The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible1 Samuel 15:4
And Saul gathered the people together…
Or "made them to
hear" F18, by the sound of a trumpet; or by sending heralds into all
parts of the land to proclaim the above order of the Lord, and summon
them to come to him, perhaps at Gilgal; so the Septuagint version, and
and numbered them in Telaim;
thought to be the same with Telem, a place
in the tribe of Judah, (Joshua 15:24) , the word signifies "lambs"; hence
the Vulgate Latin version is,
``he numbered them as lambs;''
and the Jews F20 say, because it was forbid to number the children of
Israel, which was the sin of David; therefore every man had a lamb
given him, and so the lambs were numbered, by which it was known what
was the number of the people; and the Targum says, this was done with
the passover lambs, it being now the time of the passover; but the
numbering here made was not of the people of the land in general, and
so there was no occasion of such a precaution, only a numbering and
mustering of the army when got together and rendezvoused in one place:
the sum of which is here given,
two hundred thousand footmen and ten thousand men of Judah;
last were reckoned separately, as distinct from the other tribes of
Israel, to show their obedience to Saul, who was of another tribe,
though the kingdom was promised to theirs; but R. Isaiah observes, that
the reason why so few of the men of Judah came, in comparison of the
other tribes, was, because they envied the government being in one of
the tribe of Benjamin, when they thought it should have been in one of
theirs; the number is greatly increased in the Septuagint version,
which makes the whole to be 400,000, and 30,000 men of Judah; and so
F18 (emvyw) "audire fecit", Vatablus, Drusius.
F19 Antiqu. l. 6. c. 7. sect. 2.
F20 T. Bab. Yoma, fol. 22. 2. Jarchi in loc.
F21 Ut supra. (Antiqu. l. 6. c. 7. sect. 2.)