The Meaning of Judges 8:17 Explained

Judges 8:17

KJV: And he beat down the tower of Penuel, and slew the men of the city.

YLT: and the tower of Penuel he hath broken down, and slayeth the men of the city.

Darby: And he broke down the tower of Penu'el, and slew the men of the city.

ASV: And he brake down the tower of Penuel, and slew the men of the city.

What does Judges 8:17 Mean?

Context Summary

Judges 8:13-28 - The Snare Of Success
Clearly Gideon's family had passed through some terrible tragedy previous to this war of emancipation. He had not learned our Lord's teaching of forgiveness and acted on the usual maxims of his age. Possibly, also, he felt that he was the executioner of God's vengeance upon these chiefs, whose names, "Immolation" and "Trouble," were derived from their desperate deeds. As they stood anticipating death, they uttered a memorable sentence, "As the man is, so is his strength." The usefulness of our lives is not to be gauged by what we say or have or think, but by what we are. It is not gift but grace that leaves the deepest dint upon other lives. If you want to be strong in the arm, you must be pure and true at heart.
The gold and purple of the spoil enabled Gideon to make an ephod, presumably on the pattern of that described in Exodus 28:1-43. It was not exactly an idol but a kind of fetish, and it diverted the thoughts of the people from Shiloh and the spiritual worship of the unseen and eternal God. So apt is the human heart to cling to some outward emblem-it may be a crucifix, a wafer, or a church-and miss that worship in spirit and in truth for which the Father seeks. [source]

Chapter Summary: Judges 8

1  Gideon pacifies the Ephraimites
4  Succoth and Penuel refuse to deliver Gideon's army
10  Zebah and Zalmunna are taken
13  Succoth and Penuel are destroyed
17  Gideon revenges his brothers's death on Zebah and Zalmunna
22  He refuses government
24  His ephod the cause of idolatry
28  Midian subdued
29  Gideon's children, and death
33  The Israelites' idolatry and ingratitude

What do the individual words in Judges 8:17 mean?

And the tower of Penuel he tore down and killed - the men of the city
וְאֶת־ מִגְדַּ֥ל פְּנוּאֵ֖ל נָתָ֑ץ וַֽיַּהֲרֹ֖ג אֶת־ אַנְשֵׁ֥י הָעִֽיר

מִגְדַּ֥ל  the  tower 
Parse: Noun, masculine singular construct
Root: מִגְדָּל  
Sense: tower.
פְּנוּאֵ֖ל  of  Penuel 
Parse: Proper Noun, feminine singular
Root: פְּנוּאֵל 
Sense: a Benjamite, son of Shashak, brother of Iphedeiah of the family of Saul.
נָתָ֑ץ  he  tore  down 
Parse: Verb, Qal, Perfect, third person masculine singular
Root: נָתַץ  
Sense: to pull down, break down, cast down, throw down, beat down, destroy, overthrow, break out (teeth).
וַֽיַּהֲרֹ֖ג  and  killed 
Parse: Conjunctive waw, Verb, Qal, Consecutive imperfect, third person masculine singular
Root: הָרַג  
Sense: to kill, slay, murder, destroy, murderer, slayer, out of hand.
אֶת־  - 
Parse: Direct object marker
Root: אֹות 
Sense: sign of the definite direct object, not translated in English but generally preceding and indicating the accusative.
אַנְשֵׁ֥י  the  men 
Parse: Noun, masculine plural construct
Root: אִישׁ 
Sense: man.
הָעִֽיר  of  the  city 
Parse: Article, Noun, feminine singular
Root: עִיר 
Sense: excitement, anguish.

What are the major concepts related to Judges 8:17?

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