Joshua 3:16
New International Version
the water from upstream stopped flowing. It piled up in a heap a great distance away, at a town called Adam in the vicinity of Zarethan, while the water flowing down to the Sea of the Arabah (that is, the Dead Sea) was completely cut off. So the people crossed over opposite Jericho.

New Living Translation
the water above that point began backing up a great distance away at a town called Adam, which is near Zarethan. And the water below that point flowed on to the Dead Sea until the riverbed was dry. Then all the people crossed over near the town of Jericho.

English Standard Version
the waters coming down from above stood and rose up in a heap very far away, at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan, and those flowing down toward the Sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, were completely cut off. And the people passed over opposite Jericho.

Berean Study Bible
the flowing water stood still. It backed up as far upstream as Adam, a city in the area of Zarethan, while the water flowing toward the Sea of the Arabah (the Salt Sea) was completely cut off. So the people crossed over opposite Jericho.

King James Bible
That the waters which came down from above stood and rose up upon an heap very far from the city Adam, that is beside Zaretan: and those that came down toward the sea of the plain, even the salt sea, failed, and were cut off: and the people passed over right against Jericho.

New King James Version
that the waters which came down from upstream stood still, and rose in a heap very far away at Adam, the city that is beside Zaretan. So the waters that went down into the Sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, failed, and were cut off; and the people crossed over opposite Jericho.

New American Standard Bible
then the waters which were flowing down from above stood and rose up in one heap, a great distance away at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan; and those which were flowing down toward the sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, were completely cut off. So the people crossed opposite Jericho.

NASB 1995
the waters which were flowing down from above stood and rose up in one heap, a great distance away at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan; and those which were flowing down toward the sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, were completely cut off. So the people crossed opposite Jericho.

NASB 1977
that the waters which were flowing down from above stood and rose up in one heap, a great distance away at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan; and those which were flowing down toward the sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, were completely cut off. So the people crossed opposite Jericho.

Amplified Bible
the waters which were flowing down from above stopped and rose up in one mass a great distance away at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan. Those [waters] flowing downward toward the sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, were completely cut off. So the people crossed [the river] opposite Jericho.

Christian Standard Bible
and the water flowing downstream stood still, rising up in a mass that extended as far as Adam, a city next to Zarethan. The water flowing downstream into the Sea of the Arabah —the Dead Sea—was completely cut off, and the people crossed opposite Jericho.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
and the water flowing downstream stood still, rising up in a mass that extended as far as Adam, a city next to Zarethan. The water flowing downstream into the Sea of the Arabah (the Dead Sea) was completely cut off, and the people crossed opposite Jericho.

American Standard Version
that the waters which came down from above stood, and rose up in one heap, a great way off, at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan; and those that went down toward the sea of the Arabah, even the Salt Sea, were wholly cut off: and the people passed over right against Jericho.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And the waters that were running down from upstream rose up; they stood up like that in water skins, one side beside the other; they went very far from Aram the city that is on the side of Tsaretam, and that went down to the Sea of the West, the Sea of Salt. They stopped and they were divided, but the people crossed over next to Yerikho

Brenton Septuagint Translation
then the waters that came down from above stopped; there stood one solid heap very far off, as far as the region of Kariathiarim, and the lower part came down to the sea of Araba, the salt sea, till it completely failed; and the people stood opposite Jericho.

Douay-Rheims Bible
The waters that came down from above stood in one place, and swelling up like a mountain, were seen afar off from the city that is called Adom, to the place of Sarthan: but those that were beneath, ran down into the sea of the wilderness (which now is called the Dead Sea) until they wholly failed.

English Revised Version
that the waters which came down from above stood, and rose up in one heap, a great way off, at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan: and those that went down toward the sea of the Arabah, even the Salt Sea, were wholly cut off: and the people passed over right against Jericho.

Good News Translation
the water stopped flowing and piled up, far upstream at Adam, the city beside Zarethan. The flow downstream to the Dead Sea was completely cut off, and the people were able to cross over near Jericho.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
the water, the water stopped flowing from upstream. The water rose up like a dam as far away as the city of Adam near Zarethan. The water flowing down toward the Sea of the Plains (the Dead Sea) was completely cut off. Then the people crossed from the east side [of the Jordan River] directly opposite Jericho.

International Standard Version
the water flowing downstream from above stood still in a single location, a great distance away at Adam, a city near Zarethan. The water that flowed south toward the sea in the Arabah (that is, the Dead Sea) was completely cut off. So the people crossed opposite Jericho.

JPS Tanakh 1917
that the waters which came down from above stood, and rose up in one heap, a great way off from Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan; and those that went down toward the sea of the Arabah, even the Salt Sea, were wholly cut off; and the people passed over right against Jericho.

Literal Standard Version
that the waters stand; those coming down from above have risen—one heap, very far above Adam, the city which [is] at the side of Zaretan; and those going down by the Sea of the Plain (the Salt Sea), have been completely cut off; and the people have passed through opposite Jericho;

NET Bible
the water coming downstream toward them stopped flowing. It piled up far upstream at Adam (the city near Zarethan); there was no water at all flowing to the sea of the Arabah (the Salt Sea). The people crossed the river opposite Jericho.

New Heart English Bible
that the waters which came down from above stood, and rose up in one heap, a great way off, at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan; and those that went down toward the sea of the Arabah, even the Salt Sea, were wholly cut off. Then the people passed over right against Jericho.

World English Bible
that the waters which came down from above stood, and rose up in one heap, a great way off, at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan; and those that went down toward the sea of the Arabah, even the Salt Sea, were wholly cut off. Then the people passed over right against Jericho.

Young's Literal Translation
that the waters stand; those coming down from above have risen -- one heap, very far above Adam the city, which is at the side of Zaretan; and those going down by the sea of the plain, the Salt Sea, have been completely cut off; and the people have passed through over-against Jericho;

Additional Translations ...
Context
Crossing the Jordan
15Now the Jordan overflows its banks throughout the harvest season. But as soon as the priests carrying the ark reached the Jordan and their feet touched the water’s edge, 16the flowing water stood still. It backed up as far upstream as Adam, a city in the area of Zarethan, while the water flowing toward the Sea of the Arabah (the Salt Sea) was completely cut off. So the people crossed over opposite Jericho. 17The priests carrying the ark of the covenant of the LORD stood firm on dry ground in the middle of the Jordan, while all Israel crossed over the dry ground, until the entire nation had crossed the Jordan.…

Cross References
Genesis 14:3
The latter five came as allies to the Valley of Siddim (that is, the Salt Sea).

Exodus 14:21
Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and all that night the LORD drove back the sea with a strong east wind that turned it into dry land. So the waters were divided,

Deuteronomy 1:1
These are the words that Moses spoke to all Israel in the wilderness east of the Jordan--in the Arabah opposite Suph--between Paran and Tophel, Laban, Hazeroth, and Dizahab.

Deuteronomy 3:17
The Jordan River in the Arabah bordered it from Chinnereth to the Sea of the Arabah (the Salt Sea) with the slopes of Pisgah to the east.

Joshua 3:13
When the feet of the priests who carry the ark of the LORD--the Lord of all the earth--touch down in the waters of the Jordan, its flowing waters will be cut off and will stand up in a heap."

1 Kings 4:12
Baana son of Ahilud in Taanach, in Megiddo, and in all of Beth-shean next to Zarethan below Jezreel, from Beth-shean to Abel-meholah and on past Jokmeam;

1 Kings 7:46
The king had them cast in clay molds in the plain of the Jordan between Succoth and Zarethan.


Treasury of Scripture

That the waters which came down from above stood and rose up on an heap very far from the city Adam, that is beside Zaretan: and those that came down toward the sea of the plain, even the salt sea, failed, and were cut off: and the people passed over right against Jericho.

rose up

Joshua 3:13
And it shall come to pass, as soon as the soles of the feet of the priests that bear the ark of the LORD, the Lord of all the earth, shall rest in the waters of Jordan, that the waters of Jordan shall be cut off from the waters that come down from above; and they shall stand upon an heap.

Psalm 29:10
The LORD sitteth upon the flood; yea, the LORD sitteth King for ever.

Psalm 77:19
Thy way is in the sea, and thy path in the great waters, and thy footsteps are not known.

Zaretan

1 Kings 4:12
Baana the son of Ahilud; to him pertained Taanach and Megiddo, and all Bethshean, which is by Zartanah beneath Jezreel, from Bethshean to Abelmeholah, even unto the place that is beyond Jokneam:

Zartanah

1 Kings 7:46
In the plain of Jordan did the king cast them, in the clay ground between Succoth and Zarthan.

Zarthan

Joshua 15:2
And their south border was from the shore of the salt sea, from the bay that looketh southward:

Genesis 14:3
All these were joined together in the vale of Siddim, which is the salt sea.

Numbers 34:3
Then your south quarter shall be from the wilderness of Zin along by the coast of Edom, and your south border shall be the outmost coast of the salt sea eastward:









(16) Very far from the city Adam, that is beside Zaretan.--The written text is "in Adam," but the Masorites read it "from Adam." The reading makes no difference to the literal fact. The two prepositions, in and from, express the same thought. The heap of water stood up as it were in Adam. From Adam to the place where Israel crossed, the river-bed was dry--the heap was as far away as Adam, but as it was not actually in the city, the word in was most likely altered to from. The more difficult reading, in, may very possibly be the best. For Zaretan see 1Kings 4:12; 1Kings 7:46. Adam, as the name of a city, does not occur elsewhere. The meaning of the fact has been well pointed out by Bishop Wordsworth on this place. Zaretan was beneath Jezreel, but has not been identified. Adam has been thought to be at the ford Damieh, thirty miles away.

Verse 16. - Stood and rose up upon a heap. Literally, "stood - they rose up, one heap." The narrative assumes a poetic form here (cf. Exodus 15:8, 9; Judges 5:27). Very far from the city Adam. The Masorites have corrected the text here. The original text has בְאָדָם for which the suggested Keri is מֵאָדָס. But the correction is needless. It is better to render, "they rose up, one heap, very far off, at the city Adam." The city Adam is nowhere else mentioned in Scripture, The LXX. appears to have read מְאֹד מְאֹד instead of מְאֹד מֵאָדָס, for it translates σφόδρα σφοδρῶς. This reading of the LXX. shows that the correction, though it obscures the sense, is of great antiquity, and that the site of Adam was then quite unknown. Knobel would place it either just south of the Jabbok, where the ford Damieh now exists, or at Eduma, now Daumeh, twelve German miles east of Neapolis. The former is generally accepted now, and Conder ('Handbook,' p. 241) identifies it with Admah (see Genesis 14:2), in the plain or ciccar of Jordan. That is beside Zaretan. Called Zarthan in the original (cf. 1 Kings 4:12; 1 Kings 7:46), and Zeredatha, in 2 Chronicles 4:17. Some read Zeredatha for Zererath in Judges 7:22. Knobel supposes, and not without some probability, that Zereda, Jeroboam's birthplace, is the same as this. It was in the plain of Jordan, not far from Succoth, at the mouth of the Jabbok. The LXX. here reads Καριαθιαρείμ, i.e., either Kiriathaim or Kirjath-jearim, but without authority. Delitzsch and Knobel suppose the spot to be Kurn, or Karn (i.e., horn) Sartabeh, near the ford Damieh, where the Jordan valley is at its narrowest, and the rocks stretch forward so as almost to meet. They fix on this spot, partly from the suitability of the situation for such an arresting of the waters, partly from its agreement with the situation of Zarthan, as described in the Scriptures. Vandevelde agrees with them. There was an Adami and a Zartanath higher up the river near Bethshean, which some have supposed to be meant (see Joshua 19:83; 1 Kings 4:12), but these lay entirely out of Joshua's line of march. The sea of the plain. Rather the sea of the עֲרָבָה (θάλασσαν Αραβα, LXX.), or desert (so Deuteronomy 3:17; Deuteronomy 4:49; 2 Kings 14:25; see also Deuteronomy 1:1). The term is applied by the Hebrews and Arabs to any sterile region, and thence to the sterile depression which borders on the Jordan, extending from the lake of Tiberias southward. The Arabs now apply the term el ghor to the part between Tiberias and the Dead Sea, and reserve the term Arabah for the desert valley, or wady, which extends thence to the Red Sea. So Gesen., 'Thesaurus,' s.v.; and Robinson, 'Bibl. Res.' The word translated plain in Genesis 13:10 is כִּכַּר, a word of very different signification (see also 'Shephelah' and 'Emek,' Joshua 10:40; Joshua 11:2). The salt sea. This sea is called the Dead Sea from the immobility of its waters, as well as from the apparent absence of all life within them. "Some of our party," says Canon Tristram," employed themselves in searching, but without avail, for life in the Dead Sea." It lies at a level of more than 1,300 feet below the level of the Mediterranean. Its waters are thus described by Dr. Thomson: "The water is perfectly clear and transparent. The taste is bitter and salt, far beyond that of the ocean. It acts upon the tongue and mouth like alum; smarts in the eye like camphor; produces a burning, pricking sensation." The specific gravity of its waters is very great, and bathers find a great difficulty in swimming in it from the unusual buoyancy of the water. This is caused by the very large quantity of saline matter held in solution from the salt hills in the neighbourhood. One of them, Jebel Usdum, is described by Canon Tristram as "a solid mass of rock salt," and the water in its vicinity as "syrup of chloride of sodium," that is to say, of common salt. So also Bartlett, 'Egypt and Palestine,' p. 451. The statement that no bird can fly across its waters is a fable. The fullest account of the various attempts - some of them fatal - to explore the Dead Sea are to be found in Ritter's 'Geography of Palestine,' vol. 3. Canon Tristram explored the western side thoroughly, while Mr. Macgregor's canoe voyage, described in his 'Rob Roy on the Jordan,' gives a number of most interesting details. In Ritter's work will also be found some valuable observations on the physical geography of the district, on the geological formation of the basin of the Dead Sea, together with two papers, one by M. Terreil and the other by M. Lartet, on the chemical composition of the Dead Sea waters. Failed and were cut off. Literally, were completed, were cut off, i.e., were completely cut off, so that the supply of water failed, and the channel of the Jordan to the southward, and to the northward as far as Zaretan, became dry ground (see also Psalm 114:3).

Parallel Commentaries ...


Hebrew
the flowing
הַיֹּרְדִ֨ים (hay·yō·rə·ḏîm)
Article | Verb - Qal - Participle - masculine plural
Strong's 3381: To come or go down, descend

water
הַמַּיִם֩ (ham·ma·yim)
Article | Noun - masculine plural
Strong's 4325: Water, juice, urine, semen

stood still.
וַיַּעַמְד֡וּ (way·ya·‘am·ḏū)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Consecutive imperfect - third person masculine plural
Strong's 5975: To stand, in various relations

It backed up
קָ֣מוּ (qā·mū)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - third person common plural
Strong's 6965: To arise, stand up, stand

as far upstream
הַרְחֵ֨ק (har·ḥêq)
Verb - Hifil - Infinitive absolute
Strong's 7368: To be or become far or distant

as Adam,
מֵֽאָדָ֤ם (mê·’ā·ḏām)
Preposition-m | Noun - proper - feminine singular
Strong's 121: Adam -- the first man, also a city in the Jordan Valley

a city
הָעִיר֙ (hā·‘îr)
Article | Noun - feminine singular
Strong's 5892: Excitement

in the area
מִצַּ֣ד (miṣ·ṣaḏ)
Preposition-m | Noun - masculine singular construct
Strong's 6654: A side, an adversary

of Zarethan,
צָֽרְתָ֔ן (ṣā·rə·ṯān)
Noun - proper - feminine singular
Strong's 6891: Zarethan -- a city in the Jordan Valley

while the water flowing
וְהַיֹּרְדִ֗ים (wə·hay·yō·rə·ḏîm)
Conjunctive waw, Article | Verb - Qal - Participle - masculine plural
Strong's 3381: To come or go down, descend

toward
עַ֣ל (‘al)
Preposition
Strong's 5921: Above, over, upon, against

the Sea
יָ֧ם (yām)
Noun - masculine singular construct
Strong's 3220: A sea, the Mediterranean Sea, large river, an artifical basin

of the Arabah
הָעֲרָבָ֛ה (hā·‘ă·rā·ḇāh)
Article | Noun - feminine singular
Strong's 6160: Arabah -- a steppe or desert plain, also a desert valley running south from the Sea of Galilee

(the Salt Sea)
יָם־ (yām-)
Noun - masculine singular construct
Strong's 3220: A sea, the Mediterranean Sea, large river, an artifical basin

was completely
תַּ֣מּוּ (tam·mū)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - third person common plural
Strong's 8552: To be complete or finished

cut off.
נִכְרָ֑תוּ (niḵ·rā·ṯū)
Verb - Nifal - Perfect - third person common plural
Strong's 3772: To cut, to destroy, consume, to covenant

So the people
וְהָעָ֥ם (wə·hā·‘ām)
Conjunctive waw, Article | Noun - masculine singular
Strong's 5971: A people, a tribe, troops, attendants, a flock

crossed over
עָבְר֖וּ (‘ā·ḇə·rū)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - third person common plural
Strong's 5674: To pass over, through, or by, pass on

opposite
נֶ֥גֶד (ne·ḡeḏ)
Preposition
Strong's 5048: A front, part opposite, a counterpart, mate, over against, before

Jericho.
יְרִיחֽוֹ׃ (yə·rî·ḥōw)
Noun - proper - feminine singular
Strong's 3405: Jericho -- a city in the Jordan Valley captured by Joshua


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OT History: Joshua 3:16 That the waters which came down (Josh. Jos)
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