21:22 “Let us 4 pass through your land; 5 we will not turn aside into the fields or into the vineyards, nor will we drink water from any well, but we will go along the King’s Highway until we pass your borders.” 21:23 But Sihon did not permit Israel to pass through his border; he 6 gathered all his forces 7 together and went out against Israel into the wilderness. When 8 he came to Jahaz, he fought against Israel. 21:24 But the Israelites 9 defeated him in battle 10 and took possession of his land from the Arnon to the Jabbok, as far as the Ammonites, for the border of the Ammonites was strongly defended.
1 sn This chapter has several events in it: the victory over Arad (vv. 1-3), the plague of serpents (vv. 4-9), the approach to Moab (vv. 10-20), and the victory over Sihon and Og (vv. 21-35). For information, see D. M. Gunn, “The ‘Battle Report’: Oral or Scribal Convention.” JBL 93 (1974): 513-18; and of the extensive literature on the archaeological site, see EAEHL 1:74-89.
2 sn The name Arad probably refers to a place a number of miles away from Tel Arad in southern Israel. The name could also refer to the whole region (like Edom).
3 tn Or “the south”; “Negev” has become a technical name for the southern desert region and is still in use in modern times.
4 tn The Hebrew text uses the singular in these verses to match the reference to “Israel.”
5 tc Smr has “by the King’s way I will go. I will not turn aside to the right or the left.”
6 tn Heb “Sihon.”
7 tn Heb “people.”
8 tn The clause begins with a preterite with vav (ו) consecutive, but may be subordinated to the next preterite as a temporal clause.
9 tn The Hebrew text has “Israel,” but the verb is plural.
10 tn Heb “with the edge of the sword.”