Joshua 13:19, 20: The Inheritance of Reuben, Part 2

Verse 19:[1] (Num. 32:37) And Kirjathaim, and (Num. 32:38) Sibmah, and Zareth-shahar in the mount of the valley…

[In the mount of the valley[2] (thus Montanus, Pagnine, Munster, Tigurinus)] In the mount of the plain (Jonathan). Which was situated on the mount of the plain, that is, on a hillock, which is in the plain (Vatablus). In the mountains of that valley (Junius and Tremellius). It signifies the valley of mount Abarim, or Nebo, in which God willed Moses to be buried, lest the Israelites, being more dutiful than was fitting, might bring that into the Holy Land; which it ought not to reach. For Beth-peor follows here, which was a place near to that valley in which Moses was buried, Deuteronomy 34:1-6 (Masius). He says that these cities was positioned in the mount of the valley to distinguish them for those that were in the plain, which were treated in verses 16 and 17 (Bonfrerius out of Masius). Now, that in the mount of the valley pertains to all the cities that were mentioned after Heshbon (Masius).

In the mount of the valley: In the mountain bordering upon that valley, which then was famous among the Israelites, whether that where Moses was buried, which was near to the place here following, Beth-peor, Deuteronomy 34:1, 6, or some other. And this clause is thought to belong to all the cities now mentioned.

 

Verse 20:[3] And Beth-peor, and (Deut. 3:17; Josh. 12:3) Ashdoth-pisgah (or, springs of Pisgah[4]), and Beth-jeshimoth…

[Ashdoth, Pisgah] But the rest join these words; Ashdoth-pisgah (Junius and Tremellius, Vatablus, Bonfrerius, Masius). See Deuteronomy 3:17 (Vatablus).

[1] Hebrew: וְקִרְיָתַ֣יִם וְשִׂבְמָ֔ה וְצֶ֥רֶת הַשַּׁ֖חַר בְּהַ֥ר הָעֵֽמֶק׃

[2] Hebrew: בְּהַ֥ר הָעֵֽמֶק׃.

[3] Hebrew: וּבֵ֥ית פְּע֛וֹר וְאַשְׁדּ֥וֹת הַפִּסְגָּ֖ה וּבֵ֥ית הַיְשִׁמֽוֹת׃

[4] Hebrew: וְאַשְׁדּ֥וֹת הַפִּסְגָּ֖ה.

2 thoughts on “Joshua 13:19, 20: The Inheritance of Reuben, Part 2

  1. Matthew Henry: ‘We have here the lot of the tribe of Reuben, Jacob’s firstborn, who, though he had lost the dignity and power which pertained to the birthright, yet, it seems, had the advantage of being first served. Perhaps those of that tribe had an eye to this in desiring to be seated on that side Jordan, that, since they could not expect the benefit of the best lot, they might have the credit of the first.’

  2. Matthew Henry: ‘Within the lot of this tribe was that Mount Pisgah from the top of which Moses took his view of the earthly Canaan and his flight to the heavenly. And not far off thence Elijah was when he was fetched up to heaven in a chariot of fire. The separation of this tribe from the rest, by the river Jordan, was that which Deborah lamented; and the preference they gave to their private interests above the public was what she censured, Judges 5:15, 16. In this tribe lay Heshbon and Sibmah, famed for their fruitful fields and vineyards. See Isaiah 16:8, 9; Jeremiah 48:32. This tribe, with that of Gad, was sorely shaken by Hazael king of Syria (2 Kings 10:33), and afterwards dislodged and carried into captivity, twenty years before the general captivity of the ten tribes by the king of Assyria, 1 Chronicles 5:26.’

Leave a Comment