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Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible
Cherethites and Pelethites
CHERETHITES AND PELETHITES . These were mercenary soldiers, who probably began to attach themselves to David whilst he was an outlaw ( 2 Samuel 22:2 etc.), and subsequently became the king’s bodyguard and the nucleus of his army ( 2Sa 8:18; 2 Samuel 15:18; 2 Samuel 20:7; 2Sa 20:23 , 1 Kings 1:38; 1 Kings 1:44 , 1 Chronicles 18:17 ). Benaiah, whom Josephus calls ‘captain of the guard’ ( Ant . VII. xi. 8), was their commander. They accompanied David in his retreat from Jerusalem ( 2 Samuel 15:18 ), fought against Absalom ( 2 Samuel 20:7; 2 Samuel 20:23 ), acted as Solomon’s bodyguard at his coronation ( 1 Kings 1:38; 1 Kings 1:44 ). The Cherethites were a Philistine clan ( 1 Samuel 30:14 ), dwelling on the coast ( Ezekiel 25:16 , Zephaniah 2:5 ); and the name Pelethites may have been a corrupt form of Philistines . Unwillingness to believe that foreigners stood so near the national hero led certain Jewish scholars to assert that the two clans were Israelites. The appellation ‘Cherethite’ seems to be connected with Crete, and there is good ground (but see Caphtor) for the belief that Caphtor, from which Amos 9:7 says the Philistines came, is to be identified with Crete. The LXX [Note: Septuagint.] of Ezekiel 25:16 , Zephaniah 2:5 uses Cretans as the equivalent of Cherethites .
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Hastings, James. Entry for 'Cherethites and Pelethites'. Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/hdb/c/cherethites-and-pelethites.html. 1909.