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Only 300 men lapped with their hands to their mouths;[a] the rest of the men[b] kneeled to drink water.

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Footnotes

  1. Judges 7:6 tc The Hebrew phrase, “with their hands to their mouths.” is difficult in light of v. 5, which distinguishes between dog-like lappers (who would not use their hands to drink) and those who kneel (who would presumably use their hands). The words “with their hands to their mouths” may have been misplaced. They fit better at the end of v. 5 or v. 6. Perhaps these words were originally a marginal scribal note which was later accidentally inserted into the text in the wrong place. But on the other hand since the 300 men were the men selected for the army, lapping with their hands to their mouth would allow them to see their surroundings which would be a good procedure for a soldier. The kneelers were sent away presumably because they made themselves more vulnerable to enemy attack.
  2. Judges 7:6 tn Heb “the people.”

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