a1 Bar-Ilan University and Shalom Hartman Institute, Jerusalem
The story of Amalek's deed occurs twice in the Bible: in Exod 17:8–16 and in Deut 25:17–19. The account in Exodus is quite succinct: “Then came Amalek and fought with Israel in Refidim” (Exod 17:8); in contrast, the description in Deuteronomy paints a broader and more detailed picture: “Remember what Amalek did to thee by the way, when you were come out of Egypt: how he met thee by the way, and smote the hindmost of thee, all that were feeble in thy rear, when thou wast faint and weary; and he feared not God” (Deut 25:17–18). The Exodus version, although sparing in its description of the particulars, offers the more dramatic account of the war between Israel and Amalek.
* I wish to thank Batya Stein for translating this article from Hebrew as well as for her comments and editorial help.