Anathoth with her suburbs, and Almon with her suburbs; four cities.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
9-40. they gave … these cities which are here mentioned by name—It was overruled by the unerring providence of the Divine Lawgiver that the cities of the priests lay within the territories of Judah and Benjamin. This was a provision, the admirable wisdom and propriety of which were fully manifested on the schism that took place in the reign of Rehoboam.Joshua 18:11; it was the native place of the Prophet Jeremiah; see Gill on Jeremiah 1:1; it lay about two or three miles north of Jerusalem; three, says, Jerom (k). Rauwolff (l) speaks of it as a small village, when he travelled into those parts, and as lying on a height or eminence, and which was within twenty furlongs of Jerusalem, as Josephus writes (m):
and Almon with her suburbs; this also is not mentioned among the cities of Benjamin, Joshua 18:11; it is called Alemeth, 1 Chronicles 6:60. Jarchi and Kimchi say it is the same with Bahurim, 2 Samuel 3:16; where the Targum renders it by Almeth, and both words signify the same thing, "youth":
four cities; which were a large number for so small a tribe as little Benjamin to give.Anathoth with her suburbs, and Almon with her suburbs; four cities.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)18. Anathoth] lay on or near the great road from the north to Jerusalem. Its modern name is Anâta, on a broad ridge 1¼ hours N.N.E. of the Holy City, (a) Hither Abiathar was banished by Solomon, after the failure of his attempt to raise Adonijah to the throne (1 Kings 2:26); (b) here Jeremiah the prophet was born (Jeremiah 1:1; Jeremiah 11:21-23; Jeremiah 29:27; Jeremiah 32:7-9).
Almon] or Alemeth, according to the parallel list in 1 Chronicles 6:60; now ’Almît or Almuta, about a mile N.E. of Anathoth.Verse 18. - Anathoth. The birthplace of Jeremiah, where we find that Anathoth was still a priestly city (Joshua 1:1). No doubt it was for this reason that it was chosen (1 Kings 2:26) as the place of Abiathar's banishment. Here again we see to how close an examination the writers of the Old Testament may be submitted without in the least degree shaking their testimony. Observe, too, the geographical accuracy of Isaiah's mention of Geba and Anathoth in his description of an Assyrian invasion through the passes at Ai or Aiath and Michmash (Isaiah 10:29, 30).
(Note: There is a similar list in 1 Chronicles 6:54-81, though in some respects differently arranged, and with many variations in the names, and corruptions of different kinds in the text, which show that the author of the Chronicles has inserted an ancient document that was altogether independent of the book before us. Thus in the Chronicles there are only forty-two towns mentioned by name instead of forty-eight, although it is stated in 1 Chronicles 6:45. that 13 + 10 + 13 + 12, i.e., forty-eight towns in all, were given up to the Levites. The names omitted are (1) Jutta in Judah; (2) Gibeon in Benjamin; (3 and 4) Ethekeh and Gibbethon in Dan; (5 and 6) and Jokneam and Nahalal in Zebulun (compare Joshua 21:16, Joshua 21:17, Joshua 21:23, Joshua 21:34, and Joshua 21:35, with 1 Chronicles 6:59-60, 1 Chronicles 6:68, 1 Chronicles 6:77. In some cases also the author of the Chronicles gives different names, though some of them indeed are only different forms of the same name, e.g., Hilen for Holon, Alemeth for Almon, Ashtaroth for Beeshterah, Mashal for Misheal, Hammon for Hammoth-dor, Kirjathaim for Kartan (compare 1 Chronicles 6:58, 1 Chronicles 6:60, 1 Chronicles 6:71, 1 Chronicles 6:74, 1 Chronicles 6:76, with Joshua 21:15, Joshua 21:18, Joshua 21:27, Joshua 21:30, Joshua 21:32); or in some cases possibly different names of the same town, e.g., Jokmeam for Kibzaim, and Ramoth for Jarmuth, and Anem for En-gannim (1 Chronicles 6:68, 83, and Joshua 21:22, Joshua 21:29); whilst some evidently give the true reading, viz., Ashan for Ain, and Bileam for Gath-rimmon (1 Chronicles 6:59, 1 Chronicles 6:70; Joshua 21:16, Joshua 21:26). The majority, however, are faulty readings, viz., Aner for Tanach, Kedesh for Kishon, Hukok for Helkath, Rimmon and Tabor (compare 1 Chronicles 6:70, 1 Chronicles 6:72, 1 Chronicles 6:75, 1 Chronicles 6:77, with Joshua 21:25, Joshua 21:28, Joshua 21:31, Joshua 21:34-35).)
In the tribe of Judah the priests received Kirjath-arba, or Hebron, with the necessary pasturage round about the town (see Numbers 35:2), whilst the field of the town with the villages belonging to it remained in the hands of Caleb and his family as their possession (Joshua 14:12.).
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