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In Bible versions:

a town of Benjamin assigned to the Kohathite Levites
a town of Judah 8 km north of Jerusalem, 5 km east of Gibeon (SMM)
a town of Benjamin pioneered by Jeiel of Benjamin
resident(s) of the town of Gibeon

a hill; cup
a hill
hill; cup; thing lifted up
NETBible Maps: Map10 A4 ; Map6 E4 ; Map7 E2 ; Map8 F2
Google Maps: Geba (1) (31° 51´, 35° 15´); Geba (2) (31° 50´, 35° 11´); Gibeah (31° 50´, 35° 11´); Gibeah (1) (31° 49´, 35° 13´); Gibeah (2) (31° 25´, 35° 7´); Gibeon (31° 50´, 35° 11´)


Strongs #01387: ebg Geba`

Gaba or Geba or Gibeah = "hill"

1) a city in Benjamin, modern 'Jeba', which stands on the top of a
steep terraced hill, six miles or ten kilometres north east of
Jerusalem and three miles or five kilometres from Gibeah, on the
edge of the Wadi Suweinit looking northward to the opposite
village of ancient Michmash, modern 'Mukhmas'

1387 Geba` gheh'-bah

from the same as 1375, a hillock; Geba, a place in
Palestine:-Gaba, Geba, Gibeah.
see HEBREW for 01375

Strongs #01390: hebg Gib`ah

Gibeah = "hill"

1) a city in the mountain district of Judah
2) a city of Benjamin, birthplace of king Saul
3) a city in Kirjath-jearim of Ephraim

1390 Gib`ah ghib-aw'

the same as 1389; Gibah; the name of three places in
Palestine:-Gibeah, the hill.
see HEBREW for 01389

Strongs #01394: tebg Gib`ath

Gibeath = "hill"

1) a city of Benjamin

1394 Gib`ath ghib-ath'

from the same as 1375; hilliness; Gibath:-Gibeath.
see HEBREW for 01375

Strongs #01395: ytebg Gib`athiy

Gibeathite = "hilliness"

1) an inhabitant of Gibeah

1395 Gib`athiy ghib-aw-thee'

patrial from 1390; a Gibathite, or inhabitant of
see HEBREW for 01390

Strongs #01391: Nwebg Gib`own

Gibeon = "hill city"

1) a Levitical city of Benjamin, modern 'el-Jib', which lies 5 miles
or 8 km from Jerusalem

1391 Gib`own ghib-ohn'

from the same as 1387; hilly; Gibon, a place in
see HEBREW for 01387

Strongs #01393: ynebg Gib`oniy

Gibeonite = "little hill: hilly"

1) an inhabitant of Gibeon

1393 Gib`oniy ghib-o-nee'

patrial from 1391; a Gibonite, or inhabitant of
see HEBREW for 01391

Geba [EBD]

the hill, (2 Sam. 5:25 [1 Chr. 14:16, "Gibeon"]; 2 Kings 23:8; Neh. 11:31), a Levitical city of Benjamin (1 Kings 15:22; 1 Sam. 13:16; 14:5, wrongly "Gibeah" in the A.V.), on the north border of Judah near Gibeah (Isa. 10:29; Josh. 18:24, 28). "From Geba to Beersheba" expressed the whole extent of the kingdom of Judah, just as "from Dan to Beersheba" described the whole length of Palestine (2 Kings 23:8). It has been identified with Gaba (Josh. 18:24; Ezra 2:26; Neh. 7:30), now Jeb'a, about 5 1/2 miles north of Jerusalem.

Gibeah [EBD]

a hill or hill-town, "of Benjamin" (1 Sam. 13:15), better known as "Gibeah of Saul" (11:4; Isa. 10:29). It was here that the terrible outrage was committed on the Levite's concubine which led to the almost utter extirpation of the tribe of Benjamin (Judg. 19; 20), only six hundred men surviving after a succession of disastrous battles. This was the birthplace of Saul, and continued to be his residence after he became king (1 Sam. 10:26; 11:4; 15:34). It was reckoned among the ancient sanctuaries of Palestine (10:26; 15:34; 23:19; 26:1; 2 Sam. 21:6-10), and hence it is called "Gibeah of God" (1 Sam. 10:5, R.V. marg.). It has been identified with the modern Tell el-Ful (i.e., "hill of the bean"), about 3 miles north of Jerusalem.

Gibeon [EBD]

hill-city, "one of the royal cities, greater than Ai, and all the men thereof were mighty" (Josh. 10:2). Its inhabitants were Hivites (11:19). It lay within the territory of Benjamin, and became a priest-city (18:25; 21:17). Here the tabernacle was set up after the destruction of Nob, and here it remained many years till the temple was built by Solomon. It is represented by the modern el-Jib, to the south-west of Ai, and about 5 1/2 miles north-north-west of Jerusalem.

A deputation of the Gibeonites, with their allies from three other cities (Josh. 9;17), visited the camp at Gilgal, and by false representations induced Joshua to enter into a league with them, although the Israelites had been specially warned against any league with the inhabitants of Canaan (Ex. 23:32; 34:12; Num. 33:55; Deut. 7:2). The deception practised on Joshua was detected three days later; but the oath rashly sworn "by Jehovah God of Israel" was kept, and the lives of the Gibeonites were spared. They were, however, made "bondmen" to the sanctuary (Josh. 9:23).

The most remarkable incident connected with this city was the victory Joshua gained over the kings of Palestine (Josh. 10:16-27). The battle here fought has been regarded as "one of the most important in the history of the world." The kings of southern Canaan entered into a confederacy against Gibeon (because it had entered into a league with Joshua) under the leadership of Adoni-zedec, king of Jerusalem, and marched upon Gibeon with the view of taking possession of it. The Gibeonites entreated Joshua to come to their aid with the utmost speed. His army came suddenly upon that of the Amorite kings as it lay encamped before the city. It was completely routed, and only broken remnants of their great host found refuge in the fenced cities. The five confederate kings who led the army were taken prisoners, and put to death at Makkedah (q.v.). This eventful battle of Beth-horon sealed the fate of all the cities of Southern Palestine. Among the Amarna tablets is a letter from Adoni-zedec (q.v.) to the king of Egypt, written probably at Makkedah after the defeat, showing that the kings contemplated flight into Egypt.

This place is again brought into notice as the scene of a battle between the army of Ish-bosheth under Abner and that of David led by Joab. At the suggestion of Abner, to spare the effusion of blood twelve men on either side were chosen to decide the battle. The issue was unexpected; for each of the men slew his fellow, and thus they all perished. The two armies then engaged in battle, in which Abner and his host were routed and put to flight (2 Sam. 2:12-17). This battle led to a virtual truce between Judah and Israel, Judah, under David, increasing in power; and Israel, under Ish-bosheth, continually losing ground.

Soon after the death of Absalom and David's restoration to his throne his kingdom was visited by a grievous famine, which was found to be a punishment for Saul's violation (2 Sam. 21:2, 5) of the covenant with the Gibeonites (Josh. 9:3-27). The Gibeonites demanded blood for the wrong that had been done to them, and accordingly David gave up to them the two sons of Rizpah (q.v.) and the five sons of Michal, and these the Gibeonites took and hanged or crucified "in the hill before the Lord" (2 Sam. 21:9); and there the bodies hung for six months (21:10), and all the while Rizpah watched over the blackening corpses and "suffered neither the birds of the air to rest on them by day, nor the beasts of the field by night." David afterwards removed the bones of Saul and Jonathan at Jabeshgilead (21:12, 13).

Here, "at the great stone," Amasa was put to death by Joab (2 Sam. 20:5-10). To the altar of burnt-offering which was at Gibeon, Joab (1 Kings 2:28-34), who had taken the side of Adonijah, fled for sanctuary in the beginning of Solomon's reign, and was there also slain by the hand of Benaiah.

Soon after he came to the throne, Solomon paid a visit of state to Gibeon, there to offer sacrifices (1 Kings 3:4; 2 Chr. 1:3). On this occasion the Lord appeared to him in a memorable dream, recorded in 1 Kings 3:5-15; 2 Chr. 1:7-12. When the temple was built "all the men of Israel assembled themselves" to king Solomon, and brought up from Gibeon the tabernacle and "all the holy vessels that were in the tabernacle" to Jerusalem, where they remained till they were carried away by Nebuchadnezzar (2 Kings 24:13).

Geba [NAVE]

GEBA, called also Gaba. A city of Benjamin, assigned to the sons of Aaron, Josh. 21:17; 1 Sam. 13:3; 2 Sam. 5:25; 1 Kin. 15:22; 2 Kin. 23:8; 1 Chr. 6:60; 8:6; 2 Chr. 16:6; Neh. 11:31; 12:29; Isa. 10:29; Zech. 14:10.

Gibeah [NAVE]

1. Of Judah, Josh. 15:57.
2. Of Saul. Called also Gibeah of Benjamin. The people's wickedness, Judg. 19:12-30; Hos. 9:9; 10:9.
Destroyed by the Israelites, Judg. 20.
The city of Saul, 1 Sam. 10:26; 15:34; 22:6.
The ark of the covenant conveyed to, by the Philistines, 1 Sam. 7:1; 2 Sam. 6:3.
Deserted, Isa. 10:29.
3. Another town in Benjamin, called also Gibeath, in Josh. 18:28.
4. Gibeah in the Field, Judg. 20:31.
Probably identical with Geba, which see.

Gibeon [NAVE]

1. A city of the Hivites, Josh. 9:3, 17; 2 Sam. 21:2.
The people of, adroitly draw Joshua into a treaty, Josh. 9.
Made servants by the Israelites, when their sharp practice was discovered, Josh. 9:27.
The sun stands still over, during Joshua's battle with the five confederated kings, Josh. 10:12-14.
Allotted to Benjamin, Josh. 18:25.
Assigned to the Aaronites, Josh. 21:17.
The tabernacle located at, 1 Kin. 3:4; 1 Chr. 16:39; 21:29; 2 Chr. 1:2, 3, 13.
Killed by David, 1 Chr. 14:16.
Seven sons of Saul slain at, to avenge the inhabitants of, 2 Sam. 21:1-9.
Solomon worships at, and offers sacrifices, 1 Kin. 3:4; God appears to him in dreams, 1 Kin. 3:5; 9:2.
Abner slays Asahel at, 2 Sam. 3:30.
Ishmael, the son of Nethaniah, defeated at, by Johanan, Jer. 41:11-16.
2. Pool of, 2 Sam. 2:13; Jer. 41:12.


(a hill), a city of Benjamin, with "suburbs," allotted to the priests. (Joshua 21:17; 1 Chronicles 6:60) It is named amongst the first group of the Benjamite towns --apparently those lying near to and along the north boundary. (Joshua 18:24) Here the name is given as GABA. During the wars of the earlier part of the reign of Saul, Geba was held as a garrison by the Philistines, (1 Samuel 13:3) but they were ejected by Jonathan. It is now the modern village of Jeba , which stands picturesquely on the top of its steep terraced hill, six miles north of Jerusalem, on the very edge of the great Wady Suweinit , looking northward to the opposite village of ancient Michmash, which also retains its old name of Mukhmas .


a word employed in the Bible to denote a hill. Like most words of this kind it gave its name to several towns and places in Palestine, which would doubtless be generally on or near a hill. They are --
  1. Gibeah, a city in the mountain district of Judah, named with Maon and the southern Carmel, (Joshua 15:57) and comp. 1Chr 2:49 etc.
  2. Gibeah of Benjamin first appears in the tragical story of the Levite and his concubine. (Judges 19:20) It was then a "city," with the usual open street or square, (Judges 19:15,17,20) and containing 700 "chosen men," ch. (Judges 20:15) probably the same whose skill as slingers is preserved in the next verse. In many particulars Gibeah agrees very closely with Tuleil-el-Ful , a conspicuous eminence just four mlles north of Jerusalem, to the right of the road. We next meet with Glbeah of Benjamin during the Philistine wars of Saul and Jonathan. (1 Samuel 13:15,16) It now bears its full title. As "Gibeah of Benjamin" this place is referred to in (2 Samuel 23:29) (comp. 1Chr 11:31), and as "Gibeah" it is mentioned by Hosea, (Hosea 5:8; 9:9; 10:9) but it does not again appear in the history. It is, however, almost without doubt identical with
  3. Gibeah of Saul. This is not mentioned as Saul?s city till after his anointing, (1 Samuel 10:26) when is said to have gone "home" to Gibeah. In the subsequent narrative the town bears its full name. ch (1 Samuel 11:4)
  4. Gibeah in Kirjath-jearim was no doubt a hill in that city, and the place in which the ark remained from the time of its return by the Philistines till its removal by David. (2 Samuel 6:3,4) comp. 1Sam 7:1,2
  5. Gibeah in the field, named only in (Judges 20:31) as the place to which one of the "highways" led from Gibeah of Benjamin. It is probably the same as Geba. The "meadows of Gaba" (Authorized Version Gibeah), (Judges 20:33) have no connection with the "field," the Hebrew word being entirely different.


(hill city), one of the four , cities of the Hivites, the inhabitants of which made a league with Joshua, (Joshua 9:3-15) and thus escaped the fate of Jericho and Ai. Comp. ch. (Joshua 11:19) Gibeon lay within the territory of Benjamin, ch. (Joshua 18:25) and with its "suburbs" was allotted to the priests, ch. (Joshua 21:17) of whom it became afterwards a principal station. It retains its ancient name almost intact, el-Jib . Its distance from Jerusalem by the main road is about 6 1/2 miles; but there is a more direct road reducing it to five miles.


GEBA - ge'-ba (gebha`, "hill"):

(1) A town on the Northeast boundary of the territory of Benjamin (Josh 18:24), given to the Levites (Josh 21:17; 1 Ch 6:60). It stood on the northern frontier of the kingdom of Judah, Geba and Beersheba marking respectively the northern and southern limits (2 Ki 23:8). In 2 Sam 5:25 "Geba" should be altered to "Gibeon," which stands in the corresponding passage, 1 Ch 14:16. In Jdg 20:10,33; 1 Sam 13:3,16, the Hebrew reads "Geba," the translation "Gibeah" being due to confusion of the two names. From 1 Sam 14:5 we gather that Geba stood to the South of the great gorge, Wady Suweinit, commanding the pass at Michmash. This was the scene of Jonathan's daring enterprise against the Philistines, when, accompanied by his armor-bearer, he accomplished an apparently impossible feat, climbing the rocky steeps of the gorge to the North and putting the enemy to flight. There can be no doubt that the modern village of Jeba` occupies the ancient site. It stands to the South of Wady Suweinit, looking toward Michmash--modern Mukhmas--with Seneh, the crag on the southern lip of the gorge, in front of it. The distance from Jerusalem is about 6 miles. It was fortified by Asa with materials that his enemy Baasha had used to fortify Ramah against him (1 Ki 15:22). It is named by Isaiah in his description of the terrifying march of the Assyrians upon Jerusalem from the North (10:28 ff). It appears among the cities which were reoccupied by Israel after the Exile (Ezr 2:26, etc.; Neh 11:31).

(2) (Gaibai): Between a fortress so named and Scythopolis (Beisan), Holofernes pitched his camp (Judith 3:10). On the high road that runs through Jenin, and down the Vale of Jezreel to Beisan, about 2 miles to the South of Sanur, stands the village of Jeba`, with which this fortress may be identified.

W. Ewing


GIBEAH - gib'-e-a (gibh`ah, "hill"): The Hebrew word denotes generally an eminence or hill, in distinction from har, which is used for mountain, or mountain range. It occurs, however, in two instances, as a place-name. Under GEBA (which see) we have seen that Geba, Gibeah, and Gibeon are liable to be confused. This arises from their resemblance in form and meaning.

(1) An unidentified city in the territory of Judah (Josh 15:57). It is named in the group containing Carmel, Ziph and Kain; it is therefore probably to be sought to the Southeast of Hebron. It may be one of the two villages mentioned by Eusebius, Onomasticon (s.v. "Gabathon"), Gabaa and Gabatha; in the East of the Daroma. It is probably identical with Gibeah mentioned in 2 Ch 13:2.

(2) A city described as belonging to Benjamin (Josh 18:28; Jdg 19:14) Gibeah of Benjamin (1 Sam 13:2,15; 14:16), Gibeah of the children of Benjamin (2 Sam 23:29), Gibeah of Saul (1 Sam 11:4; Isa 10:29), and possibly, also, Gibeah of God (1 Sam 10:5 margin); see GIBEATH, 4.

1. History:

The narrative in which it first appears is one of extraordinary and tragic interest, casting priceless light on the conditions prevailing in those days when "there was no king in Israel" (Jdg 19 ff). A Levite sojourning on the farther side of Mt. Ephraim was deserted by his concubine who returned to her father's house in Beth-lehem-judah. Thither he went to persuade her to return. Hospitably entertained by her father, he tarried till the afternoon of the fifth day. The evening was nigh when they came over against Jebus--Jerusalem--but, rejecting his servant's suggestion that they should lodge in this "city of a stranger"--i.e. the Jebusite--the Levite pressed on, and when they were near to Gibeah the sun set. They entered the city and sat down in the street. The laws of hospitality today do not compel the entertainment of strangers who arrive after sunset. But it may have been through disregard of all law that they were left unbefriended. An old man from Mt. Ephraim took pity on them, invited them to his house, and made himself responsible for their necessities. Then follows the horrible story of outrage upon the Levite's concubine; the way in which he made known his wrongs to Israel; and the terrible revenge exacted from the Benjamites, who would not give up to justice the miscreants of Gibeah.

Gibeah was the home of Saul, the first king of Israel, and thither he returned after his election at Mizpah (1 Sam 10:26). From Gibeah he summoned Israel to assemble for the relief of Jabesh-gilead, which was threatened by Nahash the Ammonite (1 Sam 11:4 ff). In the wars of Saul with the Philistines, Gibeah seems to have played a conspicuous part (1 Sam 13:15). Here were exposed the bodies of the seven sons of Saul, slain by David's orders, to appease the Gibeonites, furnishing the occasion for Rizpah's pathetic vigil (2 Sam 21:1 ff). Gibeah is mentioned in the description of the Assyrian advance on Jerusalem (Isa 10:29).

2. Identification:

The site now generally accepted as that of Gibeah is on Teleil el-Ful, an artificial mound about 4 miles North of Jerusalem, a short distance East of the high road to Shechem. A little way North of Teleil el-Ful, the high road bifurcates, one branch turning eastward to Jeba`, i.e. Geba (which should be read instead of "Gibeah" in Jdg 20:31); the other continuing northward to Bethel. Not far from the parting of the ways, on the road to Jeba` lies erRam, corresponding to Ramah (Jdg 19:13). At Gibeah, about 30 furlongs from Jerusalem, Titus encamped for the night on his advance against the city from the North Teleil el-Ful quite satisfactorily suits all the data here indicated.

The words in Jdg 20:33 rendered by the King James Version "the meadows of Gibeah," the Revised Version (British and American) "Maareh-geba"--simply transliterating--and the Revised Version, margin "the meadow of Geba" (or Gibeah), by a slight emendation of the text, read "from the west of Gibeah," which is certainly correct.

W. Ewing


GIBEON - gib'-e-un (gibh`on): One of the royal cities of the Hivites (Josh 9:7). It was a greater city than Ai; and its inhabitants were reputed mighty men (Josh 10:2). It fell within the territory allotted to Benjamin (Josh 18:25), and was one of the cities given to the Levites (Josh 21:17).

1. The Gibeonites:

By a stratagem the Gibeonites secured for themselves and their allies in Chephirah, Beeroth and Kirjath-jearim immunity from attack by the Israelites. Terrified by the fate of Jericho and Ai, a company disguised as ambassadors from a far country, their garments and shoes worn, and their provisions moldy as from the length of their journey, went to Joshua at Gilgal, and persuaded him and the princes of Israel to make a covenant with them. Three days later the deception was discovered and the wrath of the congregation of Israel aroused. In virtue of the covenant their lives were secured; but for their duplicity Joshua cursed them, and condemned them to be bondsmen, "hewers of wood and drawers of water for the house of my God" (Josh 9:23), "for the congregation and for the altar of the Lord" (Josh 9:27 the King James Version). This points to their employment in the sanctuary; and possibly may shed some light on the massacre of the Gibeonites by Saul (2 Sam 21:1 f). The rest of the Canaanites resented the defection of the Hivites which so greatly weakened the forces for defense, and, headed by Adoni-zedek of Jerusalem, they assembled to wreak vengeance on Gibeon. The threatened city appealed to Joshua, who made a swift night march, fell suddenly upon the confederates, routed them, and "chased them by the way of the ascent of Beth-horon, and smote them to Azekah, and unto Makkedah" (Josh 10:1 ff).

A three years' famine in the days of David was attributed to God's anger at the unexpiated crime of Saul in slaying the Gibeonites. He did this "in his zeal for .... Israel and Judah," who may have fretted at the inconvenience of having the Gibeonites among them. The latter believed that Saul's desire was to destroy them utterly. When David tried to arrange matters with them they stood upon their ancient rights, claiming life for life. They would take no rights blood money: they demanded blood from the family of the slayer of their people. This demand David could not resist, and handed over to them seven sons of Saul (2 Sam 21:1 ff).

2. The Champions:

The army of Ishbosheth under Abner, and that of David under Joab, met at the pool of Gibeon. An attempt to settle the quarrel, by means of 12 champions on either side, failed, as each man slew his fellow, and the 24 perished side by side. A "sore battle" ensued in which Abner was beaten; he was pursued by the fleet-footed Asahel, brother of Joab, whom he slew.


Possibly we should read "Gibeon" instead of "Geba" in 2 Sam 5:25, as in the parallel passage, 1 Ch 14:16 (HDB, under the word) From Baal-perazim David was to make a circuit and fall upon the Philistines who were encamped in the plan of Rephaim West of Jerusalem. Perhaps, however, we should read "Gibeah" in both places. Cheyne (EB, under the word) thinks the hill town of Baal-perazim may be intended.

3. Murder of Amasa:

When, after the death of Absalom and the suppression of his rebellion, Bichri raised the standard of revolt, Amasa was sent to call out the men of Judah against him. Tarrying longer than the time appointed, there was danger lest Bichri might have opportunity to strengthen his position; so David dispatched Abishai and the troops that were with him to attack Bichri at once. Joab went with this expedition. Obviously he could never be content with a second place. The force of Amasa was met at "the great stone of Gibeon." There Joab treacherously slew that unsuspecting general, and, himself assuming command, stamped out the rebellion with his accustomed thoroughness (2 Sam 20:4 ff). "The great stone" appears to have been well known, and may have possessed some religious character.

4. The Sanctuary:

Gibeon was the seat of an ancient sanctuary, called in 1 Ki 3:4 "the great high place." Here, according to 2 Ch 1:3, was the tabernacle made in the wilderness--but see 1 Ki 8:4. It was the scene of Solomon's great sacrifice after which he slept in the sanctuary and dreamed his famous dream (1 Ki 3:4 ff; 9:2; 2 Ch 1:3,13, etc.).

By "the great waters that are in Gibeon" Johanan overtook Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, and freed the captives he had taken from Mizpah (Jer 41:11 ff). Among those who returned with Zerubbabel were 95 "children of Gibeon" (Neh 7:25; compare 3:7). At Gibeon Cestius Gallus ancamped when marching against Jerusalem from Antipatris (BJ, II, xix, 1).

5. Identification and Description:

The ancient city is represented by the modern village el-Jib. It is fully 5 miles Northwest of Jerusalem, and about a mile North of Neby Samwil on a double knoll, with terraced slopes, but rocky and precipitous to the East. The village stands amid striking remains of antiquity. About a hundred paces from the village to the East is a large reservoir with a spring. Lower down, among the olives, are the remains of another and larger reservoir, which collected the overflow from the first. This is probably the "pool" of 2 Sam 2:13, and "the great waters" of Jer 41:12. El-Jib stands in the midst of a rich upland plain not far South of the great pass which goes down by way of the Beth-horons into the vale of Aijalon.

W. Ewing


GIBEONITES - gib'-e-un-its. Inhabitants of GIBEON (which see).

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