Joshua 15:4: The Southern Border of Judah, Part 4

Verse 4:[1] From thence it passed (Num. 34:5) toward Azmon, and went out unto the river of Egypt; and the goings out of that coast were at the sea: this shall be your south coast.

[Unto Azmon] Perhaps it is that חַצְמוֹן/Hazmon, which was the twenty-sixth station;[2] for ח/h/ch and ע[3] are interchangeable (Masius in Drusius).

[Unto the torrent of Egypt] See Joshua 13:3 and Numbers 34:5 (Malvenda).

[This shall be the limit of the southern tract] Hebrew: That shall be to you the border of the South[4] (Malvenda). Now, the length of those boundaries is that entire distance that extends from the extremity of the Dead Sea unto Rhinocolura, close to which, near that little branch of the Nile, was our עַצְמוֹן / Azmon. Moreover, that clause, that shall be to you a border, etc., contains an absurd apostrophe,[5] as it appears. But there is an allusion, I think, to those words in which these very borders were described in Numbers: for in that place Moses addresses the Israelites (Masius). But others maintain that there is an Enallage of persons, and the border shall be לָכֶם, to you, put in the place of לָהֶם, to them (Septuagint in Masius, Munster out of Kimchi).

[1] Hebrew: וְעָבַ֣ר עַצְמ֗וֹנָה וְיָצָא֙ נַ֣חַל מִצְרַ֔יִם וְהָיָ֛ה תֹּצְא֥וֹת הַגְּב֖וּל יָ֑מָּה זֶה־יִהְיֶ֥ה לָכֶ֖ם גְּב֥וּל נֶֽגֶב׃

[2] Numbers 33:29:  “And they went from Mithcah, and pitched in Hashmonah (בְּחַשְׁמֹנָה).”

[3] Gutteral.

[4] Hebrew: זֶה־יִהְיֶ֥ה לָכֶ֖ם גְּב֥וּל נֶֽגֶב׃.

[5] An apostrophe in rhetoric is a digression in a discourse in the form of a direct address to someone not present.

1 thought on “Joshua 15:4: The Southern Border of Judah, Part 4

  1. Matthew Henry: ‘The southern border was that of the land of Canaan in general, as will appear by comparing Joshua 15:1-4 with Numbers 34:3-5. So that this powerful and warlike tribe of Judah guarded the frontiers of the whole land, on that side which lay towards their old sworn enemies (though their two fathers were twin-brethren), the Edomites. Our Lord therefore, who sprang out of Judah, and whose the kingdom is, shall judge the mount of Esau, Obadiah 21.’

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