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1 Kings 20:23

    1 Kings 20:23 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    And the servants of the king of Syria said unto him, Their gods are gods of the hills; therefore they were stronger than we; but let us fight against them in the plain, and surely we shall be stronger than they.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    And the servants of the king of Syria said to him, Their gods are gods of the hills; therefore they were stronger than we; but let us fight against them in the plain, and surely we shall be stronger than they.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    And the servants of the king of Syria said unto him, Their god is a god of the hills; therefore they were stronger than we: but let us fight against them in the plain, and surely we shall be stronger than they.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    Then the king of Aram's servants said to him, Their god is a god of the hills; that is why they were stronger than we: but if we make an attack on them in the lowlands, we will certainly be stronger than they.

    Webster's Revision

    And the servants of the king of Syria said unto him, Their god is a god of the hills; therefore they were stronger than we: but let us fight against them in the plain, and surely we shall be stronger than they.

    World English Bible

    The servants of the king of Syria said to him, "Their god is a god of the hills; therefore they were stronger than we. But let us fight against them in the plain, and surely we shall be stronger than they.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    And the servants of the king of Syria said unto him, Their god is a god of the hills; therefore they were stronger than we: but let us fight against them in the plain, and surely we shall be stronger than they.

    Definitions for 1 Kings 20:23

    Let - To hinder or obstruct.

    Clarke's Commentary on 1 Kings 20:23

    Their gods are gods of the hills - It is very likely that the small Israelitish army availed itself of the heights and uneven ground, that they might fight with greater advantage against the Syrian cavalry, for Ben-hadad came up against Samaria with horses and chariots, 1 Kings 20:1. These therefore must be soon thrown into confusion when charging in such circumstances; indeed, the chariots must be nearly useless.

    Let us fight against them in the plain - There our horses and chariots will all be able to bear on the enemy, and there their gods, whose influence is confined to the hills, will not be able to help them. It was a general belief in the heathen world that each district had its tutelary and protecting deity, who could do nothing out of his own sphere.

    Barnes' Notes on 1 Kings 20:23

    Their gods are gods of the hills - The local power and influence of deities was a fixed principle of the ancient polytheism. Each country was considered to have its own gods; and wars were regarded as being to a great extent struggles between the gods of the nations engaged in them. This is apparent throughout the Assyrian inscriptions. Compare also 2 Kings 18:33-35; 2 Kings 19:12. The present passage gives an unusual modification of this view. The suggestion of the Syrian chiefs may have been a mere politic device - they being really anxious, "an military grounds," to encounter their enemy on the plain, where alone their chariots would be of much service. In the plain the Israelites had always fought at a disadvantage, and had proved themselves weaker than on the hills (see Judges 1:19, Judges 1:27, Judges 1:34).

    Wesley's Notes on 1 Kings 20:23

    20:23 Said to him - They suppose that their gods were no better than the Syrian gods and that there were many gods who had each his particular charge and jurisdiction; which was the opinion of all heathen nations; that some were gods of the woods, other of the rivers, and others of the mountains; and they fancied these to be the latter, because the land of Canaan was a mountainous land, and the great temple of their God at Jerusalem, stood upon an hill, and so did Samaria, where they had received their last blow: it is observable, they do not impute their ill success to their negligence, and drunkenness, and bad conduct, nor to the valour of the Israelites; but to a divine power, which was indeed visible in it. In the plain - Wherein there was not only superstition, but policy; because the Syrians excelled the Israelites in horses, which are most serviceable in plain ground.