Poole on 1 Samuel 12:6-8: A History of the Lord's Mercies, Part 1

Verse 6:[1] And Samuel said unto the people, (Mic. 6:4) It is the LORD that advanced (or, made[2]) Moses and Aaron, and that brought your fathers up out of the land of Egypt.



[It is the Lord that made Moses and Aaron] The speech is imperfect; and, so that the sense might be plain, it seems necessary that something be understood (Menochius). The Lord (understanding, is present and is witness), who made, etc. (Menochius, Sanchez). That is to say, I have God as the weightiest possible witness of my innocence, who made Moses, etc. (Vatablus). The witness is the Lord, who made, etc. (Jonathan, similarly Junius and Tremellius, Mariana). The Lord is God alone, who made, or created, etc. (Arabic, Syriac).


[יְהוָ֗ה אֲשֶׁ֤ר עָשָׂה֙ אֶת־מֹשֶׁ֣ה וגו״] The Lord, who made Moses and Aaron (Pagnine, Montanus, Septuagint, Arabic, Munster, Drusius, Tigurinus). Who magnified, etc. (Junius and Tremellius, Mariana, Munster), or made illustrious (Vatablus, Dutch), or advanced (English), taught (Munster). Who honored and exalted to dignity (Drusius, similarly Mendoza). Thus to make is often taken, as in Deuteronomy 32:6[3] (Junius, Piscator); Genesis 12:5, the souls that he had made in Haran,[4] that is, he had established. Thus to make is taken in Psalm 95:6;[5] Ecclesiasticus 47:8.[6] Again, in Psalm 149:2, in his maker,[7] who increased and reared him, Job 35:10;[8] Isaiah 54:5;[9] Mark 3:14, He made twelve,[10] that is, He constituted: as He made him king. Thus in Hebrews 3:2, who made him[11] (Drusius). Thus in Job 40:15, Behemoth, which I made with thee;[12] that is, which I distinguished with so many endowments. In Isaiah 43:7, …from my glory I have created him, I have formed him, and I have made him.[13] Where it is said to be created and to be formed before it is said to be made; because the latter pertains to adornment, Psalm 22:31, to a people that shall be born, whom the Lord made;[14] Psalm 118:24, they day which the Lord has made,[15] that is, He has adorned more lavishly; Deuteronomy 21:12, she shall make her nails,[16] that is, she shall trim and clean. Thus in this place, WHO MADE MOSES, etc., that is, who made them illustrious with great virtues (Mendoza). Others translate the passage in this manner, who made mighty actions through Moses, etc. (Jonathan). Who made them for your redemption (Kimchi in Drusius). One may expound it, who constituted/ established Moses and Aaron that He might lead you out, etc. Thus to make, in the place of to constitute, a king (Drusius). [It could be translated, who made with Moses, etc., that is, by Moses, namely, great and marvelous things. For אֶת[17] in the place of with is common. See on the following verse.]


It is the LORD that advanced Moses and Aaron: That for your sakes raised, constituted, and exalted Moses and Aaron to that great power and reputation which they had, and used, to deliver you.


Verse 7:[18] Now therefore stand still, that I may (Is. 1:18; 5:3, 4; Mic. 6:2, 3) reason with you before the LORD of all the righteous acts (Heb. righteousnesses, or, benefits[19]) of the LORD, which he did to you (Heb. with you[20]) and to your fathers.


[Stand now, therefore[21] (thus Pagnine, Montanus, Tigurinus, Munster)] The Hebrews were not hearing the divine word, unless standing, for the sake of greater reverence, Exodus 20:18; 33:8 (Mendoza).


[הִתְיַצְּבוּ] Arise ye now (Syriac, Arabic). Make yourselves to satand (Junius and Tremellius, Dutch); attend ye (Castalio); come ye near, therefore (Strigelius); stand ye (English, Dutch). Stand, remain, I say; all things are not yet done or complete; I have more things to transact with you by divine mandate (Osiander).


[That I might contend in judgment, וְאִשָּׁפְטָ֥ה אִתְּכֶ֖ם] And let me adjudicate with you (Montanus, Munster). And I will judge with you. Thus it is κρίνεσθαι, adjudicating, of the parties, not of the judge (Drusius). I will be convicted (Rabbi Salomon in Drusius). And I will stand in judgment with you (Tigurinus). Or let me undergo judgment (Vatablus). So that I might judge you (Syriac); and I will judge you (Septuagint). So that I might enter into judgment with you (Arabic). So that I might dispute (and I will contend [Junius and Tremellius]; and I will dispute [Jonathan]; so that I might contend in judgment [Vatablus]) with you (Pagnine, Dutch, English). שָׁפַת in the Qal signifies to judge; in the Niphal, to contend in judgment, as it is evident from Jeremiah 2:9;[22] Ezekiel 20:26;[23] Micah 6:1[24] (Mendoza).


That I may reason with you: since God hath laid so great obligations upon you, let us a little consider whether you have answered them.


[Of all the mercies of the Lord, כָּל־צִדְק֣וֹת יְהוָ֔ה] With all the judgments of the Lord (Montanus). Of all the righteousnesses (Jonathan, Tigurinus, Junius). Or righteous acts (Junius and Tremellius, Dutch, English). According to all the righteousnesses of the Lord, which, etc. (Munster). According to all His righteousness (Syriac). And I will announce to you all the righteousness of the Lord (Septuagint, similarly the Arabic). Of Jove’s many merits…toward you, etc. (Castalio). Because of all the blessings of the Lord (Strigelius). Of all the merciful acts of the Lord (Symmachus in Drusius). Of the righteousnesses, that is, of the benefits that the Lord has bestowed upon you. The Hebrews sometimes take righteousness in the place of benefit/blessing; or in the place of merciful act, inasmuch as it reveals men to be righteous (Vatablus). Thus righteousness is taken in Matthew 6:1[25] (Mariana). In the place of mercy is put, both righteousness in God, Psalm 24:5; 143:1, 2; and righteousness in man, Psalm 112:9; 2 Corinthians 9:10; Daniel 4:27; Matthew 6:1 (Mendoza). It was Samuel’s intention to recall the divine blessings into the memory of the people. And, nevertheless, he interposed individual punishments between individual blessings; as if he were judging that the punishments were to be preserved among the blessings. Not without good reason: since no less advantage arises from punishments than from blessings (Mendoza’s Annotations 11:3). The Righteousnesses of the Lord in this place signify, as much the benefits arising from the promise, as the punishments arising from their deserts, as the following things indicate (Junius, Piscator).


The righteous acts; Hebrew, the righteousnesses, that is, mercies or benefits; for so that word is oft used, as Psalm 24:5; 36:10; Proverbs 10:2; 11:4; and that is the chief subject of the following discourse; some of their calamities being but briefly named, and that for the illustration of God’s mercy in their deliverances.


Verse 8:[26] (Gen. 46:5, 6) When Jacob was come into Egypt, and your fathers (Ex. 2:23) cried unto the LORD, then the LORD (Ex. 3:10; 4:16) sent Moses and Aaron, which brought forth your fathers out of Egypt, and made them dwell in this place.


[Just as Jacob entered,[27] etc. (thus Jonathan, Syriac, Munster, Pagnine, Tigurinus, Montanus)] Others: after he had come (Junius and Tremellius, similarly the Septuagint, Castalio). Question: Why does he revive ancient examples, and only these few. Response: He rehearses only those blessings that might be able to confirm them in the present juncture of affairs. Wherefore he recounts that, as often as the the people either feared or suffered such things as they were now dreading (namely, the frightful conditions of Nahash the Ammonite, which impelled them to seek a King), God raised up leaders or judges, who rescued them from those evils (Sanchez). Moreover, Samuel does not begin from the more ancient Patriarchs, Abraham and Isaac; because these were founders, not only of Israel, but of other peoples as well; but Jacob was the father of that people only (Mendoza). Many things are missing here, which are to be supplied out of the sacred history. For they did not cry out when Jacob entered, but long afterwards (Drusius). Samuel includes long series of events in very few words (Mendoza).


[And the Lord sent Moses and Aaron, and he brought your fathers out of Egypt: and he settled them in this place, וַיֹּשִׁבוּם] And they caused them to dwell in this place (Montanus, Malvenda); they, namely, Moses and Aaron, settled. But, that they did not lead the Israelites in, is evident from Numbers 20:12 (Mendoza). Responses: 1. they settled, or established, because through their doctrine they were the reason why they came thither (Vatablus). These were the reason that they were led in by Joshua (Mendoza). 2. They settled, not indeed both of them, but Moses alone: because Aaron died previously, Numbers 20:28. A Synecdoche of the whole (Piscator). In that place; that is, in Canaan, on the near and far side of Jordan (Junius, Piscator). A Synecdoche of member. For Moses and Aaron only settled them in the region on the far side of Jordan: but Joshua settled them in the region on the near side of Jordan (Piscator). 3. Others refer this to God alone, although in Hebrew it is plural (thus Mendoza following the Vulgate). The Lord sent Moses and Aaron, and He, rescuing your fathers from the Land of Egypt, settled them in that region (Syriac, Arabic).


In this place: In this land; in which Moses and Aaron are said to settle them; partly, because they brought them into and seated them in part of it, to wit, that without Jordan; partly, because they were, under God, the principal authors of their entering into the land of Canaan; inasmuch as they brought them out of Egypt, conducted them through the wilderness, and there by their prayers to God, and counsel to them, preserved them from utter ruin, and gave command and direction from God for the distribution of the land among them, and encouraged them to enter into it by promises and assurances of success; and lastly, Moses substituted Joshua in his stead, and commanded him to carry them thither, and seat them there, which also he did.

[1] Hebrew: וַיֹּ֥אמֶר שְׁמוּאֵ֖ל אֶל־הָעָ֑ם יְהוָ֗ה אֲשֶׁ֤ר עָשָׂה֙ אֶת־מֹשֶׁ֣ה וְאֶֽת־אַהֲרֹ֔ן וַאֲשֶׁ֧ר הֶעֱלָ֛ה אֶת־אֲבֹתֵיכֶ֖ם מֵאֶ֥רֶץ מִצְרָֽיִם׃ [2] Hebrew: עָשָׂה. [3] Deuteronomy 32:6: “Do ye thus requite the Lord, O foolish people and unwise? is not he thy father that hath bought thee? hath he not made thee (ה֥וּא עָֽשְׂךָ֖), and established thee?” [4] Genesis 12:5: “And Abram took Sarai his wife, and Lot his brother’s son, and all their substance that they had gathered, and the souls that they had gotten in Haran (וְאֶת־הַנֶּ֖פֶשׁ אֲשֶׁר־עָשׂ֣וּ בְחָרָ֑ן); and they went forth to go into the land of Canaan; and into the land of Canaan they came.” [5] Psalm 95:6: “O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord our maker (עֹשֵׂנוּ).” [6] Ecclesiasticus 47:8: “In all his works he praised the Holy One most high with words of glory; with his whole heart he sung songs, and loved him that made him (τὸν ποιήσαντα αὐτόν).” [7] Psalm 149:2: “Let Israel rejoice in him that made him (בְּעֹשָׂיו): let the children of Zion be joyful in their King.” [8] Job 35:10: “But none saith, Where is God my maker (עֹשָׂי), who giveth songs in the night…” [9] Isaiah 54:5: “For thy Maker (עֹשַׂיִךְ) is thine husband; the Lord of hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; The God of the whole earth shall he be called.” [10] Mark 3:14: “And he ordained twelve (ἐποίησε δώδεκα), that they should be with him, and that he might send them forth to preach…” [11] Hebrews 3:2: “Who was faithful to him that appointed him (τῷ ποιήσαντι αὐτόν, to Him that made him), as also Moses was faithful in all his house.” [12] Job 40:15: “Behold now behemoth, which I made with thee (בְ֭הֵמוֹת אֲשֶׁר־עָשִׂ֣יתִי עִמָּ֑ךְ); he eateth grass as an ox.” [13] Isaiah 43:7: “Even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him (וְלִכְבוֹדִ֖י בְּרָאתִ֑יו יְצַרְתִּ֖יו אַף־עֲשִׂיתִֽיו׃).” [14] Psalm 22:31: “They shall come, and shall declare his righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done this (לְעַ֥ם נ֜וֹלָ֗ד כִּ֣י עָשָֽׂה׃, unto a people that shall be born, whom the Lord made).” [15] Psalm 118:24: “This is the day which the Lord hath made (זֶה־הַ֭יּוֹם עָשָׂ֣ה יְהוָ֑ה); we will rejoice and be glad in it.” [16] Deuteronomy 21:12: “Then thou shalt bring her home to thine house; and she shall shave her head, and pare her nails (וְעָשְׂתָ֖ה אֶת־צִפָּרְנֶֽיהָ׃)…” [17] Normally the direct object marker. [18] Hebrew: וְעַתָּ֗ה הִֽתְיַצְּב֛וּ וְאִשָּׁפְטָ֥ה אִתְּכֶ֖ם לִפְנֵ֣י יְהוָ֑ה אֵ֚ת כָּל־צִדְק֣וֹת יְהוָ֔ה אֲשֶׁר־עָשָׂ֥ה אִתְּכֶ֖ם וְאֶת־אֲבוֹתֵיכֶֽם׃ [19] Hebrew: צִדְקוֹת. [20] Hebrew: אִתְּכֶם. [21] Hebrew: וְעַתָּ֗ה הִֽתְיַצְּב֛וּ. [22] Jeremiah 2:9: “Wherefore I will yet plead with you (אָרִ֥יב אִתְּכֶ֖ם), saith the Lord, and with your children’s children will I plead (וְאֶת־בְּנֵ֥י בְנֵיכֶ֖ם אָרִֽיב׃).” [23] Ezekiel 20:36: “Like as I pleaded with your fathers (נִשְׁפַּ֙טְתִּי֙ אֶת־אֲב֣וֹתֵיכֶ֔ם) in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so will I plead with you (אִשָּׁפֵ֣ט אִתְּכֶ֔ם), saith the Lord God.” [24] Micah 6:1: “Hear ye now what the Lord saith; Arise, contend thou (רִיב) before the mountains, and let the hills hear thy voice.” [25] Matthew 6:1: “Take heed that ye do not your alms (τὴν ἐλεημοσύνην ὑμῶν; justitiam vestram, your righteousness, in the Vulgate) before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.” [26] Hebrew: כַּֽאֲשֶׁר־בָּ֥א יַעֲקֹ֖ב מִצְרָ֑יִם וַיִּזְעֲק֤וּ אֲבֽוֹתֵיכֶם֙ אֶל־יְהוָ֔ה וַיִּשְׁלַ֙ח יְהוָ֜ה אֶת־מֹשֶׁ֣ה וְאֶֽת־אַהֲרֹ֗ן וַיּוֹצִ֤יאוּ אֶת־אֲבֹֽתֵיכֶם֙ מִמִּצְרַ֔יִם וַיֹּשִׁב֖וּם בַּמָּק֥וֹם הַזֶּֽה׃ [27] Hebrew: כַּֽאֲשֶׁר־בָּ֥א יַעֲקֹ֖ב.

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