Joshua 15:1
This then was the lot of the tribe of the children of Judah by their families; even to the border of Edom the wilderness of Zin southward was the uttermost part of the south coast.
Jump to: BarnesBensonBICalvinCambridgeClarkeDarbyEllicottExpositor'sExp DctGaebeleinGSBGillGrayGuzikHaydockHastingsHomileticsJFBKDKingLangeMacLarenMHCMHCWParkerPoolePulpitSermonSCOTTBWESTSK
EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
XV.

(1) This then was the lot.—Rather, And the lot came to the tribe of Judah. We might perhaps better begin this section with the last sentence of Joshua 14, and read thus: “And the land had rest from war; and the lot fell to the tribe of Judah (i.e., the tribe of Judah received its allotment), according to their families.”

The question arises at this point how the position of the tribes of Judah, Ephraim, and Manasseh was determined. As to the remaining seven, see Note on Joshua 18:5-10. It is noticeable that Hebron appears to have been promised to Caleb (Joshua 14:12), and Shechem assigned to Joseph by Jacob (Genesis 48:21-22; Joshua 24:32). Did not this necessarily bring the tribe of Judah into the south, the neighbourhood of Hebron, and Ephraim (with his brother Manasseh) into the centre of the country?

Joshua 15:1. This then was the lot — For the general understanding of this business of casting lots, it must be observed, 1st, That it was transacted with great seriousness and solemnity, in God’s presence, with prayer and appeal to him for the decision of the matter. 2d, That although an exact survey of this land was not taken till afterward, Joshua 18:4-5; yet there was, and must needs be, a general description of it, and a division thereof into nine parts and a half; which, as far as they could guess, were equal either in quantity or quality. 3d, That the lot did not at this time so unchangeably determine the portion of each tribe that it could neither be increased nor diminished, as is manifest; because, after Judah’s lot was fixed, Simeon’s lot was taken out of it, Joshua 19:9. 4th, That the lot determined only in general what part of the land belonged to each tribe, but left the particulars to be determined by Joshua and Eleazar. For the manner of this, it is probably conceived, that there were two urns, into one of which were put the names of all the tribes, each in a distinct paper, and into the other the names of each portion described; then Eleazar, or some other person, drew out first the name of one of the tribes out of one urn, and then the name of one portion out of the other, and that portion was appropriated to that tribe. And with respect to these urns, in the bottom of which the papers lay, these lots are often said to come up, or come forth.

Of Judah — Whose lot came out first by God’s disposition, as a note of his pre-eminency above his brethren. To the border of Edom — Which lay south-east from Judah’s portion. Judah and Joseph were the two sons of Jacob on whom Reuben’s forfeited birthright devolved. Judah had the dominion entailed upon him, and Joseph the double portion. Therefore these two tribes are first appointed; and on them the other seven attended. By their families — The lot, it appears, determined only the right of each tribe to such or such a portion of the general division of the country. Joshua, Eleazar, and the rest of the commissioners, when they had thus given each tribe its province, by lot, did afterward (and it is probable by lot likewise) subdivide those larger portions, and assign to each family its inheritance, and then to each household; which would be better done by this supreme authority, and in a way less apt to give disgust, than if it had been left to the inferior magistrates of each tribe to make that distribution.

15:1-12 Joshua allotted to Judah, Ephraim, and the half of Manasseh, their inheritances before they left Gilgal. Afterwards removing to Shiloh, another survey was made, and the other tribes had their portion assigned. In due time all God's people are settled.The inheritance of the tribe of Judah is described first by its general boundaries on all four sides Joshua 15:1-12; then reference is again made, for the sake of completeness, to the special inheritance of Caleb which lay within these boundaries Joshua 15:13-20; and lastly a list of the towns is given Joshua 15:21-63. Consult the marginal references. CHAPTER 15

Jos 15:1-12. Borders of the Lot of Judah.

1. This then was the lot of the tribe of the children of Judah—In what manner the lot was drawn on this occasion the sacred historian does not say; but it is probable that the method adopted was similar to that described in Jos 18:10. Though the general survey of the country had not been completed, some rough draft or delineation of the first conquered part must have been made, and satisfactory evidence obtained that it was large enough to furnish three cantons, before all the tribes cast lots for them; and they fell to Judah, Ephraim, and the half-tribe of Manasseh. The lot of Judah came first, in token of the pre-eminence of that tribe over all the others; and its destined superiority thus received the visible sanction of God. The territory, assigned to it as a possession, was large and extensive, being bounded on the south by the wilderness of Zin, and the southern extremity of the Salt Sea (Nu 34:3-5); on the east, by that sea, extending to the point where it receives the waters of the Jordan; on the north, by a line drawn nearly parallel to Jerusalem, across the country, from the northern extremity of the Salt Sea to the southern limits of the Philistine territory, and to the Mediterranean; and on the west this sea was its boundary, as far as Sihor (Wady El-Arish).The borders of the lot of Judah, Joshua 15:1-12. Among them Kirjath-arba, Caleb’s inheritance: he drives thence the three sons of Anak; promises to give his daughter in marriage to him who should smite Kirjath-sepher; which Othniel does, and obtains her: she requests of her father some land for a dowry; which he grants, Joshua 15:13-19. The cities of Judah, Joshua 15:20-62. The Jebusites could not be conquered by them, Joshua 15:63.

For the general understanding of this business, it must be known,

1. That this work of casting lots was transacted with great seriousness and solemnity, in God’s presence, with prayer and appeal to him for the decision of the matter.

2. That although an exact survey of this land was not taken till Joshua 18:4,5, yet there was, and must needs be, a general description of it, and a division thereof into nine parts and a half; which as far as they could guess, were equal either in quantity or in quality.

3. That the lot did not at this time so peremptorily and unchangeably determine each tribe, that their portion could neither be increased nor diminished; as is manifest, because after Judah’s lot was fixed, Simeon’s lot was taken out of it, Joshua 19:9, though after the land was more distinctly known and surveyed, Jos 18, it is likely the bounds were more certain and fixed.

4. That the lot determined only in general what part or quarter of the land belonged to each tribe, but left the particulars to be determined by Joshua and Eleazar, &c. For the manner of this lottery, it is probably conceived that there were two urns or pots, into one of which were put the names of all the tribes, each in a distinct paper, and into the other the names of each portion described; then Eleazar, or some other person, drew out first the name of one of the tribes out of one pot, and then the name of one portion out of the other pot, and that portion was appropriated to that tribe; and so in the rest. And with respect to these pots, in the bottom of which the papers lay, these lots are oft said to come up, or come forth. The lot of the tribe of the children of Judah came out first by God’s disposition, as a note of his preeminency above his brethren. Edom lay south-east from Judah’s portion.

This then was the lot of the tribe of the children of Judah by their families,.... The land of Canaan was divided by lot to the several tribes, and the tribe of Judah had its lot first; of the manner of casting lots; see Gill on Numbers 26:55; It seems as if the lot was first cast for the tribes of Judah and Joseph, when the former had the southern, and the latter the northern part of the land for their portion, which was done in Gilgal; after this lots were cast in Shiloh for the other seven tribes, who had the land divided among them, which lay between Judah and Joseph, or between the southern and northern parts of the land, see Joshua 18:1, &c. and it seems that not only the land was divided to the tribes by lot, but that the portion of land which belonged to each tribe was divided in the same way to the several families and households belonging thereunto; as is here suggested, with respect to the tribe of Judah, whose lot reached

even to the border of Edom; or Idumea, which lay to the south of the land of Canaan:

the wilderness of Zin southward was the uttermost part of the south coast; the same with Kadesh, and lay upon the borders of Edom; see Numbers 33:36.

This then was the lot of the tribe of the children of Judah by their families; even to the border of Edom the wilderness of Zin southward was the uttermost part of the south coast.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Ch. Joshua 15:1-12. Boundaries of the Tribe of Judah

1. the lot of the tribe of the children of Judah] In this Chapter we have (a) the boundaries of the tribe of Judah (Joshua 15:1-12); (b) Caleb’s possession (Joshua 15:13-19); (c) a list of the cities of Judah (Joshua 15:20-63). “The lot of the tribe” = the lot which was drawn or fell to them.

even to the border of Edom] i. e. the territory of Judah extended to Edom on the east, and was bounded on the south by the wilderness of Zin, or that part of the wilderness of Paran, in which Kadesh-barnea was situated.

1. Zenan = Zaanan (Micah 1:11), site unknown; 2. Hadashah, site unknown; 3. Migdal-gad, site unknown; 4. Dilean, site unknown; 5. Mizpeh, not the Mizpeh of Benjamin (ch. Joshua 18:26); 6. Joktheel, site unknown; 7. Lachish (see above Joshua 10:3); 8. Bozkath, uncertain; 9. Eglon (see above, Joshua 10:3); 10. Cabbon; 11. Lahmam; 12. Kithlish; 13. Gederoth, all undetermined; 14. Beth-dagon, indicating by its name the Philistine worship of Dagon; 15. Naamah, undetermined; 16. Makkedah, a royal city of the Canaanites, already spoken of Joshua 10:16.

1. Libnah, conquered by Joshua, see above, Joshua 10:29-30; 2. Ether, and 3. Ashan, see 1 Chronicles 4:32; 4. Jiphtah; 5. Ashnah, sites unknown; 6. Nezib = the modern Nûsib; 7. Keilah, to the north of Nezib, the modern Kila; this was the town (a) which David rescued from the attack of the Philistines (1 Samuel 23:7); (b) which became the repository of the sacred ephod after the massacre of the priests at Nob (1 Samuel 23:6); (c) which David left, warned of the intention of the inhabitants to deliver him to Saul (1 Samuel 23:13); 8. Achzib, see Genesis 38:5; Micah 1:14; 9. Mareshah, afterwards fortified by Rehoboam (2 Chronicles 11:8), and the scene of the victory of king Asa (2 Chronicles 14:9-13). It was subsequently called Maresa, and was famous in the contests of the Maccabees (1Ma 5:65-68). It was restored by the Roman general Gabinius, and destroyed by the Parthians. The modern name is Merash.

1. Ekron, see ch. Joshua 13:3, with her towns, or rather “daughter towns”, and villages; 2. Ashdod, with her “daughter towns” and villages, see above, ch. Joshua 11:21; Joshua 3. Gaza, with her “daughter towns” and villages, see above, ch. Joshua 10:41; as far as the “river of Egypt,” see above, Joshua 13:3, and “the great sea.”

1. Shamir, still unknown; 2. Jattir, probably the modern ’Attîr, 10 miles south of Hebron; 3. Socoh, not Shocoh in “the Lowland,” but like it now called Suweikeh; 4. Dannah, still unknown; 5. Kirjath-sannah, i.e. Debir, see above, Joshua 10:38, Joshua 15:15; Joshua 6. Anab, a town of the Anakims (ch. Joshua 11:21), still existing under its old name; 7. Eshtemoh, one of the places frequented by David and his followers during his life as an outlaw (1 Samuel 30:28). Now Semua, seven miles south of Hebron; 8. Anim, close to Eshtemoa, nine miles south of Hebron; 9. Goshen, not determined; 10. Holon, a priest’s city (1 Chronicles 6:58); 11. Giloh, the site of which has not yet been discovered, but it was (a) the birthplace of Ahithophel (2 Samuel 15:12); (b) and the place where the traitor hanged himself (2 Samuel 17:23).

1. Arab; 2. Dumah, a ruined village not far from Hebron, now Ed-Daumeh; 3. Eshean, site unknown; 4. Janum, not discovered; 5. Beth-tappuah = “House of Apples.” The name has been preserved in Tefffûh, a place about 5 miles west of Hebron; 6. Aphekah, not the Aphek of ch. Joshua 12:18, Joshua 13:4, but on the mountains of Judah; 7. Hum-tah, not yet discovered; 8. Kirjath-Arba, see above, Joshua 14:15, Joshua 15:13; Joshua 9. Zior, unknown.

1. Maon, to the east of Eshtemoa, now Main; here David hid himself during his life as an outlaw (1 Samuel 23:24), and here he met Nabal, the churl (1 Samuel 25:2); 2. Carmel (Kurmul), a name familiar in the history (a) of Saul (1 Samuel 15:12); (b) of David (1 Samuel 25:2; 1 Samuel 25:5; 1 Samuel 25:7); (c) of Uzziah (2 Chronicles 26:10); 3. Ziph (Tell Zif), about five miles south-east of Hebron, where (a) David hid himself (1 Samuel 23:19; Psalms 54. title); which (b) Rehoboam fortified (2 Chronicles 11:8); 4. Juttah, west of Ziph, now Yǔtta, a priests’ city (ch. Joshua 21:16); 5. Jezreel, the home of Ahinoam the second wife of David (1 Samuel 25:43); 6, Jokdeam; 7. Zanoah, these places are undiscovered, and not elsewhere named; 8. Cain, likewise unknown; 9. Gibeah = “hill,” a very common name; 10. Timnah, not the Timnah between Beth-shemesh and Ekron (Joshua 15:10), but the place whither Judah went up to his sheep-shearing (Genesis 38:12-14).

1. Halhul, still called Hûlhûl, north of Hebron, on the way to Jerusalem, in a well-cultivated region of fields and vineyards; 2. Beth-zur, to the north of Halhul, now Beit Sur, fortified by Rehoboam (2 Chronicles 11:7), and one of the strongest fortresses afterwards in all Judæa (1Ma 4:29; 1Ma 4:61; 1Ma 6:7; 1Ma 6:26); 3. Gedor, north-west of Beth-zur, now Jedûr; see 1 Chronicles 12:7, on the brow of a high mountain, north-west of the road between Jerusalem and Hebron; 4. Maarath, unknown; 5. Beth-anoth = “house of Echo” (Gesenius), now Beit Ainûn; 6. Eltekon, site unknown.

1. Kirjath-baal = Kirjath-jearim, see above, Joshua 15:9; Joshua 2. Rabbah, unknown.

Verse 1. - The lot of the tribe of the children of Judah. The first twelve verses of this chapter define the boundaries of Judah. With it compare Numbers 34:3-5, which gives the southern border of the Israelitish territory, corresponding closely with this account of the southern border of Judah. The word tribe here is, as might be expected from the context מַטֶה and not שֶּׁבֶט. Even to the border of Edom. The literal translation, which makes the passage clearer, is, "the border of Edom, the wilderness of Zin towards the dry region (נֶגְבָּה) from the extreme limit of the south תֵימָן. The latter of these words, derived from יָמִין "right hand," being the position of the south when regarded from the point of view of a man looking eastward, denotes the southward direction (see above, Joshua 12:2). The former word has reference to the physical conditions of the country, its heat and dryness. The LXX. does not attempt to translate the former word and has evidently מִקָּדֵשׁ for מִקְצֶה. The wilderness of Zin. Not to be confounded with the wilderness of Sin (Exodus 16:1; cf. Numbers 34:11, 36). This wilderness was on the border of Edom (Numbers 20:1; Numbers 27:14). Thence the border of Judah (which here includes the small portion afterwards allotted to Simeon) extended to the utmost limits of the south (see Joshua 19:1, 9). A wall of mountains extends southwestward from the southern extremity of the Dead Sea, and formed the natural boundary of Judaea. Joshua 15:1Boundaries of the inheritance of the tribe of Judah. - Joshua 15:1. Its situation in the land. "And there was (i.e., fell, or came out; cf. Joshua 16:1; Joshua 19:1) the lot to the tribe of Judah according to its families to the frontier of Edom (see at Numbers 34:3), to the desert of Zin southward, against the extreme south" (lit. from the end or extremity of the south), i.e., its inheritance fell to it, so that it reached to the territory of Edom and the desert of Zin, in which Kadesh was situated (see at Numbers 13:21), on the extreme south of Canaan.
Links
Joshua 15:1 Interlinear
Joshua 15:1 Parallel Texts


Joshua 15:1 NIV
Joshua 15:1 NLT
Joshua 15:1 ESV
Joshua 15:1 NASB
Joshua 15:1 KJV

Joshua 15:1 Bible Apps
Joshua 15:1 Parallel
Joshua 15:1 Biblia Paralela
Joshua 15:1 Chinese Bible
Joshua 15:1 French Bible
Joshua 15:1 German Bible

Bible Hub






Joshua 14:15
Top of Page
Top of Page