Beth-shean.--The town to the walls of which the victorious Philistines nailed the bodies of Saul and Jonathan after the battle of Gilboa, and from which they were recovered by the gratitude of the brave people of Jabesh Gilead (1 Samuel 31:8; 2 Samuel 21:12). It is again mentioned in 1 Kings 4:12, and in later days was well known under the name of Scytho-polis, or "city of Scythians" (2 Maccabees 12:29), a name contemptuously given to it from the barbarism of its inhabitants (Jos. Vit. 6). Though conquered by Manasseh, it was in the lot of Issachar (Joshua 17:11). It is now called Beisan. It was in a district so rich and fruitful that the Rabbis describe it as the gate of Paradise.
And her towns.--Literally, and her daughters.
Taanach.--The name means "the sandy." It was a town of Issachar assigned to the Levites, and was famous for Barak's victory over Sisera. It is still called Taanuk (Robinson, Bibl. Res. i. 316).
Dor.--Properly in Asher, it seems to have been attacked by Manasseh, and was ultimately won by Ephraim (Joshua 11:2; Joshua 17:11; 1 Chronicles 7:29). It long continued to be an important place (1 Maccabees 15:11; Jos. Antt. xiv. 5, ? 3). It lies near the foot of Carmel, and is now called Tantura. Endor ("the fountain of Dor") was probably one of its dependencies.
Ibleam.--Also called Bileam (1 Chronicles 6:70). It was a Levitical town (Joshua 21:25). The only event connected with it in Scripture is the death of Ahaziah (2 Kings 9:27). Perhaps Khirbet-Belameh.
Megiddo.--Near Taanach. It is now called Lejj-n, from having been a station of the Romans. See Judges 1:19; 2 Kings 9:27 (the death of Ahaziah); and 2 Kings 23:29; Zechariah 12:11 (the defeat of Josiah by Pharaoh Necho). It was fortified by Solomon (1 Kings 9:15). From this town is derived the famous name Armageddon (Revelation 16:16) as a scene of battle and wailing.
The Canaanites would dwell in that land--i.e., the old inhabitants obstinately and successfully held their own (Joshua 17:12).
drive out the inhabitants of Bethshean and her towns, nor Taanach and her towns, nor the inhabitants of Dor and her towns, nor the inhabitants of Ibleam and her towns, nor the inhabitants of Megiddo and her towns: all which were places the half tribe had assigned them in Issachar and Asher; of which See Gill on Joshua 17:11. This tribe seems to have been sluggish, and not to have exerted itself at all, or made any attempts to drive out these people:
but the Canaanites would dwell in that land; not only desired it, but were determined on it, and rather chose to submit to a tribute than be expelled, at least would not depart unless they were forced.