehead, that the stone sunk into his forehead; and he fell upon his face to the earth. ... So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and smote the Philistine, and slew him; but [there was] no sword in the hand of David.
1 Corinthians 1:19 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.
1 Corinthians 1:27 But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;

a nail:
One of the spikes of the tent. See note on
Exodus 35:18 The pins of the tabernacle, and the pins of the court, and their cords,
.

and took:
Heb. and put

smote:

Psalms 3:7 Arise, O LORD; save me, O my God: for thou hast smitten all mine enemies [upon] the cheek bone; thou hast broken the teeth of the ungodly.

he died:

Judges 5:27 At her feet he bowed, he fell, he lay down: at her feet he bowed, he fell: where he bowed, there he fell down dead.
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Ex 35:18. Jg 3:21, 31; 5:26, 27; 15:15. 1S 17:43, 49. Ps 3:7. 1Co 1:19, 27.

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