And they said to him, We are come down to bind you, that we may deliver you into the hand of the Philistines. And Samson said to them, Swear to me, that you will not fall on me yourselves.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Swear unto me, that ye will not fall upon me yourselves.—It seems as if Samson were parleying with them from some point of vantage which he could easily have defended for a time.
9-17. Then the Philistines went up—to the high land of Judah.
and spread themselves in Lehi—now El-Lekieh, abounding with limestone cliffs; the sides of which are perforated with caves. The object of the Philistines in this expedition was to apprehend Samson, in revenge for the great slaughter he had committed on their people. With a view of freeing his own countrymen from all danger from the infuriated Philistines, he allowed himself to be bound and surrendered a fettered prisoner into their power. Exulting with joy at the near prospect of riddance from so formidable an enemy, they went to meet him. But he exerted his superhuman strength, and finding a new (or moist) jawbone of an ass, he laid hold of it, and with no other weapon, slew a thousand men at a place which he called Ramath-lehi—that is, "the hill of the jawbone."
that we may deliver thee into the hands of the Philistines; they own what was their intention in binding him, and what put them upon it was not ill will to him, but fear of the Philistines:
and Samson said unto them, swear unto me that ye will not fall upon me yourselves; which shows he did not fear them, though they were 3000; and that if they attempted to take away his life, he should defend himself, but he chose not to shed the blood of any of them; and rather than they should come into any distress through the Philistines, consented to be bound by them, and delivered into their hands; which he was a type of Christ, who was betrayed by the Jews, and delivered by them into the hands of the Romans; and though he could have delivered himself by his great strength, would not, but suffered himself to be taken and bound, and given into the hands of his enemies, that his own people might go free; see John 18:4.And they said unto him, We are come down to bind thee, that we may deliver thee into the hand of the Philistines. And Samson said unto them, Swear unto me, that ye will not fall upon me yourselves.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Verses 12, 13. - We are come down to bind thee. There is something very base in this deliberate agreement with their Philistine masters to deliver up Samson bound into their hands. But it is not very unlike the spirit in which the Hebrews looked upon Moses when he first began to work to rescue them from their Egyptian bondage (Exodus 2:14; Acts 7:25-28). Samson's forbearance towards his own countrymen is commendable. Brought him up - from the deep ravine or cleft in which he was hid. His place of concealment was probably unknown to the Philistines, or may be they had quite a superstitious fear of Samson from their experience of his prowess.
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