And Samson went down to Timnath, and saw a woman in Timnath of the daughters of the Philistines.
And he came up, and told his father and his mother, and said, I have seen a woman in Timnath of the daughters of the Philistines: now therefore get her for me to wife.
Then his father and his mother said unto him, Is there never a woman among the daughters of thy brethren, or among all my people, that thou goest to take a wife of the uncircumcised Philistines? And Samson said unto his father, Get her for me; for she pleaseth me well.
she pleaseth me well
Heb. she is right in mine eyes.
But his father and his mother knew not that it was of the LORD, that he sought an occasion against the Philistines: for at that time the Philistines had dominion over Israel.
it was of the Lord
That is, God permitted it, that it might be a means of bringing about the deliverance of Israel. Such marriages were forbidden to the Israelites, to keep them separate from the idolatrous nations.
Then went Samson down, and his father and his mother, to Timnath, and came to the vineyards of Timnath: and, behold, a young lion roared against him.
Heb. in meeting him.
And the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon him, and he rent him as he would have rent a kid, and he had nothing in his hand: but he told not his father or his mother what he had done.
Now it is not intimated that he did this by his own natural strength; but by the supernatural strength communicated by the Spirit of the Lord coming mightily upon him; which strength was not at his own command, but was, by the will of God, attached to his hair and nazarate.
And after a time he returned to take her, and he turned aside to see the carcase of the lion: and, behold, there was a swarm of bees and honey in the carcase of the lion.
to take her
It is probable, that the flesh had been entirely consumed off the bones, which had become dry; and the body having been throw into some private place, (for Samson turned aside to visit it,) a swarm of bees had formed their combs in the cavity of the dry ribs, or region of the thorax; nor was it a more improper place than a hollow rock.
And he took thereof in his hands, and went on eating, and came to his father and mother, and he gave them, and they did eat: but he told not them that he had taken the honey out of the carcase of the lion.
So his father went down unto the woman: and Samson made there a feast; for so used the young men to do.
And it came to pass, when they saw him, that they brought thirty companions to be with him.
And Samson said unto them, I will now put forth a riddle unto you: if ye can certainly declare it me within the seven days of the feast, and find it out, then I will give you thirty sheets and thirty change of garments:
or, shirts. This will receive illustration from Mr. Jackson's description of the Moorish dress:--"It resembles that of the ancient patriarchs, as represented in paintings; (but the paintings are taken from Asiatic models:) that of the men consists of a red cap and turban, a (kumja) shirt, which hangs outside of the drawers, and comes below the knee; a (caftan) coat, which buttons close before, and down to the bottom with large open sleeves; over which, when they go out of doors, they throw carelessly, and sometimes elegantly, a hayk, or garment of white cotton, silk, or wool, five or six yards long, and five feet wide. The Arabs often dispense with the caftan, and even with the shirt, wearing nothing but the hayk."
And he said unto them, Out of the eater came forth meat, and out of the strong came forth sweetness. And they could not in three days expound the riddle.
Out of the eater
Genesis 3:15 Deuteronomy 8:15,16 1 Kings 17:6 2 Chronicles 20:2,25 Isaiah 53:10-12 Romans 5:3-5 Romans 8:37 2 Corinthians 4:17 12:9,10 Philippians 1:12-20 Hebrews 2:14,15 12:10,11 James 1:2-4 1 Peter 2:24
And it came to pass on the seventh day, that they said unto Samson's wife, Entice thy husband, that he may declare unto us the riddle, lest we burn thee and thy father's house with fire: have ye called us to take that we have? is it not so?
on the seventh day
The LXX. reads "on the fourth day;" with which the Syriac and Arabic agree. This, as Dr. Wall observes, is certainly right; for it appears from ver. 17, that she wept the remainder of the seven days; for which there could have been no time, if they did not threaten her till the seventh.
lest we burn
take that we have
Heb. possess us, or, impoverish us.
And Samson's wife wept before him, and said, Thou dost but hate me, and lovest me not: thou hast put forth a riddle unto the children of my people, and hast not told it me. And he said unto her, Behold, I have not told it my father nor my mother, and shall I tell it thee?
I have not
And she wept before him the seven days, while their feast lasted: and it came to pass on the seventh day, that he told her, because she lay sore upon him: and she told the riddle to the children of her people.
the seven, or, the rest of the seven days
and she told
And the Spirit of the LORD came upon him, and he went down to Ashkelon, and slew thirty men of them, and took their spoil, and gave change of garments unto them which expounded the riddle. And his anger was kindled, and he went up to his father's house.
But Samson's wife was given to his companion, whom he had used as his friend.