7:1 When the Lord your God brings you to the land that you are going to occupy and forces out many nations before you – Hittites, 1 Girgashites, 2 Amorites, 3 Canaanites, 4 Perizzites, 5 Hivites, 6 and Jebusites, 7 seven 8 nations more numerous and powerful than you – 7:2 and he 9 delivers them over to you and you attack them, you must utterly annihilate 10 them. Make no treaty 11 with them and show them no mercy!
1 sn Hittites. The center of Hittite power was in Anatolia (central modern Turkey). In the Late Bronze Age (1550-1200
2 sn Girgashites. These cannot be ethnically identified and are unknown outside the OT. They usually appear in such lists only when the intention is to have seven groups in all (see also the note on the word “seven” later in this verse).
3 sn Amorites. Originally from the upper Euphrates region (Amurru), the Amorites appear to have migrated into Canaan beginning in 2200
4 sn Canaanites. These were the indigenous peoples of the land, going back to the beginning of recorded history (ca. 3000
6 sn Hivites. These are usually thought to be the same as the Hurrians, a people well-known in ancient Near Eastern texts. They are likely identical to the Horites (see note on the term “Horites” in Deut 2:12).
8 sn Seven. This is an ideal number in the OT, one symbolizing fullness or completeness. Therefore, the intent of the text here is not to be precise and list all of Israel’s enemies but simply to state that Israel will have a full complement of foes to deal with. For other lists of Canaanites, some with fewer than seven peoples, see Exod 3:8; 13:5; 23:23, 28; 33:2; 34:11; Deut 20:17; Josh 3:10; 9:1; 24:11. Moreover, the “Table of Nations” (Gen 10:15-19) suggests that all of these (possibly excepting the Perizzites) were offspring of Canaan and therefore Canaanites.
9 tn Heb “the
10 tn In the Hebrew text the infinitive absolute before the finite verb emphasizes the statement. The imperfect has an obligatory nuance here. Cf. ASV “shalt (must NRSV) utterly destroy them”; CEV “must destroy them without mercy.”
11 tn Heb “covenant” (so NASB, NRSV); TEV “alliance.”