1 Kings 9:16
For Pharaoh king of Egypt had gone up, and taken Gezer, and burnt it with fire, and slain the Canaanites that dwelled in the city, and given it for a present to his daughter, Solomon's wife.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(16) A present—that is, of course, a dowry, on her marriage with Solomon.

1 Kings 9:16. For Pharaoh had gone up and taken Gezer, &c., and slain the Canaanites — For the Israelites did not dispossess the Canaanites, but they continued to dwell in Gezer in Joshua’s time and after, Joshua 16:10; Jdg 1:29. And, it seems, neither David nor Solomon expelled them, but only kept them under tribute; till Pharaoh, upon some provocation which is not recorded, extirpated them, and burned their city. This, Sir John Marsham thinks, was the first expedition which the Egyptians made out of their own country.9:15-28 Here is a further account of Solomon's greatness. He began at the right end, for he built God's house first, and finished that before he began his own; then God blessed him, and he prospered in all his other buildings. Let piety begin, and profit follow; leave pleasure to the last. Whatever pains we take for the glory of God, and to profit others, we are likely to have the advantage. Canaan, the holy land, the glory of all lands, had no gold in it; which shows that the best produce is that which is for the present support of life, our own and others; such things did Canaan produce. Solomon got much by his merchandise, and yet has directed us to a better trade, within reach of the poorest. Wisdom is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold, Pr 3:14.Levy - See the marginal reference note.

Millo - See 2 Samuel 5:9 note. The Septuagint commonly render the word ἡ ἄκρα hē akra, "the citadel," and it may possibly have been the fortress on Mount Zion connected with the Maccabean struggles (1 Macc. 4:41; 13:49-52). Its exact site has not been determined.

And the wall of Jerusalem - David's fortification 2 Samuel 5:9; 1 Chronicles 11:8 had been hasty, and had now - fifty years later - fallen into decay. Solomon therefore had to "repair the breaches of the city of David" 1 Kings 11:27.

Hazor, Megiddo, and Gezer were three of the most important sites in the holy land. For the two first places, compare the marginal references and notes.

Gezer was a main city of the south. It was situated on the great maritime plain, and commanded the ordinary line of approach from Egypt, which was along this low region. The importance of Gezer appears from Joshua 10:33; Joshua 12:12, etc. Its site is near Tell Jezer, and marked now by Abu Shusheh. Though within the lot of Ephraim Joshua 16:3, and especially assigned to the Kohathite Levites Joshua 21:21, it had never yet been conquered from the old inhabitants (marginal references), who continued to dwell in it until Solomon's time, and apparently were an independent people 1 Kings 9:16.

Pharaoh took it before the marriage of Solomon with his daughter, and gave it "for a present" - i. e., for a dowry. Though in the East husbands generally pay for their wives, yet dower is given in some cases. Sargon gave Cilicia as a dowry with his daughter when he married her to Ambris king of Tubal: and the Persian kings seem generally to have given satrapial or other high offices as dowries to the husbands of their daughters.

15-24. this is the reason of the levy—A levy refers both to men and money, and the necessity for Solomon making it arose from the many gigantic works he undertook to erect.

Millo—part of the fort of Jerusalem on Mount Zion (2Sa 5:9; 1Ch 11:8), or a row of stone bastions around Mount Zion, Millo being the great corner tower of that fortified wall (1Ki 11:27; 2Ch 32:5).

the wall of Jerusalem—either repairing some breaches in it (1Ki 11:27), or extending it so as to enclose Mount Zion.

Hazor—fortified on account of its importance as a town in the northern boundary of the country.

Megiddo—(now Leijun)—Lying in the great caravan road between Egypt and Damascus, it was the key to the north of Palestine by the western lowlands, and therefore fortified.

Gezer—on the western confines of Ephraim, and, though a Levitical city, occupied by the Canaanites. Having fallen by right of conquest to the king of Egypt, who for some cause attacked it, it was given by him as a dowry to his daughter, and fortified by Solomon.

Not now, but long before this time, and presently after the marriage of his daughter, as is most probable; and it is here mentioned only as the occasion of Solomon’s building it. Possibly the Canaanites of this place had been guilty of some heinous crime; and because Solomon thought not fit to destroy them himself, he desired Pharaoh to do it for him, or Pharaoh might offer his service herein for his daughter’s advantage. For Pharaoh king of Egypt had gone up, and taken Gezer, and burnt it with fire,.... Egypt lay lower than Canaan, and therefore Pharaoh is said to go up to it; what moved him to it is not certain; whether he went of himself provoked, or was moved to it by Solomon, who had married his daughter; however, so he did, and took the place, and burnt it:

and slain the Canaanites that dwelt in the city: for though it was given to the tribe of Ephraim, yet they could not drive the Canaanites out of it, who seem to have remained in it to this time; see Joshua 16:10.

and given it for a present unto his daughter, Solomon's wife; not as a dowry with her, but as a present to her; perhaps some time after marriage.

For Pharaoh king of Egypt had gone up, and taken Gezer, and burnt it with fire, and slain the Canaanites that dwelt in the city, and given it for a present unto his daughter, Solomon's wife.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
16. For Pharaoh king of Egypt] See above on 1 Kings 3:1.

and taken Gezer] This incursion was probably before Solomon had taken the king’s daughter to wife, though Josephus (Ant. viii. 6, i) says ‘he gave it to his daughter who had been married to Solomon.’ Philippson (die Israelitische Bibel) suggests that Solomon wishing to be rid of these Canaanites asked his father-in-law to undertake their extermination.

and given it for a present] By ‘present’ here is meant ‘a wedding-portion.’ The noun implies ‘a gift on sending away’ and the verb is found Joshua 12:9, where Ibzan the judge is said to have ‘sent abroad’ (i.e. apparently, portioned out in marriage) his thirty daughters and to have taken in thirty others from abroad as wives for his sons. Though it appears to have been the more usual custom in the East for a husband to make presents to his wife’s family, yet we find that Caleb (Jdg 1:15) gave lands with his daughter when she was married to Othniel.Verse 16. - For Pharaoh king of Egypt had gone up and taken Gezer and burnt it with fire [The total destruction of the place and its inhabitants by fire and sword looks more like an act of vengeance for some grave offence than like ordinary warfare], and slain the Canaanites that dwelt in the city [Though Gezer was allotted to Ephraim (Joshua 16:3) and designated as a Levitical city (ib., 21:21), the Canaanite inhabitants had never been dispossessed (Joshua 16:10; LXX. "Canaanites and Perizzites;" cf. Judges 1:29), and they would seem to have enjoyed a sort of independence], and given it for a present [שִׁלֻחִים, dotatio, dowry. It is the custom of the East for the husband to purchase his wife by a present (Genesis 29:18; 2 Samuel 3:14, etc.); but in royal marriages a dowry was often given. "Sargon gave Cilicia as a dowry with his daughter .... Antiochus Soter gave his claims on Macedonia as a dowry to his step-daughter Phila, when she married Antigonus Gonatas. Coele-Syria and Palestine were promised as a dowry to Ptolemy Epiphanes, when he married Cleopatra, sister of Antiochus the Great," etc. (Rawlinson). Gezer being a wedding present, its conquest must have taken place years before the date to which the history is now brought down] unto his daughter, Solomon's wife. The Means by which the Buildings were Erected. - In order that all which still remained to be said concerning Solomon's buildings might be grouped together, different notices are introduced here, namely, as to his relation to Hiram, the erection of several fortresses, and the tributary labour, and also as to his maritime expeditions; and these heterogeneous materials are so arranged as to indicate the resources which enabled Solomon to erect so many and such magnificent buildings. These resources were: (1) his connection with king Hiram, who furnished him with building materials (1 Kings 9:10-14); (2) the tributary labour which he raised in his kingdom (1 Kings 9:15-25); (3) the maritime expedition to Ophir, which brought him great wealth (1 Kings 9:26-28). But these notices are very condensed, and, as a comparison with the parallel account in 2 Chronicles 8 shows, are simply incomplete extracts from a more elaborate history. In the account of the tributary labour, the enumeration of the cities finished and fortified (1 Kings 9:15-19) is interpolated; and the information concerning the support which was rendered to Solomon in the erection of his buildings by Hiram (1 Kings 9:11-14), is merely supplementary to the account already given in 1 Kings 9:5. 1 Kings 9:24, 1 Kings 9:25 point still more clearly to an earlier account, since they would be otherwise unintelligible. - In 2 Chronicles 8 the arrangement is a simpler one: the buildings are first of all enumerated in 2 Chronicles 8:1-6, and the account of the tributary labour follows in 2 Chronicles 8:7-11.

1 Kings 9:10-14

The notices concerning Solomon's connection with Hiram are very imperfect; for 1 Kings 9:14 does not furnish a conclusion either in form or substance. The notice in 2 Chronicles 8; 2 Chronicles 1:1-2:18 is still shorter, but it supplies an important addition to the account before us.

1 Kings 9:10-14

1 Kings 9:10, 1 Kings 9:11 form one period. יתּן אז (then he gave) in 1 Kings 9:11 introduces the apodosis to מק ויהי (and it came to pass, etc.) in 1 Kings 9:10; and 1 Kings 9:11 contains a circumstantial clause inserted as a parenthesis. Hiram had supported Solomon according to his desire with cedar wood and cypress wood, and with gold; and Solomon gave him in return, after his buildings were completed, twenty cities in the land of Galil. But these cities did not please Hiram. When he went out to see them, he said, "What kind of cities are these (מה in a contemptuous sense) which thou hast given me, my brother?" אחו as in 1 Kings 20:32, 1 Macc. 10:18; 11:30, 2 Macc. 11:22, as a conventional expression used by princes in their intercourse with one another. "And he called the land Cabul unto this day;" i.e., it retained this name even to later times. The land of Galil is a part of the country which was afterwards known as Galilaea, namely, the northern portion of it, as is evident from the fact that in Joshua 20:7; Joshua 21:32, Kedes in the mountains of Naphtali, to the north-west of Lake Huleh, is distinguished from the kadesh in southern Palestine by the epithet בּגּליל. It is still more evident from 2 Kings 15:29 and Isaiah 9:1 and Galil embraced the northern part of the tribe of Naphtali; whilst the expression used by Isaiah, הגּוים גּליל, also shows that this district was for the most part inhabited by heathen (i.e., non-Israelites). The twenty cities in Galil, which Solomon gave to Hiram, certainly belonged therefore to the cities of the Canaanites mentioned in 2 Samuel 24:7; that is to say, they were cities occupied chiefly by a heathen population, and in all probability they were in a very bad condition. Consequently they did not please Hiram, and he gave to the district the contemptuous name of the land of Cabul. Of the various interpretations given to the word Cabul (see Ges. Thes. p. 656), the one proposed by Hiller (Onomast. p. 435), and adopted by Reland, Ges., Maurer, and others, viz., that it is a contraction of כּהבּוּל, sicut id quod evanuit tanquam nihil, has the most to support it, since this is the meaning required by the context. At the same time it is possible, and even probable, that it had originally a different signification, and is derived from כּבל equals חבל in the sense of to pawn, as Gesenius and Dietrich suppose. This is favoured by the occurrence of the name Cabul in Joshua 19:27, where it is probably derivable from כּבל, to fetter, and signifies literally a fortress or castle; but in this instance it has no connection with the land of Cabul, since it is still preserved in the village of Cabul to the south-east of Acre (see the Comm. on Josh. l.c.). The "land of Cabul" would therefore mean the pawned land; and in the mouths of the people this would be twisted into "good for nothing." In this case ויּקרא would have to be taken impersonally: "they called;" and the notice respecting this name would be simply an explanation of the way in which the people interpreted it. Hiram, however, did not retain this district, but gave it back to Solomon, who then completed the cities (2 Chronicles 8:2).

(Note: This simple method of reconciling the account before us with the apparently discrepant notice in the Chronicles, concerning which even Movers (die biblische Chronik, p. 159) observes, that the chronicler interpolated it from a second (?) source, is so natural, that it is difficult to conceive how Bertheau can object to it; since he admits that the accounts in the books of Kings and Chronicles are incomplete extracts from common and more elaborate sources.)

The only way in which we can give to 1 Kings 9:14 a meaning in harmony with the context, is by taking it as a supplementary explanation of וּבזּהב...נשּׂא...חירם in 1 Kings 9:11, and so rendering ויּשׁלח as a pluperfect, as in 1 Kings 7:13 : "Hiram had sent the king a hundred and twenty talents of gold." If we reckon the value of gold as being ten times the worth of silver, a hundred and twenty talents of gold would be 3,141, 600 thalers (about 471,240: Tr.). This is no doubt to be regarded as a loan, which Solomon obtained from Hiram to enable him to complete his buildings. Although David may have collected together the requisite amount of precious metals for the building of the temple, and Solomon had also very considerable yearly revenues, derived partly from tribute paid by subjugated nations and partly from trade, his buildings were so extensive, inasmuch as he erected a large number of cities beside the temple and his splendid palace (1 Kings 9:15-19), that his revenues might not suffice for the completion of these costly works; and therefore, since he would not apply the consecrated treasures of the temple to the erection of cities and palaces, he might find himself compelled to procure a loan from the wealthy king Hiram, which he probably intended to cover by ceding to him twenty cities on the border of the Phoenician territory. But as these cities did not please the king of Tyre and he gave them back to Solomon, the latter will no doubt have repaid the amount borrowed during the last twenty years of his reign.

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