Judges 3:26
And Ehud escaped while they tarried, and passed beyond the quarries, and escaped unto Seirath.
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(26) Unto Seirath.—Perhaps, rather, into the bush, or woodland, as the word has the article, and does not occur again. When he had got beyond the frontier post of Gilgal, into the district of Ephraim, he was safe from pursuit.

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.Seirath - "The forest" or "weald," which evidently bordered on the cultivated plain near Gilgal, and extended into "the mountain or hill country of Ephraim." Once there, he was safe from pursuit (compare 1 Samuel 13:6), and quickly collected a strong force of Ephraimires and probably the bordering Benjamites. 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. No text from Poole on this verse.

And Ehud escaped while they tarried,.... While the servants of the king of Moab tarried waiting for the opening of the doors of the parlour, this gave him time enough to make his escape, so as to be out of the reach of pursuers; or else the sense is, that even when they had opened the doors, and found the king dead, while they were in confusion at it, not knowing what to ascribe it to, the dagger being enclosed in the wound, and perhaps but little blood, if any, issued out, being closed up with fat, and so had no suspicion of his being killed by Ehud; but rather supposing it to be an accidental fall from his seat, and might call in the physicians to examine him, and use their skill, if there were any hopes of recovery; all which prolonged time, and facilitated the escape of Ehud:

and passed beyond the quarries, and escaped to Seirath; he got beyond the quarries, which were by Gilgal, which shows that it could not be at Jericho where the king of Moab was, as Josephus thinks, but either in his own country beyond Jordan, though no mention is made of Ehud's crossing Jordan, or however some place nearer the fords of Jordan; since Gilgal, from whence he returned, and whither he came again after he had killed the king of Moab, lay on that side of Jericho which was towards Jordan; and this Seirath he escaped to was in or near the mountain of Ephraim, as appears from Judges 3:27,, but of it we have no account elsewhere; but it is thought by some learned men (l) to be the place where Seth's pillars stood, and they to be the engravings here spoken of, which we translate "quarries": the words of Josephus (m) are, that the posterity of Seth, who very much studied astronomy, having heard that Adam foretold the destruction of the universe at one time by fire, and at another by water, erected two pillars, one of stone, and the other of brick, on which they inscribed their inventions (in astronomy), that they might be preserved, and which remain to this day in the land of Siriad; but this account of Josephus seems to be taken from a fabulous relation of Manetho, the Egyptian, and is abundantly confuted by Dr. Stillingfleet (n). Jarchi interprets this of Seirath, a thick wood or forest, the trees of which grew as thick as the hair on a man's head, and so a proper place to escape to, and hide in: it may be it was the woody part of the mount Ephraim, see Joshua 17:18.

(l) Marsham. Chronicon, p. 39. Vossius de 70 Interpret. p. 271. (m) Antiqu. l. 1. c. 2. sect. 3.((n) Origines Sacrae, l. 1. c. 2.

And Ehud escaped while they tarried, and passed beyond the quarries, and escaped unto Seirath.
26. and passed beyond the quarries] lit. he having passed the sculptured stones. The construction in Hebr. (a circumstantial clause dependent on the preceding) is harsh and awkward: it is accounted for if we may suppose that clause b (‘and passed … unto Seirah’) is a doublet of clause a. The repetition of he escaped looks as if this were the case. Instead of passed the sculptured stones we should probably translate crossed (i.e. the river Jordan, not mentioned but implied in the general situation) near the sculptured stones, cf. Jdg 3:19; for crossed without an expressed object cf. Genesis 32:21 [22 Heb.], 2 Samuel 17:16; for the prep, near cf. Jdg 3:19 and Jdg 4:11.

unto Seirah] Se‘îrah, somewhere on the nearer highlands of Ephraim; otherwise unknown.

Verse 26. ? The quarries. See above, ver. 19. Seirath, or rather has-seirah, is not known as the name of a place. It seems to mean the rough or woody district, the forest in the hill country of Ephraim, where there was good shelter to hide in. Judges 3:26Ehud had escaped whilst the servants of Eglon were waiting, and had passed the stone quarries and reached Seirah. Seirah is a place that is never mentioned again; and, judging from the etymology (the hairy), it was a wooded region, respecting the situation of which all that can be decided is, that it is not to be sought for in the neighbourhood of Jericho, but "upon the mountains of Ephraim" (Judges 3:27). For when Ehud had come to Seirah, he blew the trumpet "upon the mountains of Ephraim," to announce to the people the victory that was placed within their reach by the death of Eglon, and to summon them to war with the Moabites, and then went down from the mountain into the plain near Jericho; "and he was before them," i.e., went in front as their leader, saying to the people, "Follow me; for Jehovah has given your enemies the Moabites into your hand." Then they went down and took (i.e., took possession of) the fords near Jericho (see at Joshua 2:7), למואב, either "from the Moabites" or "towards Moab," and let no one (of the Moabites) cross over, i.e., escape to their own land.
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