« ElőzőTovább »
Of the Places mentioned in the first Book of Samuel, from
Saul's being anointed King, to his Death. 1.
AFTER this the Philistines came no more into the coast of Of the land of Zuph.
Israel, all the days of Samuel. And the cities, which the Philistines had taken from Israel, were restored to Israel. Chap. vii. ver. 13, 14. Notwithstanding which, Samuel being grown old, and his sons not walking in his ways, the elders of Israel wait on Samuel at Ramah, and desire him to make a King over them, like as all other nations had. Hereupon the sacred history takes notice, upon what account Saul happened to come to Samuel, and how he was anointed by Samuel King over Israel, chap. ix-x. ver. 1. As for the land of Shalisha and Shalim, mentioned chap. ix. ver, 4. it being no where else mentioned, nothing of certainty, or tolerable probability, can be said of them. As for the land of Zuph, ver. 5. it is evident, that thereby is denoted that part of mount Ephraim, where stood Ramah, the city of Samuel, which was thence called Ramathaim-Zophim.
In chap. x. ver. 2. we have mention made of Rachel's Of Rachel's sepulchre, where it is expressly said to be in the border of sepulchre.
Benjamin, and near a place then called Zelzah. Of this sepulchre, see my Geography of the New Testament, Part I.
In the latter end of this chapter we read, that Saul was Of Gibeah. publickly made King at Mizpeh ; after which he went
home to Gibeah, a city of Benjamin, and which, as it was his native place, so it was afterwards made his royal seat; whence it is styled in Scripture, Gibeah of Saul, as well as Gibeah of Benjamin. It was here, that the concubine of the Levite was abused; which proved almost the entire ruin of this tribe of Benjamin. It lay to the north of Jerusalem, being between twenty and thirty furlongs from it. (Jos. Ant. v. chap. 2. and Jewish War vi. chap. 2.) It stood on an hill, as the name imports.
Not long after this, Jabesh-Gilead being besieged by CHAP. 1. the Ammonites, was timely relieved by Saul, and a great slaughter made of the enemy. The very name of this place imports, that it lay in Gilead, and so on the east of Of JabeshJordan, and adjoining to the country of the Ammonites who besieged it. It was a town in Eusebius and Jerom's times, being six miles distant from Pella, and standing upon an hill, as one goes to Gerasa. It is sometimes si.nply called Jabesh in Scripture; and the inhabitants thereof are remarked in the sacred history, for their grateful remembrance of this benefit they received from Saul, when after his death, having heard that the Philistines had fastened his body to the wall of Bethshan, they went all night, and took the body of Saul and the bodies of his sons from the wall of Bethshan, and came to Jabesh, and burnt them there, and took their bones, and buried them under a tree at Jabesh, and fasted seven days. Chap. xxxi. ver. 10-13. For which their gratitude they were highly commended by King David, 2 Sam. ii. 5-7.
In chap. xiii. ver. 5. we read, that the Philistines came up, and pitched in Michmash. This place, the text tells of Mich
mash. us, was eastward from Beth-aven. And Eusebius and Jerom inform us, that in their time it was a great town, retaining its old name, and lying nine miles from Jerusalem, near to Ramah. But now these two accounts are irreconcileable; and the fault seems to be either in the present reading of the Hebrew Text, or our rendering of it. The Seventy Interpreters read it Bethoron, and the Syriac and Arabic Interpreters read it Bethel; and Michmash might lie east of Bethel, and certainly did lie east of Bethoron the Nether (which the LXX. understood); but it could not lie east of Beth-aven (taken as distinct from Bethel), and yet be so near Rama or Jerusalem as Eusebius and Jerom say. If therefore Beth-aven be the true reading, then the Hebrew word rendered by us eastward ought to be rendered before, or (as it is by the LXX.) over-against ; and so both accounts are very reconcileable, as may be seen by the map,
In the same chap. xiii. ver. 3. we read, that Jonathan, 6.
the son of Saul, smote the garrison of the Philistines that was in Geba. Now among the cities of Benjamin mentioned Josh. xviii. we read of Gaba, Gibeath, and Gibeon; and Josh. xxi. ver, 17. we read, that the two cities given to the children of Aaron out of the tribe of Benjamin, were Gibeon and Geba. Whence it is not to be doubted, but that Gaba, chap. xviii. was the same with Geba, chap. xxi. Some have been of opinion, that this Geba or Gaba was also the same with Gibeah; but this opinion is discountenanced, not only by Gibeath (which in all probability was the same with Gibeah) being expressly named as a distinct city from Gaba, (Josh. xviii.) but also by the circumstances mentioned in this 13th chapter of 1 Samuel, and elsewhere. For we read, chap. x. ver. 26. that Gibeah was the city where Saul dwelt, and hence, chap. xi. ver. 4. it is called Gibeah of Saul; and agreeably, chap. xiii. ver. 2. we read, that Saul chose him three thousand men of Israel ; whereof two thousand were with Saul in Michmash and mount Bethel, and a thousand with Jonathan in Gibeah of Benjamin, i. e. in the royal city of Saul. And in ver. 3. we presently read next, that Jonathan smote the garrison of the Philistines that was in Geba: which was therefore distinct from Gibeah, it being not likely, that the Philistines should have a garrison in the city where Saul was wont to reside. The words Geba and Gibeah do in the Hebrew tongue denote an hill; and hence some understand, by Geba in this place, some hill on the coasts of the Philistines. So the word Gibeah is rendered in our Bible, chap. vii. ver. 1. The men of Kirjath-jearim brought the ark of the Lord into the house of Abinadab in the hill, which others render in Gibeah; and so it is rendered in
our own Bible, 2 Sam. vi. 4. 7. The other places mentioned in chap. xiii. have been alof the land ready spoken of, except the land of Shual, ver. 17. (which and valley seems to have been that part of Ephraim which lay about of Zeboim. Ophrah, the city of Gideon, before b spoken of) and the
b Chap. vi. §. 7. of Vol. I. Part II.
valley of Zeboim. Of this last name we read of two places CHAP. I.
SECT. II. in Scripture; one whereof was one of the four cities destroyed with Sodom; the other appertained to the tribe of Benjamin, as we learn from Neh. xi. 34. And this, without doubt, is the Zeboim here meant, which gave name to the adjoining valley, called here the valley of Zeboim.
In chap. xiv. we have mention made of a place called 8. Migron, (ver. 2.) and two rocks, one called Bozez, the Of Migron,
Bozez, and other Seneh. Migron was not far from Gibeah, as is Seneh. plain from ver. 2; and as to the two rocks, the text expressly says, that the forefront of the one was situate northward over against Michmash, and the other southward over against Gibeah, ver. 5.
In ver. 47. of this chapter we are informed of the power 9. of Saul, that he fought against all his enemies; amongst Of Zobah. whom are mentioned the Kings of Zobah. That the country of Zobah pertained to the Syrians, is evident from 2 Sam. x. 6, 8. where we read expressly of the Syrians of Zobah; and from their being hired by the Ammonites, (as is mentioned in the same place,) it appears, that Zobah lay in the parts of Syria adjoining to the Ammonites. And this is further confirmed from 2 Sam. viii. 3. compared with 1 Chron. xviii. 3. where we are informed, that David smote the King of Zobah unto Hamath, as he went to establish his dominion by the river Euphrates; and 2 Chron. viii. 3. we read, that Solomon went to Hamath-Zobah, and prevailed against it, and there built Tadmor, or Palmyra. From comparing together these several texts of Scripture, it seems clear, that the kingdom of Zobah lay on the borders of Nephtali, and the half tribe of Manasseh beyond Jordan, and so between the land of Israel and the river Euphrates, stretching from the neighbourhood of the Ammonites, to the land of Hamath. Hence Sabe and Barathena, mentioned by Ptolemy as cities of Arabia Deserta, in the confines of Palmyrene, seem to have been no other than Zobah and Berothai men
PART IIf. tioned in the Scriptures, 2 Sam. viii. 8. See more, chap.
ii. $. 29
10. In 1 Sam. $v. we read, that Saul was by God's direction Of Telaim.
sent to destroy the Amalekites. To which end he gathered the Israelites together to Telaim, which in all probability was the same place with Telem, reckoned among the cities of Judah, Josh. xv. 24. And this place was very proper for this purpose, as lying in the south part of the tribe of Judah, and so in the part adjoining to the
Amalekites, as well as Edomites. 11. Saul having smitten the Amalekites, and took their Of the city Carmel. King, came to Carmel, ver. 12. whereby is to be under
stood in this text, not the famous mountain so called, but a city of the south part of the tribe of Judah, mentioned Josh. xv. 55, and which seems to have given name to the territory round it. Of this city or country was Nabal, the husband of Abigail, whom David married; and from chap. xxv. we find that it lay in the south parts of Judah. Eusebius and Jerom tell us, that there was in their time a town, called Carmelia, ten miles from Hebron to the east, and wherein the Romans kept a garrison, which might very well be the same with the Carmel here men
tioned. 12. In chap. xvi. Samuel is sent by God to Bethlehem, to of Bethle- anoint David. I have spoken of this place in chap. ii.
f. 3. of our Saviour's Journeyings, or the first part of my Geography of the New Testament, it being the birthplace of our blessed Saviour, as well as of King David, from whom our Saviour was descended according to the flesh. To what is there said, I shall add here, that this place is otherwise called Ephrath, or Ephratah; and so sometimes Bethlehem-Ephratah, sometimes BethlehemJudah, namely, to distinguish it from another Bethlehem, lying in the tribe of Zabulon. It lies about six miles from Jerusalem to the south, or south-west, in the way to Hebron, as Eusebius and Jerom tell us; who add, that the monument of Jesse, the father of David; was shewn