and God turneth round the people the way of the wilderness of the Red Sea, and by fifties have the sons of Israel gone up from the land of Egypt.
Exodus 13:18 Additional TranslationsClarke's Commentary on the Bible
But God led the people about - Dr. Shaw has shown that there were two roads from Egypt to Canaan, one through the valleys of Jendilly, Rumeleah, and Baideah, bounded on each side by the mountains of the lower Thebais; the other lies higher, having the northern range of the mountains of Mocatee running parallel with it on the right hand, and the desert of the Egyptian Arabia, which lies all the way open to the land of the Philistines, to the left. See his account of these encampments at the end of Exodus. See Clarke's note on Exodus 40:38.
Went up harnessed - חמשים chamushim. It is truly astonishing what a great variety of opinions are entertained relative to the meaning of this word. After having maturely considered all that I have met with on the subject, I think it probable that the word refers simply to that orderly or well arranged manner in which the Israelites commenced their journey from Egypt. For to arrange, array, or set in order, seems to be the ideal meaning of the word חמש chamash. As it was natural to expect that in such circumstances there must have been much hurry and confusion, the inspired writer particularly marks the contrary, to show that God had so disposed matters that the utmost regularity and order prevailed; and had it been otherwise, thousands of men, women, and children must have been trodden to death. Our margin has it by five in a rank; but had they marched only five abreast, supposing only one yard for each rank to move in, it would have required not less than sixty-eight miles for even the 600,000 to proceed on regularly in this way; for 600,000 divided by five gives 120,000 ranks of five each; and there being only 1,760 yards in a mile, the dividing 120,000 by 1,760 will give the number of miles such a column of people would take up, which by such an operation will be found to be something more than sixty-eight miles. But this the circumstances of the history will by no means admit - Harmer. The simple meaning therefore appears to be that given above; and if the note on the concluding verse of the preceding chapter be considered, it may serve to place this explanation in a still clearer point of view.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
Exodus 14:2 Speak to the children of Israel, that they turn and encamp before Pihahiroth, between Migdol and the sea, over against Baalzephon...
Numbers 33:6-8 And they departed from Succoth, and pitched in Etham, which is in the edge of the wilderness...
Deuteronomy 32:10 He found him in a desert land, and in the waste howling wilderness; he led him about, he instructed him...
Psalm 107:7 And he led them forth by the right way, that they might go to a city of habitation.
harnessed. or, by five in a rank
Exodus 12:51 And it came to pass the selfsame day, that the LORD did bring the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt by their armies.
Exodus 13:18 Parallel CommentariesArmed Array Arrayed Battle Children Desert Egypt Equipped Fifties Fighting Harnessed Hence Israel Israelites Led Order Red Road Round Sea Turneth Waste Way WildernessArmed Array Arrayed Battle Children Desert Egypt Equipped Fifties Fighting Harnessed Hence Israel Israelites Led Order Red Road Round Sea Turneth Waste Way WildernessTHE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica®.
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