Judges 3:23
Then Ehud went forth through the porch, and shut the doors of the parlour upon him, and locked them.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(23) Then Ehud went forth through the porch.—Rather, into. The word rendered “porch”—misderōnah—is derived from seder (“order”). The Chaldee represents it by a transliteration of the Greek word exedra, “a hall decorated with pillars.” Kimchi supposes it to mean an ante-chamber where people waited to see the king, standing in order; and this seems to be the view of the LXX. (in the Vatican Codex), who render it, “he went out through those set in order” (tous diatetagmenous). If this be the meaning, it can only refer to his walking boldly out through the attendants after he had fastened the doors. But the fact is that the ancient versions were as uncertain of the meaning as ourselves. The Syriac has, “through the xystos” or colonnade; the Arabic, “through the window.”

Shut the doors of the parlour upon himi.e., upon Eglon.

Locked them.—The LXX. have “wedged them” (esphēnose). The lock was probably of a character similar to that used by all ancient nations, namely, wooden slides which entered into a hole in the doorpost, and were secured by catches cut into it. See Jahn, Archœol. Bibl. 2:6-37.

Jdg 3:23. Ehud went forth — With a composed countenance and motion, being well assured that God, who by his extraordinary call had excited him to this enterprise, would, by his special providence, carry him through it. And shut the doors upon him — Upon, or after, himself; and locked them — Either pulling them closely after him, as we do, when doors have spring- locks; or taking the key with him.

3:12-30 When Israel sins again, God raises up a new oppressor. The Israelites did ill, and the Moabites did worse; yet because God punishes the sins of his own people in this world, Israel is weakened, and Moab strengthened against them. If lesser troubles do not do the work, God will send greater. When Israel prays again, God raises up Ehud. As a judge, or minister of Divine justice, Ehud put to death Eglon, the king of Moab, and thus executed the judgments of God upon him as an enemy to God and Israel. But the law of being subject to principalities and powers in all things lawful, is the rule of our conduct. No such commissions are now given; to pretend to them is to blaspheme God. Notice Ehud's address to Eglon. What message from God but a message of vengeance can a proud rebel expect? Such a message is contained in the word of God; his ministers are boldly to declare it, without fearing the frown, or respecting the persons of sinners. But, blessed be God, they have to deliver a message of mercy and of free salvation; the message of vengeance belongs only to those who neglect the offers of grace. The consequence of this victory was, that the land had rest eighty years. It was a great while for the land to rest; yet what is that to the saints' everlasting rest in the heavenly Canaan.The King James Version and margin give different explanations of the last words of this verse. Others explain it of a vestibule or chamber, through which Ehud passed into the porch where the entrance doors were. He locked the doors, took the key with him; and then retired through the midst of the attendants below (or: more probably, through the door which communicated directly with the outside). 21-26. Ehud put forth his left hand—The whole circumstance of this daring act—the death of Eglon without a shriek, or noise—the locking of the doors—the carrying off the key—the calm, unhurried deportment of Ehud—show the strength of his confidence that he was doing God service. Ehud went forth, with a composed countenance and gait, without any fear; being well assured that God, who by his extraordinary call had put him upon that enterprise, would by his special providence preserve him, and carry him through it.

Upon him; either upon the king, or upon or after himself.

Locked them; either by pulling it close after him, as we do when doors have spring-locks; or by taking the key with him for more caution; and this he did, that they supposing the king to be retired, might wait till he was gone.

Then Ehud went forth through the porch,.... Which the Targum interprets by "exedra", a place, as Kimchi, where there were many seats, either for the people to sit in while waiting to have admittance into the presence of the king, or where the guards sat, and may be called the guard room; through this Ehud passed with all serenity and composure of mind imaginable, without the least show of distress and uneasiness in his countenance, being fully satisfied that what he had done was right, and according to the will of God:

and shut the doors of the parlour upon him, and locked them; joined the doors of the parlour, as the Targum, the two folds of the door, shut them close together upon Eglon within the parlour, and bolted them within, or drew the bolt on the inside, which he was able to do with a key for that purpose; of which see more on Judges 3:25; and which it is probable he took away along with him; this must be understood as done before he went through the porch, and therefore should be rendered, "when" or "after he had shut the doors", &c. (e); wherefore in the Vulgate Latin version this clause is put first.

(e) "quum occlusisset", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator.

Then Ehud went forth through the porch, and shut the doors of the parlor upon him, and locked them.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
23. into the porch] The rendering is a guess; the Hebr. word misděron, perhaps = ‘a row’ of pillars, must denote the part of the building to which Ehud went out when he left the ‘upper chamber,’ but the precise meaning is unknown; ‘colonnade,’ ‘vestibule,’ have been suggested.

upon him] i.e. Eglon; the doors are the two leaves of a double door, cf. Jdg 16:3, 1 Kings 6:31 f. The form of the tense and locked them is incorrect; the words were probably added by a scribe to account for the locked doors in Jdg 3:24-25 (Moore, Budde).

Judges 3:23As soon as the deed was accomplished, Ehud went out into the porch or front hall, shut the door of the room behind him (בּעדו, not behind himself, but literally round him, i.e., Eglon; cf. Genesis 7:16; 2 Kings 4:4) and bolted it (this is only added as a more precise explanation of the previous verb).
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