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Judges 7:1 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— Then Jerubbaal, who is Gideon, and all the people that were with him, rose up early, and encamped beside the spring of Harod: and the camp of Midian was on the north side of them, by the hill of Moreh, in the valley.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— Then Jerubbaal, who [is] Gideon, and all the people that [were] with him, rose up early, and pitched beside the well of Harod: so that the host of the Midianites were on the north side of them, by the hill of Moreh, in the valley.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— Then Jerubbaal (that is, Gideon) and all the people who were with him, rose early and camped beside the spring of Harod; and the camp of Midian was on the north side of them by the hill of Moreh in the valley.
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— Then Jerubbaal (who [is] Gideon) and all the people that [were] with him, rose early, and encamped beside the well of Harod: so that the host of the Midianites were on the north side of them by the hill of Moreh, in the valley.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— And Jerubbaal, who is Gideon, arose early, and all the people that were with him, and they encamped beside the spring Harod; and he had the camp of Midian on the north by the hill of Moreh in the valley.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— Then Jerubbaal, the same, is Gideon, and all the people that were with him, rose up early, and encamped by the fountain of Harod,—and, the camp of Midian, was on the north of them, by the hill of Moreh, in the vale.
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— And Jerubbaal (he [is] Gideon) riseth early, and all the people who [are] with him, and they encamp by the well of Harod, and the camp of Midian hath been on the south of him, on the height of Moreh, in the valley.
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— Then Jerobaal, who is the same as Gedeon, rising up early, and all the people with him, came to the fountain that is called Harad. Now the camp of Madian was in the valley, on the north side of the high hill.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— Then Ierubbaal (who is Gideon) and all the people that were with him, rose vp earely, and pitched beside the well of Harod: so that the hoste of the Midianites were on the North side of them by the hill of Moreh, in the valley.
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— And Jerubbaal{gr.Jerobaal} rose early, the same is Gideon{gr.Gedeon}, and all the people with him, and encamped at the fountain of Arad; and the camp of Midian{gr.Madiam} was to the north of him, [reaching] from Gabaathamorai, in the valley.
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— Then Yerubbaal, who [is] Gidon, and all the people that [were] with him, rose up early, and pitched beside the well of Charod: so that the host of the Midyanim were on the north side of them, by the hill of Moreh, in the valley.

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
Then Yrubba`al יְרֻבַּעַל, 3378
{3378} Prime
From H7378 and H1168; Baal will contend; Jerubbaal, a symbolical name of Gideon.
who x1931
(1931) Complement
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.
[is] Gi`n גִּדעוֹן, 1439
{1439} Prime
From H1438; feller (that is, warrior); Gidon, an Israelite.
and all x3605
(3605) Complement
From H3634; properly the whole; hence all, any or every (in the singular only, but often in a plural sense).
the people 5971
{5971} Prime
From H6004; a people (as a congregated unit); specifically a tribe (as those of Israel); hence (collectively) troops or attendants; figuratively a flock.
that x834
(0834) Complement
A primitive relative pronoun (of every gender and number); who, which, what, that; also (as adverb and conjunction) when, where, how, because, in order that, etc.
[were] with x854
(0854) Complement
Probably from H0579; properly nearness (used only as a preposition or adverb), near; hence generally with, by, at, among, etc.
him, rose up early, 7925
{7925} Prime
A primitive root; properly to incline (the shoulder to a burden); but used only as denominative from H7926; literally to load up (on the back of man or beast), that is, to start early in the morning.
<8686> Grammar
Stem - Hiphil (See H8818)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 4046
and pitched 2583
{2583} Prime
A primitive root (compare H2603); properly to incline; by implication to decline (of the slanting rays of evening); specifically to pitch a tent; generally to encamp (for abode or siege).
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
beside x5921
(5921) Complement
Properly the same as H5920 used as a preposition (in the singular or plural, often with prefix, or as conjugation with a particle following); above, over, upon, or against (yet always in this last relation with a downward aspect) in a great variety of applications.
the well x5878
(5878) Complement
עֵין חֲרוֹד
`Eyn Charod
{ane khar-ode'}
From H5869 and a derivative of H2729; fountain of trembling; En-Charod, a place in Palestine.
of r חֲרֹד: 5878
{5878} Prime
עֵין חֲרוֹד
`Eyn Charod
{ane khar-ode'}
From H5869 and a derivative of H2729; fountain of trembling; En-Charod, a place in Palestine.
so that the host 4264
{4264} Prime
From H2583; an encampment (of travellers or troops); hence an army, whether literally (of soldiers) or figuratively (of dancers, angels, cattle, locusts, stars; or even the sacred courts).
of the Miynm מִדיָנִים 4080
{4080} Prime
The same as H4079; Midjan, a son of Abraham; also his country and (collectively) his descendants.
were x1961
(1961) Complement
A primitive root (compare H1933); to exist, that is, be or become, come to pass (always emphatic, and not a mere copula or auxiliary).
on the north side 6828
{6828} Prime
From H6845; properly hidden, that is, dark; used only of the north as a quarter (gloomy and unknown).
(4480) Complement
For H4482; properly a part of; hence (prepositionally), from or out of in many senses.
of them, by the hill 1389
{1389} Prime
Feminine from the same as H1387; a hillock.
(4480) Complement
For H4482; properly a part of; hence (prepositionally), from or out of in many senses.
of Mr מוֹרֶה, 4176
{4176} Prime
The same as H4175; Moreh, a Canaanite; also a hill (perhaps named from him).
in the valley. 6010
{6010} Prime
From H6009; a vale (that is, broad depression).
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Judges 7:1

_ _ Judges 7:1-8. Gideon’s army.

_ _ Jerubbaal — This had now become Gideon’s honorable surname, “the enemy of Baal.”

_ _ well — rather “spring of Harod,” that is, “fear, trembling”; probably the same as the fountain in Jezreel (1 Samuel 29:1). It was situated not far from Gilboa, on the confines of Manasseh, and the name “Harod” was bestowed on it with evident reference to the panic which seized the majority of Gideon’s troops. The host of the Midianites were on the northern side of the valley, seemingly deeper down in the descent towards the Jordan, near a little eminence.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Judges 7:1-8

_ _ Here, I. Gideon applies himself with all possible care and industry to do the part of a good general, in leading on the hosts of Israel against the Midianites (Judges 7:1): He rose up early, as one whose heart was upon his business, and who was afraid of losing time. Now that he is sure God is with him he is impatient of delay. He pitched near a famous well, that his army might not be distressed for want of water, and gained the higher ground, which possibly might be some advantage to him, for the Midianites were beneath him in the valley. Note, Faith in God's promises must not slacken, but rather quicken, our endeavours. When we are sure God goes before us, then we must bestir ourselves, 2 Samuel 5:24.

_ _ II. God provides that the praise of the intended victory may be reserved wholly to himself, by appointing 300 men only to be employed in this service.

_ _ 1. The army consisted of 32,000 men, a small army in comparison with what the Midianites had now brought into the field; Gideon was ready to think them too few, but God comes to him, and tells him they are too many, Judges 7:2. Not but that those did well who offered themselves willingly to this expedition, but God saw fit not to make use of all that came. We often find God bringing great things to pass by a few hands, but this was the only time that he purposely made them fewer. Had Deborah lately blamed those who came not to the help of the Lord, and yet in the next great action must those be turned off that do come? Yes; (1.) God would hereby show that when he employed suitable instruments in his service he did not need them, but could do his work without them, so that he was not indebted to them for their service, but they to him for employing them. (2.) He would hereby put those to shame for their cowardice who had tamely submitted to the Midianites, and durst not make head against them, because of the disproportion of their numbers. They now saw that, if they had but made sure of the favour of God, one of them might have chased a thousand. (3.) He would hereby silence and exclude boasting. This is the reason here given by him who knows the pride that is in men's hearts: Lest Israel vaunt themselves against me. Justly were those denied the honour of the success. My own hand hath saved me is a word that must never come out of the mouth of such as shall be saved. He that glories must glory in the Lord, and all flesh must be silent before him.

_ _ 2. Two ways God took to lessen their numbers: — (1.) He ordered all that would own themselves timorous and faint-hearted to be dismissed, Judges 7:3. They were now encamped on a mountain close to the enemy, called Mount Gilead, from Gilead, the common ancestor of these families of Manasseh, which were seated on this side Jordan (Numbers 26:30), and thence they might see perhaps the vast numbers of the enemy; those therefore who were disheartened at the sight were left to their liberty, to go back if they pleased. There was a law for making such a proclamation as this, Deuteronomy 20:8. But Gideon perhaps thought that concerned only those wars which were undertaken for the enlarging of their coast, not, as this, for their necessary defence against an invader; therefore Gideon would not have proclaimed this if God, who knew how his forces would hereby be diminished, had not commanded him. Cowards would be as likely as any, after the victory, to take the honour of it from God, and therefore God would not do them the honour to employ them in it. One would have thought there would be scarcely one Israelite to be found that against such an enemy as the Midianites, and under such a leader as Gideon, would own himself fearful; yet above two parts of three took advantage of this proclamation, and filed off, when they saw the strength of the enemy and their own weakness, not considering the assurances of the divine presence which their general had received of the Lord, and, it is likely, delivered unto them. Some think the oppression they had been under so long had broken their spirits, others, more probably, that consciousness of their own guilt had deprived them of their courage. Sin stared them in the face, and therefore they durst not look death in the face. Note, Fearful faint-hearted people are not fit to be employed for God; and, among those that are enlisted under the banner of Christ, there are more such than we think there are. (2.) He directed the cashiering of all that remained except 300 men, and he did it by a sign: The people are yet too many for me to make use off, Judges 7:4. See how much God's thoughts and ways are above ours. Gideon himself, it is likely, thought they were too few, though they were as many as Barak encountered Sisera with (Judges 4:14); and, had he not forced his way through the discouragement by dint of faith, he himself would have started back from so hazardous an enterprise, and have made the best of his own way back. But God saith, they are too many, and, when diminished to a third part, they are yet too many, which may help us to understand those providences which sometimes seem to weaken the church and its interests: its friends are too many, too mighty, too wise, for God to work deliverance by; God is taking a course to lessen them, that he may be exalted in his own strength. Gideon is ordered to bring his soldiers to the watering, probably to the well of Harod (Judges 7:1) and the stream that ran from it; he, or some appointed by him, must observe how they drank. We must suppose they were all thirsty, and were inclined to drink; it is likely he told them they must prepare to enter upon action immediately, and therefore must refresh themselves accordingly, not expecting, after this, to drink any thing else but the blood of their enemies. Now some, and no doubt the most, would kneel down on their knees to drink, and put their mouths to the water as horses do, and so they might get their full draught. Others, it may be, would not make such a formal business of it, but as a dog laps with his tongue, a lap and away, so they would hastily take up a little water in their hands, and cool their mouths with that, and be gone. Three hundred and no more there were of this latter sort, that drank in haste, and by those God tells Gideon he would rout the Midianites, Judges 7:7. By the former distinction none were retained but hearty men, that were resolved to do their utmost for retrieving the liberties of Israel; but by this further distinction it was provided that none should be made use of but, [1.] Men that were hardy, that could endure long fatigue, without complaining of thirst or weariness, that had not in them any dregs either of sloth or luxury. [2.] Men that were hasty, that thought it long till they were engaged with the enemy, preferring the service of God and their country before their necessary refreshment; such as these God chooses to employ, that are not only well affected, but zealously affected in a good thing. And also because these were the smaller number, and therefore the least likely to effect what they were designed for, God would by them save Israel. It was a great trial to the faith and courage of Gideon, when God bade him let all the rest of the people but these 300 go every man to his place, that is, go where they pleased out of his call, and from under his command; yet we may suppose those that were hearty in the cause, though now set aside, did not go so far out of hearing but that they were ready to follow the blow, when the 300 had broken the ice, though this does not appear. Thus strangely was Gideon's army purged, and modelled, and reduced, instead of being recruited, as one would think in so great an action it both needed and deserved to be. Now,

_ _ 3. Let us see how this little despicable regiment, on which the stress of the action must lie, was accoutred and fitted out. Had these 300 been double-manned with servants and attendants, and double-armed with swords and spears, we should have thought them the more likely to bring something to pass. But, instead of making them more serviceable by their equipment, they are made less so. For, (1.) Every soldier turns butler: They took victuals in their hands (Judges 7:8), left their bag and baggage behind, and every man burdened himself with his own provision, which was a trial of their faith, whether they could trust God when they had no more provisions with them than they could carry, and a trial of their diligence, whether they would carry as much as they had occasion for. This was indeed living from hand to mouth. (2.) Every soldier turns trumpeter. The regiments that were cashiered left their trumpets behind them for the use of these 300 men, who were furnished with these instead of weapons of war, as if they had been going rather to a game than to a battle.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

[[no comment]]

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

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Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
It appears that Jerubbaal had now become the surname of Gideon. He is mentioned by Sanchoniathon, quoted by Eusebius, who lived in the reign of Ithobal, king of Tyre, and consequently a little after the time of Gideon, by the name of Jerombalus, a priest of Jeuo or Jao.
Judges 6:32 Therefore on that day he called him Jerubbaal, saying, Let Baal plead against him, because he hath thrown down his altar.

rose up:

Genesis 22:3 And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him.
Joshua 3:1 And Joshua rose early in the morning; and they removed from Shittim, and came to Jordan, he and all the children of Israel, and lodged there before they passed over.
Joshua 6:12 And Joshua rose early in the morning, and the priests took up the ark of the LORD.
Ecclesiastes 9:10 Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do [it] with thy might; for [there is] no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.


Genesis 12:6 And Abram passed through the land unto the place of Sichem, unto the plain of Moreh. And the Canaanite [was] then in the land.
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Gn 12:6; 22:3. Jsh 3:1; 6:12. Jg 6:32. Ec 9:10.

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