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A. M. 2433. A. C. 1571; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A. M, 3763. A. C. 1648. EXOD. CH. 1-xiii. little or no probability that any of these came under the that 2 the learned Spanheim makes several ancient kingperiod we are now upon, we must refer the reader, who doms, as that of the Argives, the Cretans, the Phrygians, is minded to satisfy his curiosity in this matter, ’ to the the Ethiopians, the Phænicians, the Midianites, Canaanauthors who have purposely treated of them ; and shall ites, Idunnæans, and Nabatheans, either to have been only take notice farther, that the great Selden, in his founded, or to have flourished in this time. But as Arundel Marbles, reckons the fabulous stories of Greece, these, and other heathen nations, had no historian or such as the flood of Deucalion, the burning of Phaeton, chronologer of their own, and the Greeks, who underthe rape of Proserpine, the mysteries of Ceres, the story took to write for them, for want of a certain knowledge of Europa, the birth of Apollo, and the building of of their affairs, have stuffed their accounts with the rapes Thebes by Cadmus, together with the fables of Bacchus, and robberies of their gods ; we thought it more proper Minos, Perseus, Æsculapius, Mercury, and Hercules, to stop here than to enter into a barren land, where the to have fallen out under this period; and it is certain country for a long way lies waste and uncultivated; or,
if perchance any fruit is to be seen, like the famed fictia
tious apples about the banks of the Dead Sea, it crumbles See Della Valle, Thevenot, Le Bruyn, Lucas, Marco Gri- at the very first touch into dust and ashes. mani, &c, travels; and Well's Geography of the Old Testament, mol. 2.
Seo Hist. Vet. Test.
OF THE BIBLE,
CONTAINING AN ACCOUNT OF THINGS FROM THE ISRAELITES' DEPARTURE OUT OF EGYPT, TO THEIR
ENTRANCE INTO THE LAND OF CANAAN, IN ALL FORTY YEARS.
age, to look for salvation to the Lamb that was slain
from the foundation of the world, In contemplating the extraordinary deliverance of the We must also observe the wisdom and the goodness Israelites from Egypt, we must advert to the instrument of God in giving, for the first time, a written communi. employed by divine providence in its accomplishment. cation from himself. That written and infallible word, Moses, who was called to this difficult and perilous task, with its subsequent accessions of infallible wisdom, was was pre-eminently fitted by his talents and his temper the means, as it was designed to be, of carrying on in for its performance. There arose not a prophet like the world the work of redemption. The word of God unto Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face, in all had previously been transmitted from age to age the signs and wonders which the Lord sent him to do in dition ; but now the ten commandments, the five books the land of Egypt, to Pharaoh, and to all his servants, of Moses, and probably the book of Job, were, by the and to all his land, and in all that mighty land, and in special command of God, committed to writing, and were all the great terror, which Moses showed in the sight of laid up in the tabernacle, to be kept there for the use of all Israel.' He himself having been rescued when an the church. infant from the most imminent danger, was preserved to That the church might derive instruction from typical be the deliverer of his nation.
representation, in the character and actions of intelliThe redemption of the Israelites from the land of gent beings, the progress of the redeemed through Egypt, is the greatest type of Christ's redemption, of this world to that rest which remaineth for them in the any providential event whatsoever. It was intended to heavenly Canaan, was shadowed forth by the journey of shadow forth that greater redemption from the captivity the children of Israel through the wilderness, from of sin and Satan, which was wrought out by the Son of Egypt to Canaan. The low and wretched condition God, when he destroyed principalities and powers, and from which they are delivered, -the price paid for their made a show of thein openly, triumphing over them in redemption,—the application of that redemption in their his cross.
conversion to God,—the various trials, difficulties, and Nor can we fail to observe in the narrative of the temptations which they have to encounter in their chrisperiod on which we are now entering, how much the tian course, the manner in which they are safely congiving of the law at Sinai tended to prepare the way for ducted through this world by their great Leader, to their the accomplishment of this great redemption. It is here immortal inheritance, are all typified and represented in seen how the covenant of works operates as a school- the history of Israel from their departure out of Egypt, master in leading us to Christ; how the law which is to their entrance into the promised land. “All these boly, just, and good, shuts us up to the faith of the things happened unto them for ensamples, and they were gospel. That it might have full effect in this way, God written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the was pleased to institute at the same time the ceremonial world are come.'' law-full of various and innumerable typical represen- These typical representations were at the time accomtations of good things to come ; by which the Israelites panied with clearer predictions of Christ than had before were directed every day, month, and year in their religi- been given. “I will raise up a prophet,' says God unto ous actions—in all that appertained to their ecclesias- Moses, from among their brethren, like unto thee, and tical and civil state, so that the whole nation by this law will put my words in his mouth, and he shall speak unto was, as it were, constituted in a typical state. The them all that I command him.' It is unnecessary to say, great outlines of gospel truth were thus held forth to the nation; and the people were thus directed, from age to
"I Cor. x, II,
A. M. 2513. A. C. 1491; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A. M. 3763. A. C. 1648. EXOD. CH. xiii-xxxiv. 24. how clearly the inediatorial office of the Redeemer is fear that a people unaccustomed to war should, in case pointed out in this remarkable prophecy. Balaam, of any opposition, repent of their deliverance, and take also, during this period bore testimony to Christ, in the it into their heads to return into Egypt, God ordered sublime prediction which he uttered concerning him in them to take their route along the coasts of the Red Sea; the well known words— There shall come a star out of and for their greater encouragement and security, himself Jacob, and a sceptre shall arise out of Israel :-Out of undertook to guide and direct them, both in their marches Jacob shall come he that shall have dominion.' and encampments, by the wonderful appearance of a
Finally, we ought to notice in the narrative of God's cloud, in the form of a large column, which shaded them procedure towards his ancient people, on which we are from the heat of the sun by day, and in the night-time about to enter, the outpouring of his Holy Spirit on became a pillar of fire, or a bright cloud, to supply the the young generation in the wilderness, or that genera- sun's absence, and illuminate their camp. By this means tion which entered into Canaan. Concerning this gen- they were enabled, upon any occasion, to march both day eration God had said to their fathers— But your little and night : and, under this auspicious guide, proceeding ones, which you said should be a prey, them will I bring from Succoth, they came to Etham, which gives name to in, and they shall know the land which ye have despised.' the wilderness on whose borders it is situated, and there This generation was, accordingly, brought into Canaan. they encamped. They were distinguished for their piety, and their zeal- In the mean time the c king of Egypt had information ous adherence to all the will of God.
brought him, that the Israelites, instead of returning to his dominions, were attempting their escape into the deserts of Arabia, by the cape of the Red Sea; and
therefore grieving at the loss of so many useful slaves, SECT. I.
and supposing that by speedy marches he might overtake
CHAP. I.–From their Departure to the Building of those who have wrote upon the subject is,—That though there the Tabernacle.
are two places named Rameses, which are a little differently pointed, yet they are but one and the same, or, at the most, that they difler only in this, that the one was the province, and the
other the chief city of it; that Succoth, not far from Rameses, !THEN the Israelites set out from Egypt, they made in the way to the Red Sea, had its name from the tents (for so
the Hebrew word signifies) which the Israelites pitched here, as Rameses, the chief city of Goshen, the place of their we find upon the like occasion another place between Jordan aud general rendezvous; and from thence, on the 15th day the brook Jabbock, so named: that Etham lay on the confines of of the first month, they travelled about ten or twelve Egypt and Arabia Petræa, not far from the Red Sea, and gave miles to Succoth, where they made a stop, and reviewed which in our English, and some other translations, is rendered as
the denomination to the wilderness adjacent: that Pi-hahiroth, their company, which consisted of 600,000 persons, one proper name, is by the Septuagint made part of it an appelbesides children and strangers ; for strangers of several lative, so as to signify a mouth, for so the word pi may mean, or nations, having seen the wonders which were wrought a narrow passage between two mountains, lying not far from the for their deliverance, left Egypt at the same time, with western coast of the Red Sea : that magaol was probably a tower
or castle, for the word carries that signification in it, upon the top a purpose to accompany their fortunes.
of one of these mountains, which might give denomination to the While the sense of their deliverance, and God's judg- city, which, as Herodotus informs us, lay not far distant from it; ments was fresh in their minds, Moses was commanded and that Baal-Zephon was by some learned men thought to be an to let the people know, that when they came to be settled idol set up to keep the borders of the country, and to hinder slaves
from making their escape. Baal, indeed, in the Hebrew tongue, in the land of Canaan, the first-born both of man and signifies lord; and hence the name is generally applied to the beast, in remembrance of God's having spared their eastern idols; and the word zephon is thought to be derived from first-born when he destroyed the Egyptians, should be the radix zapah, to watch or spy; and from hence it is conjectured, set apart and dedicated to him : and as Joseph, dying that this idol has its temple on the top of some adjacent mountain, in the faith of this their deliverance, had laid an injunc- show how unable it was, whatever opinion the Egyptians might
and that the sacred historian particularly takes notice of it, to tion upon his brethren, whenever they should go from have of it, to hinder the Israelites from going out of Egypt. theuce, to carry his bones out of Egypt, so Moses a took There is but small certainty, however, to be gathered from the care to have the coffin, wherein he had lain for above etymology of words; and therefore the authority of Eusebius
should ponderate with us, who makes it not an idol, but a town, 140 years, not left behind.
standing upon the northern point of the Red Sea, where the From Succoth their nearest way to Canaan was ancients, especially the Jews, think that the Israelites passed it, certainly through the country of the Philistines; but for and where there stands to this day a Christian monastery.
Patrick's and Calmet's Commentaries, his Dissertation on the a The Jews tell us, that upon the Israelites' departure out of Passage of the Red Sca, and Wells' Geography of the Old TestaEgypt, every tribe took care to bring along with them the bones ment, vol. 2. of the ancestor of their family; but though they are not always c It is not unlikely, that some of the mixed multitude (Exod. to be credited in matters of this nature, and Josephus does not xii.38.) which went along with the Israelites, observing this alterseem to have dreamed of any such act of filial piety, or else he ation in their route, and not being able to perceive the reason of would, in all probability, have recorded it; yet St Stephen, it, might forsake them, and returning to Pharaoh, inform him, (Acts vii. 15, 16,) seems to allude to some tradition among that they had lost their way, and were entangled among the them, when he tells us, that " Jacob and the fathers went down mountains; or, what is more likely, some spies, which Pharaoh into Egypt, and were carried over into Sychem, and laid in the had upon them, seeing them leave the way to Horeb, where they sepulchre which Abraham had bought of the sons of Emmor.'- desired to go three days' journey, in order to offer sacrifices, conUniversal History, b. 1. c. 7.
cluded that they never intended to return to Egypt, but were b It is somewhat difficult to make out the geography of the running quite away, and might therefore bring Pharaoh the news places where the Hebrews encamped, between their parting from thereof, as we may suppose, upon the eighteenth day. – Patrick's Rameses and their arrival at the Red Sea; but the account of Commentary.
A. M. 2513. A. C. 1491; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A. M. 3763. A. C. 1648. EXOD. CH. xiji-XXXIV. 24. and recover them, he mustered up what forces he could, | advance along the coasts of it, until they came to Piand for the greater expedition, a considerable quantity hahiroth, which lies between Migdol and the sea, and of a chariots and horsemen, and with these put himself there to encamp. upon the pursuit. But God, who well understood what By this time Pharaoh and his army were come up with measures were taking in Pharaoh's court, instead of them; and when the Israelites perceived themselves suffering the Israelites to march round the point of the hemmed in on every side, with the sea in their front, c Red Sea, as they probably intended, ordered them to huge mountains on their flanks, and the Egyptian army
in the rear, they began to despair of any means of a Josephus, who loves to magnify matters, when they tend to escape, and to clamour against Moses for having the glory of his countrymen, as well as conceal what would induced them to leave Egypt, and for bringing them into occasion their disgrace, tells us, that the Egyptian army consisted the wilderness to be sacrificed. Moses, however, being of 600 chariots, 50,000 horse, and 200,000 foot: but how so large a number could be raised in so short a time, or what need apprized of God's design, instead of a resenting their there was of so vast an armament against a weak and defenceless reproaches, endeavoured to comfort them by giving them people, is hardly conceivable. As therefore we may presume, assurance that God himself would certainly fight for them, that the haste which the Egyptians were in, lest the Israelites and by his almighty power bring matters to such an should get out of the straights wherein they were entangled, or make their escape some other way, before they came up with issue, that these very Egyptians, of whom they were so them, made them pursue them with chariots and horsemen for much afraid, should not one of them live to molest them the greater expedition; so we may observe, that the chariots they any more, employed in this pursuit, are called chosen chariots, which most interpreters imagine to be such as were armed with scythes, advance towards the sea-side ; and as they were advanc
With these comfortable words, he ordered them to which being drawn with horses, and filled with men, who threw darts and spears and other offensive weapons from them, could ing, the miraculous cloud, we were speaking of, removed not but make a strange havock wherever they came; and the from the front to the rear of the Israelites' camp, and so number which the Scripture mentions, under proper captains, turning its dark side towards the Egyptians, made them the Israelites, being worn with hard bondage, wearied with march incapable of knowing what they were about ; while by ing, destitute of arms, strangers to war, and now encamped in a its bright or fiery side, which it turned to the Israelites, very disadvantageous situation.- Josephus' Antiquities, b. 2. c. it gave them a sufficiency of light, and kept the two 15., Ainsworth's Annotations, and Howell's History.
camps from joining that night. 6“ Of all the infatuated resolutions,” to use the words of the learned Dr Jackson, b. 10. c. 11.," that either king or people Moses waved his sacred rod, and immediately a strong
As soon as the Israelites came to the brink of the sea, adventured on, the pursuing the Israelites with such a mighty army, after they had so irritated and urged them to leave their east wind blew, and drove the waves back from the land, country, may well seem, to every indifferent reader, the most and by dividing the waters, which stood suspended as it stupid that ever was taken," And so indeed the author of the
were a wall on each hand, made a dry and safe passage Book of Wisdom, c. xix. 3., justly censures it: “ For whilst they were yet mourning,” says he," and making lamentation at the for the Israelites, until they had gained the other shore. graves of the dead, they added another foolish device, and The Egyptians, in the mean while, never suspecting but pursued them as fugitives, whom they had entreated to be gone." that they, with their chariots and horsemen, might safely But how much soever it was that the Egyptians had suffered for follow, where they saw the Israelites go on foot, entered detaining the Hebrews; yet, now that they were gone, they possibly might be of the same mind with the Syrians, (1 Kings Xx. 23.) after them into the midst of the sea ; but about break of who fancied, that the God of Israel might not be alike powerful day they began to see their error, and e their wbole army in all places; or, if he was, they might nevertheless think, that Moses' commission extended no farther than the meridian of in memory of the fate of the Egyptians, who were drowned Egypt, or that if it did, it might however have no power over herein.—Wells' Geography of the Old Testament, vol. 2. mighty hosts and armies. They knew, at least, that the Israelites, d The words which Moses makes himself speak upon this as we said, had no skill in military matters, no captains of infantry, critical occasion, (Exod. xiv. 13, 14.) discover a wonderful spirit no cavalry at all, no weapons or engines of war; whereas they and bravery; and it is no bad comment which the Jewish histowere well furnished and equipped with every thing of this nature; rian has given us of them. “Put the case," says he, that you and upon these and the like presumptions, it was that they became had deposited some great trust in the hands of person that had foolhardy, and desperately resolute, either to bring back the hitherto managed all well and wisely for you, might not you Israelites to their slavery, or to be revenged upon them for all reasonably depend upon that man for the same care and kindness
, the losses they had sustained, and the penalties they had suffered. and in the same case too, over again ? What a madness is it for - Patrick's Commentary.
you to despond then, where God himself has taken you under his c The Red Sea, called by the ancients Sinus Arabicus, and protection, and of his own free bounty, performed every thing by now Gulfo de Mecca, is that part or branch of the southern sea ine that can contribute to your freedom and security ? Nay, the which interposes itself between Egypt on the west, and Arabia Felix very difficulty of the case you are in, is an argument to inflame and some part of Petræa on the east; while the northern bounds your hope rather than discourage it. He hath brought you into of it touch upon Idumea, or the coast of Edom. Edom, in the this distress, on purpose to show his power and kindness in bringHebrew tongue, signifies red, and was the nickname given Esau ing you out again, even to the surprise and admiration of yourfor selling his birthright for a mess of pottage. The country selves, as well as your enemies. It is not God's time to interpose which his posterity possessed was called after his name, and so with his almighty power in small matters, but in great and trying was the sea which adjoined to it; but the Greeks, not understand. calamities; when all hopes of human help fail us, that is the ing the reason of the appellation, translated it into their tongue, season for him to work out the deliverance of those who cast and called it iquêpà Benaoon; thence the Latins, Mare Rubrum, themselves upon him. And therefore fear nothing, so long as and we, the Red Sea. The Hebrews call it the sea of Suph, or you have him for your protector and defender, who is able to Flags, by reason of the great abundance of that kind of weed, raise the lowly and oppressed, and to lay the honour of their which grows at the bottom of it; and the Arabs at this day name persecutors in the dust. Be not afraid of the Egyptian armed it Buhr el Chalsem, that is, the Sea of Clysma, from a town troops, neither despond of your lives and safeties, because you are situate on its western coast, much about the place where the at present locked up between the sea and the mountains, and have Israelites passed over from the Egyptian to the Arabian shore. no visible way in nature to come off; for the God wkom you But as the word clysma may denote a drowning or overflowing serve, is able to level all these mountains, and lay the ocean dry. with water, it is not improbable that the town built in this place, His will, in fine, be done."-Josephus' Antiquitics, b. 2. c. 15. as well as this part of the sea, might have such a name given it, e The expression in the text is, that God troubled the host of
A. M. 2513. A. C. 1491; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A, M, 3763. A. C. 1648. EXOD. CH. xiii-xxxiv. 24. in the utmost confusion. Their chariots were some of disappointment inflamed their thirst, and exasperated them broken, others ran into quicksands, and others their murmurings against Moses, until, by the divine cast off their carriages ; so that, perceiving the hand of direction, he made use of the wood of a certain tree, God against them, they were turning about, and offering which as soon as it was thrown into the water, changed to flee, but all in vain. As soon as the Israelites were its offensive quality, and made it sweet.c all landed, Moses, by the divine command, stretched out From Marah they went, and encamped at d Eliin, bis rod again over the sea : whereupon the roaring waves where there were twelve wells of water, and a good break loose from their invisible chain, and come rushing quantity of palm or date trees, and here they continued upon Pharaoh and his army, and overwhelm them all; for some time. From hence they removed towards the while the Israelites, beholding with wonder and amaze- wilderness of Sin; but before they entered it, the supment, the carcasses and rich spoils of their enemies posed scarceness of provisions made them begiu to disthrown
upon the sea-shore, began, at least seemingly, to trust God, and to repent from their very hearts, that they fear God, and to reverence his servant Moses; who, to had suffered themselves to be decoyed from the plenty · celebrate this joyful deliverance, having composed a they enjoyed in the land of Egypt, into a barren wild triumphant hymn, wherein he extols the greatness of waste, where they could have no other prospect but to God's power, and his amazing mercy to his people dis- die with hunger : and therefore, to convince these murplayed on this occasion, divided the company into two muring people of his almighty power and providence, great choirs ; and, setting himself and his brother Aaron God was pleased to inform them, that he would take care at the head of the men, and his sister Miriam with a to supply them with food from heaven, which accordtimbrel in her hand, at the head of the women, they sung ingly came to pass. For that very evening, he caused and played alternately, and in the height of their joy quails to fall among them in such great quantities, as intermixed dances, But notwithstanding all these thankful acknowledg- travellers; but then the question is, whether it was by the
city Arsinoe, is attested by Strabo, Diodorus, and most modern ments of God's goodness, scarce had the Israelites miraculous power of God, or by the natural virtue of the wood to travelled three days from the Red Sea into the wilderness which Moses was directed, that these bitter waters were at this of Shur, before their excessive thirst, and want of water, time made sweet? The author of that excellent book called put them out of all patience : and when in a short time treated of the honour and esteem
due to a physician, he adds,
Ecclesiasticus, seems to be of the latter opinion: for, having they met with some, at a place which is called Marah, The Lord has created medicines out of the earth, and he that is it proved so b bitter, that they could not drink it. This wise will not abhor them. Was not the water made sweet with
wood, that the virtue thereof might be known !' Eccles. xxxviii. the Egyptians;' and to enforce the strength of this expression, the 5. But, notwithstanding the authority of this writer, we have Jewish historian tells us, that before God let loose the waves upon reason to think, that there was no tree in these parts of this virthe Egyptians, fierce winds and tempests, storms of hail and rain, tue, because had its virtue once been known, there is no question terrible thunderings and lightnings, and whatever else could make to be made, but that others, as well as Moses, would have made their condition horrible, were sent down upon them from above; use of it to the same purpose; but that the writers who make and therefore it is not without good reason, that these words mention of these bitter waters, would have told us, at the same of the Psalmist have been applied to this occasion, The waters time, of a tree or trees growing hard by, which had a medicinal saw thiee, O Gud, the waters saw thee, and were afraid; the quality to correct the taste of them; but since we meet with depths also were troubled: the clouds poured out water, the air nothing of this kind, we may reasonably suppose that the author thundered, and thine arrows went abroad. The voice of thy of Ecclesiasticus, a book of modern composition in comparison of thunder was heard round about, the lightning shone upon the Moses' writings, speculating in the chapter upon the medicines ground, the earth was moved and shook withal. Thy way is in which God had provided for man's use, offered this hint purely from the sea, and thy paths in the great waters, and thy footsteps are his own fancy, and without any authority for it; and consequently not known:' whereupon it follows, thou leadest thy people like we may conclude, that the correction of the quality of this water sheep, by the hand of Moses and Aaron.'-Josephus's Antiquities, is to be ascribed, not so much to the virtue of the wood, as to the b.2., and Psal. Ixxvii. 16. &c.
power of God, who used it rather as a sign to the Israelites, than a Exod. xv. 20. •And Miriam the prophetess, the sister of as an instrument to himself in doing it.—Le Clerc's Commentary, Aaron, took a timbrel in her hand, and all the women went out and Poole's Annotations, and Shuckford's Connection, vol. 3. after her with timbrels and with dances.' Lady M. W. Mon- b. 10. tague, speaking of the eastern dances, says, “ Their manner is c Exod. xv. 23. “And when they came to Marah, they certainly the same that Diana is said to have danced on the banks could not drink of the waters of Marah, for they were bitter.' of Eurolas. The great lady still leads the dance, and is followed | Dr Shaw (Trav. p. 314.) thinks that these waters may be proby a troop of young girls, who imitate her steps, and, if she sings, perly fixed at Corondel, where there is a small rill, which, unless make up the chorus. The tunes are extremely gay and lively, it be dilated by the dews and rain, is very brackish. Another yet with something in them wonderfully soft. Their steps are traveller tells us that, at the foot of the mountain of Hamamel varied according to the pleasure of her that leads the dance, but Faron, a small but most delightful valley, a place called Garondee, always in exact time." (Letters, vol. ii. p. 45.) This gives us is a rivulet that comes from the mountain, the water of which is a different apprehension of the meaning of these words than we tolerably good and sufficiently plentiful, but is bitter, though very should otherwise form. Miriam the prophetess, the sister of clear. Pococke says, there is a mountain known to this day by Aaron, took a timbrel in her hand, and all the women went out the name of Le Marah, and toward the sea is a salt well called after her, with timbrels and dances. She led the dance, and Birhammer, which is probably the same here called Marah.-.ED. they imitated her steps, which were not conducted by a set well d In remarking the several stations of the Israelites, from the known form, but extemporaneous. Probably David did not Red Sea, until they came to the Mount Sinai, we must observe, dance alone before the Lord, when the ark was removed, but led that Moses does not set down every place where they encamped, the dance in the same authoritative kind of way. (2 Sam. vi. 14. as he does in Numbers, chap. xxxiii., but only those where some Judges xi. 34. 1 Sam. xviii, 6.) Representations similar to this remarkable thing was done ; but Elim, where they were now are frequently to be met with in the ancient writers.-Sce encamped, was esteemed a pleasant and fruitful place, at least in Chandler's Life of David, vol. 2. p. 116.-ED.
comparison of the desert and barren parts about it; and that the 6 The word Marah, in the Hebrew language, signifies bitter- desert of Sin, which was their eighth station, and Rephidim their ness; and it was from the taste of the waters that the place tenth, lay at equal distances, in their way to the holy mountain, received its name. That there are several fountains of bitter -Wells' Geography of the Old Testament, vol. 2. water not far from the Red Sea, at some small distance from the e The word which we render quail, according to the confes