And they turned and went up by the way of Bashan: and Og the king of Bashan went out against them, he, and all his people, to the battle at Edrei.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Numbers 21:33. Og — Who was also a king of the Amorites. And it may seem that Sihon and Og were the leaders or captains of two great colonies which came out of Canaan, and drove out the former inhabitants of these places. Bashan — A rich country, famous for its pastures and breed of cattle, and for its oaks.Numbers 32:39 occupation of Gilead north of the Jabbok; a territory which, though populated, like southern Gilead, by the Amorites (Deuteronomy 3:9; Joshua 2:10, etc.), formed part of the domain of Og king of Bashan, who was himself of a different race Deuteronomy 3:2; Joshua 12:5; Joshua 13:11. We are not told whether they were led there by express warrant of God, or whether their advance upon Bashan was provoked by Og and his people.
Og—a giant, an Amoritish prince, who, having opposed the progress of the Israelites, was defeated.Og also was a king of the Amorites, of whom see Deu 3:1,11. And it may seem that Sihon and Og were the leaders or captains of two great colonies which came out of Canaan, and drove out the former inhabitants of these places.
Bashan, a rich country, famous for its pastures and breed of cattle, Deu 32:14 Psalm 22:12 Jeremiah 1:19, and for its oaks, Ezekiel 27:6.
and went up by the way of Bashan; which was a nearer way to Canaan, a fine country abounding with oxen and sheep, having rich pastures, and very famous for its oaks; it had its name from the mountain of Bashan in it, and has been since called Batanea; it was at this time in the hands of the Amorites, and from them it was taken by Israel, as follows: who marched this way for that purpose, or at least were so directed by the providence of God for that end:
and Og king of Bashan went out against them; who was of the race of the giants, and he himself of a gigantic stature, and was a king of the Amorites, as well as Sihon, Deuteronomy 3:8, he came out in an hostile manner against Israel, to stop them going any further:
he, and all his people: out of his many cities, a numerous army no doubt:
to the battle at Edrei; where it was fought between him and Israel. Jerom says (t) it was in his time called Adara, a famous city of Arabia, twenty four or twenty five miles from Bozra, and six from Ashtaroth Karnaim, the ancient seat of the Rephaim, or giants from whom Og sprung, Genesis 14:5, and was the seat of Og now, from whence he came to Edrei or Adara, to meet and fight Israel there; see Deuteronomy 1:4.And they turned and went up by the way of Bashan: and Og the king of Bashan went out against them, he, and all his people, to the battle at Edrei.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)33. by the way to the Bashan] The name, which usually has the article, seems to signify ‘soft and fertile ground.’ The Bashan was ‘the broad and fertile tract of country on the E . of Jordan, bounded (somewhat roughly) on the S. by the Yarmûk and a line passing through Edre‘i and Salecah (mentioned as border cities in Deuteronomy 3:10), on the E . by the imposing range of extinct volcanoes called the Jebel Ḥaurân, on the W. by Geshur and Ma‘acah (see Joshua 12:5), and on the N. stretching out towards Hermon (cf. Deuteronomy 33:22)’ (Driver, Enc. Bibl. [Note: nc. Bibl. Encyclopaedia Biblica.] 495). It was noted for its rich pastures, its well-fed herds of cattle and its oak forests.Verse 33. - They turned and went up by the way of Bashan. The brevity of the narrative does not allow us to know who went upon this expedition, or why they went. It may have been only the detachment which had reconnoitered and taken Jaazer, and they may have found themselves threatened by the forces of Og, and so led on to further conquests beyond the Jabbok. Og the king of Bashan. Og was himself of the aboriginal giant race which had left so many remnants, or at least so many memories, in these regions (see on Deuteronomy 2:10-12, 20-23; Joshua 12:4; 13:12); but he is classed with Sihon as a king of the Amorites (Joshua 2:10) because his people were chiefly at least of that race. Bashan itself comprised the plain now known as Jaulan and Haulan beyond the Jarmuk (now Mandhur), the largest affluent of the Jordan, which joins it a few miles below the lake of Tiberias. The kingdom of Og, however, extended over the northern and larger part of Gilead, a much more fertile territory than Bashan proper (see on Deuteronomy 3:1-17). At Edrei. Probably the modern Edhra'ah, or Der'a, situate on a branch of the Jarmuk, some twenty-four miles from Bozrah. The ancient city lies buried beneath the modern village, and was built, like the other cities of Bashan, in the most massive style of architecture. The cities of Og were so strong that the Israelites could not have dispossessed him by any might of their own if he had abode behind his walls. Either confidence in his warlike prowess or some more mysterious cause (see on Joshua 24:12) impelled him to leave his fortifications, and give battle to the Israelites to his own utter defeat. Numbers 21:27 and Numbers 21:28) runs thus: "Come to Heshbon: Built and restored be the city of Sihon! For fire went out of Heshbon; flames from the city of Sihon. It devoured Ar Moab, the lords of the heights of Arnon." The summons to come to Heshbon and build this ruined city up again, was not addressed to the Israelites, but to the conquered Amorites, and is to be interpreted as ironical (F. v. Meyer; Ewald, Gesch. ii. pp. 267, 268): "Come to Heshbon, ye victorious Amorites, and build your royal city up again, which we have laid in ruins! A fire has gone out of it, and burned up Ar Moab, and the lords of the heights of the Arnon." The reference is to the war-fire, which the victorious Amorites kindled from Heshbon in the land of Moab under the former king of Moab; that is to say, the war in which they subjugated Ar Moab and the possessors of the heights of Arnon. Ar Moab (see at Numbers 21:15) appears to have been formerly the capital of all Moabitis, or at least of that portion of it which was situated upon the northern side of the Arnon; and the prominence given to it in Deuteronomy 2:9, Deuteronomy 2:18, Deuteronomy 2:29, is in harmony with this. The heights of Arnon are mentioned as the limits to which Sihon had carried his victorious supremacy over Moab. The "lords" of these heights are the Moabites.
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