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The Complete Jewish Bible with Rashi Commentary
   

Shmuel I - I Samuel - Chapter 3

Shmuel I - I Samuel - Chapter 3

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Rashi's Commentary:

Chapter 3

1. And the lad Samuel was serving the Lord before Eli. Now the word of the Lord was withheld in those days; vision had not broken through.   א. וְהַנַּעַר שְׁמוּאֵל מְשָׁרֵת אֶת יְהֹוָה לִפְנֵי עֵלִי וּדְבַר יְהֹוָה הָיָה יָקָר בַּיָּמִים הָהֵם אֵין חָזוֹן נִפְרָץ:
was withheld: (Heb. ‘yakar,’ dear.) And similarly, (Prov. 17:27) ‘y’kar ruach’ one whose breath is dear is an understanding man, meaning, one whose speech is withheld is an understanding man.  
vision had not broken through: Prophecy was not revealed (Jonathan). ‘Nifratz,’ an expression similar to ‘ufaratzta,’ and you shall spread westward and eastward (Gen. 28:14).  
2. And it was on that day, that Eli was lying in his place, and his eyes had begun to grow dim; he could not see.   ב. וַיְהִי בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא וְעֵלִי שֹׁכֵב בִּמְקוֹמוֹ וְעֵינָיו הֵחֵלּוּ כֵהוֹת לֹא יוּכַל לִרְאוֹת:
3. And the lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down. In the Temple of the Lord, where the Ark of God was.   ג. וְנֵר אֱלֹהִים טֶרֶם יִכְבֶּה וּשְׁמוּאֵל שֹׁכֵב בְּהֵיכַל יְהֹוָה אֲשֶׁר שָׁם אֲרוֹן אֱלֹהִים:
and Samuel was lying down: In his place, in the court of the Levites who watch in the Temple. Jonathan paraphrases thus: And Samuel was lying in the court of the Levites…  
..in the Temple of the Lord: where the Ark of God was,…  
4. The Lord called to Samuel, and he said, "Here I am."   ד. וַיִּקְרָא יְהֹוָה אֶל שְׁמוּאֵל וַיֹּאמֶר הִנֵּנִי:
The Lord called: And a voice emanated from the Temple of God, from the Holy of Holies, which called, ‘Samuel!’ The end of the above verse is connected to the beginning of the following verse. This is what is inferred by the Scriptural verse (Job 37:5): The Lord thunders wondrously with His voice….Now, Eli was a priest, and was watching from within, while Samuel was lying without. Yet, the voice jumped over Eli to Samuel. Tractate Tamid.  
5. And he ran to Eli, and said, "Here I am, for you have called me." And he said, "I did not call. Go back and lie down." And he went and lay down.   ה. וַיָּרָץ אֶל עֵלִי וַיֹּאמֶר הִנְּנִי כִּי קָרָאתָ לִּי וַיֹּאמֶר לֹא קָרָאתִי שׁוּב שְׁכָב וַיֵּלֶךְ וַיִּשְׁכָּב:
6. And the Lord continued to call again to Samuel, and Samuel arose, and went to Eli, and said, "Here I am, for you have called me.'' And he said, "I have not called, my son. Go back and lie down."   ו. וַיֹּסֶף יְהֹוָה קְרֹא עוֹד שְׁמוּאֵל וַיָּקָם שְׁמוּאֵל וַיֵּלֶךְ אֶל עֵלִי וַיֹּאמֶר הִנְנִי כִּי קָרָאתָ לִי וַיֹּאמֶר לֹא קָרָאתִי בְנִי שׁוּב שְׁכָב:
7. Now, Samuel had not yet known the Lord, and the word of the Lord had not yet been revealed to him.   ז. וּשְׁמוּאֵל טֶרֶם יָדַע אֶת יְהֹוָה וְטֶרֶם יִגָּלֶה אֵלָיו דְּבַר יְהֹוָה:
had not yet known the Lord: (Heb. ‘terem,’) i.e., he had not yet recognized the nature of the prophetic voice. Every ‘terem’ in the Scriptures is an expression of ‘not yet,’ and is not an expression of ‘before.’ This instance proves this supposition. Furthermore, the passage: “That you do not yet fear” (Exod. 9:30), is more explicit than this. Also, “No shrub of the field was yet on the earth” (Gen. 2:5).  
8. And the Lord continued to call Samuel for the third time; and he arose and went to Eli, and said, "Here I am, for you called me." And Eli understood that that the Lord was calling the youth.   ח. וַיֹּסֶף יְהֹוָה קְרֹא שְׁמוּאֵל בַּשְּׁלִישִׁת וַיָּקָם וַיֵּלֶךְ אֶל עֵלִי וַיֹּאמֶר הִנְנִי כִּי קָרָאתָ לִי וַיָּבֶן עֵלִי כִּי יְהֹוָה קֹרֵא לַנָּעַר:
9. And Eli said to Samuel, "Go, lie down. And it shall be, if He will call you, that you shall say, 'Speak, O Lord, for Your bondsman is listening.' " And Samuel went and lay down in his place.   ט. וַיֹּאמֶר עֵלִי לִשְׁמוּאֵל לֵךְ שְׁכָב וְהָיָה אִם יִקְרָא אֵלֶיךָ וְאָמַרְתָּ דַּבֵּר יְהֹוָה כִּי שֹׁמֵעַ עַבְדֶּךָ וַיֵּלֶךְ שְׁמוּאֵל וַיִּשְׁכַּב בִּמְקוֹמוֹ:
10. And the Lord came and stood, and He called as at the other times, "Samuel! Samuel!" And Samuel said, "Speak, for Your bondsman is listening."   י. וַיָּבֹא יְהֹוָה וַיִּתְיַצַּב וַיִּקְרָא כְפַעַם בְּפַעַם שְׁמוּאֵל | שְׁמוּאֵל וַיֹּאמֶר שְׁמוּאֵל דַּבֵּר כִּי שֹׁמֵעַ עַבְדֶּךָ:
and Samuel said, “Speak,…”: He did not mention the Name of the Deity as Eli had commanded him, for he said (to himself), “Perhaps it is another voice.”  
11. And the Lord said to Samuel, "Behold, I am about to do something in Israel, about which the two ears of everyone who hears it, will tingle.   יא. וַיֹּאמֶר יְהֹוָה אֶל שְׁמוּאֵל הִנֵּה אָנֹכִי עֹשֶֹה דָבָר בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל אֲשֶׁר כָּל שֹׁמְעוֹ תְּצִלֶּינָה שְׁתֵּי אָזְנָיו:
I am about to do something: This is the capture of the Ark by the Philistines.  
will tingle: (Heb. ‘t’zillenah,’) an expression similar to ‘zelz’lim,’ cymbals, retentir, in French, to resound, ring.  
12. On that day, I shall execute against Eli all that I have spoken concerning his household, beginning and ending.   יב. בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא אָקִים אֶל עֵלִי אֵת כָּל אֲשֶׁר דִּבַּרְתִּי אֶל בֵּיתוֹ הָחֵל וְכַלֵּה:
beginning and ending: On that day, My decree upon Eli’s house will commence (to be fulfilled), for Hophni and Phinehas shall die and from then on, I shall finish My decree and complete it upon them from generation to generation, to cause them to die (as young) men of eighteen years.  
beginning and ending: Commencant et accomplissant, in French.  
13. And I have told him that I am about to execute judgment upon his household forever, for the iniquity (of the matter) that he knew that his sons were bringing disgrace upon themselves, and he did not rebuke them.   יג. וְהִגַּדְתִּי לוֹ כִּי שֹׁפֵט אֲנִי אֶת בֵּיתוֹ עַד עוֹלָם בַּעֲוֹן אֲשֶׁר יָדַע כִּי מְקַלְלִים לָהֶם בָּנָיו וְלֹא כִהָה בָּם:
that his sons are bringing disgrace upon themselves: (Lit. disgrace or despise themselves.) It should properly state “despise Me,” but the Scripture euphemized.  
disgrace or despise (Heb. ‘m’kall’lim’: usually rendered ‘curse’) and likewise, every curse is an expression of irreverence and disgrace.  
and he did not rebuke them: And he did not darken them; i.e., he did not darken their faces by removing them from their high office.  
14. And, therefore, I have sworn to the house of Eli, that the iniquity of the house of Eli shall not be purged by sacrifice or by offering forever."   יד. וְלָכֵן נִשְׁבַּעְתִּי לְבֵית עֵלִי אִם יִתְכַּפֵּר עֲוֹן בֵּית עֵלִי בְּזֶבַח וּבְמִנְחָה עַד עוֹלָם:
15. And Samuel lay down until the morning, and he opened the doors of the House of the Lord. And Samuel was afraid to relate the vision to Eli.   טו. וַיִּשְׁכַּב שְׁמוּאֵל עַד הַבֹּקֶר וַיִּפְתַּח אֶת דַּלְתוֹת בֵּית יְהֹוָה וּשְׁמוּאֵל יָרֵא מֵהַגִּיד אֶת הַמַּרְאָה אֶל עֵלִי:
16. And Eli called Samuel, and said, "Samuel, my son!" And he said, "Here I am."   טז. וַיִּקְרָא עֵלִי אֶת שְׁמוּאֵל וַיֹּאמֶר שְׁמוּאֵל בְּנִי וַיֹּאמֶר הִנֵּנִי:
17. And he said, "What is the thing which He spoke to you? Do not conceal from me now. So shall God do to you, and so shall He continue, if you conceal from me anything of the whole matter which He spoke to you."   יז. וַיֹּאמֶר מָה הַדָּבָר אֲשֶׁר דִּבֶּר אֵלֶיךָ אַל נָא תְכַחֵד מִמֶּנִּי כֹּה יַעֲשֶׂה לְּךָ אֱלֹהִים וְכֹה יוֹסִיף אִם תְּכַחֵד מִמֶּנִּי דָּבָר מִכָּל הַדָּבָר אֲשֶׁר דִּבֶּר אֵלֶיךָ:
So shall God do to you: like that very curse, that you shall not have worthy children. And that (curse actually) befell him (Infra 7:3), even though he told him (Eli).  
18. And Samuel told him all the things and did not conceal from him. And he said, "He is the Lord. May He do what is good in His eyes."   יח. וַיַּגֶּד לוֹ שְׁמוּאֵל אֶת כָּל הַדְּבָרִים וְלֹא כִחֵד מִמֶּנּוּ וַיֹאמַר יְהֹוָה הוּא הַטּוֹב בְּעֵינָו יַעֲשֶֹה:
and did not conceal: (Deducing) from here, (our Sages) stated: A curse of a wise man, even though pronounced on condition, will be realized.  
He is the Lord: he is Master, and everything belongs to Him.  
19. And Samuel grew up, and the Lord was with him, and did not let any of his words fall to the ground.   יט. וַיִּגְדַּל שְׁמוּאֵל וַיהֹוָה הָיָה עִמּוֹ וְלֹא הִפִּיל מִכָּל דְּבָרָיו אָרְצָה:
20. And all Israel from Dan to Beer Sheba, knew that Samuel was established as a prophet to the Lord.   כ. וַיֵּדַע כָּל יִשְׂרָאֵל מִדָּן וְעַד בְּאֵר שָׁבַע כִּי נֶאֱמָן שְׁמוּאֵל לְנָבִיא לַיהֹוָה:
21. And the Lord continued to appear in Shiloh, for the Lord revealed Himself to Samuel in Shiloh with the word of the Lord.   כא. וַיֹּסֶף יְהֹוָה לְהֵרָאֹה בְשִׁלֹה כִּי נִגְלָה יְהֹוָה אֶל שְׁמוּאֵל בְּשִׁלוֹ בִּדְבַר יְהֹוָה:
for the Lord revealed Himself to Samuel: Since the Scripture stated above (2:1) “and the word of the Lord was withheld in those days,” he states here that from now on, for Samuel’s sake, He revealed Himself repeatedly.  
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