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Bible Commentaries

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Joshua 13



Verse 1

Joshua 13:1 Now Joshua was old [and] stricken in years; and the LORD said unto him, Thou art old [and] stricken in years, and there remaineth yet very much land to be possessed.

Ver. 1. Thou art old and stricken in years,] q.d., Thou hast not long to do; up therefore and be doing; work while it is yet day; the night of death cometh, when none can work. Divide what thou hast conquered, yea, that which is yet to be conquered, among the tribes; for all is theirs, unless they forget their charter. See the true Christian’s charter, which he cannot forfeit. [1 Corinthians 3:22-23]

Verse 2

Joshua 13:2 This [is] the land that yet remaineth: all the borders of the Philistines, and all Geshuri,

Ver. 2. All the borders of the Philistines.] Anciently called Caphtorims. [Deuteronomy 2:23 Amos 9:7] Their country lay along the coast of the midland sea; whereby the Israelites were kept from much trading with other nations, that they might not learn their manners. Hence Judea is called an "isle," though part of the continent. [Isaiah 20:6] Like Benjamin, who had his mess by himself.

Verse 3

Joshua 13:3 From Sihor, which [is] before Egypt, even unto the borders of Ekron northward, [which] is counted to the Canaanite: five lords of the Philistines; the Gazathites, and the Ashdothites, the Eshkalonites, the Gittites, and the Ekronites; also the Avites:

Ver. 3. From Sihor.] Or Nile, which hath its name Sihor from blackness, and Nile from muddiness. So much of Egypt as this river watereth, is a black mould, so fruitful, as they do but throw in the seed, and have four rich harvests in less than four months, as travellers tell us.

Also the Avites.] Who, belike, still held part of their old possession. [Deuteronomy 2:22-23]

Verse 4

Joshua 13:4 From the south, all the land of the Canaanites, and Mearah that [is] beside the Sidonians, unto Aphek, to the borders of the Amorites:

Ver. 4. All the land of the Canaanites.] Who yet held out against the Israelites, but hindered them not from dividing the land. No more shall those remnants of corruption hinder the saints from possession of their mansions prepared for them by Christ. [John 14:2]

Verse 5

Joshua 13:5 And the land of the Giblites, and all Lebanon, toward the sunrising, from Baalgad under mount Hermon unto the entering into Hamath.

Ver. 5. And the land of the Giblites.] Called Gebal in Psalms 83:7, Ezekiel 27:9. Enemies to the Church.

Verse 6

Joshua 13:6 All the inhabitants of the hill country from Lebanon unto Misrephothmaim, [and] all the Sidonians, them will I drive out from before the children of Israel: only divide thou it by lot unto the Israelites for an inheritance, as I have commanded thee.

Ver. 6. Them will I drive out, &c., ] viz., If the Israelites rule with me and be faithful with my saints, as Hosea 11:12; else "they shall know my breach of promise," as Numbers 14:34.

Verse 7

Joshua 13:7 Now therefore divide this land for an inheritance unto the nine tribes, and the half tribe of Manasseh,

Ver. 7. Now therefore divide this land.] Even those parts thereof also that are yet unsubdued; for it is theirs, but so as they must win it before they wear it. Sic petitur caelum. The kingdom of heaven suffereth violence.

Verse 8

Joshua 13:8 With whom the Reubenites and the Gadites have received their inheritance, which Moses gave them, beyond Jordan eastward, [even] as Moses the servant of the LORD gave them;

Ver. 8. Even as Moses the servant of the Lord gave them.] So do thou confirm it. Here then is no tautology, as at first it may seem to be.

Verse 9

Joshua 13:9 From Aroer, that [is] upon the bank of the river Arnon, and the city that [is] in the midst of the river, and all the plain of Medeba unto Dibon;

Ver. 9. From Aroer, that is upon the bank.] Besides which, it may seem there was another Aroer, in the midst of the river, [Isaiah 17:2] as Venice in the midst of the sea, and taking for her motto,

Media insuperabilis unda.

Verse 10

Joshua 13:10 And all the cities of Sihon king of the Amorites, which reigned in Heshbon, unto the border of the children of Ammon;

Ver. 10. And all the cities of Sihon.] See Joshua 12:2.

Verse 11

Joshua 13:11 And Gilead, and the border of the Geshurites and Maachathites, and all mount Hermon, and all Bashan unto Salcah;

Ver. 11. And the border of the Geshurites.] Due to Israel, but yet detained from them. [Joshua 13:13]

Verse 12

Joshua 13:12 All the kingdom of Og in Bashan, which reigned in Ashtaroth and in Edrei, who remained of the remnant of the giants: for these did Moses smite, and cast them out.

Ver. 12. Which reigned in Ashtaroth and in Edrei.] Which some take for two mansion houses of his, or royal palaces.

Verse 13

Joshua 13:13 Nevertheless the children of Israel expelled not the Geshurites, nor the Maachathites: but the Geshurites and the Maachathites dwell among the Israelites until this day.

Ver. 13. Dwell among the Israelites.] Through their sloth and cowardliness, which is here taxed.

Verse 14

Joshua 13:14 Only unto the tribe of Levi he gave none inheritance; the sacrifices of the LORD God of Israel made by fire [are] their inheritance, as he said unto them.

Ver. 14. Only unto the tribe of Levi he gave none inheritance.] Because God was to be their portion: Yεος η προσοδος, as Lucian speaketh of his heathenish priests.

Verse 15

Joshua 13:15 And Moses gave unto the tribe of the children of Reuben [inheritance] according to their families.

Ver. 15. According to their families,] i.e., Proportionably according to the number of their families.

Verse 16

Joshua 13:16 And their coast was from Aroer, that [is] on the bank of the river Arnon, and the city that [is] in the midst of the river, and all the plain by Medeba;

Ver. 16. And the city that is in the midst.] See Joshua 13:9.

Verse 17

Joshua 13:17 Heshbon, and all her cities that [are] in the plain; Dibon, and Bamothbaal, and Bethbaalmeon,

Ver. 17. Bamothbaal and Bethbaalmeon.] Places of much idolatry, that land desolating sin: such as are now Sichem and Loretto; where, whensoever the Ave Maria bell rings, which is at sunrising, noon, and sun setting, all men, in what place soever, house, field, street, or market, do presently kneel down and say an Ave Maria, &c.

Verse 18

Joshua 13:18 And Jahazah, and Kedemoth, and Mephaath,

Ver. 18. The cities and coasts of each tribe are thus particularly set down, to prevent discord and division, that mother of dissolution.

Verse 21

Joshua 13:21 And all the cities of the plain, and all the kingdom of Sihon king of the Amorites, which reigned in Heshbon, whom Moses smote with the princes of Midian, Evi, and Rekem, and Zur, and Hur, and Reba, [which were] dukes of Sihon, dwelling in the country.

Ver. 21. Dukes of Sihon.] His vassals; and after his death they made themselves kings, but were shortly after slain by the sword of Israel. [Numbers 31:8]

Verse 22

Joshua 13:22 Balaam also the son of Beor, the soothsayer, did the children of Israel slay with the sword among them that were slain by them.

Ver. 22. Balaam also the son of Beor.] The spellman of Satan: though by his words he might seem a friend to Israel, yet was he worthily cut off by them for his wicked counsel. So shall all such perish as "turn aside, like Balaam, unto their crooked ways: but peace shall be upon Israel." [Psalms 125:5] See 1:11.

Verse 23

Joshua 13:23 And the border of the children of Reuben was Jordan, and the border [thereof]. This [was] the inheritance of the children of Reuben after their families, the cities and the villages thereof.

Ver. 23. {See Trapp on "Joshua 13:18"}

Verse 24

Joshua 13:24 And Moses gave [inheritance] unto the tribe of Gad, [even] unto the children of Gad according to their families.

Ver. 24. {See Trapp on "Joshua 13:18"}

Verse 25

Joshua 13:25 And their coast was Jazer, and all the cities of Gilead, and half the land of the children of Ammon, unto Aroer that [is] before Rabbah;

Ver. 25. Half the land of the children of Ammon.] Which Sihon had taken from them. See 11:15, Numbers 21:6.

Verse 26

Joshua 13:26 And from Heshbon unto Ramathmizpeh, and Betonim; and from Mahanaim unto the border of Debir;

Ver. 26. Ramathmizpeth.] Called also Ramoth in Gilead. [Joshua 20:8]

Verse 27

Joshua 13:27 And in the valley, Betharam, and Bethnimrah, and Succoth, and Zaphon, the rest of the kingdom of Sihon king of Heshbon, Jordan and [his] border, [even] unto the edge of the sea of Chinnereth on the other side Jordan eastward.

Ver. 27. {See Trapp on "Joshua 13:18"}

Verse 28

Joshua 13:28 This [is] the inheritance of the children of Gad after their families, the cities, and their villages.

Ver. 28. {See Trapp on "Joshua 13:18"}

Verse 29

Joshua 13:29 And Moses gave [inheritance] unto the half tribe of Manasseh: and [this] was [the possession] of the half tribe of the children of Manasseh by their families.

Ver. 29. Unto the half tribe of Manasseh.] Who had formerly won it with their swords. [Numbers 32:39]

Verse 30

Joshua 13:30 And their coast was from Mahanaim, all Bashan, all the kingdom of Og king of Bashan, and all the towns of Jair, which [are] in Bashan, threescore cities:

Ver. 30. See Numbers 32:41.

Verse 31

Joshua 13:31 And half Gilead, and Ashtaroth, and Edrei, cities of the kingdom of Og in Bashan, [were pertaining] unto the children of Machir the son of Manasseh, [even] to the one half of the children of Machir by their families.

Ver. 31. Mackir the son of Manasseh.] Whose children had taken Gilead: and therefore had the like right to it as Jacob had to that portion of ground which he gave to their great-grandfather Joseph.

Verse 32

Joshua 13:32 These [are the countries] which Moses did distribute for inheritance in the plains of Moab, on the other side Jordan, by Jericho, eastward.

Ver. 32. In the plains of Moab.] But lately possessed by the Amorites, and won from them by Israel.

Verse 33

Joshua 13:33 But unto the tribe of Levi Moses gave not [any] inheritance: the LORD God of Israel [was] their inheritance, as he said unto them.

Ver. 33. The Lord … was their inheritance.] See Joshua 13:14.


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Bibliography Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Joshua 13:4". John Trapp Complete Commentary. 1865-1868.

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