(Eze 25:16), more frequently Cherethites, the inhabitants of Southern Philistia, the Philistines (Zep 2:5). The Cherethites and the Pelethites were David's life-guards (1Sa 30:14; 2Sa 8:18; 20:7,23; 23:23). This name is by some interpreted as meaning "Cretans," and by others "executioners," who were ready to execute the king's sentence of death (Ge 37:36, marg.; 1Ki 2:25).
same as CHERETHITES.
CHERETHIM. ?????. Cherethim or Cherethites, are denominations for the Philistines: "I will stretch out mine hand upon the Philistines, and will cut off the Cherethim, and destroy the remnant of the sea coast," Eze 25:16. Zephaniah, exclaiming against the Philistines, says, "Wo unto the inhabitants of the sea coasts, the nation of the Cherethites," Zep 2:5. It is said, 1Sa 30:14, that the Amalekites invaded the south of the Cherethites; that is, of the Philistines. David, and some of the kings, his successors, had guards called Cherethites and Pelethites, 2Sa 15:18; 20:7. Calmet thinks that they were of the country of the Philistines; but several expositors of our own country are of a different opinion. "We can hardly suppose," say the latter, "that David would employ any of these uncircumcised people as his bodyguard, or that the Israelitish soldiers would have patiently seen foreigners of that nation advanced to such places of honour and trust." It may, therefore, be inferred that guards were called Cherethites, because they went with David into Philistia, where they continued with him all the time he was under the protection of Achish. These were the persons who accompanied David from the first, and who remained with him in his greatest distresses; and it is no wonder, if men of such approved fidelity should be chosen for his body-guard. Beside, it is not uncommon for soldiers to derive their names, not from the place of their nativity, but of their residence.