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Bible Commentaries

Lange's Commentary on the Holy Scriptures: Critical, Doctrinal, and Homiletical
1 Chronicles 2

 

 

Verses 1-55

b. The Sons of Israel, and the Generation of Judah down to David, with David’s Descendants to Elioenai and his Seven Sons.— 1 Chronicles 2:1 to 1 Chronicles 4:23

1. The Twelve Sons of Israel and the Descendants of Judah: 1 Chronicles 2:1-41 (with an Appendix relating chiefly to the Posterity of Caleb: 1 Chronicles 2:42-55)

1 Chronicles 2:1 These are the sons of Israel: Reuben, Simeon (Shimon), Levi, and Judah, 2Issachar, and Zebulun. Daniel, Joseph and Benjamin, Naphtali, Gad, and Assher 3 The sons of Judah: Er, and Onan, and Shelah; three were born to him of the daughter of Shuah, the Canaanitess; but Er, the first-born of 4 Judah, was evil in the eyes of the Lord, and He slew him. And Thamar his daughter-in-law bare him Perez and Zerah: all the sons of Judah were five 5 The sons of Perez: Hezron and Hamul 6 And the sons of Zerah: Zimri, and Ethan, and Heman, Calcol, and Dara:[FN1] five of them in all 7 And the sons of Carmi: Achar, the troubler of Israel, who transgressed in the accursed thing 8 And the sons of Ethan: Azariah.

9And the sons of Hezron, that were born to him: Jerahmeel, and Ram, and Celubai 10 And Ram begat Amminadab; and Amminadab begat Nahshon, prince of the sons of Judah 11 And Nahshon begat Salma, and Salma begat 12 Boaz. And Boaz begat Obed, and Obed begat Jesse 13 And Jesse begat his 14 first-born Eliab, and Abinadab the second, and Shima the third. Nathanael15, 16the fourth, Raddai the fifth. Ozem the sixth, David the seventh. And their sisters, Zeruiah and Abigail: and the sons of Zeruiah: Abishai, and Joab, and Asahel, three 17 And Abigail bare Amasa; and the father of Amasa was Jether the Ishmaelite.

18And Caleb, son of Hezron, begat with Azubah his wife,[FN2] and with Jerioth; 19and these are her sons: Jesher, and Shobab, and Ardon. And Azubah died; and Caleb took to him Ephrath, and she bare him Hur 20 And Hur begat 21 Uri, and Uri begat Bezalel. And afterwards Hezron went in to the daughter of Machir, father of Gilead; and he took her when he was sixty years old, and she bare him Segub 22 And Segub begat Jair, who had twenty and three 23 cities in the land of Gilead. And Geshur and Aram took the towns of Jair from them, with Kenath and her daughters, sixty cities. All these are sons 24 of Jair, the father of Gilead. And after the death of Hezron, in Calebephrathah, Abiah, Hezron’s wife, bare him Ashur (Ashchur), father of Tekoah.

25And the sons of Jerahmeel, the first-born of Hezron, were Ram, the first- born, 26and Bunah, and Oren, and Azem of Ahijah. And Jarahmeel had another wife, and her name was Atarah; she was the mother of Onam 27 And the sons of Ram, the first-born of Jerahmeel, were Maaz, and Jamin, and Eker 28 And the sons of Onam were Shammai and Jada; and the sons of Shammai: Nadab and Abishur 29 And the name of Abishur’s wife was Abihail,[FN3] and she bare him Ahban and Molid 30 And the sons of Nadab: Seled and Appaim; and Seled died childless 31 And the sons of Appaim: Ishi; and the sons of Ishi: Sheshan; 32and the sons of Sheshan: Ahlai. And the sons of Jada,brother of Shammai: Jether and Jonathan; and Jether died childless 33 And the sons of Jonathan: Peleth and Zaza. These were the sons of Jerahmeel.

34And Sheshan had no sons, but only daughters. And Sheshan had an Egyptian servant, whose name was Jarha 35 And Sheshan gave his daughter to Jarha his servant to wife; and she bare him Attai 36 And Attai begat Nathan, and Nathan begat Zabad 37 And Zabad begat Ephlal, and Ephlal begat Obed 38 And Obed begat Jehu, and Jehu begat Prayer of Azariah 39And Azariah begat Helez, 40and Helez begat Elasah. And Elasah begat Sismai, and Sismai begat Shallum 41 And Shallum begat Jekamiah, and Jekamiah begat Elishama.

Appendix: Three Series of Descendants of Caleb: 1 Chronicles 2:42-55

42And the sons of Caleb, brother of Jerahmeel, were Mesha, his first-born; he was the father of Ziph; and the sons of Mareshah, the father of Hebron.[FN4] 43, 44And the sons of Hebron: Korah, and Tappuah, and Rekem, and Shema. And Shema begat Raham, father of Jorkeam;[FN5] and Rekem begat Shammai 45 And the son of Shammai was Maon; and Maon was father of Bethzur.

46And Ephah, Caleb’s concubine, bare Haran, and Moza, and Gazez; and Haran begat Gazez 47 And the sons of Jehdai: Regem, and Jotham, and Geshan, 48and Pelet, and Ephah, and Shaaph. Caleb’s concubine Maacha bare[FN6] Sheber 49 and Tirhanah. And she bare Shaaph the father of Madmannah, Sheva, father of Machbenah, and father of Gibeah; and Caleb’s daughter was Achsah.

50These were the sons of Caleb the Song of Solomon 7 of Hur, first-born of Ephrathah: 51Shobal, father of Kiriath-jearim. Salma, father of Bethlehem, Hareph, father 52 of Bethgader. And Shobal, father of Kiriath-jearim, had sons: Haroeh, and the half of Menuhoth.[FN8] 53And the families of Kiriath-jearim were the Ithrite, and the Puthite, and the Shumathite, and the Mishraite. From these came the Zorathite and the Eshtaolite 54 The sons of Salma: Bethlehem, and the Netophathite, Ataroth of the house of Joab, and half of the Menahathite, the Zorite 55 And the families of the scribes dwelling at Jabez were the Tirathites, Shimathites, Suchathites: these are the Kenites that came from Hammath, father of the house of Rechab.

EXEGETICAL

Preliminary Remark.—The author here begins to enroll his detailed genealogies of the tribes of Israel, extending to the end of 1 Chronicles8. After premising a list of the 12 sons of Jacob as the general basis of the whole, 1 Chronicles 2:1-2, he begins with the enumeration of the generations and families of the tribe of Judah, which he then pursues in 1 Chronicles3and 1 Chronicles 4:1-23, and completes in several parts. No order, regulated by definite historical, geographical, or any systematic principles, lies at the base of this enumeration; he seems rather to have combined into a whole, as far as possible, the more or less fragmentary genealogies of certain branches and families of the house of Judah as they came down to him from antiquity; but this whole is very defective in the unity and homogeneity of its several parts. For of the five immediate descendants of Judah, that founded the tribe of Judah by a numerous posterity, his three sons Shelah, Perez, and Zerah, and his two grandsons Hezron and Hamul, only Zerah ( 1 Chronicles 2:6-8), Hezron ( 1 Chronicles 2:9-13), and Shelah ( 1 Chronicles 4:21-23) have their genealogies given with any fulness; Hamul is entirely passed over, and Perez is only followed out in the line of Hezron. This line (under which the Chronist sums up all that was known of the descendants of Caleb and of the Jephunnite Calebites) is treated with special care and fulness: to it belongs the whole series of the descendants of David till the times after the captivity ( 1 Chronicles 3), and at least the more considerable part of the genealogical fragments in 1 Chronicles 4:1-23, which serve as a supplement to 1 Chronicles 2:9-55, and of which it is often doubtful which of the members previously named they continue or supplement.

1. The Twelve Sons of Israel: [It is probable that Naphtali was born about the same time with Gad, and is therefore classified with him.—J. G. M.]

2. The Descendants of Judah: 1 Chronicles 2:3-41.—a. The5 sons of Judah, the 2 sons of Perez, and the descendants of Zerah: 1 Chronicles 2:3-8.

1 Chronicles 2:3-4. The sons of Judah, etc. The five sons of Judah, three legitimate, born of the daughter of Shuah the Canaanite, Er, Onan, and Shelah, and two born in incest of Tamar, his daughter-in-law, Perez and Zerah, are given in accordance with Genesis 38, and in the same order (comp. also Genesis 46:12). The author recalls this his source by taking over word for word the remark on Er in Genesis 38:7 : “But Er the first-born of Judah was evil in the eyes of the Lord, and He slew him.”

1 Chronicles 2:5. The sons of Perez, etc. (Hezron, perhaps the “blooming, fair;” Hamul, the “forgiven,” or the “tender, weak;” comp. Bibelw. i. p432). These occur in two registers of the Pentateuch, the list of the children of Israel who went down to Egypt with Jacob, Genesis 46:12, and in that of the families of Judah in the Mosaic age, Numbers 26:21.

1 Chronicles 2:6-8. And the sons of Zerah. Five such are named: Zimri, Ethan, Heman, Calcol, and Dara. On the first of these names, which might possibly be wrongly written (זִמרִי for זַבְדִי, Joshua 7:1), see under 1 Chronicles 2:7. The four following names, especially if we read for the last, Darda, with a great number of old witnesses (see Crit. Note), agree surprisingly with the four men compared with Solomon in 1 Kings 5:11 : Ethan the Ezrahite, and Heman, and Calcol, and Darda, the the sons of Mahol. The assumption of an identity of these four wise men with the four younger sons of Zerah is very natural; it has been already asserted by Grotius, Clericus, Lightfoot (Chronol. V. T. p. 24), Hiller (Onom. Sacr.), and others, and recently by Movers (p237) and Bertheau, who insisted on the circumstance, that in 1 Kings 5:11 contemporaries of Solomon were not intended (no more than in Ezra 14:14, 18:20, contemporaries of Daniel); further, on the probable identity of Zerah with Ezrah the father of Ethan mentioned in 1 Kings 5:11 (אֶזְרַח=זֶרַח); and lastly, on the statement of the Rabbinical book Seder Olam, which says (p52, ed. Meyer) of the sons of Zerah named in our passage: “These were prophets who prophesied in Egypt,” and thus appears to confirm expressly their being of the class of Hakamim. But the argument raised of late, especially by Hengstenberg (Beiträge zur Einl. ii61 f, and on Psalm 88), Keil (Apol. Vers. p 164 ff.; comp. Comment. p39 ff.), as well as Bähr (on 1 Kings 5:11, Bibelw. 7 p30), against the identity of these persons, seems to be more weighty and decisive. For, 1. The variant “Darda” for “Dara” in our passage, however old, appears clearly to have arisen from the endeavour to harmonize; 2. To this endeavour the notice in the Seder Olam owes its origin; 3. That at least near contemporaries of Solomon are named in 1 Kings5. follows from the manifest and undeniable identity of Ethan the Ezrahite with the Song of Solomon -named composer of Psalm 89, and from the very probable identity of Heman with “Heman the Ezrahite,” the composer of Psalm 88:4. If the Ethan and Heman of 1 Kings 5:11 be identical with the composers of these Psalm, they are also probably to be regarded as Levites of the family of the sons of Korah (see the superscr. of these Psalm), who are in 1 Chronicles15, 17,, 19 called masters of Song of Solomon, and belong not to the family of Judah, and might at the most have found admission into it as adoptive sons of Zerah (Hengstenberg, Beiträge zur Einl. ins A. T. ii71),—an assumption, however, which is too artificial; 5. The express designation of Calcol and Darda in Kings as “sons of Mahol” makes it difficult to assume their identity with the sons of Zerah, as the latter must be regarded not as immediate sons, but later descendants of Zerah; 6. Of the pre-eminent wisdom of the sons of Zerah, neither the canonical Old Testament nor the apocryphal literature has anything to report; even such passages as Jeremiah 49:7, Baruch 3:22 ff. are silent on the subject. The assumption of the identity of these with the names in 1 Kings5 can only be maintained on the presupposition that וּבְנֵי in our passage means not strictly sons, but later descendants of Zerah (so recently Keil, in Comment. p41). But this expedient has its difficulty, and by no means suffices to destroy the force of most of the arguments here adduced against the identity. We must therefore take the surprising coincidence of the names to be accidental, or assume with Movers (Chron. p237) that we have in the present passage the peculiar genealogical combination of a later author. For the conjecture of Ewald, that Heman and Ethan, “the two great singers of the tribe of Judah, were taken by the Levitical music schools into their company and family, and therefore were afterwards (in the superscriptions of Psalm 88, 89) reckoned to the tribe of Levi” (Gesch. d. V. Isr. iii1, p84), is no less artificial than that of Hengstenberg. [But of these considerations, Nos1,2contain a mere subjective assumption. No 3 assumes, without necessity, that the Ethan of 1 Kings5 and the composer of Psalm 89 are one, since two Ethans may descend from the one patriarch. No 4 assumes that the composers of Psalm 88, 89 were Levites, whereas the epithet Ezrahite appears to be added expressly to distinguish them from the Levites of those names. No5 assumes that Mahol is a proper name, which remains to be proved. No6 assumes that the wisdom of Zerah’s sons is not probable, because it is not elsewhere mentioned. This argument of itself has little if any weight. On the other hand, one motive to insert these sons of Zerah in the list was probably their occurrence in 1 Kings5, and the Chronist, according to his wont, is silent on their Wisdom of Solomon, for the sake of brevity, as it was elsewhere recorded.—J. G. M.]

1 Chronicles 2:7. And the sons of Carmi; Achar; that Isaiah, Achar was descended from Carmi. Comp. the oft-recurring use of the plural בְּנֵי, where only one descendant is named ( 1 Chronicles 2:8; 1 Chronicles 2:30-31; 1 Chronicles 2:42, and Genesis 46:23). By Achar, as the addition, “the troubler of Israel” (עכר, properly “the troubled”), shows, is meant the Achan of the book of Joshua ( Joshua 7:1 ff, Joshua 22:20), whose name must have been known to the author of this book in the by-form Achar, as he puts the valley of Achor in etymological connection with it ( Joshua 7:26, Joshua 15:7). The link that connects Carmi, the father or ancestor of this Achar, with Zerah is wanting; but from Joshua 7:1, where he is called a son of Zabdi, the son of Zerah, it is highly probable that he springs from Zimri, the first named of the sons of Zerah, whether Zimri in our passage be an error of the pen for Zabdi, or the reverse, or Zabdi be a son of Zimri, and thus several links of the series from Zerah to Achar have been omitted. On Carmi, comp. also 1 Chronicles 4:1 and Numbers 26:6, where a family of Reuben bears the name.

1 Chronicles 2:8. And the sons of Ethan: Azariah. This Ethanite Azariah is not otherwise known: no probable reason can be assumed why he only of the sons of Ethan is mentioned.

b. The Descendants of Hezron: 1 Chronicles 2:9-41.—a. His three sons, 1 Chronicles 2:9.—And the sons of Hezron that were born to him. The passive נוֹלַד stands “for the indefinite active, so that the following accusatives with אֶת depend on the virtual notion of the active ‘one bare him;’ comp. Genesis 4:18; Genesis 21:5; Genesis 46:20, and the sing. נוֹלַד in a similar position, 1 Chronicles 3:4; 1 Chronicles 26:6” (Berth.). The name Ram Isaiah, in the New Testament genealogies of Jesus, Matthew 1:3-4, Luke 3:33, Aram; comp. רָם, Job 32:2, with אֲרָם, Genesis 22:21. The name כְּלוּבַי is undoubtedly a by-form of כָּלֵב, 1 Chronicles 2:18, or, as this name is written in 1 Chronicles 4:11, of כְּלוּב: it is an adject, gentil., that stands to its stem כְּלוּב, as צוֹפַי 1 Chronicles 6:11, to צוּף 1 Chronicles 6:20 (Ewald, Lehrb. § 164, c), or as in Greek Μανιχαῖος (the n. pr. of the well-known Persian sectary) to Μάνης. Accordingly, the celebrated forefather of Bezaleel had of old three names—Caleb, Celub, the Celuban. Comp. underneath on 1 Chronicles 2:18 ff. and on 1 Chronicles 2:40. The three here named, Jerahmeel, Ram, and Celubai, appear to have been actual sons or immediate descendants of Hezron, whereas the sons of Hezron afterwards appended,—Segub, 1 Chronicles 2:21, and Ashur, 1 Chronicles 2:24,—as they are co-ordinated with his later descendants, may possibly be sons in a wider sense. At all events, they did not belong to the aforesaid founders of the three celebrated lines of Hezronites, which are analyzed in the following passage, though in an order different from the present enumeration, the family of Ram being placed first, and that of Jerahmeel transferred to the end (comp. on 1 Chronicles 2:18).

β. The family of Ram, as first of the three Hezronite lines. His precedence is explained by the circumstance that the house of David sprang from him. The posterity of Ram is therefore carried down to David in seven members. The six members to Jesse, the father of David, are found also in the book of Ruth 4:19-21; comp. the genealogies in Matthew 1and Luke 3

1 Chronicles 2:10. Nahshon, prince of the sons of Judah. This distinguishing epithet, which is wanting in Ruth, points to Numbers 1:7; Numbers 2:3; Numbers 7:12, where Nahshon is named as the prince of Judah at the exodus. As this date, according to the most probable interpretation of the number430, Exodus 12:40, is to be placed fully four centuries after the time of Judah, several members must have fallen out between Hezron, the grandson of Judah, and Nahshon, as well as between Nahshon and Jesse, as the series Salma, Boaz, Obed, and Jesse is not sufficient to fill up the interval of400 years between Moses and David. [If the430 years count from the call of Abraham, which has not yet been disproved, the exodus was only210 years after the descent of Judah into Egypt, instead of four centuries.—J. G. M.]

1 Chronicles 2:11. Salma. Instead of שַׂלְמָא, the book of Ruth has, 1 Chronicles 4:20, שַׂלְמָה, but in the following verse שַׂלְמוֹן, which has passed into the New Testament ( Luke 3:32, Σαλμών and so Matthew 1:4-5, where Luther has Salma).

1 Chronicles 2:13-15. The seven sons of Jesse. According to 1 Samuel 17:12 (comp. 1 Chronicles 16:6 ff.), Jesse had8 sons,—a difference which is most easily explained by the supposition that one of the eight died without posterity, and therefore was not included by later genealogists.—His first-born Eliab. So is the eldest called in the books of Samuel; on the contrary, in 1 Chronicles 27:18 the form Elihu appears to have come into the place of Eliab. The Peshito has in our passage8 instead of7 sons of Jesse, of whom it calls the seventh Elihu, the eighth David; the first6 agree with the Masoretic text.—And Shima the third. The name שִׁמְעָא, occurring thus in 1 Chronicles 20:7, is in 2 Samuel 13:3; 2 Samuel 21:22 in the Keri שִׁמְעָה on the contrary, in the Kethib of the latter passage שִׁמְעִי, and in Samuel ( 1 Chronicles 16:6, 1 Chronicles 17:13) twice שַׁמָּה. The latter is merely an abbreviated form of שִׁמִעָה.—The names of the next three brothers occur nowhere else.

1 Chronicles 2:16-17. And their sisters, Zeruiah and Abigail. Both sisters obtained great celebrity through their heroic sons,—Zeruiah, as the mother of Abishai, Joab, and Asahel ( 1 Samuel 26:6, 2 Samuel 2:18; 2 Samuel 3:39; 2 Samuel 6:16, etc.), who are always named after their mother, never after their less celebrated father; Abigail, as mother of the commander Amasa, who was involved in Absalom’s rebellion ( 2 Samuel 17:25; 2 Samuel 19:14; 2 Samuel 20:10), whom she bare to Jether the Ishmaelite. This יֶתֶר is called 2 Samuel 17:25יִתְרָא, with the epithet הַיִּשְׂרָעֵלִי, for which, according at least to our passage, the correct form is הַיִּשְׂמְעֵלִי; for the Israelitish descent of the man would have needed no distinct notice. Abigail herself appears, besides, according to 2 Samuel 17:25, as a daughter of Nahash and sister of Zeruiah, and therefore not a full, but only a half sister of David.

γ. The family of Caleb, as second of the three Hezronite lines: 1 Chronicles 2:18-24.—The question, how this first list of his descendants is related to the second in 1 Chronicles 2:42-49, Wellhausen (p 13 seq.) has endeavoured to answer by regarding the Caleb in 1 Chronicles 2:42 as corresponding to the Celubai in 1 Chronicles 2:9, designating the order in which the special genealogies of the three Hezronite lines occurred, by the names Ram ( 1 Chronicles 2:10 ff.), Jerahmeel ( 1 Chronicles 2:25 ff.), and Caleb ( 1 Chronicles 2:42 ff.), and considering the genealogy of Caleb ( 1 Chronicles 2:18-24) as a later insertion, whereby the Chronist has disfigured the original and normal development of his genealogy of the Hezronites. He holds that, indeed, this insertion itself is again a conglomerate of genealogical fragments of various origin, as appears most clearly from the reference of 1 Chronicles 2:21-23 to Hezron himself, the father of Caleb.[FN9] Indeed, even 1 Chronicles 2:10-17 are probably an interpolation, whereby the Chronist has endeavoured to extend the pedigree of the Hezronites originally beginning with Jerahmeel (“the first-born of Hezron,” 1 Chronicles 2:25), on the basis of the book of Ruth, the Ram of which ( Ruth 4:19) appears to him as a son of Hezron and a brother of Jerahmeel and Caleb, whereas he is in truth, according to 1 Chronicles 2:25, a son of Jerahmeel and grandson of Hezron. Accordingly, the old genealogical table before the Chronist had only two lines of Hezronites (Jerahmeelites and Calebites), and his supplementing action had extended this register, so that he first added a Ram son of Hezron, with his posterity ( 1 Chronicles 2:10-17), different from Ram son of Jerahmeel, and then a second Caleb ( 1 Chronicles 2:18-24), with many other descendants than those of the younger brother Jerahmeel, 1 Chronicles 2:42 ff. It cannot be denied that many reasons appear to recommend this bold hypothesis. It explains in a satisfactory way the circumstance that the first-born Jerahmeel, whose genealogy we should expect first, appears after those of his two younger brothers, and also the surprising duplication of the names Ram and Caleb. But the hypothesis comes short of absolute certainty in many points which require to be adduced for confirmation. And especially it still remains doubtful which of the different old traditions concerning the descendants of the old prince of Judah, Caleb the companion of Joshua, whether that in 1 Chronicles 2:18 ff, or that in 1 Chronicles 2:42 ff, or that in 1 Chronicles 4:11; 1 Chronicles 4:15 ff, is to be pronounced the oldest and most trustworthy, and whether we are entitled to reject for one of them all the others at once as totally untrustworthy, and containing no element of historical truth. If it were to be assumed that originally there were two persons of this name, a Caleb son of Hezron (2, 1 Chronicles 4:11 ff.) and a Caleb son of Jephunneh ( 1 Chronicles 4:15 ff.), this duplication would warn us to be so much the more cautious in the reception or rejection of this or that one of the various traditions that are attached to these honourable names: the still greater complexity of the collective genealogies of Caleb would all the more favour the conjecture that each of the series referred to him must be accounted in the one or the other way as authentic, as containing in itself elements of the genuine posterity of Caleb.

1 Chronicles 2:18. Begat with Azubah his wife. הוֹלִיד אֶת, either “begat with” (as elsewhere הוֹלִיד מִן, 1 Chronicles 8:8-9) or “caused to bring forth” (comp. Isaiah 66:9). The following words, אִשָּׁה וְאֶת־יְרִיעוֹת, appear to be corrupt. If we translate (with D. Kimchi, Piscat, Osiand, and others), “with Azubah, a wife, and with Jerioth,” two things are strange: the indefinite designation of Azubah as a wife, אִשָּׁה (for which we should expect “his wife,” אִשְׁתּוֹ), and the circumstance that of the second wife no son is named. If we regard (with Hiller, J. D. Mich.) וְאֶת as explicative, with Azubah a wife, that Isaiah, Jerioth, we establish a mode of expression which is without a parallel in our book. It is impossible to render “And Caleb begat Azubah and Jerioth” (B. Striegel). We must either hold אִשָּׁה, which Isaiah, moreover, wanting in two mss. (see Crit. Note), with Berth, and Kamph, as a marginal note that has crept into the text, designed to prevent the translation “begat Azubah,” or adopt the reading of the Pesh. and the Vulg, אִשְׁתּוֹ אֶת, which gives the sense, “begat with Azubah his wife Jerioth, and these are her (Jerioth’s) sons.” The latter appears the most satisfactory (comp. Keil). The names of her three sons occur nowhere else in the Old Testament.

1 Chronicles 2:19. And Azubah died, and Caleb took to him Ephrath, namely, to wife. To this second wife of Caleb, whose name in 1 Chronicles 2:50 (comp. 1 Chronicles 4:4) is Ephrathah, belongs Hur, who is also mentioned Exodus 31:2 as the grandfather of Bezalel. By this we are scarcely to understand that Ephrathah was properly a local name equivalent to Bethlehem ( Genesis 36:16; Genesis 36:19; Micah 5:1), so that Hur would be designated a descendant of Caleb, born at Bethlehem, or originating thence (an assumption to which Bertheau seems inclined).—On 1 Chronicles 2:20, comp. Exodus 31:2; Exodus 35:30.

1 Chronicles 2:21. Afterwards Hezron went in to the daughter of Machir. “Afterwards,” וְאַחַר, that Isaiah, after the birth of those three sons mentioned 1 Chronicles 2:9, whose mother is not named. The whole notice, extending to 1 Chronicles 2:24, of Hezron’s descendants, born in his old age of the daughter of Machir the Gileadite, and of a son Ashur, born after his death of a third wife Abiah ( 1 Chronicles 2:24), is undoubtedly surprising, and unsuitable to the present place: the series of Hezron’s sons and their descendants is thereby violently interrupted, and the above-mentioned interpolation theory of Wellhausen has in this case a very strong support. If we hold the present order to be original, we must assume, with Keil, that the here mentioned descendants of Hezron “were somehow more closely connected with the family of Caleb than with that of either Ram or Jerahmeel.” On Machir the first-born of Prayer of Manasseh, to whom Moses gave the land of Gilead, comp. Genesis 1:23; Numbers 32:40; Deuteronomy 3:15. As he is here and 1 Chronicles 2:23 called “father of Gilead,” so is it said Numbers 26:29 that he begat Gilead. Comp. Numbers 27:1, from which it follows that, by this paternal relation of Machir to Gilead, more must be meant than the bare notion of a descent of the Israelitish population of Gilead from Machir, and that there must have been a definite person, Gilead, son of Machir and grandfather of Zelophehad. By the designation father of Gilead, the present Machir is distinguished from later persons of the same name; comp. 2 Samuel 9:4; 2 Samuel 17:27.

1 Chronicles 2:22. And Segub begat Jair. This Jair, the grandson of Hezron through Segub, belonged on the mother’s side to the tribe of Prayer of Manasseh, and occurs therefore elsewhere, as Numbers 32:41, Deuteronomy 3:14, as a Manassite. His family, after the conquest of Og king of Bashan under Moses, received the territory of Argob, and gave to the conquered cities which Moses handed over to him the name Havvoth-Jair (חַוֹּת יָאִיר), “tent-villages of Jair,” or “life of Jair” (comp. Numbers 32:41; Deuteronomy 3:14; Joshua 13:30; 1 Kings 4:13), with, which designation the name “Judah on Jordan,” Joshua 19:34 (that Isaiah, the colony of Jews in Gilead east of the Jordan), is most probably identical; comp5. Raumer, Palœ James, 4 th edit. p233; Hengstenb. Gesch. des Reichs Gottes im A. T. ii. p258; Hoffm. Blicke in die früheste Gesch. des gelobten Landes, i. (1870) p114.

1 Chronicles 2:23. And Geshur and Aram, the Geshurites and Aramæans, which is scarcely a hendiadys for “the Aramæans of Geshur,” but rather points to an alliance of the Geshurites with the neighbouring Aramæans. For Geshur ( 2 Samuel 3:3; 2 Samuel 13:37; 2 Samuel 15:8) was a region in Aram or Syria, lying on the north-west border of Bashan near Hermon and the eastern bank of the Jordan, that in David’s time (comp. on 1 Chronicles 3:2) had a king of its own, and formed at that time an independent kingdom, not subject to Israel,—in the opinion of Hitzig (Gesch. d. Volks Israel, i p28 ff.), an Amorite kingdom of Arian (?) origin, though Moses in the distribution of the country had assigned it to Manasseh ( Joshua 13:13; comp. 1 Chronicles 12:5).—With Kenath and her daughters, sixty cities. So should the אֶת־קְנָת וגו״ be most probably taken, as a farther district, besides the villages of Jair, which the Geshurites and Aramæans took, and not as an explanatory apposition to these (comp. Berth.). For the preceding statement, that the villages of Jair amounted to twenty-three ( 1 Chronicles 2:22), is much too definite to allow it to be supposed that the now named sixty daughter towns of Kenath form an inexact repetition of the same designation. Much rather the difference of the two districts: “the villages of Jair” and the “daughters of Kenath,” appears in the clearest manner from Numbers 32:41-42, according to which, of the two Manassites Jair and Nobah, the former conquered the “Havvoth Jair,” the latter the “Benoth Kenath.” Only in their sum total were these places sixty in number, and only to this sum total does the present שִׁשִׁים עִיר apply. Whether, therefore, the group of towns designated by “Kenath” (now Kanwat, on the western slope of Jebel Hauran) and her daughters numbered exactly thirty-seven towns (as Keil thinks), remains uncertain; and the number sixty may very probably be a round number (comp. also Deuteronomy 3:12-14; Joshua 13:30). On the time when the Geshurites and Aramæans took the sixty towns, nothing can be ascertained from our passage. Certain it is that the later Judge of Israel, Jair ( Judges 10:4), possessed again at least thirty of these towns under the name of Havvoth-Jair, which must have survived to still later times. All these are sons of Jair, not the sixty towns, but the afore-mentioned Segub and Jair and their descendants and correlatives. It may be conjectured that the genealogical source used by the Chronist was originally more full, so that כָּל אֵלֶּה referred not merely to these two names.

1 Chronicles 2:24. And after the death of Hezron in Caleb-ephrathah. This place, which does not elsewhere occur, might possibly be the same as Ephrathah or Bethlehem-ephrathah (see on 1 Chronicles 2:19); the name of Caleb’s second wife Ephrath might be somehow connected with this her place of abode and death. “In 1 Samuel 30:14 a part of the south of Judah is called ‘Negeb Caleb,’ because it belonged to the family of Caleb; in analogy with which the town or place, in Which Caleb and his wife Ephrath dwelt, might be called ‘Caleb of Ephrathah,’ if Ephrath had brought it as a dowry to him, as in Joshua 15:18 f.” (Keil). Or from the Negeb Caleb, as the southern part of Caleb’s territory, 1 Samuel 30:14, “possibly the northern part might be distinguished by the more definite name ‘Caleb of Ephrathah,’ that Isaiah, of Bethlehem” (Berth.). None of these interpretations of this obscure phrase is perfectly satisfactory; and there is therefore much plausibility in the emendation of Wellhausen, founded on a various reading presented by the Sept. ἦλθε Χαλὲβ εἰς ’Εφραθά = בָּא כָלֵב אֶפְרָתָה), “And after Hezron’s death Caleb went to Ephrath, the wife of his father Hezron.” Here for בְ is read בָּא; for אֵשֶׁת,וְאֵשֶׁת and for אָבִיו,אֲבִיָּה—a change which is certainly somewhat radical; but the resulting sense is not improbable (comp. Genesis 35:22). As the text stands, here is a third wife of Hezron, called Abiah (comp. 1 Chronicles 2:9; 1 Chronicles 2:21), who bears to him “Ashur, father of Tekoa” (comp. 1 Chronicles 4:5-7), as a fil. postumus after his death. This Ashur (whom Wellhausen is disposed to change into an אִישׁ־חוּר, and to identify with Hur, Caleb’s son by Ephrath, 1 Chronicles 2:19) is called father of Tekoa, as lord and chieftain of the town Tekoa, the home of the prophet Amos, two hours south of Bethlehem (comp. Joshua 15:59), where this place still exists under the name Tekua (comp. Robinson’s Pal. ii. p406).

δ. The family of Jerahmeel, the third line of Hezron: 1 Chronicles 2:25-41.—Of Jerahmeel (he whom God pities, whom He loves = θεόφιλος) the first-born of Hezron: 1 Chronicles 2:9. As there was a negeb Caleb ( 1 Chronicles 2:24) and a negeb of the Kenites, so there was a negeb of the Jerahmeelites, 1 Samuel 27:10; comp. 1 Samuel 30:29. This is a proof of the strength and power of this line springing from the oldest Hezronites.—Ram the first-born. Wellhausen, perhaps without ground, takes this Ram to be originally identical with the Ram of 1 Chronicles 2:10, the founder of the Ramite family, from which David sprang; comp. on 1 Chronicles 4:21.—And Bunah, and Oren, and Ozem of Ahijah. The last of these names, אֲחִיָּה should not apparently designate a fifth son of Jerahmeel, because in that case the ו should not be wanting. It appears rather to be the name of the mother of the four sons, and a מֵ before אֲחִיָּה appears to have fallen out before the ם of the foregoing וְאֹצֵם (comp. 1 Chronicles 8:9). This conjecture, thrown out by Jun, Tremell, Clericus, J. H. Mich, J. Lange, and approved by all the moderns, appears the more probable, as in the following verse mention is made of a second wife of Jerahmeel, and the Syr. and the Sept. in our verse have reckoned only four sons, the latter rendering אֲחִיָּה by ἀδελφὶς αὐτοῦ.

1 Chronicles 2:26. Atarah; she was the mother of Onam, whose family is traced out 1 Chronicles 2:28-33. The name עֲטָרָה appears to signify “crown,” a name not unsuitable for a female, Proverbs 31:10. Yet it might signify “wall, fort,” as the sing, of עֲטָרוֹת, the city (comp. Numbers 32:3; Numbers 32:34 f.; Joshua 16:5; Joshua 16:7; Joshua 18:13; and Wellhausen, p25).

1 Chronicles 2:28-30. Onam’s family continues itself in pairs of sons to Abishur and Nadab, his grandsons, and to their sons. On the name “Abihail,” comp. Crit. Note.

Ver, 31. And the sons of Sheshan (descendants; see on 1 Chronicles 2:7), Ahlai. This Ahlai must have been a daughter, not a Song of Solomon, of Sheshan, great-grandson of Nadab, 1 Chronicles 2:29; for ( 1 Chronicles 2:34) Sheshan had no sons, but only daughters: Ahlai was therefore his heiress; but whether the same daughter who ( 1 Chronicles 2:35) married the Egyptian Jarha must remain uncertain. The remark of Hiller (Onom. s. p736), therefore, on Sheshan: Quicquid habuit liberorum, s. nepotum, sustulit ex unica filia Achlai, is not quite correct.

1 Chronicles 2:33. These were the sons of Jerahmeel. This subscription (going back to 1 Chronicles 2:25) includes 23 descendants of Jerahmeel. It deserves notice, that 23 descendants of Jerahmeel, with the preceding descendants of Judah (from 1 Chronicles 2:3), make up the sum of70 members of the house of Judah, namely, sons of Judah, 5; of Perez, 2; of Zerah, 5; Carmi, Achar, and Prayer of Azariah, 3; Ram and his descendants (including the 2 daughters of Jesse, and Jether father of Amasa), 21; Caleb and his descendants, 10; and Jerahmeel and his descendants, 24. This new number70 of the ancestors of the Jews, made out by Bertheau, loses weight and certainty, because it includes several females, against all genealogical rule reckons the father and mother of Amasa as two members, and excludes the 13 descendants of Sheshan, which sprang from the Egyptian servant Jarha ( 1 Chronicles 2:34-41), treating them as a mere offshoot (comp. Keil, p46). And would not the Chronist, if he had actually wished to represent the posterity of Judah, after the manner of that of his father Israel, Genesis 46:28 f, as70 souls, have overturned this reckoning again by his later additions, and especially the supplements given in 1 Chronicles 4:1-23, and altogether effaced the impression made thereby? Wellhausen’s interpolation theory, even if only approximately true, by no means agrees with this assumption of a tendency in the writer to symbolic numbers in his enumerations in 1 Chronicles 2:3-33.

1 Chronicles 2:34-41. The family of Jarha, the Egyptian servant. This Jarha occurs nowhere else; he may have served Sheshan during the sojourn of Israel in Egypt; for the latter branched off from Judah in the ninth generation, and belonged thus to the time before Moses. Most of the old expositors, perhaps rightly, presume that Jarha, only after he was made a free man and a proselyte by Sheshan (comp. Exodus 22:20; Exodus 23:9), married his daughter; comp. the law concerning intermarriage between Israelites and Egyptians, Deuteronomy 23:8; also David’s Egyptian servant, 1 Samuel 30:13 ff. Of the 13 here named descendants of Jarha, none occur elsewhere in the history of the Old Testament. Their names, indeed, recur several times, some of them, for example, in 1 Chronicles3, among the descendants of David; but it is not in the remotest degree probable that any of these belong to the list of the descendants of Jarha.

Appendix to the Genealogy of the House of Judah: Three Series of Descendants of Caleb, with Names chiefly of Geographical Import: 1 Chronicles 2:42-55

a. The first series: Mesha’s posterity: 1 Chronicles 2:42-45.—And the sons of Caleb, brother of Jerahmeel. This introduction leaves no doubt that the same Caleb is meant as in 1 Chronicles 2:18, and that this is an appendix to his genealogy already communicated. Mesha his first-born; he Was the father of Ziph. Though almost all the following names: Ziph, Mareshah, Hebron, appear to be local names, yet Mesha (מֵישַׁע) sounds decidedly like a personal name; comp. the Moabitish king of this name, who has recently become celebrated by his monument of victory ( 2 Kings 3:4). As, on the other hand, Ziph (זִיף) appears to be the town adjacent to Hebron which is mentioned Joshua 15:55, the same that gave its name to the wilderness of Ziph known to us from the history of David, 1 Samuel 23:14 ff; 1 Samuel 25:2, and which Robinson has recognised ( 1 Chronicles 2:4-17 ff.) in certain ruins on a hill south-east of Hebron, nothing is more natural than to perceive in Mesha the father of Ziph a lord or chieftain, or even the founder, of the town of Ziph (comp. on 1 Chronicles 2:24). By Ziph might also be meant the place mentioned Joshua 15:24, pretty far from Hebron in the plain (Shephelah) situated not far from Marash, the ancient Mareshah (so thinks Keil against Bertheau).—And the sons of Mareshah the father of Hebron. Mareshah is scarcely the name of that town mentioned Joshua 15:44 and 2 Chronicles 11:8 along with Ziph, which occurs in the times of the Maccabees and the Romans under the name of Marissa, and is preserved in the ruins of Marash in the Shephelah, half an hour south of Beitjibrin (5. Raum. Palœ James 3 d edit. p192; Robinson, 2:693; Tobler, Dritte Wanderung, pp129, 142). The expression “father of Hebron” makes the reference to this town very improbable; for at no time is any dependence of the ancient Hebron ( Numbers 13:23) on that very remote Mareshah recorded. We must rather, as the reading of the Masoretic text now runs, regard Mareshah as the proper name of some old tribe chief, and hold the Hebron signalized among his sons as most probably a person or tribe distinct from the well-known city Hebron (comp. Numbers 5:28 and Exodus 6:18, where חֶבְרוֹן is likewise a personal name). Song of Solomon, justly perhaps, Wellhausen and Keil, who Isaiah, moreover, disposed to consider the text corrupt, and proposes the following emendation (see Crit. Note): “and the sons of Mesha were Abi-Hebron.” This conjecture is supported by the analogy of such compounds as Abidan, Abiezer, Abinadab; the simple Hebron in 1 Chronicles 2:43 might very well be an abbreviated form of Abihebron (comp. En-tappuah, Joshua 17:7, with the shorter Tappuah, Joshua 16:8). [It is simpler and easier to regard Hebron as a person, named, if you will, after a former Hebron.—J. G. M.]

1 Chronicles 2:43. And the sons of Hebron: Korah, and Tappuah, and Rekem, and Shema. These four names also must rather be names of persons or tribes than of towns. For Korah and Shema occur only as personal names; Rekem once indeed as the name of a city, Joshua 18:27, but belonging to Benjamin, and several times as a personal name; in Numbers 31:8 as the name of a Midianite prince; and 1 Chronicles 7:18 as the name of a descendant of Manasseh. Only Tappuah (“apple”) recurs merely as the name of a city ( Joshua 12:17; Joshua 15:34; Joshua 16:8; comp. 1 Chronicles 17:7), which, however, proves nothing for the case in point, and by no means establishes a reference to this or that Song of Solomon -called city.

1 Chronicles 2:44. And Shema begat Raham, father of Jorkeam. for יָרְקְעָם which occurs nowhere else, the Sept. exhibits ’Ιεκλάν whence Bertheau concludes that it was originally יָקְדְּעָם, as in Joshua 15:56. But this name “Jokdeam’ the Sept. renders by ’Ιεκδαάμ, and here it reads twice in succession ’Ιεκλάν. It exhibits the same also for רֶקֶם, and thereby obscures the original relation of the genealogical data in our passage; some of the four sons of Hebron ( 1 Chronicles 2:43), first Shema and then the penultimate Rekem, have their genealogy traced. With Shammai the son of this Rekem comp. the so named persons above 1 Chronicles 2:28 and below 1 Chronicles 4:17, and also the celebrated leader of the Pharisees of this name, the antagonist of Hillel in the time of Jesus (Joseph. Anliq. xiv94).

1 Chronicles 2:45. And Maon was father of Beth Zur. Both Maon and Bethzur are cities in the hill country of Judea; comp. for the former, which is now called Main, and is pointed out as a castle in ruins, with cisterns, etc, on a hill in Carmel south of Hebron, Joshua 15:55; 1 Samuel 23:24 f, 1 Chronicles 25:2; Robinson, 2:421; for the latter, the site of which is to be sought north of Hebron on the road to Jerusalem, Joshua 15:58; 2 Chronicles 11:7; 2 Chronicles 5. Raumer, Pal. p163. There is no decisive reason for excluding a reference to these places. Maon the son of Shammai may be regarded as the founder of the city so called (comp. Judges 10:12, where Maon is the name of a non-lsraelitish tribe, along with Amalek and the Zidonians); Bethzur may then have been founded as a colony from Maon, a genetic relation, which is here expressed in a manner not quite usual by “father of Bethzur” (for above in 1 Chronicles 2:24; 1 Chronicles 2:42, and below in 1 Chronicles 2:50-51, it is not descent of a colony from its mother city, but government of cities by their princes or lords, that is designated in this manner).

b. The second series: posterity of Ephah and Maachah, the two concubines of Caleb: 1 Chronicles 2:46-49.—And Ephah, Caleb’s concubine. The name עֵיפָה, occurring elsewhere ( 1 Chronicles 2:47; 1 Chronicles 1:33) as a man’s name, seems here, where it designates a secondary wife of Caleb, to point to a non-lsraelitish origin of its possessor, whether she be regarded as a person or a race. Of the latter opinion is Wellhausen, p12, who takes this non-lsraelitish gens mingling With the Calebites to belong to Midian; and on the contrary, the second concubine of Caleb, designated as Maachah, 1 Chronicles 2:48, to be a gens belonging to Canaan. Of the three sons of Ephah, Haran and Gazez are not otherwise known. The middle name Moza occurs Joshua 18:26 as the name of a city of Benjamin; but this can scarcely be connected with the son of Caleb and Ephah. That Gazez (Sept. Γεζουέ) is first named as a third Song of Solomon, and then as a grandson of Caleb, may be explained in two ways,—either so that the statement: “and Haran begat Gazez” (which is omitted in the Sept.), be taken as a more exact addition to the foregoing mention of Gazez, or that there were really two descendants of Caleb of the same name, a son and a grandson (uncle and nephew; comp. 1 Chronicles 3:10). The former is the more probable assumption.

1 Chronicles 2:47. And the sons of Jehdai. It is not clear how this Jehdai (יֶהְדַּי) is genealogically connected with the foregoing. Hiller in the Onom. s. conjectures without ground that he was one and the same person with Moza, 1 Chronicles 2:46; Jehdai might as well be a second concubine of Caleb. Of the six sons of Jehdai also, of whose names only some (Jotham; comp. Shaaph, 1 Chronicles 2:49) occur elsewhere, we know nothing more.

1 Chronicles 2:48. And Caleb’s concubine Maachah bare Sheber and Tirhanah. Though this name מַֽעֲכָה occurs often (comp. 1 Chronicles 3:2, 1 Chronicles 7:16, 1 Chronicles 8:29, 1 Chronicles 9:43; also the nom. gentilic. הַמַּעֲכָתִי, 2 Kings 25:23; 1 Chronicles 4:19), yet nothing certain can be conjectured concerning its present bearer; that she was a Canaanitess is a mere conjecture of Wellhausen. The two sons of Maachah occur nowhere else. The masc. יָלַד (for which some mss. have יָֽלְדָה; see Crit. Note) may arise from the writer thinking of the father, whom he does not name.

1 Chronicles 2:49. And she bare (besides the two already mentioned) Shaaph, the father of Madinannah. This city of Judah, mentioned Joshua 15:31, may be preserved in the present Miniay or Miniah south of Gaza. Its “father” Shaaph, clearly different from him who is so named 1 Chronicles 2:47, may be regarded as its prince or founder (comp. on 1 Chronicles 2:42); even so Sheva (on which name comp. 2 Samuel 20:25, Keri) in reference to Machbenah, and the unnamed father in reference to Gibeah. Machbenah, belonging no doubt to Judah, is no further known. Joshua also, Joshua 15:57, names a Gibeah in the mountains of Judah, whether the same with the village Jeba mentioned by Robinson and Tobler, on a hill in Wady Mussur, remains a question; comp. Keil on Joshua 15.—And Caleb’s daughter was Achsa. This closing notice puts it beyond doubt that the Caleb hitherto (from 1 Chronicles 2:46) spoken of is the same as Caleb the son of Jephunneh and father of Achsa (whom he promised and gave to the conqueror of Debir as a reward, Joshua 15:16 ff.; Judges 1:12). This is Caleb son of Jephunneh, the contemporary of Moses and Joshua; and therefore it seems difficult to identify him at once with the brother of Jerahmeel and son of Hezron mentioned in 1 Chronicles 2:18; 1 Chronicles 2:42 (comp. on 1 Chronicles 2:18). For this Hezronite, a great-grandson of Judah through Perez, appears to have been older than Moses and Joshua; but our passage, as also 1 Chronicles 4:15, refers clearly to that contemporary of Joshua who is mentioned in the books of Joshua and Judges. That this younger Caleb is a descendant of the Hezronite is highly probable, because in the descendants of one and the same stock it is easy for the collateral genealogies to intermingle, as they have done here and in 1 Chronicles 4:15 ff. (comp. besides, the remarks on 1 Chronicles 4:11; 1 Chronicles 4:13; 1 Chronicles 4:15). If we assume accordingly two Calebs, an older, the Hezronite, of whom we read 1 Chronicles 2:9 (under the name Celubai), 18, 42–45, and then again 1 Chronicles 2:50-55, and a younger, whose genealogy is given in our verses (46–49) and in 1 Chronicles 4:15 ff, we do not go so far as some older expositors (even Starke), who assume with a double Caleb a double Achsa, a daughter of the Hezronite Caleb (supposed to be here mentioned), and a daughter of the Jephunnite Caleb ( Joshua 15; Judges 1). As little do we approve of Movers’ conjecture (Chron. p83), that the words, “and Caleb’s daughter was Achsa,” are a spurious interpolation of a later hand. But Keil’s conjecture, also, that the expression “daughter” denotes here “grand—daughter, descendant,” that it is the Achsah of Joshua 15:16 that is here spoken of, but as a later descendant of the old Hezronite Caleb, and not a daughter of the Jephunnite, we cannot accept, as it obviously does violence to the term “daughter.” Finally, we reject also Bertheau’s attempt to admit only one Caleb, and to refer the diversity in the accounts of him here and before to the inexact manner of the genealogical terms that express also geographical relations; as well as Ewald’s opinion, that Caleb in 1 Chronicles 2:42-49 is the Caleb of the book of Joshua; the Caleb in 1 Chronicles 2:9; 1 Chronicles 2:18-20; 1 Chronicles 2:50-55, on the contrary, is a quite different person, whose real name was Celubai. (On the somewhat different, and at all events more probable hypothesis of Wellhausen, see above on 1 Chronicles 2:18.)

c. The third series: posterity of Hur, son of Caleb: 1 Chronicles 2:50-55.—As Hur is doubtless the grandfather of Bezaleel mentioned 1 Chronicles 2:19, we have here again a line going back to Caleb the Hezronite.—These were the sons of Caleb. This introductory sentence, the generality of which does not suit the following statement, giving a genealogy of only one son of Caleb, appears to indicate that the whole section is taken from an originally different connection.—The son of Hur, first-born of Ephrathah (comp. 1 Chronicles 2:19): Shobal. As, after Shobal in the following verse, Salma and Hareph are also named as sons of Hur, it appears more correct to read for בֶּן־חוּר, with the Sept, the plur. בְּנֵי־חוּר. In the Masoretic pointing, indeed, the names Salma and Hareph follow Shobal, father of Kiriath-jearim, without close connection by ו; and בֶּן־חוּד appears in some measure as a superscription. Whether Shobal be the same with the brother of Hur and son of Judah mentioned 1 Chronicles 4:1, must remain doubtful. The town of Kiriath-jearim, of which he is here called the father, that Isaiah, founder or chief, is that old Gibeonite town which is otherwise called Kiriath-baal or Baalah (comp. Joshua 9:17; Joshua 15:9; Joshua 15:60), and lay in the north-west corner of Judah, on the border of Benjamin, probably the present Kureyet el Enab (wine town), on the road from Jerusalem to Jaffa (Robinson, 2:588 ff; Keil on Joshua 9:17).

1 Chronicles 2:51. Salma, father of Bethlehem. The coincidence of name with the Bethlehemite ancestor of David of the house of Ram mentioned 1 Chronicles 2:17 is perhaps only accidental; comp. on 1 Chronicles 2:54.—Hareph, father of Bethgader, of the same place, which in Joshua 12:13 is Geder, and in Joshua 15:36 Gederah; comp. 1 Chronicles 12:4; 1 Chronicles 27:28. Keil thinks rather of Gedor (גְּדוֹר), Joshua 15:58, 1 Chronicles 4:4; 1 Chronicles 12:7, but with less ground. The name Hareph does not occur elsewhere, though חָרִיף, Nehemiah 7:24; Nehemiah 10:20 (comp. הַֽחֲרוּפִי, 1 Chronicles 12:5), may be only a variation of the same name.

1 Chronicles 2:52. Haroeh and the half of Menuhoth. These words, unintelligible to the old translators; הָרֹאֶה חֲצי הַמְּוֻחוֹת, for which the Sept. gives three proper names: ’ Αραὰ καὶ Αἰσὶ καὶΑμμανίθ, and the Vulg. the unmeaning words: qui videbat dimidium requietionum, are obviously corrupt. Let us read after 1 Chronicles 4:2, where a Reaiah son of Shobal occurs, for רְאָיָח הָרֹאֶח (for to regard the former as a mere by-form of רְאָיָה, as many old expositors do, is inadmissible), and for חֲצִי הַמְּנֻחוֹת according to 1 Chronicles 2:54 : וַֽחֲצִי הַמָּנַחַת or וַֽחֲצִי הַמָּנַחְתִּי. The text thus amended (according to Bertheau’s conjecture) gives Reaiah and Hazi-hammanahath, that Isaiah, half of the Manahathite, as sons of Shobal, two Jewish families, of which the latter may be part of the inhabitants of the town Manahath, 1 Chronicles 8:6. The situation of this place is determined by 1 Chronicles 2:54, where Zorah is mentioned as a neighbouring town, to be near the border of Judah, towards Dan. Reaiah seems from 1 Chronicles 4:2 not to have continued as a local name, but to have been the ancestor of the citizens of Zora; so that his former seat is also to be sought in the north-west of Judah.

1 Chronicles 2:53. And the families of Kiriath-jearim were the Ithrite, etc. These families of Kiriath-jearim are annexed to the already named sons of Shobal as other sons, descendants of the same ancestor. The four families are adduced in the fundamental text as singulars: the Ithrite, the Puthite, etc. The three last named occur nowhere else; on the contrary, to the family of the Ithrites, 1 Chronicles 11:40 ( 2 Samuel 23:38), belonged Ira and Gareb, two of David’s heroes.—From these came the Zorathite and the Eshtaolite. Zorah, the home of Samson ( Judges 13:2; Judges 16:31), now Sura, between Jerusalem and Jabneh; Eshtaol, a town on the border of Judah and Daniel, near Zorah (comp. Judges 16:31; Judges 18:11), probably the present Um Eshteijeh.

1 Chronicles 2:54. The sons of Salma: Bethlehem (the family of Bethlehem; comp. 1 Chronicles 2:51) and the Netophathite. The town Netophah must, as follows from the reference of its inhabitants to Salma, be sought close by Bethlehem; comp. 1 Chronicles 9:16; 2 Samuel 23:28 f.; 2 Kings 25:23; Ezra 2:22; Nehemiah 7:26, whence appears the comparative celebrity of this town, whose site has not yet been discovered.—Ataroth of the house of Joab. This is certainly the name of a town, which is to be interpreted, not “crowns,” but rather “walls, forts,” of the house of Joab; comp. on 1 Chronicles 2:26. The site is as uncertain as that of the following Hazi-hammanahath (half Manahath); comp. 1 Chronicles 8:6. On the contrary, הַצָּרְעִי at the close points certainly to the known border city Zorah mentioned in the foregoing verse; for צָרְעִי is only formally different from צָרְעָתִי, being derived from the masc. of צָרְעָה, which may have been used along with the feminine as the name of the town, although this cannot be proved. The Zorites of our verse must have formed a second element of the inhabitants of Zorah, along with the Zorathites of the previous verse descended from Shobal.

1 Chronicles 2:55. And the families of the scribes dwelling at Jabez. This Jewish town of Jabez (יַעְבֵּץ), whose name recurs 1 Chronicles 4:9 f. as that of a descendant of Judah, is quite unknown in site, but must apparently be sought, like all the places mentioned from 1 Chronicles 2:53, in the north of Judah, on the borders of Benjamin or Dan. Of the families of scribes in Jabez, however, three are mentioned: the Tirathites, Shimathites, and Suchathites. These three names the Vulg. has applied appellatively to the functions of these three classes of learned men, translating: canentes et resonantes et in tabernaculis commorantes. It is possible that the Jewish doctors consulted by Jerome in the translation of our book (perhaps the rabbi from Tiberias, with whom he collated the text from beginning to end; comp. Introd. § 6, Rem.) had presented an etymological basis for this interpretation, in seeking to refer—1. תִּרְעָתִים to תְּרֻעָה, “jubilee Song of Solomon, trumpet sound;” 2. שִׁמְעָתִים to שִׁמְעָה, “report, echo” (or perhaps to שְׁמָעִה, Aram. שְׁמַעְתָּא, traditio legis; comp. Wellhausen, p30); 3. שׂוּכָתִים to סֻכָּה = שׂוּכָה, “hut, booth;” comp. Leviticus 23:34 ff. If the etymology here were correct, and it commends itself at all events more than the partly deviating one which Bertheau (by reference of the first term to the Chald. תְּ־ע, door, and thus making תִּרְעָתִים a synonym of שֹׁעֲרִים, porters) has attempted, the functions assigned to the three classes of Sopherim, and giving origin to their names, would belong to divine worship, and resemble those of the Levites. And this seems to agree very well with the closing remark: these are the Kenites, that came from Hammath, father of the house of Rechab, as a certain connection or spiritual relationship may be shown, as well of the Kenites as of the Rechabites, with the Levites, if we think on the one hand of Jethro, father-in-law of Moses, the priest of the Midian-Kenites in the region of Sinai ( Exodus 2:15; Exodus 3:1; comp. Judges 1:16; Judges 4:11; Judges 4:17), and of his influence on the legislative and religious activity of Moses ( Exodus 18); on the other hand, of the priestly fidelity of the family of the Rechabites, as Jeremiah 35. (comp. 2 Kings 10:15) describes them, of their constant “standing before the Lord,” and, moreover, of the ancient tradition still surviving among the nominal descendants of the Rechabites in Yemen, that the house of Rechab descended from Hobab or Keni ( Judges 1:16), the father-in-law of Moses (comp. A. Murray, Comment, de Kinæis, Hamb1718; Nägelsbach on Jeremiah 35, vol. xv. p 254 of Bibelwerk). On a fair examination of these circumstances, it appears highly probable that the certainly foreign ( 1 Samuel 15:6) yet highly honoured Kenites, in like manner as the Gibeonites, ministered of old in the sanctuary of Israel, and that the Rechabites of the times of the Kings and a ter the exile ( Nehemiah 3:14) were descendants of these old Kenite temple ministers, who, by adherence to one part of their ancient wont and use, kept themselves distinct from the great mass of the people. The naming of Hammath also, as “father of the house of Rechab,” agrees very well with this hypothesis; for if Jonathan the Rechabite that met with Jehu king of Israel, and was honoured by him ( 2 Kings 10:15; 2 Kings 10:23), was a son of Rechab, so may Hammath have been father or forefather of this Rechab, and so ancestor of the whole family. Though all this rises little above the range of the hypothetical, and though in particular the question remains dark and unanswerable, why this Kenite family of Sopherim from Jabez is directly attached to Salma the father of Bethlehem, and through him to Hur the son of Caleb (whether on account of some intermarriage having taken place between a Kenite and an heiress of the house of Salma ?), yet it is on the whole probable that those three names are really designations of three classes of ministers in the sanctuary, and not proper names of families, as the Sept. (’Αργαθιείμ, Σαμαθιείμ, Σωκαθιείμ) held, and a majority of recent expositors still hold. Besides, Wellhausen’s attempt to refer that which is stated, both in our verse concerning the Kenites or Rechabites of Jabez, and generally from 1 Chronicles 2:50 on concerning the posterity of Hur and their settlements in the north of Judah to the time after the exile, and so ascribe these statements to bias and fancy, and to admit only the foregoing genealogy, 1 Chronicles 2:42-49, which assigns to the Calebites settlements in the south of Judah around Hebron, as historically reliable, that Isaiah, referring to the time before the exile,—this whole attempt (pp29–33) falls short of satisfactory proof. There is no ground for holding that which is reported of the Calebites as inhabitants of Kiriath-jearim, Bethlehem, Netophah, Zorah, etc, to be a collection of later traditions than the foregoing accounts of Calebite families in Tappuah, Maon, Bethzur, etc. Neither do we know the geographical position of the several places mentioned in the two sections ( 1 Chronicles 2:42-55) so well, as to be able to assert that the former refers only to the south, the latter only to the north, of Judah. Respecting Jabez, for example, the seat of the Kenites, it is by no means determined that it is to be sought in the neighbourhood of Bethlehem and Kiriath-jearim (comp. above). In short, it is advisable to avoid such violent attempts to solve the problem here presented as the assumption of a genealogy of Calebites before and after the exile, and to approve the more cautious remark of Bertheau: “We can easily imagine the motive which led the Chronist to communicate this verse, though we are unable completely to perceive its contents.”

[The term בְּלוּבָי, 1 Chronicles 2:9, seems to be, if not a patronymic, at least a virtual plural, and may well indicate more than one Caleb. The name was famous and frequent in the tribe of Judah. The first of the name appears in 1 Chronicles 2:18-24. He is designated “the son of Hezron,” though Ram is not, evidently to distinguish him from others of the name. He may have been born50 or58 years after Jacob came down to Egypt, as his father was born shortly before that event. He has by his wife Azubah three sons, or perhaps grandsons; and after her death he marries Ephrath, and by her has a well-known son Hur, who was the contemporary of Moses, Exodus 17:10. The episode about his father Hezron marrying again when sixty years old, is brought in partly from the concurrence in the foregoing paragraph of the two names Caleb and Ephrath, which are combined in the name of the place where he died, and partly from the high antiquarian interest which it possesses. Hezron was born before Jacob went down to Egypt, and therefore most probably died within110 years from that date. He died, not in Egypt, but in Caleb-Ephrathah. This implies the presence and power of Caleb in the region of Hebron as a sheik giving name to a place in his estate. In this quarter Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob had resided and acquired some property in land, Genesis 23. Caleb of the line of Judah held possession of this estate during the early period of Israel's residence in Egypt, when they were still a free and honoured people. And there his father died in a town called after the united names of himself and his wife. After the Israelites, however, were reduced to slavery by the Pharaoh that knew not Joseph, the occupation of this region by the descendants of Judah was rendered precarious or entirely interrupted. In this paragraph, then, we have a most unexpected and interesting glimpse of what was taking place in the time of the first Caleb; and in this view of the passage we see that it occupies its right place.

A second Caleb is presented to us in 1 Chronicles 2:42-49. He is distinct from the former in everything but the name: 1. In the mode in which he is introduced, namely, in an appendix after the three sons of Hezron have been brought forward in order; 2. In his sons and wives, which are all quite different from those of his namesake; 3. In his time, as he is the father of Achsah, and therefore lived in and after the40 years of the wilderness, two or three generations later than the former Caleb; 4. In his place, as a careful examination of the two paragraphs will show; 5. In his designation as “the brother of Jerahmeel,” while the former is called “the son of Hezron;” for this phrase cannot mean the son of the Jerahmeel already mentioned, as this would be a superfluous addition, and would not square with the time of this Caleb. Some will conceive that the term “brother” is here used in a wide sense to denote a kinsman of Jerahmeel, a member of the family. But it is more Simple to consider Jerahmeel here to be a descendant of the former Jerahmeel, not otherwise mentioned, just as Celub in 1 Chronicles 4:11 is said to be a brother of Shuah, who is not previously mentioned. This appendix is thus in its right place, as it signalizes an important member of the Jerahmeelite clan, 1 Samuel 27:10, Caleb the son of Jephunneh.

A third Caleb comes before us in a second appendix: 1 Chronicles 2:50-55. He is clearly different from each of the others, as he is “the son of Hur, the first-born of Ephrathah,” and therefore not a Jerahmeelite like the second, but the grandson of the first.

There is nothing to hinder us taking this view of the whole passage, and it might be supported at much greater length. It deals fairly with the author, as it presumes him to observe order, and endeavours not to import confusion into his narrative by a preconceived theory. We submit it to the judgment of the reader.—J. G. M.]

Footnotes:

FN#1 - For דָרַע many mss, as well as the Syr. and the Chald, give דַּרְדַע, as in 1 Kings 5:11.

FN#2 - אִשָּׁה (for which אִשְׁתּוֹ was to be expected) is wanting in two mss, according to de Rossi, Var. Lect.—The Pesh. and Vulg. appear to have read. אִשְׁתּוֹ אֵת for אִשָּׁה וְאֵת.

FN#3 - Instead of אֲבִיהַיִל, a number of mss. and printed editions have אֲבִיחַיִל. The same vacillation is also found in 2 Chronicles 9:18, in the like-named wife of Rehoboam.

FN#4 - Instead of מָרֵשָׁה might possibly (after the proposal of Keil) be read מֵישָׁע, and instead of אֲבִי חֶברון rather the nom. composit. אֲבִי־חֶבְרוֹן. Comp. the Exeg. Expl.

FN#5 - For יָרְקְעָם the Sept. exhibits ’Ιεκλάν; and so for the following רֶקֶם.

FN#6 - Instead of the unexpected masc. ילד, some mss. present the fem. יָֽלְדהָ.

FN#7 - Instead of בֶּן־חוּר, the Sept. appears to have read בְּנֵי־חוּר, which is perhaps the original form. Comp. Exeg. Expl.

FN#8 - On the probably corrupt words הראה חצי המנחית, see Exeg.

FN#9 - “. . . Quæ 1 Chronicles 2:18 sqq. leguntur, ex variis fontibus hausta a Chronicographo demum ei Chesronæorum catalogo interposita sunt, qui quasi fundamentum est totius structuræ hujus genealogiæ” (l.c. p13).—Comp. p 1 Chronicles16 : “. . . farrago sunt omnia ( 1 Chronicles 2:18-24), ex meris congesta fragmentis.”

 


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Bibliography Information
Lange, Johann Peter. "Commentary on 1 Chronicles 2:4". "Commentary on the Holy Scriptures: Critical, Doctrinal, and Homiletical". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/lcc/1-chronicles-2.html. 1857-84.

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