21:1-3. Opposition of Arad.

e  n  1. Aggression of Arad.
     o  2. Vow made.
     o  3-. Vow heard.
    n  -3. Destruction of Arad.

1452 B.C.
Numbers 21)

1: And when king Arad (Heb. = a wild ass. Cp. Josh. 12:14) the Canaanite, which dwelt in the south (= the Negeb, see Gen. 12:9; 13:1,3; 24:62. Num. 13:17), heard tell that Israel as entering by the way of the spies (see 13:21 &c. = "the way of the Atharim" Sept. also renders it, as a proper name; probably the name of the caravan route); then he fought against Israel, and took some of them prisoners.

2: And Israel made a solemn vow to the Lord (Yahaveh), and said, If You will indeed deliver this people into my hand, then I will utterly destroy their cities.

3: And the Lord listened to the voice of Israel, and delivered up the Canaanites into Israel's hand;

and they utterly destroyed them and their cities (these destroyed after Israel came into the land; cp. Josh.12:14. Judg. 1:16,17): and he called the name of the place Hormah (= utter destruction).

4: And they journeyed from mount Hor by the way of the Red sea, to compass the land of Edom:

and the soul of the People was much discouraged (= grieved or impatient) because of the way.
5: And the People spoke against God (they had lost sight of the covenant God, Yahaveh), and against Moses, Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? for there is no bread, neither is there any water; and our soul (= we, selves) loathes this light bread.

6-9. The Fiery Serpents.

e  p  6. Fiery serpents.
     q  7. Prayer made.
    p  8. The bronze serpent.
     q  9. Prayer answered.

6: And the Lord sent fiery serpents among the People, and they bit the People (= burning. Heb. nachesn sarphm. Fig. Metonymy [of Effect], because the effect of the bite was a burning sensation. Heb. sarph = to burn down. The Seraphim so called in Isa. 6:2, because they were burning ones: hence the name for these serpents.In the same way nchsh, shining one, is also used for serpents, because they are shining ones in appearance. See Gen.3:1.); and much people of Israel died.

7: Therefore the People came to Moses, and said, We have sinned, for we have spoken against the Lord, and against you; pray to the Lord, that He take away the serpents from us. And Moses prayed for the People.

8: And the Lord said to Moses, Make you a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looks upon it, shall live.

9: And Moses made a serpent of bronze (= Heb. nachash, a shining thing of brass, as in Deut. 8:15. 2 Kings 18:4,&c: so that nachash [shining] is synonymous with saraph [burning], and both words are used of serpents), and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of bronze, he lived (cp. John 3:14,15).

10-16-. To Oboth and Arnon.

10: And the sons of Israel set forward, and encamped in Oboth (= bottles, water-skins).
11: And they journeyed from Oboth, and encamped at Ije-abarim (= fountain of gardens, ruins of regions beyond), in the wilderness which is before Moab, toward the sun-rising.
12: From that place they removed, and pitched in the valley of Zared (= exuberant in growth).
13: From that place they removed, and encamped on the other side of Arnon (= roaring), which is in the wilderness that comes out of the coasts of the Amorites: for Arnon is the border of Moab, between Moab and the Amorites.
14: Wherefore it is said in the book of the wars of the Lord (this may commence the quotation thus:-"the wars of Yehovah wherewith Eth-Vhb by the Red Sea [or with a whirlwind. Heb. Supha. Cp. Amos 1:14. Isa. 66:15. Nah. 1:3. Jer. 4:13] and by the brooks of Arnon" Eth-Vhb may be the proper name of the king of the Amorites, who took Heshbon, as in v.26. A city situated as described here, and as in Deut. 1:1. Cp. 1 Kings 9:26), What He did in the Red sea, and in the brooks of Arnon (= the outpouring of torrents),
15: And at the stream of the brooks that goes down to the dwelling of Ar (= a city), and lies upon the border of Moab." (= of his father)
16: And from that place toward Beer (= a well. No mention of Beer in the list of journeys in chapter 33):

-16-20. Event: Giving of water.

that is the well whereof the Lord spoke to Moses, Gather the People together, and I will give them water.
17: Then Israel sang this song (a song of Moses, not "the song of Moses". See Ex.15:1), Spring up, O well; sing you all to it:
18: The princes dug the well, the nobles of the People dug it, by the direction of the lawgiver, with their staves. And from the wilderness toward Mattanah (= gift of Yahaveh. No mention is made of any of these places in the itinerary in ch. 33. Why not supply "the waters or streams went" into all these places? See v.16. The structure shows the scope of this member to be an "event"; "journeys" are the subject of the preceding member. Cp. note on Ex. 15:27. Note the Alternation which gives the interpretation:

     The princess dug the well;
      The nobles of the People dug it,
     With the lawgiver
      they dug it with their staves.):

19: And from Mattanah to Nahaliel (= torrents of God): and from Nahaliel to Bamoth (= heights of Baal):
20: And from Bamoth in the valley, that is in the field of Moab, to the top of Pisgah (= a cleft), which looks toward Jeshimon (= a desolation).

21-31. Opposition of Sihon.

e4  r  21,22. Israel's demand.
     s  23. Sihon's denial.
    r  24. Sihon. Defeat.
     s  25-31. Israel. Dwelling.

21: And Israel sent messengers to Sihon (= tempestuous) king of the Amorites, saying,
22: Let us pass through your land: we will not turn into the fields, or into the vineyards; we will not drink of the waters of the well: but we will go along by the king's high way, until we be past your borders.
23: And Sihon would not suffer Israel to pass through his border (Fig. Tapienosis, much more meant, even armed opposition): but Sihon gathered all his people together, and went out against Israel into the wilderness: and he came to Jahaz (= to stamp, trodden down, i.e. threshing-floor), and fought against Israel.
24: And Israel smote him with the edge of the sword, and possessed his land from Arnon to Jabbok, even to the children of Ammon: for the border of the children of Ammon was strong.

25-31. Possession.

s  t  25. Dwelling. Particular.
    u  26. Doings.
    u  27-30. Sayings.
   t  31. Dwelling. General.

25: And Israel took all these cities: and Israel dwelt in all the cities of the Amorites, in Heshbon (= contrivance; by implication intelligence), and in all the villages thereof (Heb. = daughters. Fig. Prosopopoeia).
26: For Heshbon was the city of Sihon the king of the Amorites, who had fought against the former king of Moab, and taken all his land out of his hand, even to Arnon.
27: Wherefore they that speak in proverbs say, Come into Heshbon, let the city of Sihon be built and prepared:
28: For there is a fire gone out of Heshbon, a flame from the city of Sihon: it has consumed Ar of Moab, and the lords (Heb. Baalim) of the high places of Arnon (cp. 22:41 and Jer. 48:25).
29: Woe to you, Moab! you are undone, O people of Chemosh (= to subdue, the powerful; Kemosh, the god of the Moabites): He has given his sons that escaped, And his daughters, into captivity to Sihon king of the Amorites.
30: We (Israel) have shot at them; Heshbon is perished even to Dibon (= pining, wasting), The women also even to Nophah (= a gust, only mention of this word mentioned in the Bible), And even the men to Medeba (= a water of quiet. V. 30 rendered according to the "extraordinary points" of the Sopherim).

31: Thus Israel dwelt in the land of the Amorites.

32-35. To Jaazer. Opposition of Og.

32: And Moses sent to spy out Jaazer (= Yahaveh help), and they took the villages thereof, and drove out the Amorites that were there.
33: And they turned and went up by the way of Bashan (= fruitful): and Og (= round gyrate, long necked giant) the king of Bashan went out against them, he, and all his people, to the battle at Edrei (= mighty, stronghold).
34: And the Lord said to Moses, Fear him not: for I have delivered him into your hand, and all his people, and his land; and you shall do to him as you did to Sihon king of the Amorites (cp. Ps. 135:11), which dwelt at Heshbon.
35: So they smote him, and his sons, and all his people, until there was none left him alive: and they possessed his land.

Next page

Home