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Repos. Vol. I. p. 97. We earnestly recommend the rusal of the whole article.
A few words more concerning the book of Jasher seem necessary to a complete and harmonious view. The word jasher 70 has several different meanings. It means the just
, and has been interpreted by some as denoting some good man who acquired that title; and a book of his is therefore called the book of Jasher or of the Just. But the word is also a verb, and has the meaning of he sung, and was a suitable one to stand at the beginning of a poem.
And as the Hebrews were accustomed to name books from the first word, Jasher would be the name of any poem that began in this way.
That the author wrote what he expected others to believe, as literally true, no one can presume for a moment. The poetry of the ancients, especially the Orientals, dealt in the wildest and most extravagant imagery.
Our Bible is full of examples, both in_the poetical books, and in passages taken from them. Let the reader consult portions of Isaiah, Ezekiel, etc., and the Gospels and Epistles where their imagery is quoted : “The sun shall be darkened, the moon shall not give her light, the stars shall fall from heaven,” &c., &c.
"The heavens shall pass away with a great noise; and the elements shall melt with fervent heat,” &c.
Surely the standing still of the sun and moon does not excel this. Such passages as this have been introduced, by persons of imaginative tendencies, who, in an early day, had "the handling of the word of God.” No one need fear that the grand and beautiful edifice of divine revelation will be thrown down, by the removal of any of these spurious props. It receives no real support from them, while its beauty, symmetry and order, are greatly impaired.
For Geographical references, let the reader consult the Geographical Index, which will enable him to turn to any locality in this part of the Bible.
SECTION IX.- CITIES TAKEN AND DESTROYED.
JOS. X. 28. And that day Joshua took 36. And Joshua went up from Makkedah, and smote it with the Eglon, and all Israel with him, unedge of the sword, and the king to Hebron; and they fought against thereof he utterly destroyed, them, it: and all the souls that were therein;
37. And they took it, and smote he let none remain: and he did to
it with the edge of the sword, and the king of Makkedah as he did the king thereof, and all the cities unto the king of Jericho.
thereof, and all the souls that were 29. Then Joshua passed from therein : he left none remuining, Makkedah, and all Israel with hlm, according to all that he had done unto Libnah, and fought against to Eglon, but destroyed it utterly, Libnah:
and all the souls that were therein. 30. And the Lord delivered it
38. And Joshua returned, and also, and the king thereof, into the hand of Israel; and he smote it
all Israel with him to Debir, and with the edge of the sword, and all fought against it: the souls that were therein; he let 39. And he took it, and the king none remain in it; but did unto thereof, and all the cities thereof, the king thereof as he did unto the and they smote them with the edge king of Jericho.
of the sword, and utterly destroyed 31. And Joshua passed from all the souls that were therein; he Libnah, and all Israel with him, left none remaining : as he had unto Lachish, and encamped against done to Hebron, so he did to Deit, and fought against it:
bir, and to the king thereof, as he 32. And the Lord delivered La- had done also to Libnah, and to her chish into the hand of Israel, which king. took it on the second day, and 40. So Joshua Smote all the smote it with the edge of the sword, country of the hills, and of the and all the souls that were therein, south, and of the vale, and of the according to all that he had done to springs, and all their kings: he left Libnah.
none remaining, but utterly de33. Then Horam king of Gezer stroyed all that breathed, as the came up to help Lachish: and Lord God of Israel commanded. Joshua smote him and his people,
41. And Joshua smote them until he had left him none remain- from Kadesh-barnea even unto Gaing 34. And from Lachish, Joshua
za, and all the country of Goshen,
even unto Gibeon. passed unto Eglon, and all Israel with him; and they encamped their land did Joshua take at one
42. And all these kings, and against it, and fought against it:
36. And they took it on that day, time, because the Lord God of Is. and smote it with the edge of the rael fought for Israel. sword ; and all the souls that were 43. And Joshua returned, and therein he utterly destroyed that all Israel with him, unto the camp day, according to all that he had to Gilgal. done to Lachish.
This passage gives an account of the several cities taken by Joshua, after he had routed and destroyed the army they had raised to oppose him. He destroys the cities that had raised the army, and several others that lay in his way, some of which came to the assistance of the former.
Makkedah lay near the route of the retreat, as we have seen, and not far from Beth-horon. The hiding place of the kings was near this place; and the necessity of watching the cave was the occasion of there being a camp near the
same spot. The king of Hebron is mentioned as being destroyed with the city. But the king of Hebron had been destroyed with those that hid in the cave! This is a "contradiction.” At the same time, it is highly probable, that when one king was slain, another took his place, generally his son, and so the contradiction disappears !
Joshua destroyed these cities utterly. There is nothing in the original that answers to utterly. But the sense of that term is thought to be included in the word destroy: - It is the word that has been noticed before. It means to devote; and it means to destroy, as the result of being devoted. The Lord devoted these cities, but Joshua destroyed them. To carry out the true meaning of the first of these things, it was necessary that the last be thorough and complete. No doubt this is the reason why our translators introduced the qualifying term "utterly.” It is important that the two senses of the word for devote and destroy be not confounded, as they appear to be in some instances in the English version.
In the passage before us we find Debir, as the name of a man, and the name of a city. That the one was named from the other, we can not say; but the supposition is a reasonable one. And when it is certain that scores of names of men and cities found in the Bible are identical, what must we think of the following from a learned divine ? “With the exception of Ir David,
city of David, Sion, the writer does not recall any city of Palestine named after a man.” Grove in Smith's Dictionary of the Bible. One would think the learned author inight have "recalled” the following; "The children of Dan went up to fight against Leshem, and took it, and smote it * *** *** and called Leshem, Dan, after the name of Dan, their father.” Hebron was called Mamre, from one of Abraham's confederates. It was afterwards called Kirjath-arba, or shorter, Arba, from a man of that name. Haran was evidently named from a brother of Abram. . Cain built a city and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch. Shechem was named from the son of Hamor. Sidon from the first-born of Canaan, etc., etc.
The limits of this campaign of Joshua are given thus: From Kedesh to Gaza, and from Gaza to Gibeon. It commenced at Gibeon, and advanced westward to Bethhoron the upper. It there turned south, and proceeded in that direction to Hebron, and so on to Kadesh. From Kadesh, Joshua and his army traverse the southern border of the land to Gaza, near to Egypt. From that point he makes his way back, through the district of Goshen, to Gibeon from which he started. The line of march was in form nearly á triangle. This being completed, the Hebrew leader returns to Gilgal in the valley of the Jordan. SECTION X. - A GENERAL UPRISING AND THE RESULT.
JOS. XI. 1. And it came to pass, when | east and on the west, and to the Jabin king of Hazor had heard Amorite, and the Hittite, and the those things, that he sent to Jobab Perizzite, and the Jebusite in the king of Madon and to the king of mountains, and to the Hivite under Shimron, and to the king of Ach- Hermon in the land of Mizpeh. варh,
4. And they went out, they and 2. And to the kings that were on all their hosts with them, much the north of the mountains, and of people, even as the sand that is upthe plains south of Chinneroth, and on the sea shore in multitude, with in the valley, and in the borders horses and chariots very many. of Dor on the west,
6. And when all these kings were 8. And to the Canaanite on the I met together, they came and pitch
ed together at the waters of Merom, sword; for Hazor before-time wag to fight against Israel.
the head of all those kingdoms. 6. And the Lord said unto Jo- 11. And they smote all the souls shua, Be not afraid because of them; that were therein with the edge of for to-morrow, about this time, will the sword, utterly destroying I deliver them up all slain before them; there was not any left to Israel: thou shalt hough their hor- breathe: and he burnt Hazor with ses and burn their chariots with fire. fire
12. And all the cities of those 7. So Joshua came, and all the kings, and all the kings of them, people of war with him, against did Joshua take, and smote them them by the waters of Merom sud. with the edge of the sword ; and denly; and they fell upon them. he utterly destroyed them, as Mo
8. And the Lord delivered them ses, the servant of the Lord cominto the hand of Israel, who smote manded. them, and chased them unto great 13. But as for the cities that Zidon, and unto Misrephoth-maim, stood still in their strength, Israel and unto the valley of Mizpeh east- burned none of them, save Hazor word; and they smote them, until only; that did Joshua burn. they left them none remaining. 14. And all the spoil of these
9. And Joshua did unto them as cities, and the cattle, the children the Lord bade him: he houghed of Israel took for a prey unto them. their horses, and burnt their char selves; but every man they smote iots with fire.
with the edge of the sword, until 10. And Joshua at that time they had destroyed them, neither turned back, and took Hazor, and left they any to breathe. smote the king thereof with the
Hazor was an important place; and the reason of its taking the lead in this war, is indicated in the 10th verse ; · Hazor before time was the head of all those kingdoms." And though the intimation is, that Hazor had in some degree lost its prestige, it is plain that, of the cities mentioned in this connection, it was still the most important. These places lay in a different direction from those mentioned in the preceding chapter. Indeed, the direction was exactly opposite.
The place of the great battle fought on this occasion, was lake Merom. This was one of the three lakes formed by the river Jordan, and through which it passes. They are Merom, Genezereth, and Asphaltites. In the dry season the first is more a swamp than a lake.
Joshua was commanded to hough the horses of the enemy, and to burn the chariots with fire. It was not allowed to the Hebrews to have many horses; and char