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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature


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(Hebrews Kebar´, כְּבָר, perhaps from its length; Sept. Χοβάρ ), a river in the "land of the Chaldaeans" (Ezekiel 1:3), i.e. apparently of Mesopotamia (comp. 2 Kings 24:15), on the banks of which some of the Jews were located at the time of the captivity, and where Ezekiel saw his earlier visions (Ezekiel 1:1; Ezekiel 3:15; Ezekiel 3:23; Ezekiel 10:15; Ezekiel 10:20, Ezekiel 43:3). It is commonly regarded as identical with the HABOR (חָבוֹר ), or river of Gozan, to which some portion of the Israelites were removed by the Assyrians (2 Kings 17:6). But this is a mere conjecture, resting wholly upon the similarity of name, which, after all, is not very close. It is perhaps better to suppose the two streams distinct, more especially if we regard the Habor as the ancient Chaboras (modern Khabour), which fell into the Euphrates at Circesium, for in the Old Testament the name of Chaldea is never extended so far northward. The Chebar of Ezekiel must be looked for in Babylonia. It is a name which might properly have been given to any great stream (comp. כָּבִר, great). Perhaps the view, which finds some support in Pliny (H. N. 6:26), and is adopted by Bochart (Phaleg, 1:8) and Cellarius (Geograph. 100:22), that the Chebar of Ezekiel is the Nahr Malchr, or Royal Canal of Nebuchadnezzar the greatest of all the cuttings in Mesopotamia may be regarded as best deserving acceptance. In that case we may suppose the Jewish captives to have been employed in the excavation of the channel. That Chaldea, not Upper Mesopotamia, was the scene of Ezekiel's preaching, is indicated by the tradition which places his tomb at Keffil (Loftus's Chaldaea, p. 35). (See EZEKIEL).

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Chebar'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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the Week of Proper 28 / Ordinary 33
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