Numbers 13:6
Of the tribe of Judah, Caleb the son of Jephunneh.
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(6) Caleb the son of Jephunneh.—In three places—viz., in Numbers 32:12; and in Joshua 14:6; Joshua 14:14—Caleb is described as the Kenezite (or rather, the Kenizzite). Now in Genesis 15:19 the Kenizzites are mentioned as one of the Canaanite tribes, and in Genesis 36:11; Genesis 36:15, Kenaz occurs as an Edomite name. It has been conjectured from these facts, but, as it should seem, on insufficient grounds, that Caleb was of foreign origin, and that he had been incorporated into the tribe of Judah.

13:1-20 A memorable and melancholy history is related in this and the following chapter, of the turning back of Israel from the borders of Canaan, and the sentencing them to wander and perish in the wilderness, for their unbelief and murmuring. It appears, De 1:22, that the motion to search out the land came from the people. They had a better opinion of their own policy than of God's wisdom. Thus we ruin ourselves by believing the reports and representations of sense rather than Divine revelation. We walk by sight not by faith. Moses gave the spies this charge, Be of good courage. It was not only a great undertaking they were put upon, which required good management and resolution; but a great trust was reposed in them, which required that they should be faithful. Courage in such circumstances can only spring from strong faith, which Caleb and Joshua alone possessed.A ruler - A comparison of the list with that of Numbers 13:1 :5 following shows that they were not the princes of the tribes, but heads of houses or families Numbers 12:4.

Of the names here given those of Joshua and Caleb alone are otherwise known to us.

3. those men were heads of the children of Israel—Not the princes who are named (Nu 10:14-16, 18-20, 22-27), but chiefs, leading men though not of the first rank. No text from Poole on this verse. Of the tribe of Judah, Caleb the son of Jephunneh. See Gill on Numbers 13:4. Of the tribe of Judah, Caleb the son of Jephunneh.
6. Caleb the son of Jephunneh] See note on Numbers 14:24.Verse 6. - Caleb the son of Jephunneh. In Numbers 32:12 he is called "the Kenezite" (הַקְּנִזּי), which appears in Genesis 15:19 as the name of one of the ancient races inhabiting the promised land. It is possible that Jephunneh may have been connected by descent or otherwise with this race; it is more likely that the similarity of name was accidental. The younger son of Jephunneh, the father of Othniel, was a Kenaz (קְנַז), and so was Caleb's grandson (see on Joshua 15:17; 1 Chronicles 4:13, 15). Kenaz was also an Edomitish name. The people did not proceed any farther till the restoration of Miriam. After this they departed from Hazeroth, and encamped in the desert of Paran, namely at Kadesh, on the southern boundary of Canaan. This is evident from ch. 13, more especially v. 26, as compared with Deuteronomy 1:19., where it is stated not merely that the spies, who were sent out from this place of encampment to Canaan, returned to the congregation at Kadesh, but that they set out from Kadesh-barnea for Canaan, because there the Israelites had come to the mountains of the Amorites, which God had promised them for an inheritance.

With regard to the situation of Kadesh, it has already been observed at Genesis 14:7, that it is probably to be sought for in the neighbourhood of the fountain of Ain Kades, which was discovered by Rowland, to the south of Bir Seba and Khalasa, on the heights of Jebel Helal, i.e., at the north-west corner of the mountain land of Azazimeh, which is more closely described at Numbers 10:12, where the western slopes of this highland region sink gently down into the undulating surface of the desert, which stretches thence to El Arish, with a breadth of about six hours' journey, and keeps the way open between Arabia Petraea and the south of Palestine. "In the northern third of this western slope, the mountains recede so as to leave a free space for a plain of about an hour's journey in breadth, which comes towards the east, and to which access is obtained through one or more of the larger wadys that are to be seen here (such as Retemat, Kusaimeh, el Ain, Muweileh)." At the north-eastern background of this plain, which forms almost a rectangular figure of nine miles by five, or ten by six, stretching from west to east, large enough to receive the camp of a wandering people, and about twelve miles to the E.S.E. of Muweileh, there rises, like a large solitary mass, at the edge of the mountains which run on towards the north, a bare rock, at the foot of which there is a copious spring, falling in ornamental cascades into the bed of a brook, which is lost in the sand about 300 or 400 yards to the west. This place still bears the ancient name of Kudēṡ. There can be no doubt as to the identity of this Kudēṡ and the biblical Kadesh. The situation agrees with all the statements in the Bible concerning Kadesh: for example, that Israel had then reached the border of the promised land; also that the spies who were sent out from Kadesh returned thither by coming from Hebron to the wilderness of Paran (Numbers 13:26); and lastly, according to the assertions of the Bedouins, as quoted by Rowland, this Kudes was ten or eleven days' journey from Sinai (in perfect harmony with Deuteronomy 1:2), and was connected by passable wadys with Mount Hor. The Israelites proceeded, no doubt, through the wady Retemat, i.e., Rithmah (see at Numbers 33:18), into the plain of Kadesh. (On the town of Kadesh, see at Numbers 20:16.)

(Note: See Kurtz, History of the Old Covenant, vol. iii. p. 225, where the current notion, that Kadesh was situated on the western border of the Arabah, below the Dead Sea, by either Ain Hasb or Ain el Weibeh, is successfully refuted.)

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