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Bible Commentaries

Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible
Deuteronomy 2

 

 

Verses 1-15

Deuteronomy 2:1-15. From Kadesh-barnea to Wady-Zered.—The present passage seems to contradict the parallel narrative in Numbers 20 f.

Deuteronomy 2:1 b. i.e. we lingered in the neighbourhood of Mt. Seir a good length of time, viz. thirty-eight years (Deuteronomy 2:7; Deuteronomy 2:14).

Deuteronomy 2:4. border: better, "bordered territory," the Heb. word means both.—your brethren: i.e. kinsmen (see Genesis 25:23-26; Genesis 36:43, Amos 1:11, Obadiah 1:10; Obadiah 1:12, Malachi 1:2). In deit 23:7 the Israelites are commanded to treat their Edomite kinsmen in a friendly way. But from the destruction of Jerusalem in 586 B.C. onwards, the feelings between the Jews and Edomites (from Edom = Esau) continued to be bitterly hostile.

Deuteronomy 2:6. cf. Genesis 14:23.

Deuteronomy 2:8. by: read (with LXX, Vulg.) "through."

Deuteronomy 2:8 b. - Deuteronomy 2:25. They are to pass through the territory of Moab and Ammon, but without harassing them (cf. Deuteronomy 2:3 ff. of the Edomites). Moab and Ammon were sons of Lot by his elder and younger daughter respectively (Genesis 19:36 f.). Since Lot was Abraham's nephew, the Moabites and Ammonites were likewise kinsmen of the Hebrews. But in Gen., etc. personal names stand generally for families or tribes.

Deuteronomy 2:9. Ar: Numbers 21:15* (E).

Deuteronomy 2:10-12. An archological note by an editor. The men of a fabled past have often figured in folklore as giants (see ERE, vi. pp. 191ff.)

Deuteronomy 2:10 f. Emim, Rephaim: Genesis 14:5*.—Anakim: Deuteronomy 1:28*.

Deuteronomy 2:12. Horites: Genesis 14:6*.—as Israel did: betraying a writer who lived long after the Conquest.

Deuteronomy 2:13. Zered: i.e. the modern Wady Kerak, which enters the Dead Sea at its N. end.


Verses 20-36

Deuteronomy 2:20-23. Antiquarian note by an editor (cf. Deuteronomy 2:10-12).

Deuteronomy 2:20. Zamzummim: the Zuzim of Genesis 14:5*, so Keil and others.

Deuteronomy 2:22. unto this day: frequent in Dt. (Deuteronomy 3:14, etc.), Jos., and Jg. in a similar context. The implication is that the state of things described continued down to the writer's day.

Deuteronomy 2:23. Avvim (better "Awwim") dispossessed by the Philistines (Deuteronomy 2:12; Deuteronomy 2:21 f.) with whom, however, they are mentioned in Joshua 13:4.—Caphtor (the home of the Philistines, Amos 9:7*, Jeremiah 47:4) is Crete.

Deuteronomy 2:24-37. Numbers 21:21-32* (JE), which is older. The Israelites were not restrained by ties of kinship from attacking the Amorites and their king Sihon when their request was refused.

Deuteronomy 2:24. Arnon: pp. 32f., Numbers 21:13 f.*

Deuteronomy 2:29. It is not distinctly stated (except in the LXX) in Deuteronomy 2:2-8 that the Edomites ("children of Esau") acceded to Israel's request; nor is the contrary stated or suggested. According to Deuteronomy 23:4 and Numbers 20:18-21 (JE) they definitely rejected Israel's proposal and according to Deuteronomy 23:4 the Moabites did the same. We have to do simply with different traditions. Many, however (Driver, etc.), hold that Edom's refusal belongs to an earlier period, and that it took place in W. not E. Moab.

Deuteronomy 2:30. hardened: Exodus 4:21 (E), Deuteronomy 7:3* (P).—his spirit, his heart: i.e. him. The emphatic personal pronoun is often thus expressed (Deuteronomy 4:9*). The parallel clauses "hardened him," "made him obstinate," mean the same thing.

Deuteronomy 2:32. at: render, "to"

Deuteronomy 2:34. utterly destroyed: Heb. "put under a ban," "to tabu." The verbal root occurs in the cognate languages as well as Heb., and denotes literally to cut off, to separate; then to withdraw from common use (tabu) with a view to complete surrender to deity as a sacrifice. Hence it comes to mean, "to destroy utterly." In the Moabite Stone (lines 11-17) Mesha says he had devoted (same Semitic word) Israel to Ishtar. Generally among the Israelites, as among other people, the ban arose from a vow to devote to deity a part or the whole of the booty obtained in the event of victory. In the OT, and especially in Dt. (see Deuteronomy 20:17 ff.), the ethical character of the ban is strongly insisted upon. The goim or non-Israelites are to be offered up as a sacrifice to Yahweh lest they should corrupt the morals and religion of the chosen race. Three degrees of the war-ban may be traced in Dt. and in other parts of the OT. (a) That in which every man, woman, and child of the enemy and also their property of every kind was devoted, i.e. utterly destroyed (see Deuteronomy 13:16, etc.). (b) The ban of the second degree stopped short with the devotion, i.e. the destruction, of men, women, and children; cattle and the rest of the spoil being reserved by the victors for their own use (see Deuteronomy 2:34 f. Deuteronomy 3:6 f. Deuteronomy 7:2, etc.). (c) The third degree is represented by the law laid down in Deuteronomy 20:10-15, men alone being devoted to destruction. In Numbers 31:17 f. (P 8) and Judges 21:11 f. (LXXB) it is the virgins only that are spared (see pp 99, 114, Joshua 6:17*, and "Ban in HSDB).

Deuteronomy 2:36. Gilead proper was divided by the Jabbok into a northern and southern half. Sihon's kingdom lay S. of this river (Deuteronomy 3:10*).

 


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Bibliography Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on Deuteronomy 2:4". "Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pfc/deuteronomy-2.html. 1919.

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Sunday, December 15th, 2019
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