Agag (אגג) was the king of the Amalekites, mentioned by Balaam in Numbers xxiv.7 in a way that gives probability to the conjecture that the name was a standing title of the kings of Amalek. The name or title may mean "flame" in ancient West Semitic.
Another Amalekite ruler named Agag was taken alive by King Saul after destroying the Amalekites (I Sam. xv.). His life was spared by Saul and the Israelites took the best of the sheep, cattle, fat calves and lambs from the Amalekites.
According to the Bible, the prophet Samuel regarded this clemency as a defiance of the will of YHWH, which was "to completely destroy" the Amalekites. Samuel put Agag to death at Gilgal saying that "[a]s your sword has made women childless, so will your mother be childless among women." (See retributive justice in the Book of Judges or being brought out and cut in pieces 1 Sam. 15:8-33. Comp. Exodus 17:11; Numbers 14:45).
The story also indicates that this is the last time Samuel and Saul ever saw each other. As a result of this incident, Samuel said to Saul that "[y]ou have rejected the word of the Lord, and the Lord has rejected you as king over Israel."
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