Moreover the children of Ammon passed over Jordan to fight also against Judah, and against Benjamin, and against the house of Ephraim; so that Israel was sore distressed.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Moreover.—Rather, and. Eighteen years’ oppression of the Trans-jordanic tribes emboldened them to attack the others.
Was sore distressed.—The same expression is used in Judges 2:19.Judges 10:10, Judges 10:15-16, and so prepared the way for the deliverance. Possibly in the original narrative from which this portion of the Book of Judges is compiled, "that year" was defined.
to fight also against Judah, and against Benjamin, and against the house of Ephraim who lay to the south and the southeast of the land of Canaan, and were the first the Ammonites had to fight with and subdue, when they had crossed Jordan to the east of it:
so that Israel was sore distressed; by the Ammonites in the east, threatening those three tribes, mentioned, and the Philistines on the west, who gave disturbance to the tribes that lay nearest them, as Asher, Zebulun, Naphtali, Issachar, and Dan; and this distress was begun the same year in different parts, by different enemies.Moreover the children of Ammon passed over Jordan to fight also against Judah, and against Benjamin, and against the house of Ephraim; so that Israel was sore distressed.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)9. was sore distressed] Cf. Jdg 2:15.Verse 9. - The children of Ammon, etc. It would seem that at this time the king of the children of Ammon was also king of the Moabites, since he laid claim (Judges 11:13, 24) to the land which had once belonged to Moab. If we may trust the king of the Ammonites' statement, the object of the war was to recover that land, and he carried the war across the Jordan into the territory of Judah and Ephraim in order to compel the Israelites to give it up. Judges 10:4 is another form for ערים, from a singular עיר equals עיר, a city, and is chosen because of its similarity in sound to עירים, asses). These cities they were accustomed to call Havvoth-jair unto this day (the time when our book was written), in the land of Gilead. The להם before יקראוּ is placed first for the sake of emphasis, "even these they call," etc. This statement is not at variance with the fact, that in the time of Moses the Manassite Jair gave the name of Havvoth-jair to the towns of Bashan which had been conquered by him (Numbers 32:41; Deuteronomy 3:14); for it is not affirmed here, that the thirty cities which belonged to the sons of Jair received this name for the first time from the judge Jair, but simply that this name was brought into use again by the sons of Jair, and was applied to these cities in a peculiar sense. (For further remarks on the Havvoth-jair, see at Deuteronomy 3:14.) The situation of Camon, where Jair was buried, is altogether uncertain. Josephus (Ant. v. 6, 6) calls it a city of Gilead, though probably only on account of the assumption, that it would not be likely that Jair the Gileadite, who possessed so many cities in Gilead, should be buried outside Gilead. But this assumption is a very questionable one. As Jair judged Israel after Tola the Issacharite, the assumption is a more natural one, that he lived in Canaan proper. Yet Reland (Pal. ill. p. 679) supports the opinion that it was in Gilead, and adduces the fact that Polybius (Hist. v. 70, 12) mentions a town called Καμοῦν, by the side of Pella and Gefrun, as having been taken by Antiochus. On the other hand, Eusebius and Jerome (in the Onom.) regard our Camon as being the same as the κώμη Καμμωνὰ ἐν τῷ μεγάΛῳ πεδίῳ, six Roman miles to the north of Legio (Lejun), on the way to Ptolemais, which would be in the plain of Jezreel or Esdraelon. This is no doubt applicable to the Κυαμών of Judith 7:3; but whether it also applies to our Camon cannot be decided, as the town is not mentioned again.
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