[b-hebrew] Shield-bearer 1 Samuel 17:41

Brian & Laureen Powell PowellBrian at omf.net
Wed Jun 30 22:51:38 EDT 2004

Hi all.
I'm translating in I Samuel 17 at present, and am unclear why verse 41 
is translated as it is.

My interlinear for the verse reads 'And-he-came the-Philistine coming 
and-closer to David and-the-man bearing the-shield in-front-of-him'.

This is rendered in the NIV as 'Meanwhile, the Philistine, with his 
shield-bearer in front of him, kept coming closer to David.'

My confusion is based on how it could have worked that two of them would 
be approaching David. I understand the idea of an armour-bearer to carry 
weapons etc. for a warrior, but surely when he is actually going to 
battle the armour-bearer then gives the armour to the warrior.

My question is whether the Hebrew necessarily implies two different 
people or whether 'the Philistine' in the first clause and 'the man' in 
the second clause could not be one and the same person. This would lead 
to a translation such as 'The Philistine kept coming closer to David 
bearing his shield before him.'



Brian Powell

Bible Translator

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