Sons and Chief Men of Benjamin.
1. Now Benjamin begat, &c.—This
chapter contains some supplementary particulars in addition to what has
been already said regarding the tribe of Benjamin (see on 1Ch 7:6). The names of many of the persons mentioned are
different from those given by Moses—a diversity which may be
accounted for in part on grounds formerly stated, namely, either that
the persons had more than one name, or that the word "sons" is used in
a loose sense for grandsons or descendants. But there are other
circumstances to be taken into account in considering the details of
this chapter; namely, first, that the genealogies of the Benjamites
were disordered or destroyed by the almost total extermination of this
tribe (Jud 20:11-48); secondly, that a great number of
Benjamites, born in Assyria, are mentioned here, who returned from the
long captivity in Babylon, and established themselves—some in
Jerusalem, others in different parts of Judea. There were more returned
from Babylon of the families belonging to this tribe than to any other
except Judah; and hence many strange names are here introduced; some of
which will be found in the list of the restored exiles (compare Ezr 2:1-70).
6. these are the sons of Ehud—most
probably the judge of Israel (Jud 3:15). His descendants, who had at first been
established in Geba in Benjamin, emigrated in a body under the
direction of Gera (1Ch 8:7) to
Manahath, where their increased numbers would find more ample
accommodation. Manahath was within the territory of Judah.
8. Shaharaim begat children in the country of
Moab—He had probably been driven to take refuge in that
foreign land on the same calamitous occasion that forced Elimelech to
emigrate thither (Ru 1:1). But,
destitute of natural affection, he forsook or divorced his two wives,
and in the land of his sojourn married a third, by whom he had several
sons. But there is another explanation given of the conduct of this
Benjamite polygamist. His children by Hushim are mentioned (1Ch 8:11), while his other wife is
unnoticed. Hence it has been thought probable that it is Baara who is
mentioned under the name of Hodesh, so called because her husband,
after long desertion, returned and cohabited with her as before.
28. These dwelt in Jerusalem—The
ordinary and stated inhabitants of Jerusalem were Judahites,
Benjamites, and Levites. But at the time referred to here, the chiefs
or heads of the principal families who are enumerated (1Ch 8:14-27) established themselves in the
city after their return from the captivity.
1Ch 8:33-40. Stock of Saul
33. Ner begat Kish—The father of Ner,
though not mentioned here, is stated (1Ch 9:35) to have been Jehiel. Moreover, the
father of Kish is said (1Sa 9:1) to
have been Abiel, the son of Zeror, whence it would seem that Abiel and
Ner were names of the same person.
Abinadab—the same as Ishui (1Sa 14:49).
Esh-baal—that is, Ish-bosheth.
34. Merib-baal—that is,
36. Jehoadah—or, Jara (1Ch 9:42).
40. mighty men of valour, archers—(see
on Jud 20:16). Great strength as well as skill
was requisite in ancient archery, as the bow, which was of steel, was
bent by treading with the feet, and pulling the string with both