Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Numbers 21:24

Then Israel struck him with the edge of the sword, and took possession of his land from the Arnon to the Jabbok, as far as the sons of Ammon; for the border of the sons of Ammon was Jazer.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Ammonites;   Amorites;   Israel;   Jabbok;   Sihon;   Thompson Chain Reference - Jabbok;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Ammonites, the;   Amorites, the;   Desert, Journey of Israel through the;   Sword, the;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Ammonites;   Amorites;   Serpents;   Sihon;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Ammon;   Amorites;   Arnon;   Bashan;   Canaan;   Edom;   Jabbok;   Moab;   Palestine;   Reuben;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Gods and Goddesses, Pagan;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Heshbon;   Jabbok;   Sihon;   Wars of the Lord, the Book of the;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Ammon;   Ar;   Arnon;   Jabbok;   Jephthah;   Medeba;   Sihon;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Amorites;   Arnon;   Conquest of Canaan;   Dibon;   Heshbon;   Jahaz;   Medeba;   Reba;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Ammon, Ammonites;   Israel;   Jabbok;   Jephthah;   Medeba;   Mesha;   Moab, Moabites;   Moses;   Numbers, Book of;   Sihon;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Amorites ;   Arnon ;   Jabbok ;   Moab, Moabites ;   Sihon ;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Mount hor;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Ammon ammonites children of ammon;   Gilead;   Jabbok;   Sihon;   Smith Bible Dictionary - Am'mon;   Ar'non;   Jab'bok;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - Arnon;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - On to Canaan;   Moses, the Man of God;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Ammon;   Amorites;   Arnon;   Jabbok;   Moab;   Moses;   Wanderings of Israel;   Kitto Biblical Cyclopedia - Amorites;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Ammon, Ammonites;   Jaazer;   Jabbok;   Moab;   Sihon;  

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Jabbok (now Wady Zerka: compare Genesis 32:22) runs eastward under Rabbah of the children of Ammon, thence westward, and reaches the Jordan, 45 miles north of the Arnon. It was between Rabbah and Gerasa that it formed the Ammonite boundary.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/numbers-21.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And Israel smote him with the edge of the sword,.... Slew him and his army, entirely routed them, and got a complete victory over them; God giving them up into their hands, who otherwise were a very strong, powerful, and warlike people; see Amos 2:9.

and possessed his land from Arnon unto Jabbok; two rivers, the one to the south, the other to the north of his country; the one was the boundary of his country between him and the Moabites, the other the boundary of his country between him and the Ammonites, as it follows:

even unto the children of Ammon; for the border of the children of Ammon was strong; which is given as a reason why the Israelites proceeded no further in their conquest; there was another reason for that, which was the order of the Lord not to distress the Ammonites, nor meddle with them; though Jarchi makes this prohibition to be their strength, Deuteronomy 2:19, but this is given as a reason why Sihon could not extend his conquests further, because it was so well fortified, either by nature or art, or both, by the river Jabbok, by mountains and frontier towns, and particularly by Rabbah, as the Targum of Jonathan suggests, which was their royal city in later times, and a very strong place; see 2 Samuel 12:26.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/numbers-21.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

And Israel smote him with the edge of the sword, and possessed his land from Arnon unto h Jabbok, even unto the children of Ammon: for the border of the children of Ammon [was] i strong.

(h) The river.

(i) For the people were tall and strong like giants; (Deuteronomy 2:20).

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Bibliographical Information
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/numbers-21.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

from Arnon unto Jabbok — now the Zurka. These rivers formed the southern and northern boundaries of his usurped territory.

for the border of … Ammon was strong — a reason stated for Sihon not being able to push his invasion further.

Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/numbers-21.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

And Israel smote him with the edge of the sword, and possessed his land from Arnon unto Jabbok, even unto the children of Ammon: for the border of the children of Ammon was strong.

From Arnon — Or, which reached from Arnon; and so here is a description or limitation of Sihon's conquest and kingdom, that is, extended only from Arnon, unto the children of Ammon; and then the following words, for the border of the children of Ammon was strong, come in very fitly, not as a reason why the Israelites did not conquer the Ammonites, for they were absolutely forbidden to meddle with them, Deuteronomy 3:8, but as a reason why Sihon could not enlarge his conquests to the Ammonites, as he had done to the Moabites.

Jabbok — A river by which the countries of Ammon and Moab were in part bounded and divided.

Strong — Either by the advantage of the river, or by their strong holds in their frontiers.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Bibliographical Information
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/numbers-21.html. 1765.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Numbers 21:24. Possessed his land from Arnon unto Jabbok, even unto the children of Ammon This is a brief description of the extent of Sihon's country, which reached from the river Arnon, the bound of the Moabites country on the south, ch. Numbers 22:36 unto the river Jabbok, which was the bound of the Ammonites country on the north, Deuteronomy 3:16. Joshua 12:2; Joshua 13:10. For the border of the children of Ammon was strong; Houbigant renders, for the borders, &c. were fortified; and this is mentioned as one reason why the children of Israel did not attack their country. We are farther told, that they were forbidden to meddle with them, because they were the descendants of Lot, Deuteronomy 2:19. The border of the children of Ammon was rendered naturally strong by a ridge of mountains, which parted them from the kingdom of Sihon.

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Bibliographical Information
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/numbers-21.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

From Arnon; or which reached from Arnon, &c. such supplements being very usual; and so here is contained a description or limitation of Sihon’s conquest and kingdom, that it extended only from Arnon—unto the children of Ammon; and then the following words, for the border of the children of Ammon was strong, come in very fitly, not as a reason why the Israelites did not or could not conquer the Ammonites, for they were absolutely forbidden to meddle with them, Deuteronomy 3:8; but as a reason why Sihon could not enlarge his conquests and empire to the Ammonites, as he had done to the Moabites.

Jabbok; a river by which the countries of Ammon and Moab were in part bounded and divided.

Was strong; either by the advantage of the river, or by their strong holds in their frontiers.

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Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/numbers-21.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

24.Jabbok — This is one of the two important streams flowing into the Jordan on the east. It was the scene of Jacob’s wrestling with the angel, and of his meeting with Esau. See Genesis 30:22; Joshua 12:2, notes.

Unto the children of Ammon — This difficult passage is thus explained. The Ammonites at one time possessed the whole country between the rivers Arnon and Jabbok. Being driven out by Sihon they took possession of the eastern plain and the eastern defiles of Gilead, around the sources and upper branches of the Jabbok. For this reason the border of the children of Ammon was strong, that is, well fortified, so that Sihon had only been able to push his conquests to the upper Jabbok, not into the territory of the Ammonites which Israel was forbidden by Jehovah to enter. See Deuteronomy 2:19.

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/numbers-21.html. 1874-1909.

Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible

Sihon Is Defeated and His Land Possessed Up to The Borders of Ammon (Numbers 21:24).

Numbers 21:24

‘And Israel smote him with the edge of the sword, and possessed his land from the Arnon to the Jabbok, even to the children of Ammon. For the border of the children of Ammon was strong.’

Israel defeated Sihon, and possessed his land. There would first be the initial battle and then the progressive taking of cities and seizure of the land which is described in summary. This is then followed by the history of Heshbon in poetic form.

“From the Arnon to the Jabbok.” The Arnon was the southern border of Sihon’s land and formed the border with Moab. The River Jabbok was to the north and then curved round southward to form a border with Ammon.

Once Sihon determined to resist Israelite progress battle was inevitable. The border of Ammon, the only other possible route, was strong, guarded by a ring of fortresses to which archaeology bears witness. Thus it was defeat Sihon or retreat. And once the victory had been won the rest followed. Deuteronomy tells us that in fact all this was because Yahweh intended this land for Israel and therefore hardened Sihon’s spirit in order to make him behave in the way in which he did (Deuteronomy 2:30). There the credit for the victory goes to Yahweh. And as the Amorites were basically ‘Canaanites’ (related to inhabitants of Canaan) they were all to be put to the sword.

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Bibliographical Information
Pett, Peter. "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pet/numbers-21.html. 2013.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Numbers 21:24. From Arnon — Or, which reached from Arnon; and so here is a description or limitation of Sihon’s conquest and kingdom, that it extended only from Arnon unto the children of Ammon — And then the following words, for the border of the children of Ammon was strong, come in very fitly, not as a reason why the Israelites did not conquer the Ammonites, for they were absolutely forbidden to meddle with them, (Deuteronomy 3:8,) but as a reason why Sihon could not enlarge his conquests to the Ammonites, as he had done to the Moabites. Jabbok — A river by which the countries of Ammon and Moab were in part bounded and divided. Strong — Either by the advantage of the river, or by their strong holds in their frontiers.

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Bibliographical Information
Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/numbers-21.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Garrison, either against Sehon, or against the Hebrews, whom God did not, as yet, authorize to attack the Ammonites, (Calmet) though the latter knew it not. (Haydock)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/numbers-21.html. 1859.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And Israel smote him with the edge of the sword, and possessed his land from Arnon unto Jabbok, even unto the children of Ammon: for the border of the children of Ammon was strong.

Israel ... possessed his land from Arnon unto Jabbok, even unto the children of Ammon. The brook [ naachal (Hebrew #5157)] Jabbok (called "the river of Gad," 2 Samuel 24:5), now Nahr ez-Zerka, which rises near the ruins of Rabbath-Ammon (Amman), east of the mountains, flows by a deep chasm between the towering range of Jebel 'Ajlun and the Belka, and enters the Jordan opposite Nabulus. The territory comprised within these two rivers was in early times called the land of Gilead" (Numbers 32:1; Deuteronomy 34:1), now the Belka-which is divided into two nearly equal halves by the Wady Hesban, the northern portion extending from it to the Jabbok, while the southern portion between Wady Hesban and the Amen is again intersected by the Wady Zerka Main (Meon), which empties itself into the Dead Sea (Robinson's Physical Geography,' p. 79).

The whole country, embracing all the low-lying as well as highland regions east of the Jordan, had been formerly occupies by the descendants of Lot, until the portion known as the province of Belka, belonging to Moab, was, century before that time, invaded and seized by the chief of a wandering tribe of mountaineers (the Amorites) from southern Judea, where they were intermingled with the Anakim, and who, taking advantage of the decay of the Moabite nation, effected a permanent settlement between the territories of the two brethren, Moab on the south and Ammon on the north. The two rivers, the Arnon and the Jabbok, formed the boundaries of his usurped possession.

For the border ... of Ammon was strong - a reason stated for Sihon not being able to push his invasion further. The Ammonite territory cannot be exactly defined, because that people were a tribe of Bedouin marauders; but the country north of the Jabbok, as far as mount Hermon (Jebel esh-Shiekh) was called anciently "the land of Bashan," now the Hauran. The Ammonites were driven further to the east; because another invasion of Amorites was made on the land north of the Jabbok, which resulted in the establishment of a second Amorite kingdom in Bashan.

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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/numbers-21.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(24) For the border of the children of Ammon was strong.—These words assign the reason why the conquests of the Amorites were arrested, not why the children of Israel did not take possession of the land of the Ammonites, with whom they were forbidden to meddle, and whose land they were not to occupy. (See Deuteronomy 2:19.)

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Bibliographical Information
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/numbers-21.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And Israel smote him with the edge of the sword, and possessed his land from Arnon unto Jabbok, even unto the children of Ammon: for the border of the children of Ammon was strong.
Israel
32:1-4,33-42; Deuteronomy 2:31-37; 29:7; Joshua 9:10; 12:1-3; 13:8-10; 24:8; Judges 11:21-23; 12:1,2; 21:8; Nehemiah 9:22; Psalms 135:10-12; 136:19; Amos 2:9
Arnon
13; Genesis 32:22; Deuteronomy 3:16
Reciprocal: Numbers 21:34 - thou shalt;  Numbers 32:4 - GeneralDeuteronomy 2:33 - we smote;  Deuteronomy 2:37 - Jabbok;  Deuteronomy 31:4 - GeneralJoshua 8:24 - returned unto Ai;  Joshua 12:6 - did Moses;  Joshua 13:10 - GeneralJoshua 13:21 - whom Moses;  Judges 11:13 - Because Israel;  Judges 11:20 - General

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Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Numbers 21:24". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/numbers-21.html.