Jeremiah 41:12
Then they took all the men, and went to fight with Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, and found him by the great waters that are in Gibeon.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(12) By the great waters that are in Gibeon.—Johanan and his friends had been unable to prevent the slaughter of which they had warned Gedaliah (Jeremiah 41:15), but they were not too late to avenge it. Gibeon, retaining its name with little alteration in the modern El-jibe, lay about two miles from Mizpah; so that Ishmael must have halted on thinking himself safe against attack. On the east side of the hill on which it stands there are the remains of a large tank, about 120 feet by 100. It appears as the “pool of Gibeon” in 2Samuel 2:13, as the scene of a conflict between Joab and Abner. Josephus (Ant. x. 9-15) places the attack on Ishmael at “the pool in Hebron,” which is mentioned in 2Samuel 4:12. This, however, would hardly have been in Ishmael’s route to the country of the Ammonites.

41:11-18 The success of villany must be short, and none can prosper who harden their hearts against God. And those justly lose comfort in real fears, who excuse themselves in sin by pretended fears. The removal of a prudent and peaceable ruler, and the succession of another who is rash and ambitious, affects the welfare of many. Only those are happy and steady who fear the Lord and walk in his ways.An open pool still exists at Gibeon, and a large subterranean reservoir fed by a copious natural spring. Gibeon is about two miles north of Mizpah. 12. the … waters—(2Sa 2:13); a large reservoir or lake.

in Gibeon—on the road from Mizpah to Ammon: one of the sacerdotal cities of Benjamin, four miles northwest of Jerusalem, now Eljib.

These

great waters are supposed to be a lake, or some great pool in Gibeon, the very same that is mentioned 2 Samuel 2:13, where Joab and the servants of David met, the one keeping on one side of the pool, the other on the other side. Then they took all the men,.... All the soldiers that were under their command; this they did at once, believing the report to be true, as they had reason to do; since they knew of Ishmael's designs, and had given notice and warning of them to Gedaliah, though he would not listen to them:

and went to fight with Ishmael the son of Nethaniah: resolving to give him battle, and to revenge the innocent blood he had shed, and rescue the captives out of his hands he was carrying to the Ammonites:

and found him by the great waters that are in Gibeon; taking this road to the country of Ammon, though it was not quite the direct road; either to avoid the forces of Johanan; or rather for the sake of the hid treasure at Shechem, or Shiloh, or Samaria, the ten men had promised him for their lives. These great waters were the same with the pool at Gibeon, where the servants of Ishbosheth and the servants of David met, and sat one on one side, and the other on the other; and where twelve young men on each side slew one another, and from thence called Helkathhazzurim, 2 Samuel 2:12; and the Targum calls it

"the pool of many waters, which were in Gibeon.''

Josephus (p) calls it a fountain in Hebron; which perhaps should be read Gibeon.

(p) Antiqu. l. 10. c. 9. sect. 5.

Then they took all the men, and went to fight with Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, and found him by the great waters that are in Gibeon.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
12. Gibeon] See on Jeremiah 28:1. The “great waters” apparently are to be identified with the “pool” of 2 Samuel 2:13. Gibeon was about a mile N. of Mizpah.Verse 12. - The great waters.., in Gibeon; i.e. the pool mentioned in 2 Samuel 2:13. Dr. Thomson (p. 670) speaks of a "pond or small lake" near El-Jib. Ishmael seems to be lingering over his journey to Ammon, in order to find the subterranean stores spoken of in ver. 8. Ishmael went out from Mizpah to meet these men, always weeping as he went (הלך הלך וּבכה, cf. Ges. 131, ab; Ew. 280, b). If they came from Ephraim by way of Gibeon (el Jb), the road on to Jerusalem passed close by Mizpah. When Ishmael met them, he asked them to come to Gedaliah (to Mizpah). But when they had entered the city, "Ishmael slew them into the midst of the pit" (which was there), i.e., killed them and cast their corpses into the pit.
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