1 Samuel 13:19
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Not a blacksmith could be found in the whole land of Israel, because the Philistines had said, "Otherwise the Hebrews will make swords or spears!"

New Living Translation
There were no blacksmiths in the land of Israel in those days. The Philistines wouldn't allow them for fear they would make swords and spears for the Hebrews.

English Standard Version
Now there was no blacksmith to be found throughout all the land of Israel, for the Philistines said, “Lest the Hebrews make themselves swords or spears.”

New American Standard Bible
Now no blacksmith could be found in all the land of Israel, for the Philistines said, "Otherwise the Hebrews will make swords or spears."

King James Bible
Now there was no smith found throughout all the land of Israel: for the Philistines said, Lest the Hebrews make them swords or spears:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
No blacksmith could be found in all the land of Israel, because the Philistines had said, "Otherwise, the Hebrews will make swords or spears."

International Standard Version
No blacksmith could be found in all the land of Israel because the Philistines thought, "This will keep the Hebrews from making swords or spears."

NET Bible
A blacksmith could not be found in all the land of Israel, for the Philistines had said, "This will prevent the Hebrews from making swords and spears."

GOD'S WORD® Translation
No blacksmith could be found in the entire land of Israel. In this way the Philistines kept the Hebrews from making swords and spears.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Now there was no smith found throughout all the land of Israel, for the Philistines had said, Lest peradventure the Hebrews make swords or spears.

King James 2000 Bible
Now there was no blacksmith found throughout all the land of Israel: for the Philistines said, Lest the Hebrews make them swords or spears:

American King James Version
Now there was no smith found throughout all the land of Israel: for the Philistines said, Lest the Hebrews make them swords or spears:

American Standard Version
Now there was no smith found throughout all the land of Israel; for the Philistines said, Lest the Hebrews make them swords or spears:

Douay-Rheims Bible
Now there was no smith to be found in all the land of Israel, for the Philistines had taken this precaution, lest the Hebrews should make them swords or spears.

Darby Bible Translation
Now there was no smith found throughout the land of Israel; for the Philistines said, Lest the Hebrews make them swords or spears.

English Revised Version
Now there was no smith found throughout all the land of Israel: for the Philistines said, Lest the Hebrews make them swords or spears:

Webster's Bible Translation
Now there was no smith found throughout all the land of Israel: (for the Philistines said, Lest the Hebrews make them swords or spears:)

World English Bible
Now there was no smith found throughout all the land of Israel; for the Philistines said, "Lest the Hebrews make them swords or spears;"

Young's Literal Translation
And an artificer is not found in all the land of Israel, for the Philistines said, 'Lest the Hebrews make sword or spear;'
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

13:15-23 See how politic the Philistines were when they had power; they not only prevented the people of Israel from making weapons of war, but obliged them to depend upon their enemies, even for instruments of husbandry. How impolitic Saul was, who did not, in the beginning of his reign, set himself to redress this. Want of true sense always accompanies want of grace. Sins which appear to us very little, have dangerous consequences. Miserable is a guilty, defenceless nation; much more those who are destitute of the whole armour of God.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 19. - There was no smith. This accounts for the contemptuous disregard of Saul by the Philistines. The people were disarmed, and resistance impossible. Apparently this policy had been long followed; but we need fuller information of what had happened between Samuel's victory at Mizpah and Saul's appointment as king, to enable us to understand the evident weakness of Israel at this time. But probably this description applies fully only to the districts of Benjamin, near the Philistines, The people further away had arms with which they defeated the Ammonites, and Saul and his men would have secured all the weapons which the enemy then threw away. But evidently no manufacture of weapons was allowed, and no one as far as possible permitted either to wear or possess arms.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Now there was no smith found throughout all the land of Israel,.... The Philistines, when they ruled over them, having removed them into their own country, and forbid any to learn or exercise that trade in Israel:

for the Philistines said, lest the Hebrews make swords or spears: this they did to prevent their having arms, and the use of them, that they might not rebel against them, and fight with them, and overcome them; it was a piece of policy to keep them subject to them; so Nebuchadnezzar, when he conquered the Jews and carried them captive, took care particularly to carry away their smiths, and left none but the poorest sort of people in the land, 2 Kings 24:14 and Porsena, king of the Etrusci, when he made a covenant with the Romans, upon the expulsion of their kings, made this a condition of peace with them, that they should use no iron but in husbandry (h). When this course was taken by the Philistines with the Israelites, and how long it had continued is not certain; it is probable it might be in the space of forty years they ruled over Israel, in which Samson was born, for we never read of any sword or spear that he made use of; and though there were two battles in the times of Eli, in both which Israel were beaten, they might make use only of bows and arrows, slings, and stones, clubs, &c, as also in the battle of Saul with the Ammonites; and as for the defeat of the Philistines in the time of Samuel, it was by thunder; and though the Philistines were then subdued, yet, as Samuel grew old, they regained their power in a good measure, and the Israelites had not spirit enough to oppose them, nor diligence and industry to learn and revive the trade of smiths among them; not even for what was necessary to husbandry, as the following verse shows.

(h) Plin. Nat. Hist. l. 34. c. 14.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

19, 20. Now there was no smith found throughout … Israel—The country was in the lowest state of depression and degradation. The Philistines, after the great victory over the sons of Eli, had become the virtual masters of the land. Their policy in disarming the natives has been often followed in the East. For repairing any serious damage to their agricultural implements, they had to apply to the neighboring forts.

1 Samuel 13:19 Additional Commentaries
Context
Israel without Weapons
19Now no blacksmith could be found in all the land of Israel, for the Philistines said, "Otherwise the Hebrews will make swords or spears." 20So all Israel went down to the Philistines, each to sharpen his plowshare, his mattock, his axe, and his hoe.…
Cross References
Judges 5:8
God chose new leaders when war came to the city gates, but not a shield or spear was seen among forty thousand in Israel.

1 Samuel 13:20
So all Israel went down to the Philistines to have their plow points, mattocks, axes and sickles sharpened.

2 Kings 24:14
He carried all Jerusalem into exile: all the officers and fighting men, and all the skilled workers and artisans--a total of ten thousand. Only the poorest people of the land were left.

Jeremiah 24:1
After Jehoiachin son of Jehoiakim king of Judah and the officials, the skilled workers and the artisans of Judah were carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon by Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, the LORD showed me two baskets of figs placed in front of the temple of the LORD.

Jeremiah 29:2
(This was after King Jehoiachin and the queen mother, the court officials and the leaders of Judah and Jerusalem, the skilled workers and the artisans had gone into exile from Jerusalem.)
Treasury of Scripture

Now there was no smith found throughout all the land of Israel: for the Philistines said, Lest the Hebrews make them swords or spears:

there was no It is probable that the Philistines in the former wars had carried away all the smiths from Israel.

Judges 5:8 They chose new gods; then was war in the gates: was there a shield …

2 Kings 24:14 And he carried away all Jerusalem, and all the princes, and all the …

Isaiah 54:16 Behold, I have created the smith that blows the coals in the fire, …

Jeremiah 24:1 The LORD showed me, and, behold, two baskets of figs were set before …

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