Judges 5:16
New International Version
Why did you stay among the sheep pens to hear the whistling for the flocks? In the districts of Reuben there was much searching of heart.

New Living Translation
Why did you sit at home among the sheepfolds— to hear the shepherds whistle for their flocks? Yes, in the tribe of Reuben there was great indecision.

English Standard Version
Why did you sit still among the sheepfolds, to hear the whistling for the flocks? Among the clans of Reuben there were great searchings of heart.

Berean Study Bible
Why did you sit among the sheepfolds to hear the whistling for the flocks? In the clans of Reuben there was great indecision.

King James Bible
Why abodest thou among the sheepfolds, to hear the bleatings of the flocks? For the divisions of Reuben there were great searchings of heart.

New King James Version
Why did you sit among the sheepfolds, To hear the pipings for the flocks? The divisions of Reuben have great searchings of heart.

New American Standard Bible
“Why did you sit among the sheepfolds, To hear the piping for the flocks? Among the divisions of Reuben There were great searchings of heart.

NASB 1995
“Why did you sit among the sheepfolds, To hear the piping for the flocks? Among the divisions of Reuben There were great searchings of heart.

NASB 1977
“Why did you sit among the sheepfolds, To hear the piping for the flocks? Among the divisions of Reuben There were great searchings of heart.

Amplified Bible
“Why [Reuben] did you linger among the sheepfolds, To hear the piping for the flocks? Among the divisions of Reuben There were great searchings of heart.

Christian Standard Bible
Why did you sit among the sheep pens listening to the playing of pipes for the flocks? There was great searching of heart among the clans of Reuben.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Why did you sit among the sheepfolds listening to the playing of pipes for the flocks? There was great searching of heart among the clans of Reuben.

American Standard Version
Why sattest thou among the sheepfolds, To hear the pipings for the flocks? At the watercourses of Reuben There were great searchings of heart.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Why do you dwell in the streets to hear the breathing of wild donkeys, for the divisions of Rubil, great restorers of heart?

Brenton Septuagint Translation
Why did they sit between the sheep-folds to hear the bleating of flocks for the divisions of Ruben? there were great searchings of heart.

Contemporary English Version
Reuben, why did you stay among your sheep pens? Was it to listen to shepherds whistling for their sheep? No one could figure out why Reuben wouldn't come.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Why dwellest thou between two borders, that thou mayest hear the bleatings of the flocks? Ruben being divided against himself, there was found a strife of courageous men.

English Revised Version
Why satest thou among the sheepfolds, to hear the pipings for the flocks? At the watercourses of Reuben there were great searchings of heart.

Good News Translation
Why did they stay behind with the sheep? To listen to shepherds calling the flocks? Yes, the tribe of Reuben was divided; they could not decide to come.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Why did you sit between the saddlebags? Was it to listen to the shepherds playing their flutes? Reuben's divisions of important men had second thoughts.

International Standard Version
Why did you sit down among the sheepfolds? To hear the bleating of the flocks? Among the divisions of the army of Reuben there was great searching of heart.

JPS Tanakh 1917
Why sattest thou among the sheep-folds, To hear the pipings for the flocks? At the divisions of Reuben There were great searchings of heart.

Literal Standard Version
Why have you abided between the boundaries, To hear lowings of herds? For the divisions of Reuben, The searchings of heart [are] great!

NET Bible
Why do you remain among the sheepfolds, listening to the shepherds playing their pipes for their flocks? As for the clans of Reuben--there was intense searching of heart.

New Heart English Bible
Why did you sit among the sheepfolds, to hear the piping for the flocks? At the divisions of Reuben there were Great Searchings of heart.

World English Bible
Why did you sit among the sheepfolds, To hear the whistling for the flocks? At the watercourses of Reuben There were great searchings of heart.

Young's Literal Translation
Why hast thou abode between the boundaries, To hear lowings of herds? For the divisions of Reuben, Great are the searchings of heart!

Additional Translations ...
Context
The Song of Deborah and Barak
15The princes of Issachar were with Deborah, and Issachar was with Barak, rushing into the valley at his heels. In the clans of Reuben there was great indecision. 16Why did you sit among the sheepfolds to hear the whistling for the flocks? In the clans of Reuben there was great indecision. 17Gilead remained beyond the Jordan. Dan, why did you linger by the ships? Asher stayed at the coast and remained in his harbors.…

Cross References
Genesis 49:14
Issachar is a strong donkey, lying down between the sheepfolds.

Numbers 32:1
Now the Reubenites and Gadites, who had very large herds and flocks, surveyed the lands of Jazer and Gilead, and they saw that the region was suitable for livestock.

Numbers 32:2
So the Gadites and Reubenites came to Moses, Eleazar the priest, and the leaders of the congregation, and said,

Psalm 68:13
Though you lie down among the sheepfolds, the wings of the dove are covered with silver, and her feathers with shimmering gold."


Treasury of Scripture

Why stayed you among the sheepfolds, to hear the bleatings of the flocks? For the divisions of Reuben there were great searchings of heart.

sheepfolds

Numbers 32:1-5,24
Now the children of Reuben and the children of Gad had a very great multitude of cattle: and when they saw the land of Jazer, and the land of Gilead, that, behold, the place was a place for cattle; …

Philippians 2:21
For all seek their own, not the things which are Jesus Christ's.

Philippians 3:19
Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.)

for, or in

Judges 5:15
And the princes of Issachar were with Deborah; even Issachar, and also Barak: he was sent on foot into the valley. For the divisions of Reuben there were great thoughts of heart.

great

Psalm 4:4
Stand in awe, and sin not: commune with your own heart upon your bed, and be still. Selah.

Psalm 77:6
I call to remembrance my song in the night: I commune with mine own heart: and my spirit made diligent search.

Lamentations 3:40,41
Let us search and try our ways, and turn again to the LORD…









(16) Sheepfolds.--Literally, hurdles (mishpethaim), the dual form being due to some method of their construction. Hence the Vulgate renders, inter duos terminos.

The bleatings of the flocks.--Rather, the sounds of shepherds' flutes or pastoral pipings ("Shepherds delighting in syrinx-pipes," Hom., Il. xviii. 525). There is a contrast between these peaceful flutings and the battle-horns to which they ought to have been listening. It is as though Deborah would say to Reuben--

"Sound, sound the clarion, shrill the fife;

To all the sensual world proclaim,

One crowded hour of glorious life

Is worth an age without a name."

For the divisions.--It should be, as before, "By the streams of Reuben."

Searchings of heart.--Reuben sent magnanimous debates and promises, but they only ended in sloth and vacillation. They decided to go, and--stayed at home.



Parallel Commentaries ...


Hebrew
Why
לָ֣מָּה (lām·māh)
Interrogative
Strong's 4100: What?, what!, indefinitely what

did you sit
יָשַׁ֗בְתָּ (yā·šaḇ·tā)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - second person masculine singular
Strong's 3427: To sit down, to dwell, to remain, to settle, to marry

among
בֵּ֚ין (bên)
Preposition
Strong's 996: An interval, space between

the sheepfolds
הַֽמִּשְׁפְּתַ֔יִם (ham·miš·pə·ṯa·yim)
Article | Noun - md
Strong's 4942: Perhaps fireplaces, ash heaps

to hear
לִשְׁמֹ֖עַ (liš·mō·a‘)
Preposition-l | Verb - Qal - Infinitive construct
Strong's 8085: To hear intelligently

the whistling
שְׁרִק֣וֹת (šə·ri·qō·wṯ)
Noun - feminine plural construct
Strong's 8292: Hissing, whistling, piping

for the flocks?
עֲדָרִ֑ים (‘ă·ḏā·rîm)
Noun - masculine plural
Strong's 5739: An arrangement, muster

In the clans
לִפְלַגּ֣וֹת (lip̄·lag·gō·wṯ)
Preposition-l | Noun - feminine plural construct
Strong's 6391: A division

of Reuben
רְאוּבֵ֔ן (rə·’ū·ḇên)
Noun - proper - masculine singular
Strong's 7205: Reuben -- 'behold a son!' oldest son of Jacob, also his desc

was great
גְּדוֹלִ֖ים (gə·ḏō·w·lîm)
Adjective - masculine plural
Strong's 1419: Great, older, insolent

indecision.
חִקְרֵי־ (ḥiq·rê-)
Noun - masculine plural construct
Strong's 2714: A searching, a thing (to be) searched out


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OT History: Judges 5:16 Why did you sit among the sheepfolds (Jd Judg. Jdg)
Judges 5:15
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