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Hebrews 11:32

    Hebrews 11:32 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    And what shall I more say? for the time would fail me to tell of Gedeon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthae; of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets:

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    And what shall I more say? for the time would fail me to tell of Gedeon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthae; of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets:

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    And what shall I more say? for the time will fail me if I tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah; of David and Samuel and the prophets:

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    What more am I to say? For there would not be time to give the stories of Gideon, Barak, Samson, and Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets:

    Webster's Revision

    And what shall I more say? for the time will fail me if I tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah; of David and Samuel and the prophets:

    World English Bible

    What more shall I say? For the time would fail me if I told of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets;

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    And what shall I more say? for the time will fail me if I tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah; of David and Samuel and the prophets:

    Definitions for Hebrews 11:32

    Tell - To number; count.

    Clarke's Commentary on Hebrews 11:32

    Time would fail me - Με διηγουμενον ὁ χρονος. A very usual mode of expression with the best Greek writers, when they wish to intimate that much important intelligence remains to be communicated on the subject already in hand, which must be omitted because of other points which have not yet been handled.

    Gedeon - Who by faith in God, with 300 men, destroyed a countless multitude of Midianites and Amalekites, and delivered Israel from oppression and slavery. Judges 6, 7, 8.

    Barak - Who overthrew Jabin, king of Canaan, and delivered Israel from servitude. Judges 4.

    Samson - Who was appointed by God to deliver Israel from the oppressive yoke of the Philistines; and, by extraordinary assistance, discomfited them on various occasions. Judges 13-16.

    Jephthae - Who, under the same guidance, defeated the Ammonites, and delivered Israel. Judges 11, Judges 12:1-15.

    David - King of Israel, whose whole life was a life of faith and dependence on God; but whose character will be best seen in those books which contain an account of his reign, and the book of Psalms, to which, and the notes there, the reader must be referred. It is probable he is referred to here for that act of faith and courage which he showed in his combat with Goliah. See 1 Samuel 17.

    Samuel - The last of the Israelitish judges, to whom succeeded a race of kings, of whom Saul and David were the two first, and were both anointed by this most eminent man. See his history in the first book of Samuel.

    All these are said to have performed their various exploits through faith.

    1. The faith of Gideon consisted in his throwing down the altar of Baal, and cutting down his grove, in obedience to the command of God.

    2. The faith of Barak consisted in his believing the revelation made to Deborah, and the command to go against Jabin's numerous army.

    3. Samson's faith consisted in his obeying the various impulses produced by the Spirit of God in his own mind.

    4. Jephthae's faith consisted particularly in his believing the promise made to Abraham and his posterity, that they should possess the land of Canaan; and in his resolutely fighting against the Ammonites, that they might not deprive the Israelites of the land between Arnon and Jabbok.

    It may be observed, here, that the apostle does not produce these in chronological order; for Barak lived before Gideon, and Jephthae before Samson, and Samuel before David. He was not producing facts in their chronological order, but instances of the power of God exerted in the behalf of men who had strong confidence in him.

    Barnes' Notes on Hebrews 11:32

    And what shall I more say? - There are numerous other instances showing the strength of faith which there is not time to mention.

    For the time would fail me to tell - To recount all that they did; all the illustrations of the strength and power of faith evinced in their lives.

    Of Gedeon - The history of Gideon is detailed at length in Judges 6-7, and there can be no doubt that in his wars he was sustained and animated by strong confidence in God.

    And of Barak - Judges 4. Barak, at the command of Deborah the prophetess, who summoned him to war in the name of the Lord, encountered and overthrew the hosts of Sisera. His yielding to her summons, and his valour in battle against the enemies of the Lord, showed that he was animated by faith.

    And of Samson - see the history of Samson in Judges 14-16. It is not by any means necessary to suppose that in making mention of Samson, the apostle approved of all that he did. All that he commands is his faith, and though he was a very imperfect man, and there were many things in his life which neither sound morality nor religion can approve, yet it was still true that he evinced, on some occasions, remarkable confidence in God, by relying on the strength which he gave him. This was particularly true in the instance where he made a great slaughter of the enemies of the Lord, and of his country; see Judges 15:16; Judges 16:30.

    And of Jephthae - The story of Jephtha is recorded in Judges 11. The mention of his name among those who were distinguished for faith, has given occasion to much perplexity among expositors. That a man of so harsh and severe a character, a man who sacrificed his own daughter, in consequence of a rash vow, should be numbered among those who were eminent for piety, as if he were one distinguished for piety also, has seemed to be wholly inconsistent and improper. The same remark, however, may be made respecting Jephtha which has been made of Samson and others. The apostle does not commend all which they did. He does not deny that they were very imperfect men, nor that they did many things which cannot be approved or vindicated. He commends only one thing - their faith; and in these instances he particularly alludes, doubtless, to their remarkable valour and success in delivering their country from their foes and from the foes of God. In this it is implied that they regarded themselves as called to this work by the Lord, and as engaged in his service; and that they went forth to battle, depending on his protection and nerved by confidence in him as the God of their country.

    Their views of God himself might be very erroneous; their notions of religion - as was the case with Jephtha - very imperfect and obscure; many things in their lives might be wholly inconsistent with what we should now regard as demanded by religion, and still it might be true that in their efforts to deliver their country, they relied on the aid of God, and were animated to put forth extraordinary efforts, and were favoured with extraordinary success from their confidence in him. In the case of Jephtha, all that it is necessary to suppose, in order to see the force of the illustration of the apostle is, that he had strong confidence in God - the God of his nation, and that, under the influence of this, he made extraordinary efforts in repelling his foes. And this is not unnatural or improbable, even on the supposition that he was not a pious man. How many a Greek, and Roman, and Goth, and Muslim, has been animated' to extraordinary courage in battle, by confidence in the gods which they worshipped! That Jephtha had this, no one can doubt; see Judges 11:29-32.

    (It is not likely that Jephtha's faith would have found a record here, had it been of no higher kind than this. Peirce admits his unnatural crime, but supposes him to have repented. "It must be owned," says he, "that if Jephtha had not repented of this very heinous wickedness, he could not have been entitled to salvation. The apostle, therefore, who has assured us of his salvation, must undoubtedly have gone upon the supposition that Jephtha actually repented of it before he died. That he had time to repent is beyond dispute, because he lived near six years after this. For it is expressly said he judged Israel six years, Judges 12:7, and it is as certain he made this vow in the beginning of his government. What evidence the apostle had of Jephtha's repentance I cannot say. He might know it by the help of old Jewish histories, or by inspiration.")

    Even in the great and improper sacrifice of his only daughter which the obvious interpretation of the record respecting him in Judges 11:39, leads us to suppose he made, he did it as an offering to the Lord, and under these mistaken views of duty, he showed by the greatest sacrifice which a man could make - that of an only child that he was disposed to do what he believed was required by religion. A full examination of the case of Jephtha, and of the question whether he really sacrificed his daughter, may be found in Warburton's Divine Legation of Moses, book 9, notes, in Bush's Notes on Judges 11; and in the Biblical Repository for January 1843. It is not necessary to go into the much litigated inquiry here whether he really put his daughter to death, for whether he did or not, it is equally true that he evinced strong confidence in God. If he did do it, in obedience as he supposed to duty and to the divine command, no higher instance of faith in God as having a right to dispose of all that he had, could be furnished; if he did not, his eminent valour and success in battle show that he relied for strength and victory on the arm of Yahweh. The single reason why the piety of Jephtha has ever been called in question has been the fact that he sacrificed his own daughter. If he did not do that, no one will doubt his claims to an honored rank among those who have evinced faith in God.

    Of David also - Commended justly as an eminent example of a man who had faith in, God, though it cannot be supposed that all that he did was approved.

    And Samuel - In early youth distinguished for his piety, and manifesting it through his life; see 1Sam.

    And of the prophets - They were men who had strong confidence in the truth of what God directed them to foretell, and who were ever ready, depending on him, to make known the most unwelcome truths to their fellow man, even at the peril of their lives.

    Wesley's Notes on Hebrews 11:32

    11:32 After Samuel, the prophets are properly mentioned. David also was a prophet; but he was a king too. The prophets - Elijah, Elisha, and c., including likewise the believers who lived with them.