And there ran a man of Benjamin out of the army
Out of the rank in which he was, before the whole army was quite broken up. This was a young man as Josephus F2 says, which is highly probable; though not at all to be depended on is what the Jews F3 say, that this was Saul, later king of Israel:
and came to Shiloh the same day;
which, according to Bunting F4, was forty two miles from Ebenezer, near to which the battle was fought; and that it was a long way is pretty plain by the remark made, that this messenger came the same day the battle was fought; though not at such a distance as some Jewish writers say, some sixty, some one hundred and twenty miles F5; which is not at all probable:
with his clothes rent, and earth upon his head;
which were both tokens of distress and mourning, and showed that he was a messenger of bad tidings from the army; (See Gill on Joshua 7:6).
F2 Antiqu. l. 5. c. 11. sect. 3.
F3 Shalshalet Hakabala. fol. 8. 1. Jarchi in loc.
F4 Travels of the Patriarchs p. 123.
F5 Midrash Schemuel apud Abarbinel in loc.