There was not a city that made peace with the children of Israel, save the Hivites the inhabitants of Gibeon: all other they took in battle.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Joshua 11:19-20. All other they took in battle — That is, all that were taken by Joshua were taken by the sword, and therefore it is no wonder that the war was long, when the enemy was so obstinate. It was of the Lord to harden their hearts — In the same sense in which he hardened the heart of Pharaoh. He did not soften their hearts through the influence of his almighty grace, but gave them up to their own animosity, pride, confidence, and stubbornness; and so ordered things, in the course of his wise and righteous providence, that they were imboldened to fight with the Israelites, notwithstanding they had heard of the wonders that were repeatedly wrought for them. And this he did in order that their abominable and incorrigible wickedness might be punished, and that the Israelites might not be mixed with them, but be entire among themselves in the possession of the land. That he might destroy them utterly, and they might have no favour — Which they might have obtained if they had not been so inconsiderate, and self-confident, and rash as to imagine they could withstand those before whom the river Jordan fled back, and the walls of Jericho fell down flat; and so would not hearken to the terms that Joshua offered to them.Joshua 14:10, and Introduction). This and the preceding chapter contain a very condensed account of the wars of Joshua, giving particulars about leading events only.
that goeth up to Seir—an irregular line of white naked hills, about eighty feet high, and seven or eight geographical miles in length that cross the whole Ghor, eight miles south of the Dead Sea, probably "the ascent of Akrabbim" [Robinson].
unto Baal-gad in the valley of Lebanon—the city or temple of the god of destiny, in Baalbec.
save the Hivites and the inhabitants of Gibeon; these, some have thought, did not hear of the offers of peace, others think they did, and at first rejected them, but repenting were obliged to take the crafty methods they did to obtain it, of which see Joshua 9:1,
all other they took in battle; refusing to submit to them and make peace with them.There was not a city that made peace with the children of Israel, save the Hivites the inhabitants of Gibeon: all other they took in battle.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)19. save the Hivites] Gibeon had surrendered peacefully (Joshua 9:3; Joshua 9:7; Joshua 9:15; Joshua 10:1; Joshua 10:6). All the rest were taken in battle.Joshua 11:13) neither contains an allusion to any special fortification of the towns, nor implies a contrast to the towns built in the valleys and plains, but simply expresses the thought that these towns were still standing upon their hill, i.e., upon the old site (cf. Jeremiah 30:18 : the participle does not express the preterite, but the present). At the same time, the expression certainly implies that the towns were generally built upon hills. The pointing in תּלּם is not to be altered, as Knobel suggests. The singular "upon their hill" is to be taken as distributive: standing, now as then, each upon its hill. - With Joshua 11:15, "as Jehovah commanded His servant Moses" (cf. Numbers 33:52.; Deuteronomy 7:1., Deuteronomy 20:16), the account of the wars of Joshua is brought to a close, and the way opened for proceeding to the concluding remarks with reference to the conquest of the whole land (Joshua 11:16-23). דּבר הסיר לא, he put not away a word, i.e., left nothing undone.
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