Joshua 10:7
So Joshua ascended from Gilgal, he, and all the people of war with him, and all the mighty men of valor.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
10:7-14 The meanest and most feeble, who have just begun to trust the Lord, are as much entitled to be protected as those who have long and faithfully been his servants. It is our duty to defend the afflicted, who, like the Gibeonites, are brought into trouble on our account, or for the sake of the gospel. Joshua would not forsake his new vassals. How much less shall our true Joshua fail those who trust in Him! We may be wanting in our trust, but our trust never can want success. Yet God's promises are not to slacken and do away, but to quicken and encourage our endeavours. Notice the great faith of Joshua, and the power of God answering it by the miraculous staying of the sun, that the day of Israel's victories might be made longer. Joshua acted on this occasion by impulse on his mind from the Spirit of God. It was not necessary that Joshua should speak, or the miracle be recorded, according to the modern terms of astronomy. The sun appeared to the Israelites over Gibeon, and the moon over the valley of Ajalon, and there they appeared to be stopped on their course for one whole day. Is any thing too hard for the Lord? forms a sufficient answer to ten thousand difficulties, which objectors have in every age started against the truth of God as revealed in his written word. Proclamation was hereby made to the neighbouring nations, Behold the works of the Lord, and say, What nation is there so great as Israel, who has God so nigh unto them?The language reflects the urgency of the crisis. Accordingly Joshua made a forced march, accompanied only by his soldiers Joshua 10:7, and accomplished in a single night the distance from Gilgal to Gibeon (about 15 miles in a direct line), which on a former occasion had been a three days' journey Joshua 9:17. Jos 10:6-9. Joshua Rescues It.

6-8. the men of Gibeon sent unto Joshua—Their appeal was urgent and their claim to protection irresistible, on the ground, not only of kindness and sympathy, but of justice. In attacking the Canaanites, Joshua had received from God a general assurance of success (Jos 1:5). But the intelligence of so formidable a combination among the native princes seems to have depressed his mind with the anxious and dispiriting idea that it was a chastisement for the hasty and inconsiderate alliance entered into with the Gibeonites. It was evidently to be a struggle of life and death, not only to Gibeon, but to the Israelites. And in this view the divine communication that was made to him was seasonable and animating. He seems to have asked the counsel of God and received an answer, before setting out on the expedition.

Having, no doubt, asked advice of God first, which is implied by the answer God gives to him, Joshua 10:8.

And all the mighty men, or, even, or that is, as this particle is oft used, as hath been noted before. So it seems put here by way of explication and restriction; having said

all the people of war, he now adds, even all the mighty men, &c., i.e. an army of the most valiant men picked out from the rest; for it is not probable, either that he would take so many hundred thousands with him, which would have hindered one another, or that he would leave the camp without an army to defend it. So Joshua ascended from Gilgal,.... Which lay low in the plains of Jericho:

he and all the men of war with him; which must not be understood of the whole camp of Israel, which consisted of five hundred thousand fighting men at least; since such a number was unnecessary for this expedition, and could not have proceeded with that haste the case required; nor would it have been prudent and advisable to have left the unarmed people, old men, women, and children, defenceless; but these were a select company of able men, fit for travel as well as war:

and all the mighty men of valour; or "even all", as many as were picked out for the purpose, being men of strength, activity, and courage.

So Joshua ascended from Gilgal, he, and all the people of war with him, and all the mighty men of valor.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
7. So Joshua ascended] “Not a moment was to be lost. As in the battle of Marathon, everything depended on the suddenness of the blow which should break in pieces the hostile confederation.” Stanley’s Sinai and Palestine, p. 209.Verse 7. - Joshua ascended. Keil insists upon the military sense here, as against the literal one, "went up." He believes in the second Gilgal, which was on higher ground than the first (see Joshua 9:6), where, however, we learn that the second Gilgal was not so elevated as Gibeon. And all the mighty men of valour. A selection of the bravest troops seems to be implied here, by the copulative particle. Cf. Genesis 3:16, "Thy pain and (especially in the time of) thy pregnancy." The report that Joshua had taken Ai, and put it, like Jericho, under the ban, and that the Gibeonites had concluded a treaty with Israel, filled Adonizedek the king of Jerusalem with alarm, as Gibeon was a large town, like one of the king's towns, even larger than Ai, and its inhabitants were brave men. He therefore joined with the kings of Hebron, Jarmuth, Lachish, and Eglon, to make a common attack upon Gibeon, and punish it for its alliance with the Israelites, and at the same time to put a check upon the further conquests of Israel. Adonizedek, i.e., lord of righteousness, is synonymous with Melchizedek (king of righteousness), and was a title of the Jebusite kings, as Pharaoh was of the Egyptian. Jerusalem, i.e., the founding or possession of peace, called Salem in the time of Abraham (Genesis 14:18), was the proper name of the town, which was also frequently called by the name of its Canaanitish inhabitants Jebus (Judges 19:10-11; 1 Chronicles 11:4), or "city of the Jebusite" (Ir-Jebusi, Judges 19:11), sometimes also in a contracted form, Jebusi (היבוּסי, Joshua 18:16, Joshua 18:28; Joshua 15:8; 2 Samuel 5:8).

(Note: In our English version, we have the Hebrew word itself simply transposed in Joshua 18:16, Joshua 18:28; whilst it is rendered "the Jebusite" in Joshua 15:8, and "the Jebusites" in 2 Samuel 5:8. - Tr.)

On the division of the land it was allotted to the tribe of Benjamin (Joshua 18:28); but being situated upon the border of Judah (Joshua 15:8), it was conquered, and burned by the sons of Judah after the death of Joshua (Judges 1:8). It was very soon taken again and rebuilt by the Jebusites, whom the sons of Judah were unable to destroy (Joshua 15:63; Judges 19:10-12), so that both Benjaminites and Judahites lived there along with the Jebusites (Judges 1:21; Joshua 15:63); and the upper town especially, upon the summit of Mount Zion, remained as a fortification in the possession of the Jebusites, until David conquered it (2 Samuel 5:6.), made it the capital of his kingdom, and called it by his own name, "the city of David," after which the old name of Jebus fell into disuse. Hebron, the town of Arba the Anakite (Joshua 14:15, etc.; see at Genesis 23:2), was twenty-two Roman miles south of Jerusalem, in a deep and narrow valley upon the mountains of Judah, a town of the greatest antiquity (Numbers 13:22), now called el Khalil, i.e., the friend (of God), with reference to Abraham's sojourn there. The ruins of an ancient heathen temple are still to be seen there, as well as the Haram, built of colossal blocks, which contains, according to Mohammedan tradition, the burial-place of the patriarchs (see at Genesis 23:17). Jarmuth, in the lowlands of Judah (Joshua 15:35; Nehemiah 11:29), according to the Onom. (s. v. Jermus) a hamlet, Jermucha (Ἰερμοχωῶς), ten Roman miles from Eleutheropolis, on the road to Jerusalem, is the modern Jarmuk, a village on a lofty hill, with the remains of walls and cisterns of a very ancient date, the name of which, according to Van de Velde (Mem. pp. 115-6), is pronounced Tell 'Armuth by the Arabs (see Rob. Pal. ii. p. 344). Lachish, in the lowlands of Judah (Joshua 15:39), was fortified by Rehoboam (2 Chronicles 11:9), and besieged by Sennacherib and Nebuchadnezzar (2 Kings 18:14; 2 Kings 19:8; Jeremiah 34:7), and was still inhabited by Jews after the return from the captivity (Nehemiah 11:30). It is probably to be found in Um Lakis, an old place upon a low round hill, covered with heaps of small round stones thrown together in great confusion, containing relics of marble columns; it is about an hour and a quarter to the west of Ajlun, and seven hours to the west of Eleutheropolis.

(Note: It is true that Robinson dispute the identity of Um Lakis with the ancient Lachish (Pal. ii. p. 388), but "not on any reasonable ground" (Van de Velde, Mem. p. 320). The statement in the Onom. (s. v. Lochis), that it was seven Roman miles to the south of Eleutheropolis, cannot prove much, as it may easily contain an error in the number, and Robinson does not admit its authority even in the case of Eglon (Pal. ii. p. 392). Still less can Knobel's conjecture be correct, that it is to be found in the old place called Sukkarijeh, two hours and a half to the south-west of Beit Jibrin (Eleutheropolis), as Sukkarijeh is on the east of Ajlun, whereas, according to Joshua 10:31-36, Lachish is to be sought for on the west of Eglon.)

Eglon: also in the lowlands of Judah (Joshua 15:39). The present name is Ajln, a heap of ruins, about three-quarters of an hour to the east of Um Lakis (see Rob. Pal. ii. p. 392, and Van de Velde, Mem. p. 308). In the Onom. (s. v. Eglon) it is erroneously identified with Odollam; whereas the situation of Agla, "at the tenth stone, as you go from Eleutheropolis to Gaza" (Onom. s. v. Βηθαλαΐ́μ, Bethagla), suits Eglon exactly.

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