Deuteronomy 2:19
And when you come near over against the children of Ammon, distress them not, nor meddle with them: for I will not give you of the land of the children of Ammon any possession; because I have given it to the children of Lot for a possession.
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(19) And when thou comest nigh.—Compare Note on Deuteronomy 2:9.

2:8-23 We have the origin of the Moabites, Edomites, and Ammonites. Moses also gives an instance older than any of these; the Caphtorims drove the Avims out of their country. These revolutions show what uncertain things wordly possessions are. It was so of old, and ever will be so. Families decline, and from them estates are transferred to families that increase; so little continuance is there in these things. This is recorded to encourage the children of Israel. If the providence of God has done this for Moabites and Ammonites, much more would his promise do it for Israel, his peculiar people. Cautions are given not to meddle with Moabites and Ammonites. Even wicked men must not be wronged. God gives and preserves outward blessings to wicked men; these are not the best things, he has better in store for his own children.The words, "said I," are not in the Hebrew. The words "rise up, and get you over the brook Zered" (Numbers 21:12 note) connect themselves with Deuteronomy 2:9, and form the conclusion of what God said to Moses. 19-37. when thou comest nigh over against the children of Ammon, distress them not, nor meddle with them—The Ammonites, being kindred to the Moabites, were, from regard to the memory of their common ancestor, to remain undisturbed by the Israelites. The territory of this people had been directly north from that of Moab. It extended as far as the Jabbok, having been taken by them from a number of small Canaanitish tribes, namely, the Zamzummins, a bullying, presumptuous band of giants, as their name indicates; and the Avims, the aborigines of the district extending from Hazerim or Hazeroth (El Hudhera) even unto Azzah (Gaza), but of which they had been dispossessed by the Caphtorim (Philistines), who came out of Caphtor (Lower Egypt) and settled in the western coast of Palestine. The limits of the Ammonites were now compressed; but they still possessed the mountainous region beyond the Jabbok (Jos 11:2). What a strange insight does this parenthesis of four verses give into the early history of Palestine! How many successive wars of conquest had swept over its early state—what changes of dynasty among the Canaanitish tribes had taken place long prior to the transactions recorded in this history! No text from Poole on this verse. And when thou comest nigh over against the children of Ammon,.... Who dwelt near the Moabites, and were brethren, both descending from Lot, Genesis 19:37.

distress them not, nor meddle with them: lay no siege to any of their cities, nor provoke them to war, nor engage in battle with them:

for I will not give thee of the land of the children of Ammon any possession; that is, any part of it which was now in their hands; otherwise half their land was given to the tribe of Gad; but then that was what Sihon king of the Amorites had taken from them, and which Israel retook from him, and so possessed it not as the land of the Ammonites, but of the Amorites, one of the seven nations, whose land they were to inherit; see Joshua 13:25,

because I have given it unto the children of Lot for a possession; the Ammonites were the children of Lot by his second daughter, Genesis 19:38.

And when thou comest nigh over against the children of Ammon, distress them not, nor meddle with them: for I will not give thee of the land of the children of Ammon any possession; because I have given it unto the children of Lot for a possession.
19. when thou comest nigh over against the children of Ammon] And thou shalt approach to the front of the Bnê ‘Ammôn. The expression is vague and the mention of ‘Ammôn at this stage perplexing. It is true that, acc. to Jdg 11:13, the ‘Ammonites declared to Jephthah that Israel coming out of Egypt took away their land from Arnon even unto Jabboḳ. But the passage to which this belongs, Jdg 11:12-28, generally regarded as late and confused, repels the ‘Ammonite claim and affirms (Deuteronomy 2:22) that the land between Arnon and Jabboḳ had been held by the Amorites. This, too, is the testimony of the oldest traditions JE, Numbers 21:13; Numbers 21:24; Numbers 21:31 f., which also relate that the Amorites had taken that territory not from ‘Ammôn, but from Mo’ab (id. Numbers 21:26-30); cp. the evidence both of JE and P in Numbers 22 ff., that the land N. of Arnon was Moabite. The evidence thus preponderates that ‘Ammôn was confined to a small territory on the upper Jabboḳ, where Rabbath-‘Ammôn (chief town of ‘A.) was situated (though before the ‘Amorite invasion of E. Palestine they may have held the whole course of Jabboḳ immediately S. of that). On the Arnon, therefore, Israel was still some 35 miles from Ammonite territory and the Amorites lay between. The mention of ‘Ammôn at this stage thus appears proleptic, and coinciding as it does with a change to the Sg. address, may plausibly be maintained to be the insertion of a later writer, perhaps influenced by Jdg 11:13. On the other hand it is just possible that the reference to ‘Ammôn at this stage was held by the author of the discourse himself to be necessary, as intended to divert Israel from the due northerly direction which they had been pursuing and which, if continued, would bring them into conflict with ‘Ammôn; and to turn them N.W. through the Amorites to the Jordan.Verse 19. - Over against the children of Ammon. As the Israelites were passing eastward of Moab; when they crossed the Arnon, the Ammonites, whose dwelling was in the wilderness east of the Jordan, would be almost in front of them. The Israelites came over against them after they conquered Sihon (cf. Numbers 21:24). For this reason Israel was to remove from the desert of Moab (i.e., the desert which bounded Moabitis on the east), and to cross over the brook Zered, to advance against the country of the Amorites (see at Numbers 21:12-13). This occurred thirty-eight years after the condemnation of the people at Kadesh (Numbers 14:23, Numbers 14:29), when the generation rejected by God had entirely died out (תּמם, to be all gone, to disappear), so that not one of them saw the promised land. They did not all die a natural death, however, but "the hand of the Lord was against them to destroy them" (המם, lit., to throw into confusion, then used with special reference to the terrors with which Jehovah destroyed His enemies; Exodus 14:24; Exodus 23:27, etc.), sc., by extraordinary judgments (as in Numbers 16:35; Numbers 18:1; Numbers 21:6; Numbers 25:9).
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