Beth-Shemesh
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Hitchcock's Bible Names Dictionary
Beth-Shemesh

house of the sun

ATS Bible Dictionary
Beth-Shemesh

House of the sun,

1. A city of Judah given to the priests, Joshua 21:16 1 Chronicles 6:59 1 Samuel 6:15. It lay fifteen miles west of Jerusalem, near the border of Dan and of the Philistines, Joshua 15:10 1 Samuel 6:12. Probably the same as Irshemesh, Joshua 19:41. It is memorable for a battle between Judah and Israel, in which Amaziah was defeated, 2 Kings 14:12-14; and for the return of the ark from among the Philistines, and the punishment of those who then profaned it, 1 Samuel 6:1-21. There is reason to suppose the numbers in 1 Samuel 6:19 should be translated "threescore and ten men, even fifty out of one thousand," or one in two hundred of the men of the city.

2. A celebrated city in Egypt, Jeremiah 43:13.

Easton's Bible Dictionary
House of the sun.

(1.) A sacerdotal city in the tribe of Dan (Joshua 21:16; 1 Samuel 6:15), on the north border of Judah (Joshua 15:10). It was the scene of an encounter between Jehoash, king of Israel, and Amaziah, king of Judah, in which the latter was made prisoner (2 Kings 14:11, 13). It was afterwards taken by the Philistines (2 Chronicles 28:18). It is the modern ruined Arabic village `Ain-shems, on the north-west slopes of the mountains of Judah, 14 miles west of Jerusalem.

(2.) A city between Dothan and the Jordan, near the southern border of Issachar (Joshua 19:22), 7 1/2 miles south of Beth-shean. It is the modern Ain-esh-Shemsiyeh.

(3.) One of the fenced cities of Naphtali (Joshua 19:38), between Mount Tabor and the Jordan. Now Khurbet Shema, 3 miles west of Safed. But perhaps the same as No. 2.

(4.) An idol sanctuary in Egypt (Jeremiah 43:13); called by the Greeks Heliopolis, and by the Egyptians On (q.v.), Genesis 41:45.

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
BETH-SHEMESH

beth-she'-mesh, beth'-shemesh (beth-shemesh; Baithsamus, "house of the sun"): This name for a place doubtless arose in every instance from the presence of a sanctuary of the sun there. In accordance with the meaning and origin of the word, it is quite to be expected that there should be several places of this name in Bible lands, and the expectation is not disappointed. Analysis and comparison of the passages in the Bible where a Beth-shemesh is mentioned show four places of this name.

1. Beth-shemesh of Judah:

The first mention of a place by this name is in the description of the border of the territory of Judah (Joshua 15:10) which "went down to Beth-Shemesh." This topographical indication "down" puts the place toward the lowlands on the East or West side of Palestine, but does not indicate which. This point is clearly determined by the account of the return of the ark by the Philistine lords from Ekron (1 Samuel 6:9-19). They returned the ark to Beth-shemesh, the location of which they indicated by the remark that if their affliction was from Yahweh, the kine would bear the ark "by the way of its own border." The Philistines lay along the western border of Judah and the location of Beth-Shemesh of Judah is thus clearly fixed near the western lowland, close to the border between the territory of Judah and that claimed by the Philistines. This is confirmed by the account of the twelve officers of the commissariat of King Solomon. One of these, the son of Dekar, had a Beth-shemesh in his territory. By excluding the territory assigned to the other eleven officers, the territory of this son of Dekar is found to be in Judah and to lie along the Philistine border (1 Kings 4:9). A Philistine attack upon the border-land of Judah testifies to the same effect (2 Chronicles 28:18). Finally, the battle between Amaziah of Judah and Jehoash of Israel, who "looked one another in the face" at Beth-shemesh, puts Beth-Shemesh most probably near the border between Judah and Israel, which would locate it near the northern part of the western border of Judah's territo ry. In the assignment of cities to the Levites, Judah gave Beth-shemesh with its suburbs (Joshua 21:16). It has been identified with a good degree of certainty with the modern `Ain Shems.

It may be that Ir-shemesh, "city of the sun," and Har-cherec, "mount of the sun," refer to Beth-shemesh of Judah (Joshua 15:10; Joshua 19:41-43 1 Kings 4:9 Judges 1:33, 35). But the worship of the sun was so common and cities of this name so many in number that it would be hazardous to conclude with any assurance that because these three names refer to the same region they therefore refer to the same place.

2. Beth-shemesh of Issachar:

In the description of the tribal limits, it is said of Issachar (Joshua 19:22), "And the border reached to Tabor, and Shahazumah, and Beth-shemesh; and the goings out of their border were at the Jordan." The description indicates that Beth-shemesh was in the eastern part of Issachar's territory. The exact location of the city is not known.

3. Beth-shemesh of Naphtali:

A Beth-shemesh is mentioned together with Beth-anath as cities of Naphtali (Joshua 19:38). There is no clear indication of the location of this city. Its association with Beth-anath may indicate that they were near each other in the central part of the tribal allotment. As at Gezer, another of the cities of the Levites the Canaanites were not driven out from Beth-shemesh.

4. Beth-shemesh "that is in the Land of Egypt":

A doom is pronounced upon "Beth-shemesh, that is in the land of Egypt" (Jeremiah 43:13). The Seventy identify it with Heliopolis. There is some uncertainty about this identification. If Beth-shemesh, "house of the sun," is here a description of Heliopolis, why does it not have the article? If it is a proper name, how does it come that a sanctuary in Egypt is called by a Hebrew name? It may be that the large number of Jews in Egypt with Jeremiah gave this Hebrew name to Heliopolis for use among themselves, Beth-shemesh. being a translation of Egyptian Perra as suggested by Griffith. Otherwise, Beth-shemesh. cannot have been Heliopolis, but must have been some other, at present unknown, place of Semitic worship. This latter view seems to be favored by Jeremiah's double threat: "He shall also break the pillars of Beth-shemesh, that is in the land of Egypt; and the houses of the gods of Egypt shall he burn with fire" (save place). If Beth-shemesh were the "house of the sun," then the balancing of the state ment would be only between "pillars" and "houses," but it seems more naturally to be between Beth-shemesh, a Semitic place of worship "that is in the land of Egypt" on the one hand, and the Egyptian place of worship, "the houses of the gods of Egypt," on the other.

But the Seventy lived in Egypt and in their interpretation of this passage were probably guided by accurate knowledge of facts unknown now, such as surviving names, tradition and even written history. Until there is further light on the subject, it is better to accept their interpretation and identify this Beth-shemesh with Heliopolis.

See ON.

M. G. Kyle

Strong's Hebrew
1053. Beth Shemesh -- "sun temple," three places in Palestine ...
Beth Shemesh. 1052, 1053. Beth Shemesh. 1054 . "sun temple," three
places in Palestine, also a place in Egypt. Transliteration ...
/hebrew/1053.htm - 6k

1030. Beth-hashshimshi -- an inhabitant of Bethshemesh
... an inhabitant of Bethshemesh. Transliteration: Beth-hashshimshi Phonetic Spelling:
(bayth hash-shim-shee') Short Definition: Beth-shemite. ...
/hebrew/1030.htm - 6k

Library

The Ark among the Philistines
... If it goes on the way to its own border, to Bethshemesh, then it is Jehovah who
has done us this great harm; but if not, then we shall know that it is not he ...
/.../sherman/the childrens bible/the ark among the philistines.htm

The King --Continued.
... It had been welcomed with gladness by the villagers of Bethshemesh, who lifted their
eyes from their harvest work, and saw it borne up the glen from the ...
//christianbookshelf.org/maclaren/the life of david/xi the kingcontinued.htm

The Destruction that came Upon the Philistines, and Upon
... Now there was a certain village of the tribe of Judah, the name of which was
Bethshemesh, and to that village did the kine go; and though there was a great and ...
/.../josephus/the antiquities of the jews/chapter 1 the destruction that.htm

Importance of Small Things in Religion
... Placing the terrible captive upon a new cart, they left the oxen to bear it as they
pleased, and by divine providence the ark was carried to Beth-shemesh. ...
/.../spurgeon/spurgeons sermons volume 6 1860/importance of small things in.htm

Sovereignty of God in Administration
... And see, if it goeth up by the way of his own coast to Bethshemesh, then He hath
done us this great evil: but if not, then we shall know that it is not His ...
/.../pink/the sovereignty of god/chapter three sovereignty of god.htm

The Sweet Uses of Adversity
... As the men of Bethshemesh were smitten with death when they dared to lift up the
lid of the ark and look into its sacred mysteries, so is it often death to our ...
/.../spurgeon/spurgeons sermons volume 5 1859/the sweet uses of adversity.htm

Antipatris. Caphar Salama.
... the Gemarists, "From Gebath to Antipatris."""From Gebath to Antipatris (say they)
were sixty myriads of cities, the least of which was Beth-Shemesh." We do ...
/.../lightfoot/from the talmud and hebraica/chapter 58 antipatris caphar salama.htm

Repentance and victory
... The ark had spread disaster in Philistia and Beth-shemesh, and the willingness of
the men of Kirjath-jearim to receive it was a token of their devotion. ...
/.../maclaren/expositions of holy scripture f/repentance and victory.htm

Adam's Sin
... He meddled with that which was out of his sphere, and did not belong to him. God
smote the men of Bethshemesh for looking into the ark. 1 Samuel 6:19. ...
//christianbookshelf.org/watson/a body of divinity/2 adams sin.htm

The Old Testament and Archeology
... At present (1912) the site of ancient Beth-Shemesh is being excavated. The German
Palestine Society was organized in 1877 for a similar purpose. ...
/.../the christian view of the old testament/chapter iv the old testament.htm

Thesaurus
Bethshemesh (19 Occurrences)
... is better to accept their interpretation and identify this Beth-shemesh with Heliopolis.
See ON. MG Kyle. Multi-Version Concordance Bethshemesh (19 Occurrences) ...
/b/bethshemesh.htm - 19k

Beth-shemesh (19 Occurrences)
Beth-shemesh. Bethshemesh, Beth-shemesh. Beth-she'mesh . Easton's Bible Dictionary ...
Bethshemesh, Beth-shemesh. Beth-she'mesh . Reference Bible.
/b/beth-shemesh.htm - 20k

Beth-she'mesh (20 Occurrences)
... Beth-shemesh, Beth-she'mesh. Beth-shemeshite . ... 1 Samuel 6:20 And the men of
Beth-shemesh said: 'Who is able to stand before the LORD, this holy God? ...
/b/beth-she'mesh.htm - 12k

Shemesh (24 Occurrences)
... from Baalah westward to Mount Seir, and passed along to the side of Mount Jearim
on the north (the same is Chesalon), and went down to BethShemesh, and passed ...
/s/shemesh.htm - 14k

Kiriathjearim
... dan ("the camp of Dan") is described as between Zorah and Eshtaol; see MAHANEH-DAN.)
To this sanctuary the ark of Yahweh was brought, from Beth-shemesh by the ...
/k/kiriathjearim.htm - 13k

Kiriath-jearim (17 Occurrences)
... dan ("the camp of Dan") is described as between Zorah and Eshtaol; see MAHANEH-DAN.)
To this sanctuary the ark of Yahweh was brought, from Beth-shemesh by the ...
/k/kiriath-jearim.htm - 19k

Bethanath (2 Occurrences)
... BETH-ANATH. beth-a'-nath (beth`anath; Bainathath): A city in the territory of Naphtali,
named with Horem and Bethshemesh (Joshua 19:38 Judges 1:33). ...
/b/bethanath.htm - 7k

Beth-anath (2 Occurrences)
... city in the territory of Naphtali, named with Horem and Bethshemesh (Joshua 19 ... And
Iron, and Migdal-el, Horem, and Beth-anath, and Beth-shemesh; nineteen cities ...
/b/beth-anath.htm - 7k

Shaalbim (2 Occurrences)
... Makaz, Beth-shemesh and Elon-beth-hanan (1 Kings 4:9). Beth-shemesh is the ... with Selbit,
3 miles Northwest of Aijalon (Yalo), and 8 miles North of Bethshemesh. ...
/s/shaalbim.htm - 8k

Timnah (12 Occurrences)
... 12, 13, 14. (2) A town on the northern border of Judah (Joshua 15:10),
lying between Beth-shemesh and Ekron. It is probably the ...
/t/timnah.htm - 13k

Concordance
Beth-shemesh (19 Occurrences)

Joshua 15:10
and the border turned about from Baalah westward unto mount Seir, and passed along unto the side of mount Jearim on the north ( the same is Chesalon ), and went down to Beth-shemesh, and passed along by Timnah;
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

Joshua 19:22
and the border reached to Tabor, and Shahazumah, and Beth-shemesh; and the goings out of their border were at the Jordan: sixteen cities with their villages.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

Joshua 19:38
And Iron, and Migdal-el, Horem, and Beth-anath, and Beth-shemesh; nineteen cities with their villages.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

Joshua 21:16
and Ain with its suburbs, and Juttah with its suburbs, and Beth-shemesh with its suburbs; nine cities out of those two tribes.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

Judges 1:33
Naphtali drove not out the inhabitants of Beth-shemesh, nor the inhabitants of Beth-anath; but he dwelt among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land: nevertheless the inhabitants of Beth-shemesh and of Beth-anath became subject to taskwork.
(ASV BBE JPS WBS YLT NAS)

1 Samuel 6:9
And see; if it goeth up by the way of its own border to Beth-shemesh, then he hath done us this great evil: but if not, then we shall know that it is not his hand that smote us; it was a chance that happened to us.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

1 Samuel 6:12
And the kine took the straight way by the way to Beth-shemesh; they went along the highway, lowing as they went, and turned not aside to the right hand or to the left; and the lords of the Philistines went after them unto the border of Beth-shemesh.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

1 Samuel 6:13
And they of Beth-shemesh were reaping their wheat harvest in the valley; and they lifted up their eyes, and saw the ark, and rejoiced to see it.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

1 Samuel 6:15
And the Levites took down the ark of Jehovah, and the coffer that was with it, wherein the jewels of gold were, and put them on the great stone: and the men of Beth-shemesh offered burnt-offerings and sacrificed sacrifices the same day unto Jehovah.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

1 Samuel 6:19
And he smote of the men of Beth-shemesh, because they had looked into the ark of Jehovah, he smote of the people seventy men, and fifty thousand men; and the people mourned, because Jehovah had smitten the people with a great slaughter.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

1 Samuel 6:20
And the men of Beth-shemesh said, Who is able to stand before Jehovah, this holy God? and to whom shall he go up from us?
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

1 Kings 4:9
Ben-deker, in Makaz, and in Shaalbim, and Beth-shemesh, and Elon-beth-hanan;
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

2 Kings 14:11
But Amaziah would not hear. So Jehoash king of Israel went up; and he and Amaziah king of Judah looked one another in the face at Beth-shemesh, which belongeth to Judah.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

2 Kings 14:13
And Jehoash king of Israel took Amaziah king of Judah, the son of Jehoash the son of Ahaziah, at Beth-shemesh, and came to Jerusalem, and brake down the wall of Jerusalem from the gate of Ephraim unto the corner gate, four hundred cubits.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

1 Chronicles 6:59
and Ashan with its suburbs, and Beth-shemesh with its suburbs;
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

2 Chronicles 25:21
So Joash king of Israel went up; and he and Amaziah king of Judah looked one another in the face at Beth-shemesh, which belongeth to Judah.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

2 Chronicles 25:23
And Joash king of Israel took Amaziah king of Judah, the son of Joash the son of Jehoahaz, at Beth-shemesh, and brought him to Jerusalem, and brake down the wall of Jerusalem from the gate of Ephraim unto the corner gate, four hundred cubits.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

2 Chronicles 28:18
The Philistines also had invaded the cities of the lowland, and of the South of Judah, and had taken Beth-shemesh, and Aijalon, and Gederoth, and Soco with the towns thereof, and Timnah with the towns thereof, Gimzo also and the towns thereof: and they dwelt there.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS YLT NAS)

Jeremiah 43:13
He shall also break the pillars of Beth-shemesh, that is in the land of Egypt; and the houses of the gods of Egypt shall he burn with fire.
(ASV BBE DBY JPS WBS)

Subtopics

Beth-Shemesh

Beth-Shemesh: A City Near Jerusalem

Beth-Shemesh: A Fortified City of the Territory of the Tribe of Naphtali

Beth-Shemesh: A Priestly City of the Tribe of Dan

Beth-Shemesh: A Priestly City of the Tribe of Dan in Later Times Transferred to the Tribe of Judah

Beth-Shemesh: A Priestly City of the Tribe of Dan: Amaziah Taken Prisoner At

Beth-Shemesh: A Priestly City of the Tribe of Dan: Called Beth-Shmesh

Beth-Shemesh: A Priestly City of the Tribe of Dan: Mentioned in Solomon's Commission Districts

Beth-Shemesh: A Priestly City of the Tribe of Dan: On the Northern Border of Territory of the Tribe of Judah

Beth-Shemesh: A Priestly City of the Tribe of Dan: Retaken by the Philistines

Beth-Shemesh: An Idolatrous Temple

Related Terms

Beth-shemesh (19 Occurrences)

Beth-she'mesh (20 Occurrences)

Shemesh (24 Occurrences)

Kiriathjearim

Kiriath-jearim (17 Occurrences)

Bethanath (2 Occurrences)

Beth-anath (2 Occurrences)

Shaalbim (2 Occurrences)

Timnah (12 Occurrences)

Amazi'ah (37 Occurrences)

Anath (4 Occurrences)

Sunworship

Sun-worship

Unwalled (39 Occurrences)

Cows (33 Occurrences)

Beth (115 Occurrences)

Amaziah (41 Occurrences)

Lords (63 Occurrences)

Kirjath-jearim (17 Occurrences)

Kirjathjearim (17 Occurrences)

Naphtalites (1 Occurrence)

Juttah (3 Occurrences)

Jeho'ash (16 Occurrences)

Judah's (18 Occurrences)

Laborers (19 Occurrences)

Lowing (3 Occurrences)

Gederoth (2 Occurrences)

Faced (32 Occurrences)

Taskwork (14 Occurrences)

Tributary (9 Occurrences)

Tributaries (4 Occurrences)

Elon (8 Occurrences)

Makaz (1 Occurrence)

Pasturelands (42 Occurrences)

Beth-shemite (2 Occurrences)

Bethshemite (2 Occurrences)

Ajalon (10 Occurrences)

Angle (19 Occurrences)

Sorek (1 Occurrence)

Section (22 Occurrences)

Belongeth (36 Occurrences)

Expel (29 Occurrences)

On (40792 Occurrences)

Dispossessed (42 Occurrences)

Cart (12 Occurrences)

Villages (106 Occurrences)

Kine (24 Occurrences)

Jehoash (28 Occurrences)

Forced (84 Occurrences)

Boundary (83 Occurrences)

Voices (76 Occurrences)

Ahazi'ah (33 Occurrences)

Suburbs (75 Occurrences)

Jo'ash (44 Occurrences)

Beth-she'an (5 Occurrences)

Pulled (84 Occurrences)

Drove (89 Occurrences)

Tore (59 Occurrences)

Pasture (120 Occurrences)

Corner (60 Occurrences)

Captured (143 Occurrences)

Joash (49 Occurrences)

Dwelleth (142 Occurrences)

Direction (128 Occurrences)

Coast (70 Occurrences)

Touched (96 Occurrences)

Sacrificed (112 Occurrences)

Brake (80 Occurrences)

Nevertheless (153 Occurrences)

Hamlets (38 Occurrences)

Rock (176 Occurrences)

Caught (110 Occurrences)

Covenant (309 Occurrences)

Labor (181 Occurrences)

Subject (99 Occurrences)

Driving (144 Occurrences)

Inhabitants (254 Occurrences)

Attacked (93 Occurrences)

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