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The Campaign in the North
Here there is no trace, as in the former case, of miraculous interposition. Joshua’s generalship, courage, swiftness and loyalty are the prominent factors in the achievement. Yet it is made clear here (Joshua 11:6-8) as ever, that those qualities attained their object because they were under the direct guidance of the God of Israel.
1. Jabin] king of Hazor. Hazor] may be Tell el-Hurrawiyeh, 2½ m. S. of Kedesh-Naphtali. Shimron] (=Shimron-meron 12:20) is Semûnieh, W. of Nazareth. Achshaph] el Yasîf, the port of Accho. Hazor is again a powerful Canaanite centre in the time of Deborah (Judges 4) and its king bears the same name, or title, Jabin (=wise) and may have been of the same dynasty. 2, 3. RV ’that were on the north, in the hill-country, and in the Arabah south of Chinneroth, and in the lowland, and in the heights, of Dor on the west, to the Canaanite on the east..’ The ’Arabah S. of Chinneroth ’means the plain S. of the lake of Gennesaret (Luke 5:1). Dor] near Mt. Carmel.
3. The Canaanite on the east and on the west] The name ’Canaanite’ is more probably geographical than racial. It means ’lowlanders.’ In the Amama tablets (14th cent. b.c.) the Land of Canaan means the Phoenician coast; in later Egyptian monuments it includes all W. Syria.
5. Waters of Merom] Probably Lake Huleh, a marshy lake near the sources of the Jordan.
6. Thou shalt hough, etc.] To ’hough’ or ’hock’=to hamstring a horse. This was done, no doubt, during the battle, to stop the charge. The chariots were destroyed afterwards.
16-23. General retrospect of Joshua’s campaigns. This paragraph covers the preceding chapters as well as chapter Joshua 11:1-15. The war, which has been presented to us in graphic sketches following one another in swift succession, is said to have been a ’long’ one (Joshua 11:18), and the natural inference from Joshua 14:7-10 (where see note) is that it lasted seven years.
16. The mountain country and Negeb (dry southern uplands) and Shephelah (low hills skirting the mountains) first mentioned are those of Judah (see on Joshua 10:40), from which the inference has been drawn that the writer was a native of that tribe, because he does not qualify the terms. Then follows the Arabah (deep valley of Jordan), and finally the mountain of Israel and its Shephelah, i.e. the N. Israelite part of this central range and the low hills (valley) between it and Carmel. The stretch of country described reaches from Halak in Edomite territory S. of the Dead Sea to Baal Gad at the foot of Hermon, N. of Lake Huleh.
22. The Anakims] This hill-tribe had by their stature made an alarming impression on the original spies (Numbers 13:28-33 cp. Joshua 14:12). It was from Gath that Goliath came (1 Samuel 17:4) and other giants (2 Samuel 21:18-22).
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Dummelow, John. "Commentary on Joshua 11". "Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/
the Fifth Week after Easter