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scripture

 

CHAPTER 15

Boundaries of Judah. 1The lot for the tribe of Judah by their clans fell toward the boundary of Edom, the wilderness of Zin in the Negeb, in the extreme south.a 2b Their southern boundary ran from the end of the Salt Sea,* from the tongue of land that faces the Negeb, 3and went southward below the pass of Akrabbim, across through Zin, up to a point south of Kadesh-barnea, across to Hezron, and up to Addar; from there, looping around Karka, 4it crossed to Azmon and then joined the Wadi of Egypt* before coming out at the sea. (This is your southern boundary.) 5The eastern boundary was the Salt Sea as far as the mouth of the Jordan.

The northern boundary climbed northward from the tongue of the sea, toward the mouth of the Jordan, 6c up to Beth-hoglah, and ran north of Beth-arabah, up to Eben-Bohan-ben-Reuben. 7Thence the boundary climbed to Debir, north of the Valley of Achor,d in the direction of the Gilgal that faces the pass of Adummim, on the south side of the wadi; from there it crossed to the waters of En-shemesh and emerged at En-rogel. 8Climbing again to the Valley of Ben-hinnom* on the southern flank of the Jebusites (that is, Jerusalem), the boundary rose to the top of the mountain at the northern end of the Valley of Rephaim,e which bounds the Valley of Hinnom on the west. 9From the top of the mountain it ran to the fountain of waters of Nephtoah,f extended to the cities of Mount Ephron, and continued to Baalah, or Kiriath-jearim. 10From Baalah the boundary curved westward to Mount Seir and passed north of the ridge of Mount Jearim (that is, Chesalon); it descended to Beth-shemesh, and ran across to Timnah. 11It then extended along the northern flank of Ekron, continued through Shikkeron, and across to Mount Baalah, from there to include Jabneel, before it came out at the sea. 12The western boundary was the Great Sea* and its coast. This was the complete boundary of the Judahites by their clans.

Conquest by Caleb. 13g As the LORD had commanded, Joshua gave Caleb, son of Jephunneh,h a portion among the Judahites, namely, Kiriath-arba (Arba was the father of Anak), that is, Hebron. 14i And Caleb dispossessed from there the three Anakim, the descendants of Anak: Sheshai, Ahiman, and Talmai. 15From there he marched up against the inhabitants of Debir,j which was formerly called Kiriath-sepher. 16Caleb said, “To the man who attacks Kiriath-sepher and captures it, I will give my daughter Achsah in marriage.” 17* Othniel captured it, the son of Caleb’s brother Kenaz; so Caleb gave him his daughter Achsah in marriage. 18When she came to him, she induced him to ask her father for some land. Then, as she alighted from the donkey, Caleb asked her, “What do you want?” 19She answered, “Give me a present! Since you have assigned to me land in the Negeb, give me also pools of water.” So he gave her the upper and the lower pools.

Cities of Judah.* 20This is the heritage of the tribe of Judahites by their clans: 21The cities of the tribe of the Judahites in the extreme southern district toward Edom were: Kabzeel, Eder, Jagur, 22Kinah, Dimonah, Adadah, 23Kedesh, Hazor, and Ithnan; 24Ziph, Telem, Bealoth, 25Hazor-hadattah, and Kerioth-hezron (that is, Hazor); 26Amam, Shema, Moladah, 27Hazar-gaddah, Heshmon, Beth-pelet, 28Hazar-shual, Beer-sheba, and Biziothiah; 29Baalah, Iim, Ezem, 30Eltolad, Chesil, Hormah, 31Ziklag, Madmannah, Sansannah, 32Lebaoth, Shilhim, and Ain and Rimmon; a total of twenty-nine cities with their villages.

33In the Shephelah: Eshtaol, Zorah, Ashnah, 34Zanoah, Engannim, Tappuah, Enam, 35Jarmuth, Adullam, Socoh, Azekah, 36Shaaraim, Adithaim, Gederah, and Gederothaim; fourteen cities and their villages. 37Zenan, Hadashah, Migdal-gad, 38Dilean, Mizpeh, Joktheel, 39Lachish, Bozkath, Eglon, 40Cabbon, Lahmas, Chitlish, 41Gederoth, Beth-dagon, Naamah, and Makkedah; sixteen cities and their villages. 42Libnah, Ether, Ashan, 43Iphtah, Ashnah, Nezib, 44Keilah, Achzib, and Mareshah; nine cities and their villages. 45Ekron and its towns and villages; 46from Ekron to the sea, all the towns that lie alongside Ashdod, and their villages; 47Ashdod and its towns and villages; Gaza and its towns and villages, as far as the Wadi of Egypt and the coast of the Great Sea.

48In the mountain regions: Shamir, Jattir, Socoh, 49Dannah, Kiriath-sannah (that is, Debir), 50Anab, Eshtemoh, Anim, 51Goshen, Holon, and Giloh; eleven cities and their villages. 52Arab, Dumah, Eshan, 53Janim, Beth-tappuah, Aphekah, 54Humtah, Kiriath-arba (that is, Hebron), and Zior; nine cities and their villages. 55Maon, Carmel, Ziph, Juttah, 56Jezreel, Jokdeam, Zanoah, 57Kain, Gibbeah, and Timnah; ten cities and their villages. 58Halhul, Beth-zur, Gedor, 59Maarath, Beth-anoth, and Eltekon; six cities and their villages. Tekoa, Ephrathah (that is, Bethlehem), Peor, Etam, Kulom, Tatam, Zores, Karim, Gallim, Bether, and Manoko; eleven cities and their villages. 60Kiriath-baal (that is, Kiriath-jearim) and Rabbah; two cities and their villages.k

61In the wilderness:* Beth-arabah, Middin, Secacah, 62Nibshan, Ir-hamelah, and En-gedi; six cities and their villages. 63But the Jebusites who lived in Jerusalem the Judahites could not dispossess; so the Jebusites dwell in Jerusalem beside the Judahites to the present day.l

* [15:2] Salt Sea: the Dead Sea. The “tongue,” a prominent feature of the landscape, is a spit of land thrusting into the Dead Sea from its eastern shore; it is now called by its Arabic name, ’el lisân, “tongue.”

* [15:4] Wadi of Egypt: the natural boundary between Gaza and the Sinai Peninsula.

* [15:8] The Valley of Ben-hinnom: the southern limit of Jerusalem. Ben-hinnom means “son of Hinnom.” The place was also called Valley of Hinnom, in Hebrew ge-hinnom, whence the word “Gehenna” is derived.

* [15:12] Great Sea: the Mediterranean.

* [15:1719] The story of Othniel is told again in Jgs 1:1315; cf. also Jgs 3:911.

* [15:2062] This elaborate list of the cities of Judah was probably taken from a document made originally for administrative purposes; the cities are divided into four provincial districts, some of which have further subdivisions. For similar lists of the cities of Judah, cf. 19:27; 1 Chr 4:2832; Neh 11:2530. This list has suffered in transmission, so that the totals given in vv. 32 and 36 are not exact; many of the cities cannot be identified.

* [15:61] In the wilderness: in the Jordan rift near the Dead Sea.

a. [15:1] Nm 34:3.

b. [15:24] Nm 34:312.

c. [15:6] Jos 18:1819, 22.

d. [15:7] Jos 7:26; 18:1618.

e. [15:8] Jos 18:16.

f. [15:9] Jos 18:15.

g. [15:1319] Jgs 1:1015.

h. [15:13] Jos 14:1315.

i. [15:14] Nm 13:22; Jgs 1:20.

j. [15:15] Jos 10:38.

k. [15:60] Jos 18:14.

l. [15:63] Jgs 1:21; 2 Sm 5:6.




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