Genesis 15:19
The Kenites, and the Kenizzites, and the Kadmonites,
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(19) The Kenites.—An Arab race, found both among the Amalekites in the south (1Samuel 15:6) and among the tribes of Naphtali and Zebulon in the north (Judges 4:11), and even in Midian, as Jethro, the father-in-law of Moses, is called a Kenite (Judges 1:16). Balaam speaks of them as being a powerful nation (Numbers 24:21), and this wide dispersion of them into feeble remnants seems to show that they were a race of early settlers in Canaan, who, like the Rephaim, had been overpowered and scattered by subsequent immigrants. They were uniformly friendly to Israel.

The Kenizzites.—The chief fact of importance connected with this race is that Caleb was a Kenezite (Numbers 32:12). Apparently with his clan he joined the Israelites at the Exodus, and was numbered with the tribe of Judah. Kenizzite and Kenezite are two ways of spelling the same Hebrew word, the former being right.

The Kadmonites.—This may mean either an eastern or an ancient people, of whom we know nothing.

For the Perizzites see Genesis 13:7; for the Rephaims, Genesis 14:5; and for the rest, Genesis 10:15-18.

15:17-21 The smoking furnace and the burning lamp, probably represented the Israelites' severe trials and joyful deliverance, with their gracious supports in the mean time. It is probable that this furnace and lamp, which passed between the pieces, burned and consumed them, and so completed the sacrifice, and testified God's acceptance of it. So it intimates that God's covenants with man are made by sacrifice, Ps 50:5. And we may know that he accepts our sacrifices, if he kindles in our souls pious and devout affections. The bounds of the land granted are stated. Several nations, or tribes, are spoken of, that must be cast out to make room for the seed of Abram. In this chapter we perceive in Abram faith struggling against, and triumphing over, unbelief. Wonder not, believers, if you meet with seasons of darkness and distress. But it is not the will of God that you should be cast down: fear not; for all that he was to Abram he will be to you.The ten principal nations inhabiting this area are here enumerated. Of these five are Kenaanite, and the other five probably not. The first three are new to us, and seem to occupy the extremities of the region here defined. The Kenite dwelt in the country bordering on Egypt and south of Palestine, in which the Amalekites also are found Numbers 24:20-22; 1 Samuel 15:6. They dwelt among the Midianites, as Hobab was both a Midianite and a Kenite Numbers 10:29; Judges 1:16; Judges 4:11. They were friendly to the Israelites, and hence some of them followed their fortunes and settled in their land 1 Chronicles 2:55. The Kenizzite dwelt apparently in the same region, having affinity with the Horites, and subsequently with Edom and Israel Genesis 36:11, Genesis 36:20-23; Joshua 15:17; 1 Chronicles 2:50-52. The Kadmonite seems to be the Eastern, and, therefore, to hold the other extreme boundary of the promised land, toward Tadmor and the Phrat. These three tribes were probably related to Abram, and, therefore, descendants of Shem. The other seven tribes have already come under our notice.

- The Birth of Ishmael

1. הנר hāgār, Hagar, "flight." Hejrah, the flight of Muhammed.

7. מלאך mal'ak "messenger, angel." A deputy commissioned to discharge a certain duty for the principal whom he represents. As the most usual task is that of bearing messages, commands, or tidings, he is commonly called a "messenger" ἄγγελος angelos). The word is therefore a term of office, and does not further distinguish the office-bearer than as an intelligent being. Hence, a מלאך mal'ak may be a man deputed by a man Genesis 32:3; Job 1:14, or by God Haggai 1:13; Malachi 3:1, or a superhuman being delegated in this case only by God. The English term "angel" is now especially appropriated to the latter class of messengers.

1st. The nature of angels is spiritual Hebrews 1:14. This characteristic ranges over the whole chain of spiritual being from man up to God himself. The extreme links, however, are excluded: man, because he is a special class of intelligent creatures; and God, because he is supreme. Other classes of spiritual beings may be excluded - as the cherubim, the seraphim - because they have not the same office, though the word "angelic" is sometimes used by us as synonymous with heavenly or spiritual. They were all of course originally good; but some of them have fallen from holiness, and become evil spirits or devils Matthew 25:31, Matthew 25:41; Jde 1:6; Revelation 12:7. The latter are circumscribed in their sphere of action, as if confined within the walls of their prison, in consequence of their fallen state and malignant disposition Genesis 3; Job 1:2; 1 Peter 2:4; Revelation 20:2. Being spiritual, they are not only moral, but intelligent. They also excel in strength Psalm 103:20. The holy angels have the full range of action for which their qualities are adapted. They can assume a real form, expressive of their present functions, and affecting the senses of sight, hearing, and touch, or the roots of those senses in the soul. They may even perform innocent functions of a human body, such as eating Genesis 18:8; Genesis 19:3. Being spirits, they can resolve the material food into its original elements in a way which we need not attempt to conceive or describe. But this case of eating stands altogether alone. Angels have no distinction of sex Matthew 22:30. They do not grow old or die. They are not a race, and have not a body in the ordinary sense of the term.

2d. Their office is expressed by their name. In common with other intelligent creatures, they take part in the worship of God Revelation 7:11; but their special office is to execute the commands of God in the natural world Psalm 103:20, and especially to minister to the heirs of salvation Hebrews 1:14; Matthew 18:10; Luke 15:10; Luke 16:22. It is not needful here to enter into the uniquenesses of their ministry.

3d. The angel of Jehovah. This phrase is especially employed to denote the Lord himself in that form in which he condescends to make himself manifest to man; for the Lord God says of this angel, "Beware of him, and obey his voice; provoke him not, for he will not pardon your transgressions; for my name is in his inmost" Exodus 23:21; that is, my nature is in his essence. Accordingly, he who is called the angel of the Lord in one place is otherwise denominated the Lord or God in the immediate context (Genesis 16:7, Genesis 16:13; Genesis 22:11-12; Genesis 31:11, Genesis 31:13; Genesis 48:15-16; Exodus 3:2-15; Exodus 23:20-23; with Exodus 33:14-15). It is remarkable, at the same time, that the Lord is spoken of in these cases as a distinct person from the angel of the Lord, who is also called the Lord. The phraseology intimates to us a certain inherent plurality within the essence of the one only God, of which we have had previous indications Genesis 1:26; Genesis 3:22. The phrase "angel of the Lord," however, indicates a more distant manifestation to man than the term Lord itself. It brings the medium of communication into greater prominence. It seems to denote some person of the Godhead in angelic form. שׁוּר shûr, Shur, "wall." A city or place probably near the head of the gulf of Suez. The desert of Shur is now Jofar.

11. ישׁמעאל yı̂shmā‛ē'l, Jishmael, "the Mighty will hear."

13. ראי אל 'êl rŏ'ı̂y, "God of vision or seeing."

14. ראי לחי באר be'ēr-lachay-ro'ı̂y, Beer-lachai-roi, "well of vision to the living." ברד bered, Bered, "hail." The site is not known.

Sarah has been barren probably much more than twenty years. She appears to have at length reluctantly arrived at the conclusion that she would never be a mother. Nature and history prompted the union of one man to one wife in marriage, and it might have been presumed that God would honor his own institution. But the history of the creation of man was forgotten or unheeded, and the custom of the East prompted Sarai to resort to the expedient of giving her maid to her husband for a second wife, that she might have children by her.

9-21. Take me an heifer, &c.—On occasions of great importance, when two or more parties join in a compact, they either observe precisely the same rites as Abram did, or, where they do not, they invoke the lamp as their witness. According to these ideas, which have been from time immemorial engraven on the minds of Eastern people, the Lord Himself condescended to enter into covenant with Abram. The patriarch did not pass between the sacrifice and the reason was that in this transaction he was bound to nothing. He asked a sign, and God was pleased to give him a sign, by which, according to Eastern ideas, He bound Himself. In like manner God has entered into covenant with us; and in the glory of the only-begotten Son, who passed through between God and us, all who believe have, like Abram, a sign or pledge in the gift of the Spirit, whereby they may know that they shall inherit the heavenly Canaan. The Kenites are supposed the same with the Midianites, by comparing Exodus 3:1, with Judges 1:16. See also Numbers 24:21 1 Samuel 15:6.

The Kenizzites, thought to be the Idumeans, who sprung from Kenaz of Esau’s race. But this seems not to agree with Deu 2:5, where God expressly saith to the Israelites concerning the Idumeans,

I will give you none of their lands, & c.

The Kadmonites, i.e. the eastern people, as the word signifies, elsewhere called the Hivites, Joshua 9:1, who lived near the Mount Hermon, Joshua 11:3, which was in the east part of Canaan. See Psalm 89:12. The Kenites, and the Kenizzites, and the Kadmonites. In this and the following verses ten nations are reckoned as occupying the land of Canaan at this time, whereas only seven are mentioned in the times of Moses and Joshua; and these three are not among them, and seem before those times to have been extinct, or were mixed with the other nations, and were no more distinct ones; though Aben Ezra thinks these people had two names, and Jarchi interprets them of the Edomites, Moabites, and Ammonites, who shall be the inheritance of the children of Israel in future times, according to Isaiah 11:14; and so the Jerusalem Talmud (t), from whence he seems to have taken it; and some are of opinion that the Midianites are meant by the Kenites, since Jethro, Moses's father in law, who was of Midian, is called the Kenite, as was also Heber, who was of the same race, Judges 1:16; there were Kenites near to the Amalekites in the times of Balaam, and who dwelt among them in the times of Saul, Numbers 24:20; as there were also some of this name that descended from the father of the house of Rechab, or the Rechabites, who were associates and proselytes to the people of Israel, 1 Chronicles 2:55; the Kenizzites are supposed by some to be the descendants of Kenaz, a grandson of Esau, Genesis 36:11; but then they must be so called here by anticipation, since Kenaz was not now born, and rather then would have had the name of Kenazites; besides, none of the land of the children of Esau, at least of those that dwelt about Mount Seir, was to be given to the children of Israel, Deuteronomy 1:5; could indeed the Edomites or Idumeans be intended, it might be thought this had its accomplishment in the times of David, and more especially when the Idumeans became Jews, embraced their religion, and were one people with them, in the times of Hyrcanus (u): the Kadmonites, or the Orientals, were, as Bochart (w) very probably thinks, the Hivites, who inhabited the eastern part of the land of Canaan about Mount Hermon, and from thence might have their name, as they are in the Jerusalem Targum called the children of the east; and hence came the names of Cadmus and Hermione his wife, who were Hivites, and the fable of their being turned into serpents, which the word Hivites signifies.

(t) Sheviith, fol. 37. 2.((u) Joseph Antiqu. l. 13. c. 9. sect. 1.((w) Canaan, l. 1. c. 19. col. 447.

The Kenites, and the Kenizzites, and the Kadmonites,
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
19. the Kenite] Dwellers in the S. of Canaan, connected with the Amalekites and noted for their subsequent friendly relations with Israel. Cf. Numbers 24:20-21; Jdg 4:17; 1 Samuel 15:6.

the Kenizzite] Also a people on the Edomite border of Canaan; cf. Kenaz, Genesis 36:11. Caleb, the head of the tribe of Judah, was a Kenizzite, Numbers 32:12, Joshua 14:6. Hence the Kenizzites were probably a south Palestinian clan absorbed into the tribe of Judah.

the Kadmonite] Probably dwellers on the eastern desert frontier of Canaan. Compare “the children of the east” (b’nê ḳedem) in Genesis 29:1.

19–21. The names of the ten peoples to be driven out by the Israelites. For other lists of these, cf. Exodus 3:8; Exodus 3:17; Exodus 13:5; Exodus 23:23; Exodus 34:11; Deuteronomy 7:1; Deuteronomy 20:17. Here only, are ten names given; usually only five or six are mentioned. The Kenite, the Kenizzite, the Kadmonite, the Perizzite, and the Rephaim, seem here to be added to make up the full list.

These verses and Genesis 15:18 are attributed by many scholars to a Deuteronomic editor."And when the sun was just about to go down (on the construction, see Ges. 132), and deep sleep (תּרדּמה, as in Genesis 2:21, a deep sleep produced by God) had fallen upon Abram, behold there fell upon him terror, great darkness." The vision here passes into a prophetic sleep produced by God. In this sleep there fell upon Abram dread and darkness; this is shown by the interchange of the perfect נפלה and the participle נפלת. The reference to the time is intended to show "the supernatural character of the darkness and sleep, and the distinction between the vision and a dream" (O. v. Gerlach). It also possesses a symbolical meaning. The setting of the sun prefigured to Abram the departure of the sun of grace, which shone upon Israel, and the commencement of a dark and dreadful period of suffering for his posterity, the very anticipation of which involved Abram in darkness. For the words which he heard in the darkness were these (Genesis 15:13.): "Know of a surety, that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them (the lords of the strange land), and they (the foreigners) shall oppress them 400 years." That these words had reference to the sojourn of the children of Israel in Egypt, is placed beyond all doubt by the fulfilment. The 400 years were, according to prophetic language, a round number for the 430 years that Israel spent in Egypt (Exodus 12:40). "Also that nation whom they shall serve will I judge (see the fulfilment, Exodus 6:11); and afterward shall they come out with great substance (the actual fact according to Exodus 12:31-36). And thou shalt go to thy fathers in peace, and be buried in a good old age (cf. Genesis 25:7-8); and in the fourth generation they shall come hither again." The calculations are made here on the basis of a hundred years to a generation: not too much for those times, when the average duration of life was above 150 years, and Isaac was born in the hundredth year of Abraham's life. "For the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full." Amorite, the name of the most powerful tribe of the Canaanites, is used here as the common name of all the inhabitants of Canaan, just as in Joshua 24:15 (cf. Genesis 10:5), Judges 6:10, etc.).

By this revelation Abram had the future history of his seed pointed out to him in general outlines, and was informed at the same time why neither he nor his descendants could obtain immediate possession of the promised land, viz., because the Canaanites were not yet ripe for the sentence of extermination.

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