God was not "required" to kill everyone who looked into the ark, even if they were forced against their will to do so. Rather, on a deeper level, God killed those Israelites because they had such a low respect for the holiness of God that they looked inside of the Ark of the Covenant. Q: In 1 Sam , does the Hebrew say 50,, or 70? A: Most Hebrew manuscripts have 50,, and a few Hebrew manuscripts have Scholars disagree as to which was the original number.
Gleason Archer in Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties p. Archer points out that neither pattern is followed in the translation "70 man 50, man". Archer also mentions that textual errors are more frequent in 1 Samuel than in any other Old Testament book. A few Hebrew manuscripts do not have 50,, and Josephus in Antiquities of the Jews 6. The Expositor's Bible Commentary p. See also When Critics Ask p.
The Hebrew does not necessarily mean males, but can refer to men and women. While the New Bible Dictionary p. An estimate of the population of both the town and surrounding farms is only 20, people. The number here is not necessarily 50, but only 70, or possibly 1, See the previous question for the arguments pro and con for this point. If it was in fact 50, people, this number would undoubtedly include people who came from other towns to gawk at the ark.
See Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties p. Q: In 1 Sam , why did Samuel tell the Israelites to put away the foreign gods among them?
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A: This verse alludes to a sad fact. Many among the Israelites were still worshipping other gods. A: No, because it was not recorded that the Philistines were massively defeated with great loss of life. Furthermore, the result of the battle was not that the Israelites conquered the Philistines, but that the Israelites had freedom from the Philistines for a period of time.
Sometimes a general chooses to retreat prior to their being great losses. Q: In 1 Sam , did the Philistines no longer occupy the territory of Israel, or did they continue to fight later in Samuel? A: Two points to consider in the answer. At that time, the Philistines did not either occupy Israel or fight the Israelites. Regardless of whether one interprets 1 Samuel to mean the time after the battle, or from that time on, it is an accurate statement.
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A: Three points to consider in the answer. It does not say that all the Philistine cities were given to Israel. It does not necessarily mean that Ekron and Gath were given to Israel. Indeed, it is most probable that those two cities remained in Philistine hands. Rather, the smaller towns between Ekron and Gath, that the Israelites at one time occupied, were returned to Israel. The New Bible Dictionary p.
Q: In 1 Sam , why did Samuel make his evil sons judges over Israel? A: His sons were lovers of money and bribes.
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A: 1 Samuel uses an interesting Hebrew literary device called a chiasm. The Expositor's Bible Commentary says that this chiasm is unusual, in that each even topic reverses the speaker of the previous topic. Here is the analysis from The Expositor's Bible Commentary vol.
Other chiasms in the 1 Samuel are in ; ; , and Q: In 1 Sam , why did God dislike their asking for a king? A: Deuteronomy shows that God planned they would eventually have a king. However, in 1 Samuel , God disliked their motive for asking. They asked because they did not want God to rule them directly and they wanted to be like the other nations, as 1 Samuel shows. A king could effectively muster the army and lead them in battle. However, God knew that kings have a habit of considering the kingdom to be theirs, and people can tend to live to serve the king more than the One, True King of all Creation.
While scripture does not say hypothetically what would have happened if they had not asked, perhaps God would have given the people David as the first king of the unified land instead of Saul See Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties p.
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Q: In 1 Sam , why did God say the king would have chariots and horses, since Dt says the king should not have chariots and horses? A: God was not saying what he desired, but rather prophesying how the kings they asked for would oppress the people, as 1 Samuel shows. A: We do not know all of God's counsel, but the faith of one person is not a substitute for the faith of another. One question we can wonder about though, is why were Gideon's brothers at Tabor instead of in the army with Gideon?
Q: In 1 Sam ,18, how did Saul not recognize a famous person like Samuel? A: Remember, this is in the days before photographs, TV, and printing presses. Saul and his servant definitely had known of Samuel, according to 1 Samuel However, they had never met him before, and so they had never seen his face, and it would not be expected that they would recognize him.
Q: In 1 Sam , was Saul just being falsely modest to say that he was from the smallest clan from the smallest tribe of Israel? A: Saul was from the smallest tribe, Benjamin.
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We cannot verify whether he was from the smallest clan or not. There are four points to consider in the answer. Anointing in private occurred in 1 Samuel Public proclamation and acceptance as king occurred in 1 Samuel Lacking from this passage is any mention of Saul being anointed, as kings were. This is because he was already privately anointed in 1 Samuel The same pattern occurred with both Saul and David becoming king.
Q: In 1 Sam , was Saul chosen by lot, chosen by the people in 1 Sam , or chosen by God in 1 Sam ; ? A: All of the above are true.
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Primarily, God chose Saul. Once this was done, all the people approved, with a few exceptions noted in 1 Samuel Q: In 1 Sam ; what are these instruments? A: We are not sure. The NIV translates this as "lyres and tambourines". The NKJV translates this as "stringed instruments and tambourines". Q: In 1 Sam ,12, why did Saul prophesy, since Saul later turned evil? A: The giving of the Spirit, and the giving of prophecy were different in Old Testament times than New Testament times.
A: Scripture does not say, but we can speculate on a couple of reasons. Saul perhaps thought his uncle would not believe him. After all, at this point there was no proof that all of Israel would accept Saul as king. This number is considerably less than the census after the Exodus. However, 1 Samuel did not say that Saul was successful in mustering every single able-bodied man. The Ammonites understood what the Gileadites were doing and even agreed to give them seven days to ask for reinforcements in verse 3. By doing this, the Ammonites thought they would have them as servants without having to fight.
The Gileadites said they would "come out" tomorrow, hoping they could trust Saul, but knowing their seven days were up. It can mean "attack" as well as "surrender".
Q: In 1 Sam , who is Bedan? X Bedan might have been some one who was not documented as a judge anywhere else. However, while nothing in scripture prevents this, this view is highly unlikely. Manuscripts of 1 Samuel have more typographical errors than most Old Testament books, and it is likely that this is a typographical error. It also would be somewhat strange for Samuel to remind the people of an obscure judge they never heard of, so the people probably heard of the person here. If the person was famous enough for the people to have all remembered him, it would be likely he was mentioned in the history in the book of Judges.
Barak in Judges was the judge intended here. The Expositor's Bible Dictionary vol. Abdon in Judges and 1 Chronicles was intended here. One helpful reader sent in this: "A common transformation called the Canaanite Shift would account for the transformation from Abdon to Bedan in the text. See Merrill F. Unger, the New Unger's Bible Dictionary p. The note about Abdon being a Benjamite is significant since Samuel is setting up a comparison here between the new king Saul and the judges.