Judges 11:16
But when Israel came up from Egypt, and walked through the wilderness to the Red sea, and came to Kadesh;
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(16) When Israel came up from Egypt.—Compare with this narrative Numbers 20, 21.

Walked through the wilderness.—In the second year of the wanderings (Deuteronomy 1:19).

Unto the Red sea.Numbers 14:25. The name for this sea in the Old Testament is Yam sooph, “the sea of weeds.” They reached Kadesh Barnea from Ezion Geber (“the Giant’s backbone”), in the Gulf of Akaba (Numbers 33:36).

To Kadesh.Numbers 20:1; Numbers 33:16.

Jdg 11:16-17. Unto the Red sea — Unto which they came three times; once, Exodus 13:18; again, a little after their passage over it; and a third time, long after, when they came to Ezion-geber, which was upon the shore of the Red sea, from whence they went to Kadesh; of this time he speaks here. In the like manner they sent to the king of Moab — We do not read of such a message sent to the Moabites; but when the Israelites came from Ezion-geber into the wilderness of Moab, we find a command of God given to them not to distress the Moabites, nor contend with them in battle. This intimates there was some occasion for such a command, which was probably their refusing to grant them some common civility.11:12-28 One instance of the honour and respect we owe to God, as our God, is, rightly to employ what he gives us to possess. Receive it from him, use it for him, and part with it when he calls for it. The whole of this message shows that Jephthah was well acquainted with the books of Moses. His argument was clear, and his demand reasonable. Those who possess the most courageous faith, will be the most disposed for peace, and the readiest to make advances to obtain; but rapacity and ambition often cloak their designs under a plea of equity, and render peaceful endeavours of no avail.Consult the marginal references. If the ark with the copy of the Law Deuteronomy 31:26 was at Mizpeh, it would account for Jephthah's accurate knowledge of it; and this exact agreement of his message with Numbers and Deuteronomy would give additional force to the expression, "he uttered all his words before the Lord" Judges 11:11.13. the king of Ammon …, Because Israel took away my land—(See on [221]De 2:19). The subject of quarrel was a claim of right advanced by the Ammonite monarch to the lands which the Israelites were occupying. Jephthah's reply was clear, decisive, and unanswerable;—first, those lands were not in the possession of the Ammonites when his countrymen got them, and that they had been acquired by right of conquest from the Amorites [Jud 11:21]; secondly, the Israelites had now, by a lapse of three hundred years of undisputed possession, established a prescriptive right to the occupation [Jud 11:22, 23]; and thirdly, having received a grant of them from the Lord, his people were entitled to maintain their right on the same principle that guided the Ammonites in receiving, from their god Chemosh, the territory they now occupied [Jud 11:24]. This diplomatic statement, so admirable for the clearness and force of its arguments, concluded with a solemn appeal to God to maintain, by the issue of events, the cause of right and justice [Jud 11:27]. Unto the Red Sea; unto which they came three times; once, Exodus 13:18; again, a little after their passage over it, Exodus 15:22; and a third time, long after, when they came to Ezion-gaber, Numbers 33:35 Deu 2:8, which was upon the shore of the Red Sea, 1 Kings 9:26 2 Chronicles 8:17, from whence they went to Kadesh, Num 20: of this time he speaks here. But when Israel came up from Egypt,.... In order to go to the land of Canaan, which was higher than the land of Egypt, which lay low (k):

and walked through the wilderness unto the Red sea; which is to be understood not of their walking to it; when they first came out of Egypt, they indeed then came to the edge of the wilderness of Etham, and so to the Red sea, and walked through it as on dry land, and came into the wilderness of Shur, Sin, and Sinai; and after their departure from Mount Sinai they came into the wilderness of Paran, in which they were thirty eight years; and this is the wilderness meant they walked through, and came to Eziongaber, on the shore of the Red sea, Numbers 33:35.

and came to Kadesh; not Kadeshbarnea, from whence the spies were sent, but Kadesh on the borders of Edom, from whence messengers were sent to the king of it, as follows.

(k) Theocrit. Idyll. 17. ver. 79.

But when Israel came up from Egypt, and walked through the wilderness unto the Red sea, and came to Kadesh;
16. the wilderness … the Red Sea … Kadesh] The route is generalized, perhaps from reminiscences of Numbers 14:25; Numbers 20:14 (JE), as Moore suggests. It is now generally held that Kadesh is to be identified with ‘Ain Ḳadîs, 50 m. S. of Beer-sheba. Jdg 11:16-18 agree with JE’s narrative in Num., according to which the Israelites journeyed straight from Sinai to Kadesh, and abode in Kadesh (Jdg 11:17, Numbers 20:1 b) apparently till the fortieth year of the Exodus (Numbers 20:14; Numbers 20:16). D and P give divergent accounts; see Gray, Numbers, p. 260.Verse 16. - When Israel came up, etc. In this and the following verses there is a distinct reference to the history in Numbers and Deuteronomy, and in some instances verbal quotations. Thus in this verse the words below which are put in italics are found in Numbers 13:26; Numbers 14:25: Israel... walked through the wilderness unto the Red Sea, and came to Kadesh. The elders promised this on oath. "Jehovah be hearing between us," i.e., be hearer and judge of the things concerning which we are negotiating; "truly according to thy word so will we do" (לא אם, a particle used in connection with an oath).
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