The Philistine garrison in Geba
Jonathan smote the garrison of the Philistines that was in Geba, and the Philistines heard of it. Then Saul blew the trumpet throughout the land, saying, “Let the Hebrews hear.”
1 Samuel 13:3  NASB

After the Geba smiting
That first slaughter which Jonathan and his armor bearer made was about twenty men within about half a furrow in an acre of land.
1 Samuel 14:14  NASB


SAB Contradiction 420


Wrong counting?
There is mentioning in the book of Samuel (chapters 13 and 14) about several battles between Israel and the Philistines. The critic suggests that there is a wrong counting: a second attack of Jonathan (14:14) would have been counted mistakenly as a first attack (13:3). It’s quite silly of the critic to not read the entire story, then he would not have come to this strange opinion.


Casus belli
In the dictionary of Merriam-Webster we find the definition of a “casus belli”: an event or action that justifies or allegedly justifies a war or conflict. The first defeat Jonathan inflicted on the enemy was against the garrison of Philistines at Geba (first reference 13:3).
Some remarks are necessary to understand the right context.
1. Philistines were apparently in the land of Israel with a strong military power to oppress the Israelites.
2. It was the risk of the Philistines to be attacked.
3. Part of the risk was that they would be killed (slaughtered), for at that time it was “on the run” or “being killed” in a battle. There was no in between.
When Jonathan defeated the Philistines at Geba he certainly fought a fair battle.


The war
After Jonathan’s first action a war broke out and the Philistine mobilization (1 Samuel 13:5) was:
– 30,000 chariots,
– 6,000 horsemen,
– infantry in abundance.

This mighty army stood against 600 Israelites (1 Samuel 13:15). What happened?


Two guys, Jonathan and his armor bearer, took by surprise a band of 20 Philistines (1 Samuel 14:11-12), which resulted in a great confusion among the Philistines. Even so that they started to fight against each other (certainly due to conflictive orders of their leaders; 1 Samuel 14:20). The entire army cut itself to pieces. Later on Jonathan is called the man, who has brought about this great deliverance in Israel (1 Samuel 14:45). And how did he bring this great deliverance? By his first defeat of the 20 Philistines: the first defeat of the war.


No Bible Contradiction