1 Samuel 15:7
And Saul smote the Amalekites from Havilah until you come to Shur, that is over against Egypt.
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(7) From Havilah until thou comest to Shur.—The Havilah here alluded to cannot be now identified. Shur, which signifies “wall,” probably refers to the wall which crossed the north-east frontier of Egypt, extending from Pelusium, past Migdol, to Hevo. Ebers suggests that this wall gave to Egypt the name of “Mizraini,” the enclosed, or fortified.

1 Samuel 15:7-8. To Shur — That is, from one end of their country to the other; he smote all that he met with: but a great number of them fled away upon the noise of his coming, and secured themselves in other places, till the storm was over. Destroyed all — Whom he found. Now they paid dear for the sins of their ancestors. They were themselves guilty of idolatry and numberless sins, for which they deserved to be cut off. Yet, when God would reckon with them, he fixes upon this as the ground of his quarrel.15:1-9 The sentence of condemnation against the Amalekites had gone forth long before, Ex 17:14; De 25:19, but they had been spared till they filled up the measure of their sins. We are sure that the righteous Lord does no injustice to any. The remembering the kindness of the ancestors of the Kenites, in favour to them, at the time God was punishing the injuries done by the ancestors of the Amalekites, tended to clear the righteousness of God in this dispensation. It is dangerous to be found in the company of God's enemies, and it is our duty and interest to come out from among them, lest we share in their sins and plagues, Re 18:4. As the commandment had been express, and a test of Saul's obedience, his conduct evidently was the effect of a proud, rebellious spirit. He destroyed only the refuse, that was good for little. That which was now destroyed was sacrificed to the justice of God.The district here described would stretch from Havilah on the extreme east to Shur, either near Suez, or further north on the coast road from Gaza to Egypt. 1Sa 15:7-9. He Spares Agag and the Best of the Spoil.

7-9. Saul smote the Amalekites—His own view of the proper and expedient course to follow was his rule, not the command of God.

i.e. From one end of their country to the other; he smote all that he met with; but a great number of them fled away upon the noise of his coming, as is usual in such cases, and secured themselves in other places, until the storm was over, when they returned again; of whom we read before, 1 Samuel 13:6 14:22. And Saul smote the Amalekites,.... Engaging in battle with them, he overcame them, and beat them, and slew great numbers of them:

from Havilah until thou comest to Shur, that is over against Egypt; having routed them in the valley, or in whatsoever place the battle was fought, he pursued them from one end of their country to the other; from Havilah, which lay to the northeast, to Shur, which lay to the southwest, and destroyed all that came in his way between those two points, see Genesis 25:18.

And Saul smote the Amalekites from Havilah until thou comest to Shur, that is over against Egypt.
7. from Havilah until thou comest to Shur] The region occupied by the Ishmaelites is described in the same terms in Genesis 25:18. Havilah is supposed to be a district of Arabia, but its position cannot be fixed with any certainty. Shur is repeatedly mentioned in connexion with the route from Palestine to Egypt, and appears to be the part of the Arabian desert bordering on Egypt. See Genesis 16:7; Genesis 20:1; Exodus 15:22; 1 Samuel 27:8. Shur means wall, and the name may have been derived from the wall which anciently defended the north-eastern frontier of Egypt.

over against Egypt] In front of Egypt, looking towards it from Palestine; or, eastward of Egypt.Verse 7. - From Havilah until thou comest to Shur. Hebrew, "from Havilah as thou goest towards Shur." It seems impossible that this Havilah can be the northwestern portion of Yemen, called Chawlan, and identified with the Havilah of Genesis 10:7, 29, as this would make Saul smite them from southeast to northwest. Shur, which means wall, is, as Wellhausen (Text 1 samuel 9:7) observes, originally the name of the wall which ran from Pelusium past Migdol to Hero, and which gave to Egypt, as Ebers thinks, its name Mizraim, the enclosed or fortified. Shur is again mentioned in 1 Samuel 27:8 as indicating the direction towards Egypt of the region occupied by the Amalekites. Havilah, which means circle, must have been some spot on the route to the isthmus of Suez, lying on the edge of the wilderness to the south of Judah, where Saul commenced his foray. Beginning thus upon the borders of Judaea, Saul continued his devastations up to the limits of Egypt. The account of the war against the Amalekites is a very condensed one, and is restricted to a description of the conduct of Saul on that occasion. Without mentioning either the time or the immediate occasion of the war, the narrative commences with the command of God which Samuel solemnly communicated to Saul, to go and exterminate that people. Samuel commenced with the words, "Jehovah sent me to anoint thee to be king over His people, over Israel," in order to show to Saul the obligation which rested upon him to receive his commission as coming from God, and to proceed at once to fulfil it. The allusion to the anointing points back not to 1 Samuel 11:15, but to 1 Samuel 10:1.
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