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Ephrata, was the old, and Bethlehem the later name of this town. "Bethlehem' means "house of bread ;' but we do not know on what occasion it was imposed. The town was in the allotment of the tribe of Judah, being situated about six miles south of Jerusalem, on the road to Hebron. Some notice of its present state will come most suitably as a note to Matt. ii. 1; and it is therefore only necessary here to remark that it was a city in the time of Boaz (Ruth iii. 11; iv. 1), whose grandson was Jesse, the father of David, who was born and reared there; in consequence of which the place is very frequently distinguished as the city of David. It was one of the cities fortified by Rehobuam. But its greatest and most holy distinction results from its having been the appointed birthplace of our Saviour. The town is called sometimes in the Old Testament • Bethlehem-Judah,' to distinguish it from another Bethlehem, mentioned, in Josh. xix, 15, as a city of Zebulun. Its ancient name is nearly preserved to this day, it being now called Beit-Lahhm.
20. • That is the pillar of Rachel's grave unto this day.'— Many interesting considerations, on which we cannot here expatiate, result from tracing the various methods which were resorted to in order to preserve the memory of events in the primitive times, when the art of writing was either unknown or had not yet been brought to bear on the usages of civil life. The progress of writing was manifestly slow; and after the art was well known, the ancient commemo
RACHEL'S SEPULCHBE. rative practices were still for a long time retained. Some of the devices for the transmission of important facts to | land of the people of the East; to the power of beauty, that posterity have already passed under our notice. We have could so long make banishment sweet; to the devoted comseen the patriarchs erecting altars where the Lord had panion of the wanderer, who deemed all troubles light for appeared to them (ch. xii. 7; xxvi. 25; xxxv. 7); plant- her sake.' The Turks have generally enclosed the real or ing woods (ch. xxi. 31, 33), and setting up monuments in supposed sepulchres of the chief characters of the Old Tesmemory of the principal events of their lives; and for the tament in some building or other: that which covers the same purpose giving characteristic names to the spots tomb of Rachel is of a very humble description. It is a where such events took place. Instances of the last de small square building surmounted by a dome, and rescription have been too frequent to require indication. sembling the common tombs of sheikhs and saints in The profane writers, and the existing usages in many Arabia and Egypt. Mr. Buckingham, who has particularly countries, furnish examples of the same custom. The described it, says, “We entered it on the south side by an ancient fragment of Sanchoniathon informs us that rude aperture through which it was difficult to crawl, as it has stones and posts were the first memorials of the Phænician no door-way; and found on the inside a square mass of people. Near Cadiz, heaps of stone used to be indicated as masonry in the centre, built up from the floor nearly to the the famous pillars' which are said to have commemorated | roof, and of such a size as to leave barely a varrow passage the expedition of Hercules to Spain. The ancient people for walking round it. It is plastered with white stucco on of the north preserved the memory of events by placing the outer surface; and is sufficiently large and high to stones of extraordinary size in particular places; and this enclose within it any ancient pillar that might have been method is still used by the American savages, among whom found on the grave of Rachel. As this interior central writing is unknown. The manner in which such monu mass is certainly different from anything we have ourselves ments were made subservient to this purpose is clearly ever witnessed in such structures, we are disposed to concur described in Josh. iv. Parents explained to their children with Mr. Buckingham in thinking it probable that it was the object of such erections, and instructed them in the originally intended to enclose a pillar, or fragment of one, facts which gave occasion to them. In this way tradition which tradition had pointed out as the pillar of Rachel's supplied in some degree the place of written records. The early sepulchral pillars came under the same class of commemorative erections. They do not appear to have borne any inscriptions in their primitive use, although in aftertimes they did. Burder collects instances from Homer of pillars erected over graves. Paris is represented, when going to shoot Diomed, as couching behind the pillar which had been erected upon or near the grave of Ilus. So, also, at the funeral of Elpeuor, we find Ulysses and his companions forming a tumulus and erecting a pillar: and in another place, a heap of earth and a pillar are mentioned as the usual tokens of respect paid to the dead.
The reputed tomb of Rachel, near Ephrath, is somewhat Jess than half way on the road from Bethlehem to Jerusalem. It stands a little to the left of the road. Mr. Carne, in his Recollections of the East, says: “The spot is as wild and solitary as can well be conceived: no palms or cypresses give their shelter from the blast; not a single tree spreads its shade where the ashes of the beautiful mother of Israel rests. Yet there is something in this sepulchre in the wil. derness that excites a deeper interest than more splendid or revered ones. The tombs of Zacharias and Absalom, in the valley of Jehoshaphat, or that of the kings in the plain of Jeremiah, the traveller looks at with careless indif. ference; beside that of Rachel his fancy wanders to the
rave and that the present structure was afterwards danger, their moveables, and their wives and young chil. built over the whole by the Mohammedans, who do not dren, if they do not themselves resort to the shelter which yield to the Jews or Christians in their veneration for such these structures offer. Such are the watch-towers- the places.
Mizpehs-- which the Scriptures so often mention. ' 21. • The tower of Edar.'-Literally the flock-tower.' 22. “And Israel heard it.'_ What he felt is left to the It was doubtless a tower which some former pastors had imagination of the reader, as something too strong to be erected for their convenience and safety. Such towers still uttered. This is thus a striking and emphatic abruption, exist, and are still erected. On their summits the shepherds the effect of which is not improved, but grievously marred, hold their watch, and can discern approaching danger from by the impertinent addition of the Septuagint, kai movnpòv . afar; and within their walls they deposit, in prospect of | épávn évaytlov avtoû, “and it was evil in his eyes.'
14 And these were the sons of Aholi2 Esau's three wives. 6 His removing to mount Seir.
| bamah, the daughter of Anah the daughter 9 His sons. 15 The dukes which descended of his of Zibeon, Esau's wife : and she bare to Esau sons. 20 The sons and dukes of Seir. 24 Anah Jeush, and Jaalam, and Korah. findeth mules. 31 The kings of Edom. 40 The
These arere dukes of the sons of dukes that descended of Esau.
the sons of Eliphaz the firstborn son of Esau ; Now these are the generations of Esau, who | duke Teman, duke Omar, duke Zepho, duke is Edom.
Kenaz, 2 Esau took his wives of the daughters 16 Duke Korah, duke Gatam, and duke of Canaan ; Adah the daughter of Elon the Amalak: these are the dukes that came of Hittite, and Aholibamah the daughter of Anah Eliphaz in the land of Edom : these were the the daughter of Zibeon the Hivite;
sons of Adah. 3 And Bashemath Ishmael's daughter, sister 17 And these are the sons of Reuel of Nebajoth.
Esau's son ; duke Nahath, duke Zerah, duke 4 And 'Adah bare to Esau Eliphaz; and Shammah, duke Mizzah : these are the dukes Bashemath bare Reuel ;
that came of Reuel in the land of Edom; these 5 And Aholibamah bare Jeush, and Jaa- | are the sons of Bashemath Esau's wife. lam, and Korah: these are the sons of Esau, 18 And these are the sons of Aholiwhich were born unto him in the land of bamah Esau's wife ; duke Jeush, duke JaaCanaan.
lam, duke Korah : these were the dukes that 6 I And Esau took his wives, and his sons, came of Aholibamah the daughter of Anah, and his daughters, and all the "persons of his | Esau's wife. house, and his cattle, and all his beasts, and 19 These are the sons of Esau, who is all his substance, which he had got in the Edom, and these are their dukes. land of Canaan; and went into the country 20 | "These are the sons of Seir the Horite, from the face of his brother Jacob.
who inhabited the land ; Lotan, and Shobal, 7 For their riches were more than that they and Zibeon, and Anah, might dwell together; and the land wherein 21 And Dishon, and Ezer, and Dishan : they were strangers could not bear them be these are the dukes of the Horites, the children cause of their cattle.
of Seir in the land of Edom. 8 Thus dwelt Esau in #mount Seir : Esau 22 And the children of Lotan were lori, is Edom.
and Heman; and Lotan's sister was Timna. 9 | And these are the generations of Esau 23 And the children of Shobal were these ; the father of the Edomites in mount Seir: Alvan, and Manahath, and Ebal, Shepho, and
10 These are the names of Esau's sons ; Onam. 'Ellphaz the son of Adah the wife of Esau, 24 And these are the children of Zibeon; Reuel the son of Bashemath the wife of Esau. both Ajah, and Anah: this was that Anah
11 And the sons of Eliphaz were Teman, that found the mules in the wilderness, as he Omar, Zepho, and Gatam, and Kenaz. fed the asses of Zibeon his father.
12 And Timna was concubine to Eliphaz 25 And the children of Anah were these; Esau's son ; and she bare to Eliphaz Amalek : | Dishon, and Aholibamah the daughter of Anah. these were the sons of Adah Esau's wife.
26 And these are the children of Dishon ; 13 And these are the sons of Reuel ; Na- | Hemdan, and Eshban, and Ithran, and Cheran. hath, and Zerah, Shammah, and Mizzah : 27 The children of Ezer are these ; Bilhan, these were the sons of Bashemath Esau's wife. ¡ and Zaaran, and Akan.
11 Chron. 1. 35. Hleb souls. 8 Josh. 24, 4. Heb. Edom. s Chron. 1. 35, &c. Chron. 1. 38.
28 The children of Dishan are these ; Uz, 36 And Hadad died, and Samlah of Masand Aran.
rekah reigned in his stead. 29 These are the dukes that came of the 37 And Samlah died, and Saul of RehoHorites ; duke Lotan, duke Shobal, duke both by the river reigned in his stead. Zibeon, duke Anah,
38 And Saul died, and Baal-hanan the son 30 Duke Dishon, duke Ezer, duke Dishan : of Achbor reigned in his stead. these are the dukes that came of Hori, among | 39 And Baal-hanan the son of Achbor died, their dukes in the land of Seir.
and Hadar reigned in his stead : and the name 31 4 And these are the kings that reigned of his city was Pau; and his wife's name in the land of Edom, before there reigned any was Mehetabel, the daughter of Matred, the king over the children of Israel.
daughter of Mezahab. 32 And Bela the son of Beor reigned in | 40 | And these are the names of the dukes Edom : and the name of his city was Din that came of Esau, according to their families, nabah.
after their places, by their names; duke Tim33 And Bela died, and Jobab the son of nah, duke Alvah, duke Jetheth, Zerah of Bozrah reigned in his stead.
41 Duke Aholibamah, duke Elah, duke 34 And Jobab died, and Husham of the Pinon, land of Temani reigned in his stead.
42 Duke Kenaz, duke Teman, duke Mibzar, 35 And Husham died, and Hadad the son 43 Duke Magdiel, duke Iram : these be the of Bedad, who smote Midian in the field of dukes of Edom, according to their habitations, Moab, reigned in his stead : and the name of in the land of their possession : he is Esau the his city was Avith.
father of 'the Edomites. : 7 Heb. Edon.
Verse 1. • The generations of Esau,' etc.--The follow- | And the chapter closes by giving the residences of the ing brief abstract of the view of this chapter taken by Edomitish tribes. This general yiew removes the chief Dreschler, in his very able work, Die Einheit und difficulties of the chapter. The fourteen alluphim (15-19) Aechtheit der Genesis, will serve to elucidate most of its before the kings, do not form a successive course, but are apparent difficulties. The chapter begins with an ac contemporaneous; and, after the kings, it is not a new count of Esau's family during their residence in Canaan, course of pylarchs that is given, but the residences of those and of their wealth and removal, 1-8. It proceeds to give before named. Every difficulty,' continues this writer, a general view of the domestic condition of Esau in the vanishes, when it is considered that the royal power country of Seir, 9-14. This is followed by the names of among the Edomites was not raised upon the ruins of the the tribes of the Edomites, who, like those of the Israelites, authority of the pylarchs (which would require a consi. borrowed their names from those of Esau's nearest de- derable course of time for the continuance of the latter. scendants, and each of whom had its own head or chieftain, after the expiration of which the course of eight kings in Hebrew Alluph, as the alluph of the tribe of Teman, etc., might begin), but that both existed contemporaneously, 15-19. Afterwards appears the genealogy of Seir the the Edomites having rulers of tribes, and also kings at the llorite, 20-30. Then we have the Edomitish kings, 31-39. ' same time. The eighth king of the Edomites was evidently
contemporary with the author of the Pentateuch; who | The mountains of Seir were in the first instance occupied mentions the decease of all the preceding kings, but is | by a people called the Horim, or Horites, who are men. silent respecting his. The reason is plain : he was king tioned in Gen. xiv. among those whose country was ravaged when the author wrote. In the first book of Chronicles, by Chedorlaomer and his allies. These people are supindeed, his death is stated : but that book was composed posed to have taken their name from the chief or leader long after his time. The author of Genesis, with a parti who, with his tribe or family, first settled there, and whose calarity which appears only in this individual case, men name (Hor) is preserved in the mountain, in this range, on tions the names of his wife, her parent, and grand-parent. which Aaron died. The name • Seir,' applied to this region, What reason can be assigned for this, unless the author is doubtless derived from the chief of that name, who is was contemporary with the Edomitish king? And the mentioned in v. 20 as the head of the family. The extent period of his reign falls within the age of Moses.' From of territory occupied by the Horites cannot be very prewhat has been said, it appears that the dukes and kings cisely ascertained; but there is no room to suppose that it mentioned in this chapter flourished before the time of reached so far south of the Dead Sea, or spread so far west Moses, and consequently the notice here contained may towards the Mediterranean as the land of Edom' of afterhave been written by him. Inasmuch as he does speak of times certainly did. The land of Seir,' of the patriarchal kings who should rule over the Hebrews (Deut. xvii. times, seems to have been immediately to the east and 14-20; xxviii. 36), it is not impossible he may have writ south of the Dead Sea. In this land Esau settled himself ten even the latter clause, before there reigned any king permanently after the death of his father; and as his deover the children of Israel,' particularly as in ch. xxxv. 11 scendants increased, they were enabled to extirpate the be recounts the promise of God to Jacob, that "kings' | original inhabitants, and occupied the land in their stead should descend from him. Still it may have been a mar (Deut. ii. 12, 22). The country then took the name of the ginal note, which in time found its way into the text. land of Edom; a denomination which appears to have
2. • Adah the daughter of Elon.'--See the note on ch. extended with the progressive extension of the Edomite xxvi. 34.
power, whence it is necessary that, in speaking of the land 9. • Esau the father of the Edomites in Mount Seir.' of Edom, we should be careful to distinguish times. In The term · Mount Seir,' or rather the mountains of Seir, the times of Moses and Joshua, and even under the kings must be understood with considerable latitude. It was of Judah, it was confined to the region of Mount Seir; but applied indefinitely to that range of mountains which, in that direction it had, before the time of Solomon, exunder the modern names of Djebel Shera and Hasma, rise tended to the Gulf of Akabah. In 1 Kings ix. 26, we read, abruptly on the east side of the Ghor, or depressed plain, • King Solomon made a navy of ships at Ezion-geber, which which extends from the southern extremity of the Dead Sea is beside Eloth, on the shore of the Red Sea in the land of to the Gulf of Akabah. These mountains form a natural Edom; and if Ezion-geber was both on the shore of the division of the country, which appears to have been well Red Sea and in the land of Edom, the dominions of the known to the ancients. The plain to the east of the hilly Edomites must have extended to the Arabian Gulf. It is region which these mountains form is much more elevated rot until a much later period that we find the country to than the level of the Ghor, which bounds that region on the the south of Palestine called the land of Edom; and it west of the same mountains; in consequence of which the therefore appears that the Edomites availed themselves of hills appear with diminished importance as viewed from the depressed state into which the Jews were brought by the eastern or upper plain. This plain terminates to the the Assyrian and Babylonian kings to extend themselves south by a steep rocky descent, at the base of which begins westward from their mountains towards the Mediterthe desert of Nedjed. It is to a part of this upper plain, ranean, and ultimately to encroach upon the southern and to the mountains which constitute its western limit, province of Palestine itself, making Hebron their capital. that, as Barckhardt thinks, the name of Arabia Petræa, or It is proper, in this view, to distinguish the whole extent the Stony, was given by the ancients; the denomination of the land of Edom into two parts. One comprehended being, however, extended northward, so as to include the the whole range of Seir, with the neighbouring plain. eastern plain, together with the mountains which form the Bozra (see notes on Isa. xxxiv. 6; Jer. xlix, 13), in the eastern boundary of Palestine so far north as the river part east of Palestine, and Petra, more towards the Arabian Jabbok. Speaking of this region, Burckhardt says, “It Gulf, were its chief towns. The latter city is supposed to might well be called Petra, not only on account of its | be the Selah’ and Joktheel' of the Bible (see note on rocky mountains, but also of the elevated plain, which is 2 Kings xiv. 7); and is described in ancient history as the so covered with stones, especially flints, that it may with capital of the Nabathæans; for those Edomites who regreat propriety be called a stony desert, although suscep- mained in Seir, after a large colony had gone to occupy tible of culture. In many places it is overgrown with the south of Judæa, during the captivity of the Jews, joined herbs ; and must once have been thickly inhabited, for the themselves with the descendants of that Nebajoth, son of traces of many ruined towns and villages are met with on Ishmael, whose full sister Esau had married (v. 3), and both sides of the Hadj route between Maan and Akaban, they were ever after called Nabathæans. After this the as well as between Maan and the plains of the Haouran ; 1 land of Edom, and what was exclusively known as Idumæa in which direction there are many springs. At present, to the Greeks and Romans, must be understood of the all this country is desert, and Maan is the only inhabited branch dominion south of Palestine. It will be useful to place in it'(Travels in Syria ; different parts of which attend to this distinction between the Edomites south of have been analyzed to furnish this geographical statement). Judæa, and the Edomites as mixed and identified with the The mountains themselves are described by the same tra- | Nabathæans in the region of Seir. veller as chiefly calcareous, with an occasional mixture of The Israelites, in their passing from Egypt to Cabasalt. The mountainous region which they form, of course, naan, were directed to abstain from hostilities with the differs from the plain which skirts it on the east. The descendants of Esau ; and when the Edomites refused the climate is very pleasant. The air is pure; and although children of Israel a passage through their territory, Moses the heat is great in summer, the refreshing breezes which was enjoined to make a large circuit round their dominions, then prevail prevent the temperature from becoming suf in order to avoid any inimical collision with them. Saul, focating. The winter, on the other hand, is very cold ; , the first king of Israel, warred successfully against the deep snow falls, and the frosts sometimes continue to the Edomites; but it was left to his successor, David, to comend of March. This mountainous country is adequately plete their subjugation, after a long and sanguinary contest fertile, producing figs, pomegranates, apples, peaches, olives, (2 Sam. viii. 14; 1 Kings xi. 16). Then was realized the apricots, and most European fruits. The region has been prophecy of Isaac, that the elder brother should serve the in all times noted for the salubrity of its air; and Burck younger. There are several indications that the Edomites hardt observes. there was no part of Syria in which he saw submitted to the yoke with great impatience; and they did so few invalids.
I not omit to avail themselves of the opportunities which the
division of the Hebrew nation into two kingdoms, at va- | of a tribe; and to denote the head of a family, clan, or tribe. riance with each other, offered, for the recovery of their | It might therefore be rendered by "chieftain; in which independence. After that division, the dominion over sense it is taken by the modern German translators, who Edom remained with Judah ; sometimes governed by tri have stammfürst, tribe-chief.' butary princes (1 Kings iï. 9), at others by viceroys ap 24. · This was that Anah that found the mules in the wilpointed by the kings of Judah (1 Kings xlii. 28). But in
derness as he fed the asses of Zibeon his father.'— The words the reign of Jehoram, son of Jehoshaphat, they revolted,
DOD nxxymatza eth hay-yemim, translated 'found • and made themselves a king' (2 Chron. xxi. 8-10); and
the mules,' have occasioned much discussion. The common they succeeded in maintaining their national independence against him and his immediate successors. They were
opinion, apparently adopted by our translators, is that this
Anah was the first who coupled the ass and horse to proagain subdued by King Amaziah (1 Kings xiv. 7; 2Chron.
duce the mongrel breed called mules. This opinion has xxv. II); but in the reign of Ahaz they again and finally
the authority of the Jewish rabbins and of the Arabic verrecovered their independence. Thus, as Isaac had foretold,
sion, and is allowed by several commentators of authority. Esau broke the yoke of the younger brother from off his
The objections to this are, that the word matza never neck. They were obliged to submit to Nebuchadnezzar,
means to invent, but to find,' in the common sense of king of Babylon; and a body of them were present with
the term, or to acquire, discover, or encounter ;' that his army at the siege, and took an active part in the final
mules are never elsewhere called yemim, but D'7D sack of the city, dealing severely with the citizens (Ps. cxxxvii. 1; Lament. iv. 21; Ezek. xxxv.; Obad. 11-14).
pheredim ; that Anah fed asses only, not horses; and that This conduct was strongly denounced by the prophets,
there is no mention of mules in Palestine till the time of who foretold the future overthrow of Edom. The Jewish
David. Bochart, by whom these objections are strongly traditions state, that during the desolation of Israel and urged, is of opinion that the word rendered .mules' really Judah, the Edomites greatly increased in numbers and
denotes the Emim, a gigantic people whose territories power, extending their dominions westward, and sending bordered on that of the Horim, and with whom it is supcolonies far abroad. This must no doubt be understood of posed that Anah and his herdsmen had a remarkable the collective body; but what follows must be restricted to encounter as they fed the asses in the wilderness. This the people of Idumæa south of Palestine. When the Jews opinion has the sanction of the Samaritan text and version; were restored from their captivity, they remained for a
and to the same doctrine leans Onkelos, whose Targum long time in too weak a state to engage in any contest with
renders the word by ‘giants,' or strong powerful men; and the encroaching Idumeans. But when, at an after-period,
another rabbi (Abraham Sepharat) holds that the yeni the latter invaded Judæa while Judas Maccabæus was en
were demons or satyrs. The Septuagint preserves the gaged in opposing the tyranny of Antiochus Epiphanes, original word as a proper name, in the singular number; they were defeated with great slaughter by the Jewish
while others render it as a proper name in the plural, which general, who retaliated the incursion, and demolished the
it certainly should be, if taken as a proper name at all. chief fortresses of Idumæa (1 Macc. v. 3, 65; 2 Macc. x, 15;
The Syriac translates the greatly disputed word as 'waters, xii. 32, sq.). Another of the same family, John Hyrcanus,
and is followed by St. Jerome, who renders it aquas calidas, brought the Edomites into still further subjection, compell 'warm springs or waters,' and in his note makes a remark ing them to receive circumcision, and to submit to the other
on the diversity of opinions which prevail on the subject, rites and observances of the Hebrew law (Joseph. Antiq.
and says that the word has, in the Punic language, the xiv. 1, 3). Their subsequent history is connected with that
signification which he assigns to it. Gesenius concurs in of Judæa; and the only circumstance of note is, that Herod
this interpretation; and we are certainly disposed to conthe Great, whom the Romans made king of Judæa, was of
clude that waters of some kind or other are intended. The Idumæan extraction. When Jerusalem was threatened by probability is, that Anah, while feeding his father's asses, Vespasian, the Idumæans, whom Josephus describes as a
discovered some remarkable springs, and this would cer. tumultuous and disorderly nation-delighting in mutation
tainly, in that arid region, be considered an event of suffi--and hastening to a battle as if it were to a feast'-were
cient importance to be recorded; and it might be the asses invited to Jerusalem by the • Zealots.' They proceeded
which led him to make the discovery, as those animals, as thither with 20,000 men, and being admitted during the
well as camels, have the reputation of being very sagacious night, committed fearful havoc among the people and the
in the discovery of water. This interpretation may per. party opposed to the Zealots; but they afterwards repented
haps be held to derive confirmation that, on the east side of what they had done and withdrew from the city. After
of the Dead Sea, in or sufficiently near to the region indithis we hear little of the Idumeans. Origen says that in
cated, there is a place which was celebrated by the Greeks his time (A.D. 185-253) the Edomites bad ceased to be a and Romans for its warm baths, and called by them Cal. distinct people; they were numbered with the Arab tribes, lirhoe. These springs are fully described by Irby and and spoke the Syriac language.
Mangles (Travels, p. 467). And towards the southern 15.*· Duke.'-'It would have been desirable to avoid extremity of the Dead Sea, and therefore close to if not giving to these ancient chiefs of Edom a modern European
within the territory of the Horites, are other thermal title, even though the application were substantially correct. springs, to which the discovery of Anah might, with still It suggests associations having no congruity with a time so greater probability, be referred. This at least shows that ancient and a people so remote. Some such general title
the interpretation is in accordance with the physical chaas 'prince,' or an Oriental one, as 'emir,' would have been
racteristics of the region in which the circumstance oebetter. The original is 998 alluph, which seems to be
curred. formed from
31. Before there reigned any king over the children of 38, in the sense of a family or subdivision 1 Israel.:-- See the pote on v, 1.