2 Samuel 23:11
And after him was Shammah the son of Agee the Hararite. And the Philistines were gathered together into a troop, where was a piece of ground full of lentiles: and the people fled from the Philistines.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(11) Into a troop.—Josephus, using different vowels, read “to Lehi,” the scene of Samson’s exploit (Judges 15:9; Judges 15:19); but as the same word recurs in 2Samuel 23:13, clearly in the sense of “troop,” the English reading should be retained.

Lentiles.—Chronicles has “barley.” The two words might easily be confounded in the Hebrew, and it is quite immaterial which is correct; the point is that the Philistines had made a foray to gather the ripe crops, the Israelites were terrified and fled, while Shammah, by his courage and valour, turned the tide of battle, and won a great victory.

2 Samuel 23:11. After him was Shammah — Who, although not expressly mentioned in the parallel place, 1 Chronicles 11:14, yet is plainly implied to have been engaged in this great action. For it is said, that they set themselves, &c., that is, Shammah and Eleazar, who joined in this enterprise. But this place, in Samuel, teaches us that Shammah had the chief hand in it, and therefore it is ascribed to him. Ground full of lentils — In 1 Chronicles 11:13 it is, full of barley: in which there is no difficulty, one part of the field having probably been sown with lentils and the other with barley. The people fled from the Philistines — Fearing to defend the place.

23:8-39 David once earnestly longed for the water at the well of Bethlehem. It seems to be an instance of weakness. He was thirsty; with the water of that well he had often refreshed himself when a youth, and it was without due thought that he desired it. Were his valiant men so forward to expose themselves, upon the least hint of their prince's mind, and so eager to please him, and shall not we long to approve ourselves to our Lord Jesus, by ready compliance with his will, as shown us by his word, Spirit, and providence? But David poured out the water as a drink-offering to the Lord. Thus he would cross his own foolish fancy, and punish himself for indulging it, and show that he had sober thoughts to correct his rash ones, and knew how to deny himself. Did David look upon that water as very precious which was got at the hazard of these men's blood, and shall not we much more value those benefits for purchasing which our blessed Saviour shed his blood? Let all beware of neglecting so great salvation.Hararite - Interpreted to mean "mountaineer," one from the hill country of Judah or Ephraim. 2Sa 23:8-39. A Catalogue of His Mighty Men.

8. These be the names of the mighty men whom David had—This verse should be translated thus: He who sits in the seat of the Tachmonite (that is, of Jashobeam the Hachmonite), who was chief among the captains, the same is Adino the Eznite; he lift up his spear against eight hundred, whom he slew at one time. The text is corrupt in this passage; the number eight hundred should be three hundred [Davidson, Hermeneutics]. Under Joab he was chief or president of the council of war. The first or highest order was composed of him and his two colleagues, Eleazar and Shammah. Eleazar seems to have been left to fight the Philistines alone; and on his achieving the victory, they returned to the spoil. In like manner Shammah was left to stand alone in his glory, when the Lord, by him, wrought a great victory. It is not very easy to determine whether the exploits that are afterwards described were performed by the first or the second three.

Full of lentiles, or barley, as it is 1 Chronicles 11:13; for both might very well grow in the same field, in divers parts of it. And this fact is ascribed to Eleazar, 1 Chronicles 11:12, but so as it is implied that he had some partner or partners in it: for it is there said, 1 Chronicles 11:14, They set themselves, &c. So Eleazar might stand and fight in that part where the barley was, and Shammah there where the lentiles were.

And after him was Shammah the son of Agee the Hararite,.... One who was of the mountainous country, as the Targum, the hill country of Judea, of Hebron, or the parts adjacent; this was the third of the first three; there was one of this name among the thirty, 2 Samuel 23:33,

and the Philistines were gathered together into a troop; but so they were no doubt at first; R. Isaiah takes it to be the name of a place called Chiyah; as the Targum, Chayatha; and which Kimchi says was a village, an unwalled town; and Ben Melech observes, that it is said in the Arabic language, a collection of houses is called Alchai: it may be the same with Lehi, where Samson slew a thousand with the jawbone of an ass, Judges 15:17, whence it had its name; and Josephus (u) says, the place where the Philistines were gathered together was called "the Jawbone": but perhaps the sense of Ben Gersom may be best of all, that they gathered together in this place for provision, for food and forage, to support the life of them and their cattle: since it follows:

where was a piece of ground full of lentiles; a sort of pulse, which was eaten in those countries, and the pottage of which was delicious food, see Genesis 25:30,

and the people fled from the Philistines; as they did before under Eleazar, 2 Samuel 23:9.

(u) Antiqu. l. 7. c. 12. sect. 4.

And after him was Shammah the son of Agee the Hararite. And the Philistines were gathered together into a troop, where was a piece of ground full of lentils: and the people fled from the Philistines.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
11. into a troop] Probably the consonants should be read with different vowels to Lehi, the scene of Samson’s victory over the Philistines (Jdg 15:9; Jdg 15:14; Jdg 15:19).

lentiles] Chr. reads barley. The two words might easily be confused in Hebrew. The Philistines came up to carry off the ripe crops. Cp. 1 Samuel 23:1.

Verse 11. - Into a troop. Josephus renders it "to Lehi," the scene of Samson's exploit. The word is rare, but occurs again in ver. 13, where, however, we find in Chronicles the ordinary name for a host substituted for it. The Revisers have retained in the margin, "or, for foraging:" but its occurrence in Psalm 68:10, where it is tendered "thy congregation," and in the margin of the Revised Version," troop" makes it probable that" troop" is the right rendering here. Lentiles. In 1 Chronicles 11:13, "barley." The difference is probably caused by a transposition of letters. The Philistines seem to have made this incursion in order to carry off or destroy the crops of the Israelites. 2 Samuel 23:11The third leading hero was Shammah, the son of Age the Hararite (הררי is probably contracted from ההררי, 2 Samuel 23:33). He also made himself renowned by a great victory over the Philistines. The enemy had gathered together לחיּה, "as a troop," or in a crowd. This meaning of היּה (here and 2 Samuel 23:13, and possibly also in Psalm 68:11) is thoroughly established by the Arabic (see Ges. Thes. p. 470). But it seems to have fallen into disuse afterwards, and in the Chronicles it is explained in 2 Samuel 23:13 by מלחמה, and in 2 Samuel 23:15 by מחנה. "On a portion of a field of lentils there," sc., where the Philistines had gathered together, the people (of Israel) were smitten. Then Shammah stationed himself in the midst of the field, and יצּילה, "wrested it," from the foe, and smote the Philistines. Instead of עדשׁים, lentils, we find in the Chronicles שׁלעורים, barley, a very inconsiderable difference.
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