1 Samuel 13:16
And Saul, and Jonathan his son, and the people that were present with them, stayed in Gibeah of Benjamin: but the Philistines encamped in Michmash.
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(16) Gibeah of Benjamin.—Saul and his son, uniting their sadly diminished forces, entrench themselves at Geba, in a strong position at the end of a pass, whence they could watch the movements of the Philistines. Their small number forbade any idea of an attack on the enemy.

The English translators wrongly here substitute “Gibeah of Benjamin” for “Geba of Benjamin,” probably led astray by the mention of Gibeah in the preceding verse.

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.Samuel arose - Saul could not return to his own station at Michmash, seeing it was occupied by the Philistines; so, perhaps by Samuel's advice (since, according to the text, he preceded him there), he effected a junction with Jonathan at Gibeah. Some would read "Saul" instead of "Samuel." 15, 16. Samuel … gat him … unto Gibeah … and Saul, and Jonathan his son, and the people that were present with them, abode in Gibeah—Saul removed his camp thither, either in the hope that, it being his native town, he would gain an increase of followers or that he might enjoy the counsels and influence of the prophet. No text from Poole on this verse. And Saul, and Jonathan his son,.... Who were now joined to their men, on Saul's coming to Gibeah:

and the people that were present with them; the six hundred men before numbered: abode in Gibeah of Benjamin; being perhaps a strong fortified place, not choosing to go forth to meet the army of the Philistines, so vastly superior to them:

but the Philistines encamped at Michmash; the old quarters of Saul before he went to Gilgal, 1 Samuel 13:2.

And Saul, and Jonathan his son, and the people that were present with them, abode in Gibeah of Benjamin: but the Philistines encamped in Michmash.
16. in Gibeah of Benjamin] Heb. in Geba of Benjamin. The positions of 1 Samuel 13:2-3 are now reversed, the Philistines occupying Michmash on the northern side of the valley, Saul and Jonathan holding Geba on the southern side.Verse 16. - In Gibeah of Benjamin. This is an arbitrary change of the A.V. (in company with the Septuagint and Vulgate) for Geba, which is the word in the Hebrew text. Our translators no doubt considered that as Gibeah of Benjamin occurs in the previous verse, this must be the same place. But our greater knowledge of the geography of the Holy Land enables us to say that Geba is right; for, as we have seen, it was at one end of the defile, at the other end of which was Michmash; and here alone could the small army of Saul have any chance of defending itself against the vast host of the Philistines. However much we may blame Saul's disobedience, he was a skilful soldier and a brave man, and his going with his little band to the end of the pass to make a last desperate stand was an act worthy of a king. The offering of the sacrifice was hardly finished when Samuel came and said to Saul, as he came to meet him and salute him, "What hast thou done?" Saul replied, "When I saw that the people were scattered away from me, and thou camest not at the time appointed, and the Philistines were assembled at Michmash, I thought the Philistines will come down to me to Gilgal now (to attack me), before I have entreated the face of Jehovah; and I overcame myself, and offered the burnt-offering." יי פּני חלּה: see Exodus 32:11.
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