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Deuteronomy 2:31-37

Context
2:31 The Lord said to me, “Look! I have already begun to give over Sihon and his land to you. Start right now to take his land as your possession.” 2:32 When Sihon and all his troops 1  emerged to encounter us in battle at Jahaz, 2  2:33 the Lord our God delivered him over to us and we struck him down, along with his sons 3  and everyone else. 4  2:34 At that time we seized all his cities and put every one of them 5  under divine judgment, 6  including even the women and children; we left no survivors. 2:35 We kept only the livestock and plunder from the cities for ourselves. 2:36 From Aroer, 7  which is at the edge of Wadi Arnon (it is the city in the wadi), 8  all the way to Gilead there was not a town able to resist us – the Lord our God gave them all to us. 2:37 However, you did not approach the land of the Ammonites, the Wadi Jabbok, 9  the cities of the hill country, or any place else forbidden by the Lord our God.

1 tn Heb “people.”

2 sn Jahaz. This is probably Khirbet el-Medeiyineh. See J. Dearman, “The Levitical Cities of Reuben and Moabite Toponymy,” BASOR 276 (1984): 55-57.

3 tc The translation follows the Qere or marginal reading; the Kethib (consonantal text) has the singular, “his son.”

4 tn Heb “all his people.”

5 tn Heb “every city of men.” This apparently identifies the cities as inhabited.

6 tn Heb “under the ban” (נַחֲרֵם, nakharem). The verb employed is חָרַם (kharam, usually in the Hiphil) and the associated noun is חֵרֶם (kherem). See J. Naudé, NIDOTTE, 2:276-77, and, for a more thorough discussion, Susan Niditch, War in the Hebrew Bible, 28-77.

sn Divine judgment refers to God’s designation of certain persons, places, and things as objects of his special wrath and judgment because, in his omniscience, he knows them to be impure and hopelessly unrepentant.

7 sn Aroer. Now known as àAraáir on the northern edge of the Arnon river, Aroer marked the southern limit of Moab and, later, of the allotment of the tribe of Reuben (Josh 13:9, 16).

8 tn Heb “the city in the wadi.” This enigmatic reference may refer to Ar or, more likely, to Aroer itself. Epexegetically the text might read, “From Aroer…, that is, the city in the wadi.” See D. L. Christensen, Deuteronomy 1–11 (WBC), 49.

9 sn Wadi Jabbok. Now known as the Zerqa River, this is a major tributary of the Jordan that normally served as a boundary between Ammon and Gad (Deut 3:16).



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