Judges 5:10
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
"You who ride on white donkeys, sitting on your saddle blankets, and you who walk along the road, consider

New Living Translation
"Consider this, you who ride on fine donkeys, you who sit on fancy saddle blankets, and you who walk along the road.

English Standard Version
“Tell of it, you who ride on white donkeys, you who sit on rich carpets and you who walk by the way.

New American Standard Bible
"You who ride on white donkeys, You who sit on rich carpets, And you who travel on the road-- sing!

King James Bible
Speak, ye that ride on white asses, ye that sit in judgment, and walk by the way.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
You who ride on white donkeys, who sit on saddle blankets, and who travel on the road, give praise!

International Standard Version
"Speak up, you who ride white donkeys, sitting on cloth saddles while you travel on your way!

NET Bible
You who ride on light-colored female donkeys, who sit on saddle blankets, you who walk on the road, pay attention!

New Heart English Bible
"Speak, you who ride on white donkeys, you who sit on saddle blankets, and you who walk by the way.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
You people who ride on brown donkeys, who sit on saddle blankets, and who walk on the road-think.

JPS Tanakh 1917
Ye that ride on white asses, Ye that sit on rich cloths, And ye that walk by the way, tell of it;

New American Standard 1977
“You who ride on white donkeys,
            You who sit on rich carpets,
            And you who travel on the road—sing!

Jubilee Bible 2000
Speak, ye that ride on white asses, ye that preside in judgment, and walk by the way.

King James 2000 Bible
Speak, you that ride on white donkeys, you that sit in judgment, and walk by the way.

American King James Version
Speak, you that ride on white asses, you that sit in judgment, and walk by the way.

American Standard Version
Tell of it , ye that ride on white asses, Ye that sit on rich carpets, And ye that walk by the way.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Speak, you that ride upon fair asses, and you that sit in judgment, and walk in the way.

Darby Bible Translation
Ye that ride on white she-asses, ye that sit on carpets, and ye that walk by the way, consider.

English Revised Version
Tell of it, ye that ride on white asses, ye that sit on rich carpets, and ye that walk by the way.

Webster's Bible Translation
Speak, ye that ride on white asses, ye that sit in judgment, and walk by the way.

World English Bible
"Tell [of it], you who ride on white donkeys, you who sit on rich carpets, and you who walk by the way.

Young's Literal Translation
Riders on white asses -- Sitters on a long robe -- And walkers by the way -- meditate!
Study Bible
The Song of Deborah and Barak
9"My heart goes out to the commanders of Israel, The volunteers among the people; Bless the LORD! 10"You who ride on white donkeys, You who sit on rich carpets, And you who travel on the road-- sing! 11"At the sound of those who divide flocks among the watering places, There they shall recount the righteous deeds of the LORD, The righteous deeds for His peasantry in Israel. Then the people of the LORD went down to the gates.…
Cross References
Judges 10:4
He had thirty sons who rode on thirty donkeys, and they had thirty cities in the land of Gilead that are called Havvoth-jair to this day.

Judges 12:14
He had forty sons and thirty grandsons who rode on seventy donkeys; and he judged Israel eight years.
Treasury of Scripture

Speak, you that ride on white asses, you that sit in judgment, and walk by the way.

speak. or meditate

Psalm 105:2 Sing to him, sing psalms to him: talk you of all his wondrous works.

Psalm 145:5,11 I will speak of the glorious honor of your majesty, and of your wondrous …

ride

Judges 10:4 And he had thirty sons that rode on thirty donkey colts, and they …

Judges 12:14 And he had forty sons and thirty nephews, that rode on three score …

ye that sit

Psalm 107:32 Let them exalt him also in the congregation of the people, and praise …

Isaiah 28:6 And for a spirit of judgment to him that sits in judgment, and for …

Joel 3:12 Let the heathen be wakened, and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat: …

(10) Speak.--Rather, Think of it. or, perhaps, "Meditate the song." It is placed in the original in far more forcible position at the end of the verse.

Ye that ride on white asses.--That is, nobles and wealthy (Judges 10:4; Judges 12:14). The word can hardly mean "white," because there are no such things as white asses. It means rather "bright-coloured" (Ezekiel 27:18), "glossy-skinned," or "dappled" (super nitentes asinos, Vulg.). These were the more valuable sort of asses, and were used by the rich and great. It is only because this was not understood among the Greeks and Romans, who despised the ass, that the LXX. and Josephus so often disguise the word in writing for Gentiles, using p?lon, "steed," or the general word hupozugion, "beast of burden," instead. No incident was more derided among the Gentiles than the riding to Zion of her king, "meek and sitting upon an ass" (Zechariah 9:9), (see the Life of Christ, 2:197). Here though the Alexandrine MS. of the LXX has "on female asses of the South "--i.e., of Ethiopia--we find in other MSS. "on beasts of burden."

Ye that sit in judgment.--Rather, ye that sit on rich divans, though our version follows the Vatican MS. of the LXX., the Chaldee, and the Vulgate. The Hebrew is, "ye that sit on middin," and some Jews understood it to mean "at Middin"--i.e., ye inhabitants of the town Middin (which is mentioned in Joshua 15:61, and which they suppose may have been peculiarly oppressed and insulted by the enemy). Others, again, suppose that middin is saddle-cloths (comp. Matthew 21:7). The Alexandrine MS. of the LXX. has epi lampnm--i.e., on sedans or covered chariots. There can be little doubt that it means "bright carpets" (compare mad in Psalm 109:18).

And walk by the way.--Rather, ye that walk in the way. Deborah appeals (1) to the wealthy, riding through the safe highways: (2) to those of all classes who now sit at ease on divans, bright with carpets, of which Easterns are so fond: and (3) to foot-passengers in the ordinary life--to join in the thought and song of praise. On the phrases "sitting at home and "walking on the roads" to describe the ordinary avocations of life, see Deuteronomy 6:7 : "When thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way."

Verse 10. - She appeals to the nobles who ride on white (or roan) asses, and sit on rich saddle-cloths (not sit in judgment), and to the people who walk by the way, alike to speak of the great deliverance. Speak, ye that ride on white asses,.... Though in some countries, as in ours, it is reckoned disgraceful to ride on asses; so Leo Africanus (b) makes mention of a preacher in Africa, who was called the ass rider; because he was continually, sitting on an ass; yet in Judea, where there were no horses, or very few, it was accounted honourable; so it was in the time of our Lord; for his riding on an ass to Jerusalem was not mean and disgraceful, but honourable and glorious: and so it certainly was in those early times of the judges; for we read of the sons of two of them, which were very numerous, that rode on asses' colts, Judges 10:4, and it seems that white asses were the most valuable, and chiefly used by great personages. The ass in the Hebrew language has its name from redness, that being the usual colour of them in those parts; and hence they were hateful to the Egyptians, because that their Typhon was of that colour (c); but there were some that were white, as there are wild ones now of that colour. A traveller (d) in those parts in the beginning of the last century tells us, that on the banks of the Euphrates they beheld every day great droves of wild beasts, as wild asses "all white", &c. The word we translate "white" is "zechorot", and perhaps may describe the same animal the Ethiopians call "zecora", and some "zebra"; said to excel in beauty all four footed creatures in the whole world. It is an animal of the size of a mule, found in the woods beyond Abyssinia, is easily tamed, and is the frequent and chief present of the kings of that country; about its loins is a circle of a black colour, in the form of a girdle, which is followed with more on each side, according to the part of the body, some broader, others narrower, both black and white, or of an ash colour, so neat that they seem to exceed the art of the most eminent painter; its only deformity are its ears, which are long; hence it is called by the Portuguese the wild ass, though wrongly; of what value and esteem it was appears from the large price it has been sold for; one, that was the gift of a king to a Turkish governor, was sold to an Indian for 2,000 pieces of Venetian money, to make a present of to the great Mogor, king of the Indians (e), which was the value of nine hundred pounds. Those that rode on these creatures were the princes and nobles of Israel; though they are generally interpreted by the Jewish commentators of merchants that rode from place to place about business; and these are called upon to speak of the wonderful things God had done for Israel, in freeing them from the bondage of the Canaanites, so that these nobles or merchants might ride about the country without any fear; and to discourse of them to others, and in their meditations give praise to God on account of them:

ye that sit in judgment; which seems to describe judges upon the bench, sitting to hear and try causes, and pass righteous judgment; these are also exhorted to give thanks to the Lord, that they were now restored to their seats of judgment, from which they were driven; or where they could not peaceably exercise their office, which they now might and did: Cocceius renders the word "on measures", as if these were persons that presided over measures, and took care that they were just and right. Though Kimchi and Ben Melech say, that Middin, which we render "in judgment", is either the name of a city in the book of Joshua; see Gill on Joshua 15:61, or the name of a way (f) well known, in which they were afraid to go because of the enemy, but now went in it with safety, and therefore had reason to speak well of God, and praise his name; but this is rather intended in the next clause:

and walk by the way; the common people that travelled from place to place on business, who before were obliged to leave the public roads, and go in byways, Judges 5:6 but now could travel in the common road without fear, and therefore ought to be thankful.

(b) Descriptio Africae, l. 5. p. 574. (c) Plutarch. de Iside. (d) Cartwright's Preacher's Travels, p. 106. (e) Ludolph. Ethiop. Hist. l. 1. c. 10. Vid. Philostorg. Eccles. Hist. l. 3. c. 11. (f) Vid. David de Pomis Lexic. fol. 19. 3.10. Speak—that is, join in this song of praise.

white asses—Those which are purely white are highly prized, and being costly, are possessed only by the wealthy and great.

Ye that sit in judgment—has been rendered, "ye that repose on tapestries."5:6-11. Deborah describes the distressed state of Israel under the tyranny of Jabin, that their salvation might appear more gracious. She shows what brought this misery upon them. It was their idolatry. They chose new gods, with new names. But under all these images, Satan was worshipped. Deborah was a mother to Israel, by diligently promoting the salvation of their souls. She calls on those who shared the advantages of this great salvation, to offer up thanks to God for it. Let such as are restored, not only to their liberty as other Israelites, but to their rank, speak God's praises. This is the Lord's doing. In these acts of his, justice was executed on his enemies. In times of persecution, God's ordinances, the walls of salvation, whence the waters of life are drawn, are resorted to at the hazard of the lives of those who attend them. At all times Satan will endeavour to hinder the believer from drawing near to the throne of grace. Notice God's kindness to his trembling people. It is the glory of God to protect those who are most exposed, and to help the weakest. Let us notice the benefit we have from the public peace, the inhabitants of villages especially, and give God the praise.
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