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13 And the sun stood still, and the moon stay- | book of - Jasher? So the sun stood still in the ed, until the people had avenged themselves midst of heaven, and hasted not to go down upon their enemies. i Is not this written in the about a whole day.
שמש בגבעון דוס וירח בעמק אילין
Lord to perform the most stupendous miracle that had belief of the being and perfections of God, but also in the ever been wrought, which was no less than to arrest the doctrine of an especial Providence, and in the nullity of sun in his course, and prolong the day till the destruction the whole system of idolatry and superstition. of his enemies had been completed !
7. That no evil was done by this miraculous interSun, stand thou still upon Gibeon; and thou, Moon, ference, nor any law or property of nature ultimately in the valley of Ajalon.) To account for this miracle, and changed: on the contrary, a most important good was to ascertain the manner in which it was wrought, has em- produced, which probably, to this people, could not bare ployed the pens of the ablest divines and astronomers, es been brought about any other way; and that, therefore, pecially of the two last centuries. By their learned labours the miracle wrought on this occasion, was highly worthy many difficulties have been removed from the account in of the wisdom and power of God. general; but the very different and contradictory methods 8. I consider, thai the terms in the text employed to depursued by several in their endeavours to explain the scribe this miracle, are not, when rightly understood, conwhole, and make the relation concord with the present ac trary to the well-established notions of the true system of knowledged system of the universe, and the phenomena the universe; and are not spoken, as some have contend. of nature, tend greatly to puzzle the plain unphilosophical ed, ad captum vulgi, to the prejudices of the common reader. The subject cannot be well explained without a people, much less do they favour the Ptolemaic, or any dissertation: and a dissertation is not consistent with the other hypothesis, that places the carth in the centre of the nature of short notes, or a commentary on Scripture. It solar system. is, however, necessary to attempt an explanation ; and to Having laid down these preliminaries, some short obbring that as much as possible within the apprehension of servations on the words of the text may be sufficient. common readers : in order to this, I must beg leave to in Joshua's address is in a poctic form in the original, and troduce a few preliminary observations, or what the reader makes the two following hemistichs: may call propositions, if he pleases.
1. I take it for granted that a miracle was wrought, as nearly as circumstances could admit, in the manner in
Shernesh, be Gibeon dom: which it is here recorded. I shall not, therefore, seek for
V'yareach, beemnek Aiyalon.
Sun! opon Gibeon be dumb: any allegorical or metaphorical interpretations: the mira
And the moon on the sale of Aisalon cle is recorded as a fact : and as a fact I take it up.
The effect of this command is related ver. 13. in the 2. I consider the present accredited system of the uni- following words: verse, called sometimes, the Pythagorean, Copernican, or ypy 7 youn 07" vayiddom ha-SHEMESH TE-TAREACE Newtonian system, to be genuine; and also to be the sys- amad, And the sun was dumb, or silent, and the moon tem of the universe laid down in the Mosaic writings; that stood still. And in the latter clause of this verse it is the Sun is in the centre of what is called the solar system; added, And the sun stood still in the midst of hea peri, and that the earth, and all the other planets, whether pri- and hasted not to go down about a whole day. mary or secondary, move round him in certain periodical It seems necessary here to answer the question, At wbat times, according to the quantity of their matter, and dis time of the day did this miracle take place? The expresa tance from him, their centre.
sion Down una bohatsi hashamayim, in the midst of 3. I consider the sun to have no revolution round any heaven, seems to intimate, that the sun was at that time orbit, but to revolve round his own axis, and round the on the meridian of Gibeon, and consequently had one common centre of gravity in the planetary system, which half of its course to run; and this sense of the place has centre of gravity is included within his own surface, and been strongly contended for, as essential to the miracle in all other respects I consider him to be at rest in the for the greater display of the glory of God: “Because, system.
say its abėttors, "had the miracle been wrought when the 4. I consider the earth, not only as revolving round the
sun was near the going down, it might have been mis. sun in 365 days, 5 hours, 43 minutes, and 48 seconds, but taken for some refraction of the rays of light, occasioned as revolving round its oron axis, and making this revolu- by a peculiarly moist state of the atmosphere in the horition in 23 hours, 56 minutes, and 4 seconds; that in the zon of that place; or by some such appearance as the course of 24 hours complete, every part of its surface is al- | Aurora Borealis. To me, there seems no solidity in ternately turned to the sun; and that this revolution con this reason : had the sun been arrested in the meridian, Btitutes our day and night, as the former does our year: the miracle could scarcely have been noticed, and espethat it is day to all those parts which have the sun above cially in the hurry and confusion of that time; and we the horizon; and night to those which have the sun below may be assured, that among the Canaanites there werə it: and that this diurnal revolution of the earth, or revolv- neither clocks nor time-keepers, by which the preternatural ing round its own axis, in a direction from west to east, length of such a day could have been accurately measured: occasions what is commonly called the rising and setting but, on the contrary, had the sun been about the setting, of the sun, which appearance is occasioned, not by any when both the pursuers and the pursued must be appremotion in the sun himself, but by this motion of the earth'; hensive of its speedy disappearance, its continuance for which may be illustrated by a ball or globe appended to a several hours abore the horizon, so near the point wben it taread, and caused to turn round. If this be held opposite might be expected to go doron, must have been very obto a candle, it will appear half enlightened and half dark; servable and striking. The enemy must see, feel, and des but the dark parts will be seen to come successively into plore it; as their hope of escape must, in sueh circumthe light, and the enlightened parts into the shade: while stances, be founded on the speedily entering in of the the candle itself, which gives the light, is fixed, not chang- night, through which alone they could expect to elude the ing its position.
pursuing Israelites. And the Israelites ihemselves must 5. I consider the solar influence to be the cause both of behold, with astonishment and wonder, that the setting the annual and diurnal motion of the earth; and that sun hasted not to go down about a whole day, affording while that influence continues to act upon it, according to them supernatural time totally to destroy a routed foe, the law which God originally impressed on both the earth which otherwise might have had time to rally, confedeand the sun, the annual and diurnal motions of the earth rate, choose a proper station, and attack in their turn, with must continue; and that no power, but the unlimited power peculiar adrantages, and a probability of success. It ap; of God, can alter this influence, change, or suspend, the pears, therefore, much more reasonable that Joshua should operation of this law: but that He is such an infinitely require this miracle to be performed when daylight aus FREE AGENT, that He can, when his unerring wisdom sees about to fail, just as the sun was setting. If we were 10 good, alter, suspend, or even annihilate all secondary consider the sun as being at the meridian of Gibeon, as causes and their effects; for it would be degrading to the so:ne understand the midst of heaven, it may be well perfections of his nature to suppose, that he had so bound asked, “How could Joshua know that he should not have himself by the laws which he has given for the preserva- time enough to complete the destruction of his enemies, tion and direction of universal nature that he could not who were now completely routed ?" Already multitudes change them, alter their effects, or suspend their opera- of them had fallen by the hailstones and by the sword; tions, when greater and better effects, in a certain time or and if he had yet half a day before him, it would have place, might be produced by such temporary change or been natural enough for him to conclude that he had a suspension.
sufficiency of time for the purpose, his men having been 6. I consider, that the miracle wrought on this occasion, employed all night in a forced march, and half a day in served greatly' to confirm the Israelites, not only in the close fighting; and, indeed, had he not been under an
p Deut. 1. 30. Ver. 42. Ch. 23. 3.
14 And there was no • day like that before the voice of a man: for p the LORD fought for it or after it, that the LORD hearkened unto Israel.
n See Isai. 30. 8. - 2 Kings 20. 13. especial inspiration, he could not have requested the miracle the effect the retention of the solar influence had on the at all, knowing, as he must have done, ihat his men must moon: in the first case, the sun was silent, or inactive, be nearly exhausted by marching all nighi, and tighting On7 dom, in the latter the moon stood still, ypy amad. all day. But it may be asked, What is the meaning of The standing still of the moon, or its continuance above Down una bechutsi hushamayim, which we translate in the horizon, would be the natural effect of the censation the midst of heaven? If, with Mr. Bate, we translate of the solar influence, which obliged the earth to disconnon chatsah, to part, divide asunder, then it may refer to tinue her diurnal rotation, which of course would arrest the horizon, which is the apparent division of the heavens the moon, and thus both it and the sun were kept above into the upper and lower hemisphere: and thus the whole the horizon, probably for the space of a whole day. As verse has been understood by some eminently learned men, to the address to the moon, it is not conceived in the same who have translated the whole passage thus : And the terms as that to the sun, and for the most obvious philoso-sun stood still in the (upper) hemisphere of hcaren, and phical reasons: all that is said is simply, and the moon hasted not lo go down, when the day was complete; that on the rale of Ajalon, which may be thus understood : is, though the day was then complete, the sun being on “Let the sun restrain his influence, or be inactive, as he the horizon, the line that to the eye constituted the mid appears now upon Gibeon, that the moon may continue heaven; yet it hasted not to go down, was miraculously as she appears now over the vale of Ajalon." It is worsustained in its then almost setting position; and this thy of remark, that every word in this poetic address, is seems still more evident from the moon appearing at that apparently selected with the greatest caution and pretime, which it is not reasonable to suppose could be visible in the glare of light occasioned by a noon-day sun.
Persons who are no friends to Divine revelation say, But the main business relative to the standing still of “that the account given of this miracle, supposes the the sun, still remains to be considered.
earth to be in the centre of the system, and the sun moveI have already assumed, as a thoroughly demonstrated able; and as this is demonstrably a false philosophy, con. truth, that the sun is in the centre of the system, moving sequently the history was never dictated by the Spirit of only round his own axis, and the common centre of the truth." Others, in answer say, " that the Holy Spirit gravity of the planetary system, while all the planets re condescends to accommodate himself to the apprehensions volve round him, Prop. 2. and 3. that his influence is the of the vulgar : the Israelites would naturally have imcause of the diurnal and annual revolutions of the earth; agined that Joshua was deranged, had he bid the earth nor can I see what other purpose his revolution round his stand still, which they grant would have been the most own axis can possibly answer, Prop. 5.
accurate and philosophical mode of command on this ocI consider, that the word on dom, in the text, refers to casion. But with due deference both to the objectors and the withholding or restraining this influence, so that the defenders, I must asserl
, that such a form of speech, on cessation of the earth's motion might immediately take such an occasion, would have been utterly unphilosophic; place. The desire of Joshua was, that the sun might not and that the expressions found in the Hebrew text, are sink below the horizon; but as it appeared now to be over such as Sir Isaac Newton himself might have denomiGibeon, and the moon to be over the valley of Ajalon, he nated, every thing considered, elegant, correct, and suprayed that they might continue in these positions till the blime. Nor does it at all appear, that the prejudices of battle should be ended; or, in other words, that the day the vulgar were consulted on this occasion; nor is there a should be miraculously lengthened out.
word here, when properly understood, that is inconsistent Whether Joshua had a correct philosophical notion of with the purest axiom of the soundest philosophy; and the true system of the universe, is a subject that need not certainly nothing that implies any contradiction. I grant, come into the present inquiry: but whether he spoke with that when the people have to do with astronomical and strict propriety on this occasion, is a matter of importance, philosophical matters, then the terms of the science may because he must be considered as acting under the divine be accommodated to their apprehensions : it is on this influence, in requesting the performance of such a stupen- ground that Sir Isaac Newton himself speaks of the rising dous miracle: and we may safely assert, that no man in and of the setting of the sun ; though all genuine philohis right mind would have thought of offering such a pe- sophers know, that these appearances are produced by the tition had he not felt himself under some Divine afflatus. rotation of the earth on its own axis, from west to east. Leaving therefore his philosophic knowledge out of the But when matters of this kind are to be transacted bequestion, he certainly spoke as if he had known that the tween God and his prophets, as in the above case, then solar influence was the cause of the earth's rotation, and, subjects relative to philosophy, are conceived in their therefore, with the strictest philosophic propriety, he re proper terms, and expressed according to their own naquested that that influence might be for a time restrained, ture. At the conclusion of the 13th verse, a different exthat the diurnal motion of the earth might he arrested, pression is used when it is said, So the sun stood still, it through which alone the sun could be kept above the ho
, amad; rizon, and day be prolonged. His mode of expression ha-shemesh, which expression, thus varying from that in evidently considers the sun as the great ruler or master in the coinmand of Joshua, may be considered as implying, the system; and all the planets, (or at least the earth) that in order to restrain his influence, which I have asmoving in their respective orbits at his command. He sumed to be the cause of the earth's motion, the sun him. therefore desires him, (in the name, and by the authority self became inactive, that is, ceased to revolve round his of his Creator) to suspend his mandate with respect to own axis; which revolution is probably one cause, not the earth's motion, and that of its satellite, the moon. only of the revolution of the earth, but of all the other Had he said, earth, stand thou stiu-the cessation of planetary bodies in our system, and might have affected whose diurnal motion was the effect of his command, it all the planets at the time in question : but this neither could not have obeyed him; as it is not even the secon- could, nor did, produce any disorder in ure; and the dary cause either of its annual motion round the sun, or delay of a few hours in the whole planetary motions, its diurnal motion round its own axis. Instead of doing dwindles away into an imperceptible point, in the thouso, he speaks to the sun, the cause (under God) of all sands of years of their revolutions. I need scarcely add, these motions, as his great archetype did, when, in tie that the command of Joshua to the sun, is to be understorm on the sea of Tiberias, he rebuked the wind first, stood as a prayer to God (from whom the sun derived and then said to the wares, Peace! be still! Etwra, repia his being and his continuance) that the effect might be pwoo, be silent! be dumi! Mark iv. 31. and the effect of what is expressed in the command : and therefore it is this command was, a cessation of the agitation in the sea, said, ver. 14. that the LORD HEARKENED UNTO THE VOICE because the wind ceased to command it, that is, to exert OF A MAN, for the Lord fought for Israel. its influence upon the waters.
I have thus gone through the different parts of this asThe terms in this command are worthy of particular tonishing miracle, and have endeavoured' to account for note : Joshua does not say to the sun, Stand still, as if he the whole in as plain and simple a manner as possible. It had conceived him to be running his race round the is not pretended that this account should satisfy every carth: but be silent, or inactire, that is, as I understand reader; and that ercry difficulty solved: it would be it, restrain thy influence; no longer act upon the earth, impossible to do this in such a compass as that by which ! to cause it to revolve round its axis; a mode of speech am necessarily circumscribed : and I have been obliged, which is certainly consistent with the strictest astronomi for the sake of brevity, to throw into the form of propocal knowledge : and the writer of the account, whether sitions, or observations, several points which may appear Joshua himself, or the author of the Book of Jasher, in lo demand illustration and proof-for such I must refer relating the consequence of this command, is equally'ac- the reader to astronomical treatises. Calmet, Scheuchzer, curate, using a word widely different, when he speaks of and Saurin, with several of our own countrymen, have Vol. 1.-72
15 « And Joshua returned, and all Israel with nor be dismayed, be strong, and of good courage: him, unto the camp to Gilgal.
for * thus shall the Lord do to all your enemies 16 | But these five kings fled, and "hid them- against whom ye fight. selves in a cave at Makkedah.
26 And afterward Joshua smote them, and 17 And it was told Joshua, saying, The five slew them, and hanged them on five trees and kings are found hid in a cave at Makkedah. they were hanging upon the trees until the
13 And Joshua said, Roll great stones upon evening. the mouth of the cave, and set men by it for to 27 And it came to pass at the time of the going keep them:
down of the sun, thát Joshua commanded, and 19 And stay ye not, but pursue after your ene- they took them down off the trees, and cast mies, and smite the hindmost of them; suffer them into the cave wherein they had been hid, them not to enter into their cities: for the LORD and laid great stones in the cave's mouth, which your God hath delivered them into your hand. remain until this very day.
20 And it came to pass, when Joshua and the 28 | And that day Joshua took Makkedah, children of Israel had made an end of slaying and smote it with the edge of the sword, and. them with a very great slaughter, till they were the king thereof he utterly destroyed, them, and consumed, that the rest which renained of them, all the souls that were therein; he let none reentered into fenced cities.
main; and he did to the king of Makkedah as 21 And all the people returned to the camp to he did unto the king of Jericho. Joshua at Makkedah in peace: "none moved his 29 | Then Joshua passed from Makkedah, tongue against any of the children of Israel. and all Israel with him, unto Libnah, and fought
22 T Then said Joshua, Open the mouth of the against Libnah: cave, and bring out those five kings unto me out 30 And the LORD delivered it also, and the of the cave.
king thereof, into the hand of Israel; and he 23 And they did so, and brought forth those smole it with the edge of the sword, and all the five kings unto him out of the cave, the king of souls that were therein; he let none remain in Jerusalem, the king of Hebron, the king of Jar- it; but did unto the king thereof, as he did unto muth, the king of Lachish, and the king of Eglon. the king of Jericho.
24 And it came to pass, when they brought 31 1 And Joshua passed from Libnah, and out these kings unto Joshua, that Joshua called all Israel with him, unto Lachish, and encamped for all the men of Israel, and said unto the cap against it, and fought against it: tains of the men of war which went with him, 32 And the LORD delivered Lachish into the Come near, ' put your feet upon the necks of hand of Israel, which took it on the second day, these kings. And they came near, and put their and smote it with the edge of the sword, and all feet upon the necks of them.
the souls that were therein, according to all that 25 And Joshua said unto them, *Fear not, he had done to Libnah.
Ver. 43.- Psa. 49. 1, 5. leai. 2 10. Ver. 22. Psn. 18. 37-41.-t Heb. cut of the tail.- Erol 11.7. - Psal. 107. 40. & 110.5.& 149. 8, 9 Isai. 26. 5, 6. Mal. (3.
w Deat. 31. 6, 8. Ch. 1 9.-- Deut. 3. 21. & 7. 13.-7 Ch & 2.- Deel 2 k
Ch. 8. 2.- Ch. 6. 21.- 2 Kings 8. 2
spoken largely on this difficult subject; but in such a way, was completed, they struck the camp at Makkedah, and
Verse 21. None moved his tongue) The whole transac-
tions of this important day, had been carried on so eviIIor. Epist. I I. E. vl. ver. 67.
dently under the direction of God, that there was not the Farewell! and if a better syetem' thine,
least murmuring, nor cause for it, among them, for their Impart it frankly, or make use of mine.
cnemies were all discomfited. There is an expression Book of Jasher] The book of the upright. See on similar to this, Exod. ix. 7. on which the reader is requested Numb. xxi. 14. Probably this was a book, which, in ref to consult the note. erence to Joshua and his transactions, was similar to the Verse 24. Put your feet upon the necks of these kings.] Commentaries of Cæsar, on his wars with the Gauls. This act was done symbolically, as a token not only of the Critics and commentators are greatly divided in their sen- present complete victory, but of their approaching triumph timents relative to the nature of this book. The opinion over all their adversaries, which is the interpretation given above appears to me most probable.
of it by Joshua, in the succeeding verse. Verse 14. And there was no day like that] There was Verse 26. Smote-slev--and hanged them on fire trees) no period of time in which the sun was kept so long above Hanging alive seems a barbarous custom; among the the horizon, as on that occasion. Some learned men have Hebrews, criminals were first deprived of life, this was supposed that the Fable of Phaeton was founded on this the debt required by justice; then they were hanged up, historic fact. The fable may be seen, with all the elegance perhaps generally by the hands, not by the neck; this was of poetic embellishment, in the commencement of the se done by way of example, to deter others from committing cond book of Ovid's Metamorphoses : but I confess I can the crimes for which those had suffered: but they were see nothing in the pretended copy, that can justify the never permitted to hang thus exposed all night, as this above opinion.
could have answered no purpose, either of justice or er Verse 15. And Joshua returned-unto the camp to ample, as they could not be seen in the night season. One Gilgal.] That the Israelitish army did not return to the day also was deemed enough for their exposure, it being camp ai Gilgal, till after the hanging of the five kings thought sufficient to show the public, that justice had been and the destruction of their cities, is sufficiently evident executed: and to have exhibited them longer would have from the subsequent parts of this chapter. When all this appeared to be a barbarous cruelty, which attempted to ex. business was done, and not before, they returned unto the tend punishment beyond the possible requisitions of juscamp to Gilgal. See ver. 43. This verse is omitted by the tice. "See the note on Deut. xxi. 23. Septuagint and by the Anglo-Saxon: and it does not Verse 28. That day Joshua took Makkedah) It is very appear to have existed in the ancient hexaplar versions ; possible, that Makkedah was taken on the evening of the it stands in its proper place, ver. 43. and is not only useless same day in which the miraculous solslice took place; but where it is, but appears to be an incumbrance to the narra as to the other cities mentioned in this chapter, they cer tive. Should it be considered as genuine, and in its proper tainly were subdued some days after ; as it is not possible place; I would propose that nopo Makkedah, should be that an army, exhausted as this must have been, with a read instead of busa Gilgalah, for we find from ver. 21. whole night's march, and two days' hard fighting, could that Joshua had a temporary camp there. Then Joshua have proceeded farther than Makkedah that night-the returned and all Israel with him, unto the camp to Mak- other cities were successively taken in the following days. KEDAH-after which we may supposc, that Joshua, having Verse 29. Fought against Libnah] This city was Dear Becured the cave, sent some detachments to scour the coun- Makkedah, see chap. xv. 42. and fell to the tribe of Judah, try, and cut off all the remaining straggling Canaanites; ver. 20, 42, and was given to the priests, chap, xxi. 13 when this was done, they also returned to the camp at Sennacherib besieged it, after he had been obliged to raise Makkedah, as is related, ver. 21. and when the business the siege of Lachish. See 2 Kings, xix. 8. Isa. XxxFÜ. 8
33 T Then Horam king of Gezer came up to 39 And he took it, and the king thereof, and help Lachish; and Joshua smote him and his all the cities thereof; and they smote them with people, until he had left him none remaining. the edge of the sword, and uiterly destroyed all
34 T And from Lachish Joshua passed unto the souls that were therein; he left none reEglon, and all Israel with him: and they en maining: as he had done to Hebron, so he did to camped against it, and fought against it: Debir, and to the king thereof; as he had done
35' And they took it on that day, and smote it also to Libnah, and to her king. with the edge of the sword, and all the souls that 40 | So Joshua smote all the country of were therein he utterly destroyed that day, ac- the hills, and of the south, and of the vale, cording to all that he had done to Lachish. and of the springs, and all their kings: he
36 | And Joshua went up from Eglon, and all | left none remaining, but utterly destroyed all Israel with him, unto Hebron; and they fought that breathed, as the LORD God of Israel'e comagainst it:
manded. 37 And they took it, and smote it with the 41 And Joshua smote them from Kadesh-bar. edge of the sword, and the king thereof, and all nea, even unto 'Gaza, 5 and all the country of the cities thereof, and all the souls that were Goshen, even unto Gibeon. therein; he left none remaining, according to all 42 And all these kings and their land did that he had done to Eglon; but destroyed it ut- Joshua take at one time, because the LORD terly, and all the souls that were therein. God of Israel fought for Israel.
38 T And Joshua returned, and all Israel with 43 And Joshua returned, and all Israel with him, to d Debir; and fought against it:
him, unto the camp to Gilgal.
e See Ch. 14. 13. & 15. 13. Judg. 1. 10.- See Ch. 15. 15. Judg. 1. 11.
e Deut. 20. 16, 17,- Gen. 10. 19.-- Ch. 11. 16.-h Ver. 14.
Verse 32. Lachish] It appears that this was anciently made their escape, and afterward re-occupied certain parts a very strong place-notwithstanding the people were of the land. See on ver. 36, 37. panic-struck, and the Israelites flushed with success, yet Verse 41. And all the country of Goshen] Calmet contends Joshua could not reduce it till the second day, and the king that this was the very same country in which the Hebrews of Assyria afterward was obliged to raise the siege. See dwelt before their departure from Egypt, and according to above, and see the note on ver. 3.
this hypothesis, he has constructed his map, causing it to Verse 33. Horam king of Gezer) It is likely that Ho-extend from the Nile, which was called the river of Egypt, ram was in a state of alliance with the king of Lachish; along the frontiers of the land of Cush or Arabia. It howand therefore came to his assistance
as soon as it appeared ever appears plain, that there was a city named Goshen in that he was likely to be attaeked. Joshua probably sent a. the tribe of Judah, see chap. xv. 51. and this probably detachment against him, before he was able to form a junc- gave name to the adjacent country, which may be that retion with the forces of Lachish: and utterly destroyed him ferred to above. and his army.
Verse 42. Did Joshua take at one time] That is, he deGezer is supposed to have been situated near Azotus. feated all those kings, and took all their cities in one camSee 1 Maccab. xiv. 34. It fell to the tribe of Ephraim, paign: this appears to be the rational construction of the chap. xvi. 3. but was probably taken afterward by some of Hebrew. But these conquests were so rapid and stupenthe remnant of the Canaanitish nations; for we find it dous, that they cannot be attributed either to the generalwas given by Pharaoh to his son-in-law Solomon, 1 Kings ship of Joshua, or the valour of the Israelites; and hence ix. 16. which proves that it had got out of the possession the author himself, disclaiming the merit of them, modestof the Israelites, previously to the days of Solomon. ly and piously adds, because the Lord God of Israel fought
Verse 34. Eglon) It is likely that this town was not any for Israel. It was by this aid that Joshua took all these great distance from Lachish. See on ver. 3.
kings and their land at one time-in a single campaign. Verses 36 and 37. Hebron—and the king thereof) See And when all the circumstances related in this chapter are the note on ver. 3. From ver. 23. we learn that the king properly weighed, we shall find that GOD alone could have of Hebron was one of those five whom Joshua slew and performed these works; and that both reason and piety hanged on five trees at Makkedah. How then can it be require, that to him alone they should be attributed. said that he slew the king of Hebron, when he took the city, which was some days after the transactions at Mak 1. The principal subjects of this important chapter, have kedah? Either this slaying of the king of Hebron must been considered so much in detail in the preceding notes, refer to what had already been done; or the Hebronites, that there is little room to add any thing to what has alfinding that their king fell in battle, had set up another in ready been said. The principal subject is the miracle of his place, which was the king Joshua slew after he had the sun's standing still, and to assert that all difficulties taken the city and its dependencies, as is related, ver. 37. have been removed, by the preceding notes and observa
It appears that the city of Hebron had fallen back into tions, would be to say what the writer does not believe, and the hands of the Canaanites; for it was again taken from what few readers would feel disposed to credit. Yet it is them by the tribe of Judah, Judg. i. 10. Debir had also hoped that the chief difficulties have been removed; and fallen into their hands, for it was reconquered by Olhniel, the miracle itself shown to have nothing contradictory in it. the son-in-law of Caleb, Ib. v. 11–13. The manner in If, as is generally believed, the sun and moon were obwhich Calmet accounts for this is very natural; Joshua, jects of the Canaanitish adoration, the miracle was grain his rapid conquests, contented himself with taking, de- ciously calculated to check this superstition, and to show molishing, and burning those cities : but did not garrison the Israelites, as well as the Canaanites, the vanity of such any of them, for fear of weakening his army. In several worship, and the folly of such dependence. Even their instances, no doubt, the scaltered Canaanites returned, re- gods, at the command of a servant of JEHOVAH, were peopled, and put those cities in a state of defence. Hence obliged to contribute to the destruction of their rolaries. the Israelites were obliged to reconquer them a second This methce of checking superstition, and destroying idoltime. This is a more rational way of accounting for these atry, God adopted in the plagues which he inflicted upon things, than that which supposes that the first chapter of the Egyptians: and by il, at once showed his justice and Judges gives the more detailed account of the transactions his mercy. See the concluding observations on Exod. xii, recorded here; for there it is expressly said, that these 2. The same God who appeared go signally in behalf of transactions took place after the death of Joshua, see Judg. his people of old, is still the Governor of the heavens and i. ver. 1. and consequently cannot be the same that are the earth, and if applied to, will do every thing essentially mentioned here.
necessary for the extension of his truth, and the mainteVerse 39. Destroyed all the souls)-UD Song pins nance of his religion among men. How is it that faith is tayacharimu et col nephesh. They brought every person rarely exercised in his proer and goodness? We have not, under an anathema-ihey either slew them, or reduced because we ask not:-Our experience of his goodness is them to a state of slavery. Is it reasonable to say, those contracted, because we pray little, and believe less. To were slain who were found in arms: of the others, they holy men of old, the object of faith was more obscurely remade slares ?
vealed than to us; and they had sewer helps to their faith; Verse 40. All the country of the hills] See the note on yet they believed more, and witnessed greater displays of Deut. i. 7.
the power and mercy of their Maker. Reader, have faith Destroyed all that breathed] Every person found in in God! and know, that to excite, exercise, and crown arms, who continued to resist-these were all destroyed this, he has given thee his Word and his Spirit
, and learn those who submitted were spared; but many, no douby, I to know, that without him you can do nothing.
An account of the
with them, much people, even as the sand that
is upon the sea-shore in multitude, with horses The king of Haror, Madon, Shimron, and Achhaph, with those of the monn. tains, plains, &c. and various chlefs of the Canaanies and Amories, confeie
and chariots very inany. rate against Israel, 1-3. They pitch their tents at the waters of Merom, 1,5. 5 And when all these kings were 'met togeThe Lord encourages Joshua, 6. He attacks and disconfius them, 7, 8. Houghs all their horns, and burns all their chariots, 9. Takes and burns several of ther, they came and pitched together at the watheir cities, 10-13. The Israelito take the spoile, 14, 15, country taken by Joshna, 16--18. The Gibeonites and Hivites only, make ters of Merom, to fight against Israel. peace with Israel, 16._All the rest resist, and are overcome, 9). Joshua cuts off 6 And the LORD said unto Joshua, . Be not The Anakim, 21, 2 The conquered lands are given to Lerael, and the war is concluded, 23.
afraid because of them: for to-morrow about An. Exod. Isr.
ND it came to pass, when Jabin this time will I deliver them up all slain before 41. Anno ante I Olyinp. 674.
things, that he i sent to Jobab king of their chariots with fire. Madon, and to the king of Shimron, and to the 7 So Joshua came, and all the people of war king of Achshaph,
with him, against them by the waters of Merom 2 And to the kings that were on the north of suddenly, and they fell upon them. the mountains, and of the plains south of Chin 8 And the LORD delivered them into the hand neroth, and in the valley, and in the borders m of of Israel, who smote them, and chased them Dor on the west,
unto u great Zidon, and unto' * Misrephoth3 And to the Canaanite on the east, and on maim, * and unto the valley of Mizpeh eastward; the west, and to the Amorite, and the Hittite, and they smote them, uniil they left them none and the Perizzite, and the Jebusite in the moun- remaining, tains, " and to the Hivite under · Hermon p in 9 And Joshua did unto them as the LORD the land of Mizpeh.
bade him: he houghed their horses, and burnt 4 And they went out, they and all their hosts their chariots with fire.
i Ch. 10. 3.-k Ch. 19.15.-! Namb. 34. 11.-m Ch. 17.11. Judg. 1. 27. 1 Kings 4. II. Judg. 3.3-0 Ch. 13. 11.-p Gen 31. 49.-9 Gen. 22. 17. & 32. 12 Jug 7. 12.
u Or, Zidon-rabbah - Ch. 13. 6. -* Oi, salt pits.-Reb burrange- Vete
NOTES OF CHAPTER XI.
And in the borders of Dor] Calmet supposes this to Verse 1. Jabin king of Hazor] It is probable that Ja mean the champaign country of the higher and lower bin was the common name of all the kings of Hazor. Galilee, on to the Mediterranean sea, and to the village or That king, by whom the Israelites were kept in a state of city of Dor, which was the furthermost city of Phænicia. blavery for twenty years, and was defeated by Deborah Dor was in the lot of the half tribe of Manasseh, and was and Barak, was called by this name, see Judg. iv. 2, 3, 23. situated on the Mediterranean sea, three leagues froma The name signifies wise or intelligent. The city of Hazor | Cæsarea, and seven from Ptolemais. was situated above the lake Semechon, in upper Galilee, Verse 3. The Canaanite on the east, &c.] Those who according to Josephus, Antiq. lib. v. c. 6. It was given to dwelt on the borders of Jordan, south of the sea of Tiberias. the tribe of Naphtali, Josh. xix. 36. who, it appears, did On the west) Those were the Phænicians, who dwelt on not possess it long; for though it was burnt by Joshua, the coast of the Mediterranean sea, from Dor north warda ver. 11. it is likely that the Canaanites rebuilt it, and re on the way to mount Libanus. Calmet. stored the ancient government, as we find a powerful king The Hirite under Hermon) Mount Hermon was to the chere about one hundred and thirty years after the death of east of Libanus, and the fountains of Jordan: it is ibe Joshua, Judg. iv. 1. It is the same that was taken by same with Syrion, and Baal-Hermon, in Scripture. Tiglath-pileser, together with Kadesh, to which it is con The land of Mizpeh.] There were several cities of this tiguous, see 2 Kings xv. 29. It is supposed to have given name: one in the tribe of Judah, chap. xv. 38.; a second name to the Valley or Plain of Hazor or Nazor, situated in the tribe of Benjamin, chap. xviii. 26. ; a third beyond between it and Kadesh, where Jonathan and Mattathias Jordan, in the tribe of Gad; and a fourth beyond Jordan, defeated the armies of Demetrius, and slew three thousand in the tribe of Manasseh, which is that mentioned in the of their men, 1 Maccab. xi. 63–74. It was, in ancient text, see Wells' Geography. Calmet supposes this Mizpeh times, the metropolitan city of all that district, and a num to be the place where Laban and Jacob made their cove ber of petty kings or chieftains were subject to its king, nant, and from which circumstance it took its name. See see ver. 10. and it is likely that it was those tributary kings Gen. xxxi. 48, 49. who were summoned to attend the king of Hazor on this Verse 4. Much people, even as the sand] This form of occasion; for Joshua having conquered the southern
part speech, by some called hyperbole, conveys simply the idea of the promised land, the northern parts seeing themselves of a vast or unusual number-a number, of which no exposed, made now a common interest, and joining with regular estimate could be easily formed. Josephus, wbo Jabin, endeavoured to put a stop to the progress of the Is- seldom finds difficulties in such cases, and makes no scruraelites. See Calmet.
ple of often speaking without book, tells us that the allied Jobab king of Madon] This royal city is nowhere armies amounted to 300,000 foot, 10,000 horse, and 20,000 else mentioned in Scripture, except in chap. xii. 19. The chariots of war, Antiq. lib. v. c. 1. Vatican copy of the Septuagint reads Mapwr, Maron, That chariots were frequently used in war, all the rewhich, if legitimate, Calmet thinks may mean, Maronia, cords of antiquity prove: but it is generally supposed, that or Marath, in Phænicia, to the north of mount Libanus. among the Canaanites they were armed with iron scythes The Hebrew text reads pro Meron, chap. xii. 20. after fastened to their poles, and to the nates of their wheela Shimron, which is probably the same with 170 Madon, Terrible things are spoken of these, and the havoc made ver. 19. the word having casually dropped out of the pre- by them when furiously driven among the ranks of infantry. ceding place into the latter, and the resh, and daleth, Of what sort the cavalry was, we know not; but from the interchanged, which might have easily happened from the account here given, we may see what great advantages great similarity of the letters. Hence Calmet conjectures these allies possessed over the Israelites, whose armies that it may be the same place with no Meroz, Judg. v. 23. consisted of infantry only.
King of Shimron] This city is supposed to be the same Verse 5. The waters of Merom) Where these waters with Symira, in Cælo-Syria, joined to Maron or Marath, were, interpreters are not agreed. Whether they were the by Pliny and Pomponius Mela. It cannot be Samaria, waters of the lake Semechon, or the waters of Megiddo, as that had its name long after, by Omri, king of Israel. mentioned Judg. v. 19. cannot be easily determined. The See 1 Kings xvi. 24.
latter is the more probable opinion. King of Achshaph] Calmet supposes this to have been Verse 6. Be not afraid of them! To meet such a forthe city Ecdippé, mentioned by Pliny, Ptolemy, Jose- midable host, so well equipped, in their own country, furphus, and Eusebius. The latter places it within ten miles nished with all that was necessary to supply a numerous of Ptolemais, on the road to Tyre. It fell to the tribe of army, required more than ordinary encouragement in Asher. See chap. xix. 25.
Joshua's circumstances. This communication from God Verse 2. On the north of the mountains) Or the moun was highly necessary, in order to prevent the people from tain-probably Hermon, or some mountain not far from desponding on the eve of a conflict in which their all was the lake of Gennesareth.
at stake. And of the plains) That is, the valleys of the above Verse 7. By the waters of Merom suddenly) Joshua mountains, which had the sea of Chinnereth, or Genne- being apprized of this grand confederation, lost no time, Bareth on the south.
but marched to meet them; and before they could have Chinneroth] This city is supposed by St. Jerom, and supposed him at hand, fell suddenly upon them and put several others since his time, to be the same as was after them to the rout. ward called Tiberias. From this city or village, the sea Verse 8. Great Zidon) If this were the same with the of Chinn eroth, or Gennesareth, probably had its name. Sidon of the ancients, it was illustrious long before the