Joshua 15:29
Baalah, and Iim, and Azem,
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15:20-63 Here is a list of the cities of Judah. But we do not here find Bethlehem, afterwards the city of David, and ennobled by the birth of our Lord Jesus in it. That city, which, at the best, was but little among the thousands of Judah, Mic 5:2, except that it was thus honoured, was now so little as not to be accounted one of the cities.Baalah Joshua 19:3 is found in the modern "Deir-el-Belah", near Gaza. Iim, i. e. "ruinous heaps" or "conical hills" (Numbers 21:11 note) is by some connected with Azem; and the compound name, "Ije Azem", is traced in El-Aujeh, in the country of the Azazimeh Arabs, in whose name the ancient Azem may perhaps be traced. Eltolad is connected with "Wady-el-Thoula", in the extreme south of the Negeb. Chesil appears to be the town called Bethul Joshua 19:4, and probably the Bethel 1 Samuel 30:27 situated not far from Ziklag. The name Chesil ( "fool") was most likely bestowed by way of opprobrium (compare the change of Bethel, house of God, into Bethaven, house of vanity, Hosea 4:15). As Chesil signifies the group of stars known as Orion (compare Job 38:31; Amos 5:8), probably it was the worship of the heavenly bodies in particular that was carried on here. Bethel may have been the ancient name, and the spot was perhaps the very one near Beer-sheba where Abraham planted a tamarisk tree Genesis 21:33.

The place is probably "El Khulasah", the Elusa of ecclesiastical writers, situated some fifteen miles southwest of Beer-sheba. Jerome testifies to the fact, that the worship of Venus as the morning star was practiced there, and Sozomen appears to be speaking of this place, when he mentions a Bethel Βηθελια Bēthelia in the territory of Gaza, populous and famous for an ancient and splendid temple. The site of Ziklag is uncertain. Madmannah and Sansannah correspond to Beth-marcaboth ( "house of chariots") and Hazar-susah ("horse enclosure") in Joshua 19:5 1 Chronicles 4:31. The latter names point to two stations of passage on or near the high road between Egypt and Palestine, and are represented by the modern "Minyay" and "Wady-es-Suny", on the caravan route south of Gaza. Shilhim or Sharuhen, Joshua 19:6, and Shaaraim 1 Chronicles 4:31 is traced in "Khirbet-es-Seram", near El Aujeh. Ain and Rimmon were possibly originally two towns, but in process of time became so connected as to be treated as one name Nehemiah 11:29. The place is probably the present "Um-er-Rummamim," i. e. "mother of pomegranates," a place about ten miles north of Beer-sheba.

Jos 15:21-63. Cities of Judah.

21-63. the uttermost cities of the tribe of the children of Judah—There is given a list of cities within the tribal territory of Judah, arranged in four divisions, corresponding to the districts of which it consisted—the cities in the southern part (Jos 15:21-32), those in the lowlands (Jos 15:33-47), those in the highlands (Jos 15:48-60), and those in the desert (Jos 15:61, 62). One gets the best idea of the relative situation of these cities by looking at the map.

No text from Poole on this verse.

Baalah,.... Baalah was given to the tribe of Simeon, Joshua 19:3; for Baalah is the same with Balah there, as it is with Bilba, 1 Chronicles 4:29; though according to the Jerusalem Talmud (i) it is the same with Baalah, given to the tribe of Dan, Joshua 19:44; and was one of those places whose houses were in Judah and their fields in Dan:

and Azem was also given to the tribe of Simeon, Joshua 19:3; it is the same with Ezem, 1 Chronicles 4:29,

and Iim, of which we read nowhere else.

(i) Hieros. Sanhedrin, fol. 18. 3.

Baalah, and Iim, and Azem,
29. Baalah] A fourth group is added of thirteen places which lay to the west and south-west:—

(1) Baalah, called Balah (ch. Joshua 19:3) and Bilhah (1 Chronicles 4:29); (2) Iim, unknown; (3) Azem = “firmness” or “strength” (ch. Joshua 19:3); (4) Eltolad = Tolad (1 Chronicles 4:29), unknown; (5) Chesil = Bethul (Joshua 19:4) = Bethuel (1 Chronicles 4:30); (6) Hormah, or Zephath (comp. Joshua 12:14); (7) Ziklag = “wilderness of destruction” (Gesenius), which afterwards came into the possession of Achish, king of Gath, who presented it to David (1 Samuel 27:6), and was burnt by the Amalekites (1 Samuel 30:1); (8) Madmannah = possibly to el-Minyây, south of Gaza, on the route of the pilgrims during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries; (9) Sansannah, unknown; (10) Lebaoth = Beth-lebaoth (Joshua 19:6; 1 Chronicles 4:31), perhaps Lebhem, eight hours south of Gaza; (11) Shilhim = el-Scheriat, about midway between Gaza and Beer-sheba; (12) Ain; (13) Rimmon; in ch. Joshua 19:7, 1 Chronicles 4:32, these are treated as one place, and comp. Nehemiah 11:29. Rimmon has been supposed to be represented by Um er-Rumamim, about three hours north of Beersheba.

Verse 29. - Iim. The Alexandrian version of LXX. has Ἀυείμ here. If this be correct, the city was named after the Avim (see note on Joshua 13:4). If we take the reading in the text we must interpret by ruins (see note on Ai, Joshua 7:2). Joshua 15:29The four groups of thirteen towns in the western portion of the Negeb.

Joshua 15:29

Baalah, which was assigned to the Simeonites, is called Balah in Joshua 19:3, and Bilhah in 1 Chronicles 4:29. Knobel identifies it with the present Deir Belah, some hours to the south-west of Gaza Rob. iii. App.; Ritter, Erdk. xvi. pp. 41, 42); but it cannot have been so far to the west, or so near the coast as this. Iim (or Ivvim, according to the Αυεἴμ of the lxx) is probably the ruins of Beit-auwa (Rob. iii. App.). Azem, which was also given up to the Simeonites (Joshua 19:3; 1 Chronicles 4:29), is supposed by Knobel to be Eboda, the present Abdeh, eight hours to the south of Elusa, a considerable mass of ruins on a ridge of rock (Rob. i. p. 287), because the name signifies firmness or strength, which is also the meaning of the Arabic name-a very precarious reason.

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