Samson Defeats the Philistines
1After a while, at the time of the wheat harvest, Samson visited his wife with a young goat.#Literally “kid of goat” He said, “I want to go to my wife’s private room.” But her father would not allow him to enter. 2Her father said, “I really thought that you hated her, so I gave her to your companion. Is not her younger sister more beautiful than she? Please, take her instead.”#Literally “let her be in the place of her” 3And Samson said to them, “This time, as far as the Philistines are concerned, when I do something evil I am without blame.” 4And Samson went and captured three hundred foxes, and he took torches. He turned them tail to tail, and he put one torch between two tails. 5He set fire to the torches and let the foxes go into the standing grain of the Philistines, and he burned both the stacks#Hebrew “stack” of sheaves and the standing grain, up to the vineyards#Hebrew “vineyard” of olive groves. 6And the Philistines said, “Who has done this?” And they said, “Samson the son-in-law of the Timnite, because he took his wife and gave her to his companion.” And the Philistines went up and burned her and her father with fire. 7Samson said to them, “If you want to behave like this, I swear I will not rest unless I have taken revenge on you.” 8And he gave them a thorough beating,#Literally “he struck them hip and thigh with a great blow” and he went down and stayed in the cleft of the rock of Etam.
9Then the Philistines came up and encamped in Judah, and they overran Lehi. 10And the men of Judah said, “Why have you come up against us?” And they said, “To bind Samson; to do to him just as he did to us.” 11Then three thousand men from Judah went down to the cleft of the rock of Etam, and they said to Samson, “Do you not know that the Philistines are ruling over us? What is this that you have done to us?” And he said to them, “Just as they did to me, so I have done to them.” 12They said to him, “We have come down to bind you and give you over into the hand of the Philistines.” And Samson said to them, “Swear to me that you will not attack me yourselves.” 13They said to him, “No, we will only bind you and give you into their hand; we will certainly not kill you.” So they bound him with two new ropes, and they brought him up from the rock.
14As he came up to Lehi, the Philistines came shouting to meet him; and the Spirit of Yahweh rushed on him, and the ropes that were on his arms became like flax that has burned with fire, and his bindings melted from his hands. 15And he found a fresh jawbone of a donkey; he reached down and took it and killed one thousand men with it. 16And Samson said,
“With the jawbone of the donkey,
heap upon heap;
with the jawbone of the donkey,
I struck dead one thousand men.”
17And it happened, when he finished speaking he threw the jawbone from his hand; and he called that place Ramath Lehi.#That is, “Hill of the Jawbone”
18And he was very thirsty, and he called to Yahweh and said, “You gave this great victory into the hand of your servant, but now I must die of thirst and fall into the hand of the uncircumcised?” 19So God split the hollow place that is at Lehi, and water came out from it; and he drank, and his spirit returned, and he was revived. Thus he called its name The Spring of Ha-Qore,#Literally “the spring of the one who called” or “En-hakkore” which is at Lehi to this day. 20And he judged Israel in the days of the Philistines twenty years.
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