Joshua 15:9 MEANING

Joshua 15:9
(9) Kirjath-jearim is by Conder identified as 'Arma (spelt 'Erma on the Ordnance map), four miles east of Beth-shemesh ('Ain Shemes, or Shems).

Verse 9. - Was drawn. Or, extended. The fountain of the waters of Nephtoah. If these be identified with En Etam, as is done by the Rabbis (whom Conder follows), and if we suppose it to have supplied Jerusalem with water by the aqueduct which ran from a point southwest of Betlehem to Jerusalem, we must place it south of Bethlehem, and imagine that the border ran directly south here. Far more probable is the notion of Vandevelde, which places it northwest of Jerusalem, at Ain Lifta. Conder's view is dominated by the situation he has assigned to Kirjath-jearim (see note on Joshua 9:17). If the view there given in these notes is sound, the border now ran in a northwesterly direction from Jerusalem to within five miles of Gibeon (see also note on Joshua 18:14). Kirjath-jearim. See Joshua 9:17. To the authorities mentioned there in favour of Kuriet el Enab we may add Knobel, Ritter, and Tristram, in his last book, 'Bible Lands.' The view taken above corresponds to the minuteness of detail with which the boundary is given. To place Nephtoah south of Bethlehem and Kirjath-jearim at 'Arma would make the boundary far less distinct.

15:1-12 Joshua allotted to Judah, Ephraim, and the half of Manasseh, their inheritances before they left Gilgal. Afterwards removing to Shiloh, another survey was made, and the other tribes had their portion assigned. In due time all God's people are settled.And the border was drawn from the top of the hill,.... Mount Moriah, and went round in a circuit, so Jarchi and Kimchi:

unto the fountain of the water of Nephtoah; which lay at the bottom of it; which, according to the Jewish writers, is the same with the fountain of Etam, from whence a stream flowed to the dipping room in the water gate of the temple, where the high priest for the first time dipped himself on the day of atonement (p):

and went out to the cities of Mount Ephron; Jerom (q) speaks of an Ephron in the tribe of Judah, which was a very large village in his time, and went by the name of Ephraea, and was twenty miles from Aelia or Jerusalem to the north; and which Eusebius better places eight miles from it; and Jarchi observes, that the line went to the north side, and the border enlarged to this place; near to this mountain were cities, and it is not improbable that one of them might have its name from it; but whether this, or what mountain is here meant, is uncertain: some have thought of Ephraim, with its towns, mentioned in 2 Chronicles 13:19; which seems to have been in the tribe of Ephraim; though Reland (r) places it in the tribe of Benjamin:

and the border was drawn to Baalah, which is Kirjathjearim; called Kirjathbaal, or the city of Baal, Joshua 15:60; where it is probable there was a temple of Baal; and when it came into the hands of the Israelites, they changed its name to Kirjathjearim, or the city of the woods, because of the great number of trees which grew about it; for which reason it might have been pitched upon by the Heathens for their idolatrous service; it was one of the cities of the Gibeonites, Joshua 9:17; and, according to Eusebius and Jerom (s), it was nine or ten miles from Jerusalem, as you go to Lydda; it is also called Baalah in 1 Chronicles 13:6; and Baale of Judah, 2 Samuel 6:2.

(p) T. Bab. Yoma, fol. 31. 1. & Gloss. in ib. & T. Bab. Zebachim, fol. 54. 2. Kimchi in loc. (q) De loc. Heb. fol. 91. A. (r) Palestin. Illustrat. tom. 2. p. 765. (s) Apud ib. tom. 1. p. 488.

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