OF THE ISRAELITES FROM EGYPT TO CANAAN (usually referred to in Hebrews by the phrase הוֹצִיא יהוָֹה אֶתאּבּנֵי יִשִׂרָאֵל מֵאֶיֶוֹ מִצִרִיִם, "The Lord did bring the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt," Ex 12:51; to which is often emphatically added, בּיָר חֲזָקָה וּבִזרעִ נטוּיָה, "with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm," De 26:8, to express the miraculous interventions of Providence in the series of events), the great national epoch of the Hebrew people, in fact their "independence day," and as such constantly referred to in all their subsequent history and vaticinations. Several of the Psalms are but a poetical rehearsal of its scenes (e.g. Ps 114; Ps 136); it is the burden of Habakkuk's lofty ode (Habakkuk 3); and besides the recapitulation of many of its incidents by Moses in Deuteronomy, it constitutes the main topic of one of the books of Scripture. The following account, including especially the date of the event, and the identifications of the place of crossing the Red Sea and of the stations in the desert, is a resume of nearly all the important matters not treated by us under other heads. SEE EXODUS.
I. Date. — The particular Egyptian monarch under whom this great event, the first definite link of the Hebrew with other ancient history, occurred, is so differently identified with those of early profane chronicles, and of the monuments by various Egyptologers, that but little reliance, unfortunately, can be placed upon any of them, based as they almost entirely are upon conjectural adaptations or arbitrary premises. The only one of these hypotheses that seems to afford any independent evidence of agreement is that lately propounded by Osburn (in the Journ. of Sac. Lit. for July, 1860), who conceives that the Egyptian king in question was Sethos II, the grandson of the great Sesostris, but of so odious a character and so inglorious a reign that his sarcophagus was demolished and his cartouche effaced by the early Egyptians themselves. SEE PHARAOH. This king, however, began to reign about B.C. 1240, a date entirely too late for the event under consideration. The historical questions connected with this point are noticed under EGYPT SEE EGYPT . Hales places the Exode in B.C. 1648, Usher in B.C. 1491, Bunsen in B.C. 1320, and Poole in B.C. 1652. A careful collation of the Biblical elements of the calculation, the only definite and trustworthy data, point to the spring of B.C. 1658 as the most probable date of the beginning of the series of exodic transactions. SEE CHRONOLOGY. As to the account of the Exode given by Manetho, it was confessedly a mere popular story, for he admitted it was not a part of the Egyptian records, but a tale of uncertain authorship (Josephus, c. Apion. 1:16). A critical examination shows that it cannot claim to be a veritable tradition of the Exode: it is, indeed, if based on any such tradition, so distorted that it is impossible to be sure that it relates to the king to whose reign it is assigned. Yet, upon the supposition that the king is really Menptah, son of Rameses II, the advocates of the Rabbinical date entirely base their adjustment of Hebrew with Egyptian history at this period. SEE MANETHIO.
II. The Outset. — The Exode is a great turningpoint in Biblical history. With it the patriarchal dispensation ends and the law begins, and with it the Israelites cease to be a family and become a nation. It is therefore important to observe how the previous history led to this event. The advancement of Joseph, and the placing of his kinsmen in what was, to a pastoral people at least, "the best of the land," yet, as far as possible, apart from Egyptian influence, favored the multiplying of the Israelites and the preservation of their nationality. The subsequent persecution bound them more firmly together, and at the same time loosened the hold that Egypt had gained upon them. It was thus that the Israelites were ready, when Moses declared his mission, to go forth as one man from the land of their bondage. SEE JOSEPH.
The intention of Jehovah to deliver the Israelites from Egyptian bondage was made known to Moses from the burning bush at Mount Horeb, while he kept the flock of Jethro, his father-in-law. Under the divine direction, Moses, in conjunction with Aaron, assembled the elders of the nation, and acquainted them with the gracious design of Heaven. After this they had an interview with Pharaoh, and requested permission for the people to go, in order to hold a feast unto God in the wilderness. The result was not only refusal, but the doubling of all the burdens which the Israelites had previously had to bear. Moses hereupon, suffering reproach from his people, consults Jehovah, who assures him that he would compel Pharaoh "to drive them out of his land." "I will rid you out of their bondage, and I will redeem you with a stretched-out arm and with great judgments" (Ex 3:1-6:6). Then ensue a series of miracles (Exodus 6-12), commonly called the PLAGUES OF EGYPT SEE PLAGUES OF EGYPT (q.v.). At last, overcome by the calamities sent upon him, Pharaoh yielded all that was demanded, saying, "Rise up, and get you forth from among my people, both ye and the children of Israel; and go serve the Lord as ye have said; also take your flocks and your herds, and be gone." Thus driven out, the Israelites, to the number of about 600,000 adults, besides children, left the land, attended by a mixed multitude, with their flocks and herds, even very much cattle (Ex 12:31 sq.). Being "thrust out" of the country, they had not time to prepare for themselves suitable provisions, and therefore they baked unleavened cakes of the dough which they brought forth out of Egypt. SEE MOSES.
On the night of the self-same day that terminated a period of 430 years, during which they had been in Egypt, were they led forth from Rameses or Goshen. They are not said to have crossed the River Nile, whence we may infer that Goshen lay on the eastern side of the river. Their first station was at Succoth (Ex 12:37). SEE SUCCOTH. The nearest way into the Land of Promise was through the land of the Philistines. This route would have required them to keep on in a north-east direction. It pleased their divine conductor, however, not to take this path, lest, being opposed by the Philistines, the Israelites should turn back at the sight of war into Egypt. If; then, Philistia was to be avoided, the course would lie nearly direct east, or south-east. Pursuing this route, "the armies" come to Etham, their next station, "in the edge of the wilderness" (Ex 13:17 sq.). Here they encamped. Dispatch, however, was desirable. They journey day and night, not without divine guidance, for "the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way, and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light, to go by day and night." This special guidance could not well have been meant merely to show the way through the desert, for it can hardly be supposed that in so great a multitude no persons knew the road over a country lying near to that in which they and their ancestors had dwelt, and which did not exceed more than some forty miles across. The divine guides were doubtless intended to conduct the Israelites in that way and to that spot where the hand of God would be most signally displayed in their rescue and in the destruction of Pharaoh. SEE PILLAR.
The Land of Goshen may be concluded, from the Biblical narrative, to have been part of Egypt, but not of what was then held to be Egypt proper. It must therefore have been an outer eastern province of Lower Egypt. It is enough here to say that it was on the eastern side of the Nile, probably in the province of Esh-Shurkiyeh. Rasmeses was the place of rendezvous. But it is evident, from the frequent communications of Moses with the Egyptian court on the one hand, and with the Israelites on the other, that the latter must have been, at the time of starting, congregated at a point not far from the capital. They could only, therefore, have gone by the valley now called the wady et-Tumeylht, for every other cultivated or cultivable tract is too far from the Red Sea. In the Roman time, the route to Gaza from Memphis and Heliopolis passed the western end of the wady et- Tumeylat, as may be seen by the Itinerary of Antoninus (Parthey, Zur Erdk. d. Alt. AEgyptens, map 6), and the chief modern route from Cairo to Syria passes along the wady et-Tumeylut and leads to Gaza (Wilkinson, Handbook, new ed. page 209). Rameses, as we shall see, must have lain in this valley, which thus corresponded in part at least to Goshen. That it wholly corresponded to that region is evident from its being markedly a single valley, and from the insufficiency of any smaller territory to support the Israelites. SEE GOSHEN. It is not difficult to fix very nearly the length of each day's march of the Israelites. As they had with them women, children, and cattle, it cannot be supposed that they averaged more than fifteen miles daily; at the same time, it is unlikely that they fell far short of this. The three journeys would therefore give a distance of about forty-five miles. There seems, however, as we shall see, to have been a deflexion froum a direct course, so that we cannot consider the whole distance from the starting-point, Rameses, to the shore of the Red Sea, as much more than about forty miles in a direct line. Measuring from the western shore (of the Arabian Gulf south-east of the wady et-Tumeylat, a distance of forty miles in a direct line places the site of Rameses near the ruins called in the present day Abu Kesheib, not far from the middle of the valley. This is in accordance with the location of Robinson and Lepsius. That the Israelites started from a place in this position is farther evident from the account of the two routes that lay before them: "And it came to pass, when Pharaoh had let the people go, that God led them not [by] the way of the land of the Philistines, although that [was] near; for God said, Lest peradventure the people repent when they see war, and they return to Egypt, but God let the people turn to the way of the wilderness of the Red Sea" (Ex 13:17-18). The expression used, וִיִּסֵּב, does not necessarily imply a change in the direction of the journey, but may mean that God did not lead the Israelites into Palestine by the nearest route, but took them about by the way of the wilderness. Were the meaning that the people turned, we should have to suppose. Ranceses to have been beyond the valley to the west, and this would probably make the distance to the Red Sea too great for the time occupied in traversing it, besides overthrowing the reasonable identification of the land of Goshen. Rameses is evidently the Rameses of Ex 1:11. It seems to have been the chief town of the land of Goshen, for that region, or possibly a part of it, is called the land of Rameses in Ge 47:11; comp. 4, 6. SEE RAMESES.
1. The direct route thence to the Red Sea was along the valley of the ancient canal. If, however, they rendezvoused near the metropolis, their route would be different. From the vicinity of Cairo there runs a range of hills eastward to the Red Sea, the western extremity of which, not far from Cairo, is named Jebel-Mokattem; the eastern extremity is termed Jebel-
Ataka, which, with its promontory Ras Ataka, runs into the Red Sea. Between the two extremes, some. where about the middle of the range, is an opening which affords a road for caravans. Two routes offered themselves here. Supposing that the actual starting-point lay nearer Cairo, the Israelites might strike in from the north of the range of hills at the opening just mentioned, and pursue the ordinary caravan road which leads from Cairo to Suez; or they might go southward from Mokattem, through the wady et-Tih, that is, the Valley of Wandering, through which also a road, though less used, runs to Suez. According to Niebuhr, they took the first; according to ancient tradition, Father Sicard (Ueber der Weg der Israel/ten), Paulus (Samml. 5:211 sq.), and others, they took the iast. Sicard found traces of the Israelites in the valley. He held Rameses to be the starting-point, and Rameses he placed about six miles from ancient Cairo, where Bezatin is now found. Here is a capacious sandy plain, on which Sicard thinks the Israelites assembled on the morning when they began their journey. In this vicinity a plain is still found, which the Arabs call the Jews' Cemetery, and where, from an indefinite period, the Jews have buried their dead. In the Mokattem chain is a hill, a part of which is called Mejanat Musa, "Moses's Station." On another hill in the vicinity ruins are found, which the Arabs name Meravad Musa, "Moses's Delight." Thus several things seem to carry the mind back to the time of the Hebrew legislator. Through the valley which leads from Bezatin (the Valley of Wandering) to the Red Sea, Sicard traveled in three days. He reckons the length to be twenty-six hours, which if we give two miles to each hour (Robinson), would make the distance fifty-two miles. This length is also assigned by Girard (Descrip. Topograp. de la Valise de 1'Egarement). The valley, running pretty much in a plain surface, would afford a convenient passage to the mixed bands of Israelites. About eighteen miles from Bezatin you meet with Gendelhy, a plain with a fountain. The name signifies a military station, and in this Sicard finds the Succoth (tents) of Exodus, the first station of Moses. The haste with which they left (were driven out) would enable them to reach this place at nightfall of their first day's march. Sicard places their second station, Etham, in the plain Ranaliyeh, eighteen miles from Gendelhy, and sixteen from the sea. From this plain is a pass four miles in length, so narrow that not more than twenty men can go abreast. To avoid this, which would have caused dangerous delay, the order was given them to turn (Ex 14:2). Etham is said (Ex 13:20) to be on the edge of the wilderness. Jablonski says the word means "terminus maris," the termination or boundary of the sea. Now, in the plain where Sicard fixes Etham (not to be confounded with the Eastern Etham, through which afterwards the Israelites traveled three days, Nu 33:8), is the spot where the waters divide which run to the Nile and to the Gulf of Suez, and Etham is therefore truly terminus maris.
On the other hand, if, as the position of Rameses, and the nature of the ground between that point and the head of the gulf seems to indicate, they pursued the direct route thence down the valley of the bitter lakes, we may locate Succoth not far from the ruins of Serapeum, and Etham at a point about half way between. that spot and the head of the gulf; for we may suppose that the encumbered multitude made but little progress the first day, whereas on the third their march may have been quickened by apprehensions of the approaching Egyptians in pursuit. SEE ETHAM.
2. At the end of the second day's march, for each camping-place seems to mark the close of a day's journey, the route appears to have been altered from the natural thoroughfare around the head of the gulf. The first passage relating to the journey, after the mention of the encamping at Etham, is this, stating a command given to Moses: "Speak unto the children of Israel that they turn [or 'return'] and encamp [or 'that they encamp again,' ויָשֻׁבוּ ויִהֲניּ] before Pihahiroth, between Migdol and the sea, over against Baal-zephon" (Ex 14:2). This explanation is added: "And Pharaoh will say of the children of Israel, They [are] entangled in the land, the wilderness hath shut them in" (verse 3). The rendering of the A.V., "That they turn and encamp," seems to us the most probable of those we have given: "return" is the closer translation, but appears to be difficult to reconcile with the narrative of the route; for the more likely inference is that the direction was changed, not that the people returned: the third rendering does not appear probable, as it does not explain the entanglement. It is most likely that they at once turned, although they may have done so later in the march. The direction cannot be doubted, for thee would have been entangled (verse 5) only by turning southward. not northward. They encamped for the night by the sea, probably after a full day's journey. Pi-hahiroth (the mouth of the hiding- places) Sicard identifies with Tuarek (small caves), which is the name still given to three or four salt springs of the plain Baideah, on the south side of Mount Attaka, which last Sicard identifies with Baal-zephon, and which is the northern boundary of the plain Baideah, while Kulalah (Migdol) is its southern limit. But we would prefer to transpose these names, assigning Migdol to Jebel Attaka, and Baal-zephoen to Jebel Deraj or Klulaih, while Wady Tuwarik will remain for Pi-hahiroth. (See each in its order.) The pass which leads to Suez, between Attaka and the sea, is very narrow, and could easily be stopped by the Egyptians. In this plain of Baideah Pharaoh had the Israelites hemmed in on all sides. This, then, according to all appearance, is the spot where the passage through the sea was effected. Such is the judgment of Sicard and of Raumer (Dea Zug der Israeliten, Leipzig, 1837; for a description of the Valley of Wandering, see also Ritter, Erdkunde, 1:858). It cannot be denied that this route satisfies all the conditions of the case. Equally does the spot correspond with the miraculous narrative furnished by holy writ. A different route is laid down by Niebuhr (Arab. page 407). Other writers, who, like him, endeavor to explain the facts without the aid of miracle, imitate his example. (See below.)
It is no small corroboration of the view now given from Sicard and Ranmer that in substance it has the support of Josephus, of whose account we shall, from its importance, give an abridgment. The Hebrews, he says, took their journey by Latopolis where Babylon was built afterwards when Cambyses Lid Egypt waste. As they went in haste, on the third day they came to a place called Baal-zephon, on the Red Sea. Moses led them this way in order that the Egyptians might be punished should they venture in pursuit, and also because the Hebrews had a quarrel with the Philistines. When the Egyptians had overtaken the Hebrews they prepared to fight them, and by their multitude drove them into a narrow place; for the number that went in pursuit was 600 chariots, 50,000 horsemen, and 200,000 infantry, all armed. They also seized the passages, shutting the Hebrews up between inaccessible precipices and the sea; for there was on each side a ridge of mountains that terminated at the sea, which were impassable, and obstructed their flight. Moses, however, prayed to God, and smote the sea with his rod, when the waters parted, and gave the Israelites free passage. The Egyptians at first supposed them distracted; but when they saw the Israelites proceed in safety, they followed. As soon as the entire Egyptian army was in the channel, the sea closed, and the pursuers perished amid torrents of rain and the most terrific thunder and lightning (Ant. 2:15).
III. Passage of the Red Sea. — This was the crisis of the Exode. It was the miracle by which the Israelites left Egypt and were delivered from the oppressor, All the particulars relating to this event, and especially those which show its miraculous character, require careful examination.
1. It is usual to suppose that the most northern place at which the Red Sea could have been crossed is the present head of the Gulf of Suez. This supposition depends upon the idea that in the time of Moses the gulf did not extend farther to the northward than at present. An examination of the country north of Suez has convinced some geographers, however, that the sea has receded many miles, and that this change has taken place within the historical period, possibly in fulfillment of the prophecy of Isaiah (Isa 11:15; Isa 19:5; comp, Zec 10:11). The old bed is thought by them to be indicated by the Birket et-Timsah, or "Lake of the Crocodile," and the more southern bitter lakes, the northernmost part of the former corresponding to the ancient head of the gulf. In previous centuries it is not supposed that the gulf extended farther north, but that it was deeper in its northernmost part. We are inclined to believe, however, that such a change, if it ever took place, cannot materially affect the question of the place of the Israelites' passage.
From Pi-hahiroth the Israelites crossed the sea. The only points bearing on geography in the account of this event are that the sea was divided by an east wind, whence we may reasonably infer that it was crossed from west to east, and that the whole Egyptian army perished, which shows that it must have been some miles broad. Pharaoh took at least six hundred chariots, which, three abreast, would have occupied about half a mile, and the rest of the army cannot be supposed to have taken up less than several times that space. Even if in a broad formation some miles would have been required. It is more difficult to calculate the space taken up by the Israelitish multitude, but probably it was even greater. On the whole, we may reasonsably suppose about twelve miles as the smallest breadth of the sea.
2. A careful examination of the narrative of the passage of the Red Sea is necessary to a right understanding of the event. When the Israelites had departed, Pharaoh repented that he had let them go. News is carried to the monarch which leads him to see that the reason assigned (namely, a sacrifice in the wilderness) is but a pretext; that the Israelites had really fled from his yoke; and also that, through some (to him) unaccountable error, they had gone towards the south-east, had reached the sea, and were hemmed in on all sides. He summons his troops and sets out in pursuit — "all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh, and his horsemen and his army;" and he overtook them encamping by the sea, beside Pi-hahiroth, before Baal-zephon" (Ex 14:9). It might be conjectured, from one part of the narrative (verses 1-4), that he determined to pursue them when he knew that they had encamped before Pi-hahiroth, did not what follows this imply that he set out soon after they had gone, and also indicate that the place in question refers to the pursuit through the sea, not to that from the city whence he started (verses 5-10). This city was most probably Zoan, and could scarcely have been much nearer to Pi-hahiroth, and the distance is therefore too great to have been twice traversed, first by those who told Pharaoh, then by Pharaoh's army, within a few hours. The strength of Pharaoh's army is not farther specified than by the statement that "he took six hundred chosen chariots, and [or 'even'] all the chariots of Egypt, and captains over every one of them" (verse 7). The war-chariots of the Egyptians held each but two men, an archer and a charioteer. The former must be intended by the word שָׁלִשִׁם, rendered in the A.V. "captains." Throughout the narrative the chariots and horsemen of Pharaoh are mentioned, and "the horse and his rider" (Ex 15:21) are spoken of in Miriam's song, but we can scarcely infer hence that there was in Pharaoh's army a body of horsemen as well as of men in chariots, as in ancient Egyptian the chariot-force is always called HTAR or HETRA, "the horse," and these expressions may therefore be respectively pleonastic and poetical. There is no evidence in the records of the ancient Egyptians that they used cavalry, and, therefore, had the Biblical narrative expressly mentioned a force of this kind, it might have been thought conclusive of the theory that the Pharaoh of the Exode was a shepherd-king. With this army, which, even if a small one, was mighty in comparison with the Israelitish multitude, encumbered with women, children, and cattle, Pharaoh overtook the people " encamping by the sea" (verse 9). When the Israelites saw the oppressor's army they were terrified, and murmured against Moses. "Because [there were] no graves in Egypt, hast thou taken us away to die in the wilderness?" (verse 11.) Along the bare mountains that skirt the valley of Upper Egypt are abundant sepulchral grottoes, of which the entrances are conspicuously seen from the river and the fields it waters: in the sandy slopes at the foot of the mountains are pits without number and many built tombs, all of ancient times, No doubt the plain of Lower Egypt, to which Memphis, with part of its far-extending necropolis, belonged politically, though not geographically, was throughout as well provided with places of sepulture. The Israelites recalled these cities of the dead, and looked with Egyptian horror at the prospect that their carcasses should be left on the face of the wilderness. Better, they said, to have continued to serve the Egyptians than thus to perish (verse 12). Then Moses encouraged them, bidding them see how God would save them, and telling them that they should behold their enemies no more. There are few cases in the Bible in which those for whom a miracle is wrought are commanded merely to stand by and see it. Generally the divine support is promised to those who use their utmost exertions. It seems from the narrative that Moses did not know at this time how the people would be saved, and spoke only from a heart full of faith, for we read, "And the Lord said unto Moses, Wherefore criest thou unto me? Speak unto the children of Israel that they go forward; but lift thou up thy rod, and stretch out thine hand over the sea, and divide it; and the children of Israel shall go on dry [ground] through the midst of the sea" (verses 15, 16). That night the two armies, the fugitives and the pursuers, were encamped near together. Here a very extraordinary event takes place: "The angel of God, which went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them; and the pillar of the cloud went from before their face and stood behind them; and it came between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of Israel; and it was a cloud and darkness to them, but it gave light by night to these; so that the one came not near the other all the night" (verses 19, 20). The monuments of Egypt portray an encampment of an army of Rameses II during a campaign in Syria; it is well-planned and carefully guarded: the rude modern Arab encampments bring before us that of Israel on this memorable night. Perhaps in the camp of Israel the sounds of the hostile camp might be heard on the one hand, and on the other the roaring of the sea. But the pillar was a barrier and a sign of deliverance. The time had now come for the great decisive miracle of the Exode. "And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea: and the Lord caused the sea to go [back] by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry [land], and the waters were divided. And the children of Israel went through the midst of the sea upon the dry [ground]; and the waters [were] a wall unto them on their right hand and on their left" (verses 21, 22; comp. 29). The narrative distinctly states that a path was made through the sea, and that the waters were a wall on either hand. The term "wall" does not appear to oblige us to suppose, as many have done, that the sea stood up like a cliff on either side, but should rather be considered to mean a barrier; as the former idea implies a seemingly needless addition to the miracle, while the latter seems to be not discordant with the language of the narrative. It was during the night that the Israelites crossed, and the Egyptians followed. In the morning watch, the last third or fourth of the night, or the period before sunrise, Pharaoh's army was in full pursuit in the divided sea (verses 23-25). Delays are now occasioned to the Egyptians; their chariot-wheels are supernaturally taken off, so that "in the morning-watch they drave them heavily." The Egyptians are troubled, they urge each other to fly from the face of Israel. Then was Moses commanded again to stretch out his hand, and the sea returned to its strength and overwhelmed the Egyptians, of whom not one remained alive (verses 26-28). The statement is so explicit that there could be no reasonable doubt that Pharaoh himself, the great offender, was at last made an example, and perished with his army, did it not seem to be distinctly stated in Psalm 36 that he was included in the same destruction (verse 15). The sea cast up the dead Egyptians, whose bodies the Israelites saw upon the shore. From the song of triumph which Moses sang upon this occasion we learn some other particulars, as that "the depths covered Pharaoh's host, they sank to the bottom as a stone;" language which, whatever deduction may be made for its poetic character, implies that the miracle took place in deep water (Exodus 15; comp. Ps 106:9 sq.). In a later passage some particulars are mentioned which are not distinctly stated in the narrative in Exodus. The place is indeed a poetical one, but its meaning is clear, and we learn from it that at the time of the passage of the sea there was a storm of rain, with thunder and lightning, perhaps accompanied by an earthquake (Ps 77:15-20). To this Paul may allude where he says that the fathers "were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea" (1Co 10:2); for the idea of baptism seems to involve either immersion or sprinkling, and the latter could have here occurred: the reference is evidently to the pillar of the cloud: it would, however, be impious to attempt an explanation of what is manifestly miraculous. These additional particulars may illustrate the troubling of the Egyptians, for their chariots may have been thus overthrown.
Here, at the end of their long oppression, delivered finally from the Egyptians, the Israelites glorified God. In what words they sang his praise we know from the Song of Moses, which, in its vigorous brevity, represents the events of that memorable night, scarcely of less moment than the night of the Passover (Ex 15:1-18:19 is probably a kind of comment, not part of the song). Moses seems to have sung this song with the men, Miriam with the women also singing and dancing, or perhaps there were two choruses (verses 20, 21). Such a picture does not recur in the history of the nation. Neither the triumphal song of Deborah, nor the rejoicing when the Temple was recovered from the Syrians, celebrated so great a deliverance, or was joined in by the whole people. In leaving Goshen, Israel became a nation; after crossing the sea, it was free. There is evidently great significance, as we have suggested, in Paul's use of this miracle as a type of baptism; for, to make the analogy complete, it must have been the beginning of a new period of the life of the Israelites.
3. The importance of this event in Biblical history is shown by the manner in which it is spoken of in the books of the O.T. written in later times. In them it is the chief fact of Jewish history. Not the call of Abraham, not the rule of Joseph, not the first Passover, not the conquest of Canaan, are referred to in such a manner as this great deliverance. In the Psalms it is related as foremost among the deeds that God had wrought for his people. The prophet Isaiah recalls it as the great manifestation of God's interference for Israel, and an encouragement for the descendants of those who witnessed that great sight. There are events so striking that they are remembered in the life of a nation, and that, like great heights, increasing distance only gives them more majesty. So no doubt was this remembered long after those were dead who saw the sea return to its strength and the warriors of Pharaoh dead upon the shore.
It may be inquired how it is that there seems to have been no record or tradition of this miracle among the Egyptians. This question involves that of the time in Egyptian history to which this event should be assigned. The date of the Exode, according to different chronologers, varies more than three hundred years; the dates of the Egyptian dynasties ruling during this period of three hundred years vary fully one hundred. The period to which the Exode may be assigned therefore virtually corresponds to four hundred years of Egyptian history. If the lowest date of the beginning of the 18th dynasty be taken, and the highest date of the Exode, both which we consider the most probable of those that have been conjectured in the two cases, the Israelites must have left Egypt in a period of which monuments or other records are almost wholly wanting. Of the 18th and subsequent dynasties we have as yet no continuous history, and rarely records of events which occurred in a succession of years. We know much of many reigns, and of some we can be almost sure that they could not correspond to that of the Pharaoh of the Exode. We can in no case expect a distinct Egyptian monumental record of so great a calamity, for the monuments only record success; but it might be related in a papyrus. There would doubtless have long remained a popular tradition of the Exode; but if the king who perished was one of the shepherd strangers, this tradition would probably have been local, and perhaps indistinct. Josephus, indeed, gives us some extracts from the last work of Manetho, who appears, if we may trust the criticisms of the Jewish historian (contra Apionem, § 14, 26), to have greatly garbled the account in favor of the Egyptians. SEE HYKSOS.
Endeavors have been made to explain away the miraculous character of the passage of the Red Sea. It has been argued that Moses might have carried the Israelites over by a ford, and that an unusual tide might have overwhelmed the Egyptians. But no real diminution of the wonder is thus effected. How was it that the sea admitted the passing of the Israelites, and drowned Pharaoh and his army? How was it that it was shallow at the right time, and deep at the right time? Some writers (Wolfenb. Fragm. page 64 sq.) have at once declared the whole fabulous, a course which appears to have been taken as early as the time of Josephus (Ant. 2:16, 5). Others, who do not deny miracles as such, yet with no small inconsistency seek to reduce this particular miracle to the smallest dimensions. Writers who see in the deliverance of the Hebrews the hand of God and the fulfillment of the divine purposes, follow the account in Scripture implicitly, placing the passage at Ras Attaka, at the termination of the Valley of Wandering; others, who go on rationalistic principles, find the sea here too wide and deep for their purpose, and endeavor to fix the passage a little to the south or the north of Suez. The most recent advocate of the passage at or near Suez is the learned Dr. Robinson (Biblical Researches in Palestine). The route taken by Moses was, according to Robinson, from Rameses to the head of the Arabian Gulf, through Succoth to Etham. The last place he fixes on the edge of the desert, on the eastern side of the line of the gulf. Instead of passing down the eastern side, at the top of which they were, the Israelites thence marched down the western side of the arm of the gulf, stopping in the vicinity of Suez, where the passage was effected. This view of the miracle, however, entirely fails to satisfy the Scripture account, and has been amply refuted by Dr. Olin (Travels in the East, N.Y. 1843) and others. (See the account of Mr. Blumhardt's visit, October 1836, in the Church Missionary Record, January 1836; Kitto's Scripture Lands, page 58; Daily Bible Illustrat. 2:95.) Some have supposed the Red Sea anciently extended farther north, and have sought to identify the localities of the passage on that theory (see Sharpe in Bartlett's Forty Days in the Desert, page 23 sq.); but this is quite improbable and without evidence. Another explanation (Dr. Durbin, Observations in the Fast, 1:254) makes the Israelites to have turned from the vicinity of the bitter lakes to the western side of the head of Suez, and so to have followed the shore to the plain of Baideah let the mouth of wady Tuwarik, and there crossed; but if (as some travelers affirm) there is room for such a passage along the shore by Ras Attaka, the Israelites inight have escaped by the same route by simply retreating, or, if that had been prevented by the Egyptians following along the same path behind them, they uuuight still have fled up the wady Tih, and thence around Jebel Attaka and the head of the sea. A still later view (Captain Moresby, in Aiton's Lands of the Messiah, page 107) places the scene of the passage still farther south, at the mouth of the next valley opening on the Red Sea near Ras Abu Deraj; but it would be difficult to show how the Israelites could have reached this spot from their former position in the edge of the wilderness, and it would also bring them out too far south on the other side of the Red Sea. Indeed, the mountains approach so steeply the shore all along at these points, that they could only have arrived at the valley or plain of Baideash, where we have supposed the passage to have been made, by turning sharply at Ethamm around the western base of Mount Attaka, and so partly back into the wady et-Tih, through which they were immediately pursued by the Egyptiames. The latter thus hemmed them in completely, and drove them forward to the extreme edge of the shore projecting in front of Mount Attaka, around which they were unable to escape. Here it was that Providence opened to them a miraculous path through the deep waters to the opposite point (at the mouth of wady Beyanah), near which are situated the wells of Moses, which doubtless derived their name from the first encampment of the Hebrews after their rescue. SEE RED SEA.
IV. The Route from the Red Sea to Sinai. — When safe on the eastern shore, the Israelites, had they taken the shortest route into Palestine, would have struck at once across the desert in a south-easterly direction to el- Arish or Gaza. But this route would have brought them into direct collision with the Philistines, with whom they were as yet quite unable to cope. Oar they might have traversed the desert of Paran, following the pilgrim road of the present day to Elath, and, turning to the north, have made for Palestine. In order to accomplish this, however, hostile hordes and nations would have to be encountered, whose superior skill and experience in war might have proved fatal to the newly-liberated tribes of Israel. Wisely, therefore, did their leader take a course which necessitated the lapse of time, and gave promise of affording intellectual and moral discipline of the highest value. He resolved to lead his flock to Sinai, in order that they might see the wonders there to be exhibited, and hear the lessons there to be given. At Sinai, and on the journey thither, might the great leader hope that the moral brand which slavery had imprinted on his people would be effaced, and that they would acquire that self-respect, that regard to God's will, that capacity of self-guidance which alone could make liberty a blessing to the nation, and enable Moses to realize on their behalf the great and benign intentions which Godhadled him to form. There were, however, two ways by which he might reach Sinai. By following a south-easterly direction, and proceeding across the desert et-Tih, he would have reached at once the heart of the Sinaitic, region. This was the shorter and the more expeditious road. The other route lay along the shore of the Red Sea, which must be pursued till an opening gave thee means of turning suddenly to the east, and ascending at once into the lofty district. The latter was preferable for the reason before assigned, namely, the additional opportunities which it offered for the education of the undisciplined tribes of recently emancipated slaves.
Moses did not begin his arduous journey till, with a piety and a warmth of gratitude which well befitted the signal deliverance that his people had just been favored with, he celebrated the power, majesty, and goodness of God in a triumphal ode, full of the most appropriate, striking, and splendid images; in which commemorative festivity he was assisted by "Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron," and her associated female band, with poetry music, and dancing. The nature of these festivities gives us full reason to conclude that, if the people at large were still slaves in intellect and morals, there were not wanting individuals in the camp who were eminently skilled in the best refinements of the age. The spot where these rejoicings were held could not have been far from that which still bears the nanme of Ayuen Meisa, "the fountains of Moses," the situation of which is even now marked bv a few palm-trees. This was a suitable place for the encampment, because well supplied with water. Here Robinson counted seven fountains, near which he saw a patch of barley and a few cabbage- plants.
1. In tracing the track pursued by the host, we should bear in mind the limitation that a variety of converging or parallel routes naust often have been required to allow of the passage of so great a number (Robinson, Researches, 1:106). Assuming the passage of the Red Sea to have been effected at the spot indicated above, they eould march froma their point of landing, a little to the E. of S. Here they were in the wilderness of Shur, and in it "they went three days and found no water." The Israelites seem to have proceeded along the coast, probably following the route usually pursued by modern travelers, being at a short distance from the shore and parallel with it. The district is hilly and sandy, with a few water-courses running into the Red Sea, which, failing rain, are dry. "These wadys," says Robinson, "are mere depressions in the desert, weith only a few scattered herbs and shruebs, now withered and parched with drought." SEE SHUR.
At the end of three days the Israelites reached the fountain Marah, but the waters were bitter, and could not be drunk. The stock which they had brought with them being now exhausted, they began to utter murmurings on finding themselves disappointed at Marah. Moses appealed to God, who directed him to a tree, which, being thrown into the waters, sweetens ed them. The people were satisfied and admonished. The present 'Ain el- Hawara has been thought icy most travelers since Burckhardt's time to be Marah. The basin is six or eight feet in diameter, and the water Robinson found about two feet deep. Its taste is unpleasant, saltish, and somewhat bitter. The Arabs pronounce it bitter, and consider it as the worst water in all these regions. Near the spring are numerous bushes of the shrub ghurkud — a low, bushy, thorny shrub, producing a small fruit, which ripens in June, not unlike the blackberry, very juicy, and slightly acidulous. It delights in a saline soil, and is found growing near the brackish fountains in and around Palestine, affording a grateful refreshment to travelers. By means of the berries, or, if they were met ripe, the leaves of this plant, the bitterness may have been removed from the waters of Marah. Not improbably the miracle in the case lae in this, that Jehoasah directed Moses to use the tree (bush) itself, instead of what was usual, the berries, as from the time of year, shortly after Easter, they could hardly have been ripe. Between Ain Howarah and Ayuin Musa the plain is alternately — gravelly, stony, and sandy, while under the range of Jebel Wardan (a branch of et- Tih) chalk and flints are found. There is no water on the direct line of route (Robinson, 1:127-144). Hawara stands in the lime and gypsum region which lines the eastern shore of the Gulf of Suez at its northern extremity. Seetzen (Reisen, 3:117) describes the water as salt, with purgative qualities; but adds that his Bedouins and their camels drank of it. He argues, from its inconsiderable size, that it could not be the Marah of Moses. This, however, seems an inconclusive reason. It would not be too near the point of landing assumed, as above, as Dr. Stewart argues (page 55), when we consider the encumbrances which would delay the host, and, especially while they were new to the desert, prevent rapid marches. But the whole region appears to abound in brackish or bitter springs (Seetzen, ib. 3:117, etc.; Anmerk. page 430). For instance, about one and three- fourths hours nearer Suez than the wady Ghurundel (which Lepsius took for Marah, but which Niebuhr and Robinson regard as more probably Elim), Seetzen (ib. 3:113, 114) found a wady Tal, with a salt spring and a salt crust on the surface of its bed, the same, he thinks, as the spot where Niebuhr speaks of finding rock-salt. This corresponds in general proximity with Marah. The neighboring region is described as a low plain girt with limestone hills, or more rarely chalk. On this first section of their desert march, Dr. Stanley (Sinai and Palst. page 37) remarks, "There can be no dispute as to the general track of the Israelites after the passage (of the Red Sea). If they were to enter the mountains at all, they must continue in the route of all travelers, between the sea and the table-land of the Tih, till they entered the low hills of Ghurufndel." He adds in a note, "Dr. Graul, however, was told ... of a spring near Tih el-Amara, right (i.e., south) of Hawara, so bitter that neither men nor camels could drink of it. From hence the road goes straight to wady Ghurundel." Seetzen also inclines to view favorably the identification of el Amara with Marah. He gives it the title of a "wady," and precisely on this ground rejects the pretensions of ei- Hawara as being no "wady," but only a brook; whereas, from the statement "they encamped" at Marah, Marah must, he argues, have been a wady. SEE MARAH.
2. The next station mentioned in Scripture is Elim, where were twelve wells of water, and threescore and ten palm-trees. As is customary with travelers in these regions, "they encamped there by the waters" (Ex 16:1). The indications given in the Bible are not numerous nor very distinct. Neither time nor distance is accurately laid down. Hence we can expect only general accuracy in our maps, and but partial success in fixing localities. Elim, however, is generally admitted to be wady Ghurundel, lying about half a day's journey south-east from Marah. The way from Egypt to Sinai lies through this valley, and, on account of its water and verdure, it is a chief caravan station at the present day. It seems certain, at all events, that wady Ghuirundel — whether it be Marah, as Lepsius and (although doubtfully) Seetzen thought, or Elim, as Niebuhr, Robinson, and Kruse — must have been on the line of march, and almost equally certain that it furnished a camping station. In this wady Seetzen found more trees, shrubs, and bushes than he anywhere else saw in his journey from Sinai to Suez. He particularizes several date-palms and many tamarisks, and notes that the largest quantity of the vegetable manna, now to be found anywhere in the Peninsula, is gathered here (3:116) from the leaves of the last-named tree, which here grows "with gnarled boughs and hoary head; the wild acacia, tangled by its desert growth into a thicket, also shoots out its gray foliage and white blossoms over the desert" (Stanley, Sinai and Palest. page 68). The "scenery" in this region becomes "a succession of water- courses" (ib.); and the wady Taiyibeh, connected with Ghurundel by Useit, is so named from the goodly water and vegetation which it contains. These three wadys encompass on three sides the Jebel Hummam; the sea, which it precipitously overhangs, being on the fourth. They are the principal ones of those which the Israelites, going from north-west to south-east along the coast, would come upon in the following order-wady Ghfurundel, wady Useit, wady Thal, and wady Shubeikeh, the last being in its lower part called also wady Taiyibeh, or having a junction with one of that name. Between Useit and Taiyibeh, the coast-range of these hills rises into the Jebel Hummam, "lofty and precip. itous, extending in several peaks along the shore, apparently of chalky limestone, mostly covered with flints . . its precipices ... cut off all passage alongshore from the hot springs (lying a little west of south from the mouth of wady Useit, along the coast) to the mouth of wady Taiyibeh" (Robinson, 1:150; compare Stanley, Sin. and Palest. page 35). Hence, between the courses of these wadys the track of the Israelites must have been inland. Stanley says "Elim must be Ghurindel, Useit, or Taiyibeh (page 37); elsewhere (page 68) that "one of two valleys, or perhaps both, must be Elim;" these appear from the sequel to be Ghurufndel and Useit, "fringed with trees and shrubs, the first vegetation he had met with in the desert;" among these are "wild palms," not stately trees, but dwarf or savage, "tanmarisks," and the "'wild acacia." To judge from the configuration as given in the maps, there seems to be no reason why all three should not have combined to form Elim. or, at any rate, as Stanley suggests, two of them. Only, from Nu 33:9-10, as Elim appears not to have been on the sea, we must suppose that the encampment, if it extended into three wadys, stopped short of their seaward extremities. The Israelitish host would scarcely find in all three more than adequate ground for their encampment. Beyond (i.e., to the south-east of Ghurundel), the ridges and spurs of limestone mountain push down to the sea, across the path along the plain (Robinson, 1:101, and Map). This portion of the question may be summed up by presenting, in a tabular form, the views of some leading travelers or annotators on the site of Elim:
Wady Wady Some warm springs Ghurundel. Useit. north of Tar, which feed the rich date Niebuhr, One of Laborde plantations of the Robinson, both, "possibly." convent there, Kruse. Stanley. Seetzen. [By Lepsius identified with Marah.]
Dr. Kruse (Anmerk. page 418) singularly takes the words of Ex 15:27, "they encamped there (in Elim) by the waters," as meaning "by the sea;" whereas, from Nu 33:9-10, it appears they did not reach the sea till a stage farther, although their distance from it previously had been but small. SEE ELIM.
3. From Elim the Israelites marched, encamping on the shore of the Red Sea, for which purpose they must have kept the high ground for some time, since the precipices of Jebel Hummam — a lofty and precipitous mountain of chalky limestone — run down to the brink of the sea. They therefore went on the land side of this mountain to the head of wady Taiyibeh, which passes down south-west through the mountains to the shore. On the plain of Ras Zetima, at the mouth of this valley, was probably (Stanley, page 37) the encampment "by the Red Sea" (Nu 33:10).
4. According to Nu 32:11, the Israelites removed from the Red Sea, and encamped next in the wilderness of Sin; an appellation no doubt representing some natural feature, and none more probably than the alluvial plain, which, lying at the edge of the sea, about the spot we now regard them as having reached, begins to assume a significant appearance. The modern name for this is el-Kaa, identified by Seetzen with this wilderness (3, part 3:412). Stanley calls el-Kaa, at its initial point, "the plain of Murkhah," and thinks it is probably this wilderness (page 37). Robinson likewise identifies it with "the great plain, which, beginning near el- Murkhah, extends with greater or less breadth almost to the extremity of the peninsula. In its broadest part it is called el-Kaa" (1:106). Thus they kept along the shore, and did not yet ascend any of the fruitful valleys which run up towards the center of the district. The account in Exodus 16 knows nothing of the foregoing encampment by the sea, but brings the host at once into "the wilderness of Sin;" but we must bear in mind the general purpose there of recording not the people's history so much as God's dealings with them, and the former rather as illustrative of the latter, and subordinate to it. The evident design, however, in Numbers 33 belong to place on record their itinerary, this latter is to be esteemed as the locus classicus on any topographical questions as compared with others having a less special relation to thettrack. Indeed, we may regard the encampment by the Red Sea as bed essentially in the wilderness of Shur itself. SEE SIN (DESERT OF).
The Israelites arrived in the wilderness of Sin on the fifteenth day of the second month after their dep.Arture out of the land of Egypt (Ex 21:1), and being now wearied of their journey and tired of their scanty fare, they began again to murmur. Indeed, it is not easy to see how the most ordinary and niggardly food could have been supplied to them, constituting as they did nearly two millions of persons, in such a country as that into which they had come. It is true that some provision might have been made by individuals ere the march from Suez began. It is also probable that the accounts of encampments which we have are to be regarded as chiefly those of Moses and his principal men, with a chosen body of troops, while the multitude were allowed to traverse the open country and forage in the valleys. Still the region was unfavorable for the purpose, and some have hence concluded that here we have one of those numerical difficulties which are not uncommon in the Old Testament Scripture, and which make many suspect some radical error in our conceptions of the Hebrew system of numbers. The contrast between the scanty supply of the desert and the abundance of Egypt furnished the immediate occasion of the outbreak of dissatisfaction. Bread and flesh were the chief demand; bread and flesh were miraculously supplied; the former by manna, the latter by quails (Ex 16:13). Manna grows in some of the neighboring valleys; but the Israelites were in the wilderness, so that the supply could not have proceeded from natural resources, even had such existed to a sufficient extent for the purpose. The modern confection sold under that name is the exudation collected from the leaves of the tamarisk-tree (tamarix Orientales, Linn.; Arab. tarfa, Hebrews אֵשֶׁל) only in the Sinaitic valleys, and in no great abundance. If it results from the punctures made in the leaf by an insect (the coccus manniparus, Ehrenberg) in the course of June, July, and August, this will not precisely suit the time of the people's entering the region, which was about May. It is said to keep as a hardened sirup for years (Laborde, Comment. Geogr. on Ex 16:13-14), and thus does not answer to the more striking characteristics described in Ex 16:14-26. Seetzen thought that the gum Arabic, an exudation of the acacia, was the real manna of the Israelites; i.e., he regards the statement of " bread from heaven" as a fiction (Reisen, 3:75-79). A caravan of a thousand persons is said by Hasselquist (Voyages, etc., Materia Medica, page 298, transl. ed. 1766) to have subsisted solely on this substance for two months. SEE MANNA.
5. The next station mentioned in Exodus is Rephidim; but in Numbers Dophkah and Alush are added. The two latter were reached after the people had taken "their Journey out of the wilderness of Sin." Exact precision and minute agreement are not to be expected. The circumstances of the case forbid us to look for them. In a desert, mountainous, and rarely frequented country, the names of places are not lasting. There was the less reason for permanence in the case before us, because the Israelites had not taken the shorter and more frequented road over the mountains to Sinai, but keptsalong the shore of the Red Sea. It still deserves notice, that in Ex 17:1 there is something like an intimation given of other stations besides Rephidim ihu the words "after their journeys." Dophlkah is probably to be found near the spot where wady Feiran runs into the Gulf of Suez. SEE DOPHKAH. Alush may have lain on the shore near Ras Jehan. SEE ALUSH. From this point a range of calcareous rocks, termed Jebal Hemam, stretches along the shore, near the southern end of which the Hebrews took a sudden turn to the northeast, and, going up wady Hibran, reached the central Sinaitic district. On the opposite side, the eastern, the Sinaitic mountains come to a sudden stop, breaking off, and presenting like a wall nearly perpendicular granite cliffs. These cliffs are cut by wady Hibran, and at the point of intersection with the plain which runs between the two ranges probably lay Rephidim. The tabernacle vas not yet set mup, nor the order of march organized, as subsequently (Nu 10:13, etc.); hence the words "track" or "route," as indicating a line, can only be taken in the most wide and general sense. SEE REPHIDIM.
This was the last station before Sinai itself was reached. Naturally enough is it recorded that "there was no water for the people to drink." The road was an and gravelly plain; on either side were barren rocks. A natural supply was impossible. A miracle was wrought, and water was given. The Scripture makes it clear that it was from the Sinaitic group that the water was produced (Ex 17:6). The plain received two descriptive names: Massah, "Temptation," and Meribah, "Strife." It appears that the congregation was not allowed to pursue their way to Sinai unmolested. The Arabs thought the Israelites suitable for plunder, and fell upon them. These hordes are termed Amalek. The Amalekites may have been out on a predatory expedition, or they may have followed the Israelites from the north, and only overtaken them at Rephidim; any way, no conclusion can be gathered from this fact as to the ordinary abode of these nomads. It appears, however, that the conflict was a severe and doubtful one, which by some extraordimeary aid ended in favor of the children of Israel. This aggression on the part of Amalek gave occasion to a permanent national hatred, which ended only in the extermination of the tribe (Nu 24:20; Ex 17:4-16). In commemoration of this victory, Moses was commanded to write an account of it in a book: he also erected there an altar to Jehovah, and called the name of it "Jehovah, my banner." There is no occasion to inquire whether or not there was space for a battle in the spot where Moses was. It was a nomad horde that made the attack and mot a modern army. The fight was not a pitched battle. SEE AMALEK.
The word Horeb, applied by Moses to the place whence the water was gained, suggests the idea that Horeb was the general, and Sinai the specific name; Horeb standing for the entire district, and Sinai for one particular mountain. Many passages sanction this distinction; but in the New Testament Sinai only is read, having then apparently become a general name, as it is at the present day (Ac 7:30-38; Ga 4:24). It is a monkish usage which gives the name Sinai to Jebel Musa, and Horeb to the northern part of the same ridge. SEE HOREB.
6. The route from Rephidim to Horeb is usually supposed to have been by way of wady Feiran, but we can see no good reason for so circuitous a course, supposing that we have correctly located Rephidim. The Israelites may more probably have ascended wady Hibiahn as far as its junction with wady Bughabigh, and through this first south-easterly, and then north- easterly between Jebel Madsus and Jebel es-Sik; thence, in a northerly direction, along the western base of Jebel Katherin, through wady Um- Kuraf, across wady Tulah. Here they may have followed the path be. tween Jebel Humr and Jebel el-Ghubsheh, which comes out at the modern gardens in the recess of the hills. We thus place them before Mount Horeb, in fite capacious plain Rahah, which, having its widest part in the immediate front of that immense mass of rock, extends as if with two arms, one towards the northwest, the other towards the northeast. The review of the plain by so competent a person as Robinson is of great consequence for the interests of scientific geography, and the yet more important interests of religious truth; the rather because a belief prevailed, even among the best informed, that there was no spot in the Sinaitic district which answered' to the demands of the scriptural narrative. Even the accurate Winer (Real-Wort. in art. "Sinai," not "Horeb," as referred to by Robinson, 1:17; 2:550) says, "Whichever mountain may be considered as the place for the promulgation of the law, the common representation still remains false — that at the foot of the hill there spreads out a great plain, on which the people of Israel might assemble" (comp. Rosenmimiler, Alterth. 3:129). We shall therefore transcribe Robinson's words in extenso: "We came to Sinai with some incredulity, wishing to investigate the point whether there was any probable ground, beyond monkish tradition, for fixing upon the present supposed site. We were led to the conviction that the plain er- Rahah is the probable spot where the congregation of Israel were assembled; and that the mountain impending over it, the present Horeb, was the scene of the awful phenomena in which the law was given. We were surprised as well as gratified to find here, in the inmost recesses of these dark granite cliffs, this fine plain spread out before the mountain, and I know not where I have felt a thrill of stronger emotion than when, in first crossing the plain, the dark precipices of Horeb rising in solemn grandeur before us, we became aware of the entire adaptedness of the scene to the purposes for which it was chosen by the great Hebrew legislator. Moses doubtless, during the forty years in which he kept the flocks of Jethro, had often. wandered over these moanntains, and was well acquainted with their valleys and deep recesses, like the Arabs of the present day. At any rate, he knew and had visited the spot to which he was to conduct his people — this adytum in the midst of the great circular granite region; a secret holy place, shut out from the world amid lone asnd desolate mountains" (1:175 sq.). We subjoin what Robinson reports of the climate: "The weather, during our residence at the convent (of Sinai), as, indeed, during all our journey through the peninsula (March and April), was very fine. At the convent the thermometer ranged only between 470 and 670 F. But the winter nights are said here to be cold; water freezes as late as February, and snow often falls upon the mountains. But the air is exceedingly pure, and the climate healthy, as is testified by the great asge and vigor of many of the monks; and if in general few of the Arabs attain to so great an age, the cause is doubtless to be sought in the scantiness of their fare, and their exposure to privations, and not to any injurious influence of the climate" (page 175). Other travelers, however, have since contended for the plain of wady es-Sebaiyeh, at the south-eastern base of Sinai, as the scene of the giving of the law (Kitto's Daily Bible Illust. 2:123). This appears a less favorable position for that purpose, but Ait might easily have been reached by the Israelites by keeping along the shore of the Red Sea, and ascending by the next valley opposite Jebel Um-Shaumer. SEE SINAI.
V. From Sinai to Kadesh. — The sojourn of a year in the neighborhood of Mount Sinai was an eventful one. The statements of the scriptural narrative which relate to the receiving of the two tables, the golden calf; Moses's vision of God, and the visit of Jethro, are too well known to need special mention here; but, besides these, it is certain, from Nu 3:4, that before they quitted the wilderness of Sinai the Israelites were throwemn into mourning bythe untimely death of Aaron's two sons, Nadab and Abihu. This event is probably connected with the setting up of the tabernacle and the enkindling of that holy fire, the sanctity of which their death avenged. That it has a determinate chronological relation with the proanulgations which from time to time were made in that wilderness, is proved by an edict in Leviticus 16, being fixed as subsequent to it (Leviticus 10; comp. 16:1). The only other fact of history contained in Leviticus is the punishment of the son of mixed parentage for blasphemy (Le 24:10-14). Of course the consecration of Aaron and his son is mentioned early in the book in connection with the laws relating to their office (Le 8:9). In the same wilderness region the people were numbered, and the exchange of the Levites against the first-born was effected; these last, since their delivery when God smote those of Egypt, having incurred the obligation of sanctity to him. The offerings of the princes of Israel were here also received. The last incident mentioned before the wilderness of Sinai was quitted for that of Paran is the intended departure of Hobab the Kenite, emhich it seems he abandoned at Moses's urgency. SEE HOBAB.
1. After having been thus about a year in the midst of this mountains region, the Israelites broke up their encampment and began their journey in the order of their tribes, Judah leading the way with the ark of the covenant, under the guidance of the directing cloud (Nu 9:15 sq.; 10:11 sq.). They doubtless proceeded down wady Sheik, having the wilderness of Paran (Debbet er-Ramleh) before them, in a northerly direction; but having come to a gorge in the mountains not far from Sinai, they appear to have struck in a north-easterly direction across some long swells into wady Sal, where the subsequent route obliges us to place the station Taberah. It took the army three days to reach this station. Whatever name the place bore before, it now received that of Taberah (fire), from a superuatural fire with which murmurers, in the extreme parts of the canip, were de, stroyed as a punishment for their guilt. Here, too, the mixed multitude that was among the Israelites not only fell a-lusting themselves, but also excited the Hebrews to remember Egyptian fish and vegetables with strong desire, and to complain of the divinely supplied manna. The discontent was intense and widely spread. Moses became aware of it, and forthwith felt his spirit misgive him. He brings the matter before Jehovah, and receives divine aid by the appointment of seventy elders to assist him in the important and perilous office of governing the gross, sensuous, and self-willed mayriads whom he had to lead to Canaan. Moreover, an abundance of flesh-meat was given in a most profuse supply of quails. It appears that there were now 600,000 footmen in the congregation. SEE TABERAM.
2. Thee next station was Kibroth-hattaavah (probably at the intersection of their north-easterly course with wady Murrah), near which there are fine springs and excellent pasturage. This spot, the name of which signifies "graves of lust," emas so denominated from a plague inflicted an the people in punishment of their rebellious disposition (Nu 11:33; 1Co 10:6). Raumer (Beitrage z. bib. Geog. page 6, also Palast. 1850, page 442) infers from De 1:3, that Dizahab (now Dahab) lay on the route of the Israelites, and therefore identifies it with Kibroth-hattavah; but this is improbable, and requires a large detour. SEE KIBROTH-HATTAAVAH.
3. Thence they journeyed to Hazeroth, which Robinson, after Burckhardt, finds in el-Hudherah, where is a fountain, together with palm-trees. "The determination of this point," says Robinson, "is perhaps of more importance in Biblical history than would at first appear; for, if this position be adopted for Hazeroth, it settles at once the question as to the whole route of the Israelites between Sinai and Ksadesh. It shows that they must have followed the route upon which we now were to the sea, and so along the coast to Akabah (at the head of the eastern arm of the Red Sea), and thence, probably, through the great wady el-'Arabah to Kadesh. Indeed, such is the nature of the country, that, having once arrived at this fountain, they could not well have varied their course so as to keep aloof from the sea, and continue along the high plateau of the western desert" (1:223). A glance at Kiepert's, or any map showing the region in detail, will show that a choice of two main routes exists, in order to cross the intervening space between Sinai and Canaan, which they certainly approached in the first instance on the southern, and not on the eastern side. Here the higher plateau surmounting the Tih region would almost certainly, assuming the main features of the wilderness to have been then as they are now, have compelled them to turn its western side nearly by the route by which Seetzen came in the opposite direction from Hebron to Sinai, or to turn it on the east by going up the 'Arabah, or between the 'Arabah and the higher plateau. Over its southern face there is no pass, and hence the roads from Sinai, and those from Petra towards Gaza and Hebron, all converge into one of two trunk-lines of route (Robinson, 1:147, 151, 2; 2:186). One reason for thinking that they did not strike northwards across the Tih range from Sinai is Moses' question when they murmur, "Shall all the fish of the sea be gathered together for them, to suffice them?" which is natural enough if they were rapidlynearing the Gulf of 'Akabah, but strange if they were posting towards the inland heart of the desert. Again, the quails are brought by "a wind from the sea" (Nu 11:22,31); and various travelers (Burckhardt, Schubert. Stanley) testify to the occurrence of vast flights of birds in this precise region between Sinai and 'Akabah. Again, Hazeroth, the next station after these, is coupled with Dizahab, which last seems undoubtedly the Dahab on the shore of that gulf (De 1:1, and Robinson, 2:600, note). This makes a seaward position likely for Hazeroth. Now as Taberah, previously reached, was three days' journey or more from the wilderness of Sinai, they had probably advanced that distance towards the northeast and 'Akabah; and the distance required for this will bring us so near el-Hudherath (the spot which Robinson thought represented Hazeroth in fact, as it seems to do in name), that it may be accepted as a highly probable site. Thus they were now not far from the coast of the Gulf of 'Akabah. A spot which seems almost certain to attract their course was the wady el-'Ain, being the water, the spring of that region of the desert, which would have drawn around it such "nomadic settlements as are implied in the name of Hazeroth, and such as that of Israel must have been" (Stanley, page 82). Stanley nevertheless thinks this identification of Hazeroth a "faint probability," and the more uncertain as regards identity, "as the name Hazeroth is one of the least likely to be attached to any permanent or natural feature of the desert," meaning "simply the inclosures, such as may still be seen in the Bedouin villages, hardly less transitory than tents" (Sinai and Palestine, pages 81, 82). We rely, however, as much on the combination of the various circumstances mentioned above as on the name. The wady Hfiderah and wady el-'Ain appear to run nearly parallel with each other, from southwest to northeast, nearly from the eastern extremity of the wady es-Sheikh, and their northeast extremity comes nearly to the coast, marking about a midway distance between the Jebel,Musa and 'Akabah. After reaching the sea, however, at Ain el-Waseit, the Israelites may have made a detour by way of wady Wetir nearly to its head, and thence passed through the watercourse running directly northward into the Derb es-Sanna, thence around the northern face of Jebel Herte, down wady Hessi and wady Kureiyeh to the sea again; thus avoiding the narrow shore and the difficult pass across the hill between wady el-Huweimiraty and wady el Huweimirat. (See Stanley's Sinai and Palestine, page 84). SEE HAZEROTH.
At Hazeroth, where the people seem to have remained a short time, there arose a family dissension to increase the difficulties of Moses. Aaron, apparently led on by his sister Miriam, who may have been actuated by some feminine pique or jealousy, complained of Moses on the ground that he had married a Cushite, that is, an Arab wife, and the malcontents went so far as to set up their own claims to authority as not less valid than those of Moses. An appeal is made to Jehovah, who vindicates Moses, rebukes Aaron, and punishes Miriam (Numbers 12). SEE MIRIAM.
The two preceding stations seem from Nu 10:363, 33-36, to have lain in the wilderness of Paran; but possibly the passage in 10:11-13 should come after that of 33-36, and the "three days' journey" of verse 33 lie still in the wilderness of Sinai; and even Taberah and Hazeroth, reached in 11, 12, also there. Thus the Israelites would reach Paran only in 12:16; and 10:12 would be either misplaced, or mentioned by anticipation only. SEE PARAN (WILDERNESS OF).
4. The next permanent encampment brought them into the wilderness of Paran, and here the local commentator's greatest difficulty begins. "And afterwards the people removed from Hazeroth, and pitched in the wilderness of Paran," at Kadesh (Nu 12:16; Nu 13:26). In De 1:19-21, we read, "And when we departed from Horeb we went through all that great and terrible wilderness which ye saw by the way of the mountain of the Amorites, as the Lord our God commanded us; and we came to Kadesh-barnea. And I said unto you, Ye are come unto the mountain of the Amorites, which the Lord our God doth give unto us.
Behold, the Lord thy God hath set the land before thee: go up and possess it; fear not, neither be dis. couraged." Accordingly, here it was that twelve men (spies) were sent into Canaan to survey the country, who went up from the wilderness of Zin (Nu 13:21) to Hebron, and returning after foity days, brought back a very alarming account of what they had seen. Let it, however, be remarked that the Scriptures here supply several local data to this effect: Kadesh- barnea lay not far from Canaan, near the mountain of the Amorites, in the wilderness of Zin, in the wilderness of Paran. It is evident that there is here a great lacuna, which some have attempt. ed to fill up by turning the route a little to the west to Rithmah (q.v.), on the borders of Idumaea, and then conducting it with a sudden bend to the west and the south, into what is considered the wilderness of Paran (Relievo Map of Arabia Petrasa, published by Dobbs, London). In this view, however, we cannot concur. Both Robinson and Raumer are of a different opinion. At the same time it must be admitted that so great a gap in the itinerary is extraordinary. If, however, we find ourselves in in egard to the journey from Horeb to Kadesh possessed of fewer and less definite materials of information, we have also the satisfaction of feeling that no great scriptural fact or doctrine is concerned. It is certain that the narrative in the early part of Numbers goes at once from Hazeroth to Kadesh; and although the second account (in Numbers 33) supplies other places, these seem to belong properly to a second route and a second visit to Kadesh. The history in the book of Numbers is not, indeed, a consecutive narrative; for after the defeat of the Israelites in their foolish attempt to force a.n entrance into Canaan contrary to the will of God (Nu 14:45), it breaks suddenly off, and, leaving the journeyings and the doings of the camp, proceeds to recite certain laws. Yet it offers, as we think, a clear intimation of a second visit to the wilderness of Zin and to Kadesh. Without having said a word as to the removal of the Israelites southward, and therefore leaving them in the wilder ness of Zin, at Kadesh; it records in the twentieth chapter (verse 1), "Then came the children of Israel, the whole congregation, into the desert of Zin, in the first month, and the people abode in Kadesh." And this view appears confirmed by the fact that the writer immediately proceeds to narrate the passage of the Israelites hence on by Mount Hor southwards to Gilgal and Canaan. Robinson's remarks (2:611) on this point have much force: "I have thus far assumed that the Israelites were twice at Kadesh, and this appears from a comparison of the various accounts. They broke up from Sinai on the the twentieth day of the second month in the second year of their departure out of Egypt, corresponding to the early part of May; they came into the desert of Paran, whence spies were sent up the mountain into Palestine, 'in the time of the first ripe grapes;' and these returned after forty days to the camp at Kadesh. As grapes begin to ripen on the mountains of Judah in July, the return of the spies is to be placed in Atigust or September. The people now murmured at the report of the spies, and received the sentence from Jehovah that their carcasses should fall in the wilderness, and their children wander in the desert forty years. They were ordered to turn back into the desert 'by the way of the Red Sea,' although it appears that they abode 'many' days in Kadesh. The next notice of the Israelites is, that in the first month they came into the desert of Zin and abode again at Kadesh; here Miriam dies; Moses and Aaron bring water from the rock; a passage is demanded through the land of Edom, and refiused; and they then journeyed from Kadesh to Mount Hor, where Aaron dies in the fortieth year of the- departure from Egypt, in the first day of the fifth month, corresponding to a part of August and September. Here, then, between August of the second year and August of the fortieth year, we have an interval of thirty-eight years of wandering in the desert. With this coincides another account. From Mount Hor they proceeded to Elath on the Red Sea, and so around the land of Edom to the brook Zered, on the border of Moab; and from the time of their departure from Kadesh (meaning, of course, their first departure) until they thus came to the brook Zered, there is said to have been an interval of thirty-eight years." In this way the scriptural account of the journeyings of the Israelites become perfectly harmonious and intelligible. The eighteen stations mentioned only in the general list in the book of Numbers as preceding the arrival at Kadesh are then apparently to be referred to this eight-and-thirty years of wandering, during which the people atlast approached Eziongeber, and afterwards returned northwards a second time to Kadesh, in the hope of passing directly through the land of Edom. Their wanderings extended, doubtless, over the western desert, although the stations named are probably only those head-quarters where the tabernacle was pitched, and where Moses, and the elders, and priests encamped, while the main body of the people was scattered in various directions.
Where, then, was Kadesh? Clearly on the borders of Palestine. We agree with Robinson and Rauiner in placing it nearly at the top of the wady 'Arabah, where, indeed, it is fixed by Scripture, for in Nu 12:16 we read, "Kadesh, a city in the uttermost of thy (Edom's) border." The precise spot it may be difficult to ascertain; but here, in the wilderness of Zin, which lay in the more comprehensive district of Paran, is Kadesh to be placed. Raumer, however, has attempted to fix the locality, and in his views Robinson and Schubert generally concur. Raumer places it south from the Dead Sea, in the low lands between the mountain of the Edomites and that of the Amorites. The country gradually descends from the mountains of Judah southward, and where the descent terminates Raumer sets Kadesh. With this view the words of Moses entirely correspond, when, at Kadesh, he said to the spies, "Get you up southward (rather on the south, בִּנֶּגֶב), and go up into the mountain" (Nu 13:17). The ascent may have been made up the pass es-Sufah; up this the self-willed Hebrews went, and were driven back by the Canaanites as far as to Hormah, then called Zephath (Nu 12:16; Nu 14:40-45; Jg 1:17). The spot where Kadesh lay Robinson finds in the present Ain el- Weibeh. But Raumer prefers a spot to the north of this place — that where the road mounts by wady el-Khurar to the pass Sufah. It ought, he thinks, to be fixed on a spot where the Israelites would be near the pass, and where the pass would lie before their eyes. This is not the case, according to Schubert, at Ain el-Weibeh. Raunier, therefore. inclines to fix on Ain Hasb, which lies near Ain el-Khurar. This is probably Kadesh. The distance from the pass Sufah to Ain Hasb is little more than half the length of that from the same pass to Ain el-Weibeh. According to the Arabs, there is at Ain Hasb a copious fountain of sweet water, surrounded by verdure and traces of ruins, which must be of considerable magnitude, as they were seen by Robinson at a distance of some miles. These may be the ruins of Kadesh; but at Ain el-Weibeh there are no ruins (see Raumer, Palast. 1850, page 445). SEE KADESH.
By what route, then, did the Israelites come from Hazeroth to Kadesh? We are here supplied with scarcely any information. The entire distance, which is considerable, is passed by the historian in silence. Nothing more remains than the direction of the two places, the general features of the country, and one or two allusions. The option seems to lie between two routes. From Hazeroth, pursuing a direction to the northeast, they would coine upon the seacoast, along which they might go till they c.me to the top of the Bahr Akabah, and thence up wady Arabah to Kadesh, nearly at its extremity. Or they might have taken a northwestern course and crossed the mountain Jebel et-Tih. If so, they must still have avoided the western side of Mount Araif, otherwise they would have been carried to Beer-sheba, which lay far to the west of Kadesh. Robinson prefers the first route, Raumer the second. "I," says the latter, "am of opinion that Israel went through the desert et-Tih, then down Jebel Araif, but not along wady 'Arabah." This view is thought to be supported by the words found in De 1:19, "When we departed from Horeb we went through all that great and terrible wilderness which ye saw by the way of the mountain of the Amorites [as if Jebel Araif], and we came to Kadesh- barnea." This journey from Horeb to Kadesh-lbarnea took the Hebrews eleven days (De 1:2). But in this last passage the route is expressly said to be "by the way of Mouni Seir" (which must therefore be the "mount of the Amorites" above referred to), and in verse 1 the "wilderness is said to be in the 'Arabah ("plain"), with several places designated as extreme boundary points. SEE ARABAH.
VI. The Wanderings in the Desert. — At the direct command of Jehovah the Hebrews, left Kadesh, came down to the wady 'Arabah, and entered the wilderness by the way of the Red Sea (Nu 14:25). In this wilderness they wandered eight-and-thirty years, but little can be set forth respecting the course of their march. It may in general be observed that their route would not resemble that of a regular modern army. They were a disciplined horde of nomads, and would follow nomadic customs. It is also clear that their stations, as well as their course, would necessarily be determined by the nature of the country, and its natural supplies of the necessaries of life. Hence regularity of movement is not to be expected. A common error is that of supposing that from station to station (in Numbers 33) always represents a day's march merely, whereas it is plain, from a comparison of two passages in Exodus (Ex 15:22) and Numbers (Nu 10:23), that on two occasions three days formed the period of transition between station and station, and therefore that not day's marches, but intervals of an indefinite number of days between permanent encaneppments are intended by that itinerary; and as it is equally clear from Nu 9:22 that the ground mecay have been occupied for "two days, or a month, or a year," we may suppose that the occupations of a longer period only may be marked in the itinerary; and thus the difficulty of apparent chasms in, its enumeration, for instance the greatest, between Ezion-Geber and Kadeash (33:35-37), altogether vanishes. How, except by a constant miracle, two million people were supported for forty years in the peninsula of Sinai, has been thought, under the actual circumstances of the case, to be inexplicable; nor will such scmnty supplies as an occasional well or a chance oasis do much to relieve the subject. Much of the difficulty experienced by commentators on this head however, arises from a misconception of the nature of the so-called "desert" (מַרבָּרּ, which is rather an open uninhabited country thame a desolate wilderness in the strict sense. Indeed, Jotbalh (q.v.), one of the stations named in this part of the route, is explicitly called " a land of rivers of waters" (De 10:8). Modern travelers through the region in question speak of miany parts of it as well watem-sad, and actually sustaining a numerous nomadic population (coanp. Math. Quart. Rev. April, 1863, page 301 sq.). SEE WILDERNESS.
1. In the absence of detailed information, any attempt to lay down the path pursued by the Israelites after their emerging from the 'Arabah can be little better than conjectural. Some authorities carry themna quite over to the eastern bank of the Red Sea; but the expression "by the way of the Red Sea" denotes nothing more than the western wilderness, or the wilderness in the direction of the Red Sea. The stations over which the Israelites passed are set down in Nu 33:18 sq. (comp. De 10:6-7), and little beyond the bare record can be given. Only it seems extraordinary, and is much to be regretted, that for so long a period as eight-and-thirty years our information should be so exceedingly small. Raumer, indeed, makes a feeble effort (Beitrdge zur biblische Geographie, Leips. 1843) to fix the direction in which some of the stations'lay to each other, but he locates them all in the valley of the 'Arabah, without being able to identify one of the names with a modern locality (see his Palestina, 1850, page 446; also map). Were the interior of the peninsula thoroughly explored, we doubt not many of the ancient names might be found still subsisting which would serve as landmarks to determine the route. As it is, we do not altogether despair of finding some clew to the subject. [See below.] It miIay be of service to subjoin the following table of the places through which the Israelites passed (not all of them exactly stations) from the time of their leaving Egypt to their arrival in Canaan, which we take (with some alterations) from Dr. Robinson's paper in the Biblical Repos. for 1832, page 794-797.
(1.) FROM EGYPT TO SINAI.
(EXODUS 12-19.) (NUMBERS 33.) [1.] From Rameses (12:37). From Rameses (verse 3). [2.] Succoth (12:37). Succoth (verse 5).
[3.] Etham (13:20). Etham (verse 6). [4.] Pi-hahirotle (14:2). Pi-hahiroth (verse 7). [5.] Passage through the Passage through the Red Sea Red Sea (14:22). (verse 8). [6.] Three days' march into Three days' march in the des the desert of Shur desert of Etham (verse 5). (15:22). [7.] Marah (15:23). Marah (verse 8). [8.] Eline (15:27). Elim (verse 9). [9.] Encampment by the Red Sea (verse 10). [10.] Desert of Sin (16:1). Desert of Sin (verse 11). [11.] Dophkah (verse 12). [12.] Alush (verse 13).  Rephidim (17:1). Repiuidim (verse 14). [14.] Desert of Sinai (19:1). Desert of Sinai (verse 15).
(2.) FROM SINAI TO KADESH THE SECOND TIME.
(NUMBERS 10-20). (NUMBERS 33). From the desert of Sinai (10:12). From the desert of Sinai (verse 16). [15.] Taberah (11:3; [De 9:2]. [16.] Kibroth-hattaavah Kibroth-hattaavah 11:34), in the edge of the (verse 16). desert of Paran 10:12). [17.] Hazeroth (11:35). Hazeloth (verse 17). [18.] The desert of 'Arabah, Dreadful desert by the way of by the way of Mount Seir mount of the Amorites [De 1:1-2]. [De 1:19]. [19.] Rithmah (verse 18). [20.] Kadesh, in the desert of Paran (12:16; 13:26); [De 1:2,19].
[Hence they turn back and wander for 38 years (Nu 14:25 sq.) through the desert (De 2:1)]. [21.] Rimmon-parez (verse 19) [22.] Libnah (verse 20). [23.] Rissah (verse 21) .
[24.] Kehelathah (verse 22). [25.] Mount Shapner (verse 23). [26.] Haradah (verse 24). [27.] Makheloth (verse 25). [28.] Tahath (verse 26). [29.] Tarah (verse 27). [30.] Mithcah (verse 28) [31.] Hashmonah (verse 29). [32.] Moseroth (verse 30). [33.] Ben-jaakun (verse 31). [34.] Hor-hagidgad (verse 32). [35.] Jotbathah (verse 33). [36.] Ebronah (verse 34). [37.] Ezion-geber (verse 35, by the way of the Red Sea [De 2:1].  Return to Kadash, in Kadesh, in the desert of Zin the desert of Zin (verse 37). (Nu 20:1), by the way of Matthew Seir (De 2:1).
(3.) FROM KADESH TO THE JORDAN.
(NUMBERS 31; (NUMBERS 31.) De 1; De 2; De 10). From Kadesh (Nu 20; Nu 22). From Kadeash (verse 37). [39.] Beeroth Bene-jaakan (De 10:6). [40.] Mount Her (Numbers 20, Mount Hor (verse 38). 22), or Moses (De 10:6), where Aaron died. [41.] Gudgodah (De 10:7). [42.] Jotbaith (De 10:7). [43.] Way of the Red Sea (Nu 21:4), by Ezion-geber (De 2:5). [44.] Elath (De 2:8). [45 ] Zalmonah (verse 41). [46.] Punon (verse 42). [47.] Oboth (Nu 21:10). Oboth (verse 43).
[48.] Ije-abarim (Numbers 21, Ije-abarim, or him (verse 11) 44,45, [49.] The brook Zered(Nu 21:12; De 2:13-14). [50.] The brook Arnon (Nu 21:13; De 2:24). [51.] Dibon-gad (verse 45). [52.] Almon-diblathmaim (v. 46). [53.] Beer (well), in the desert (Nu 21:16, [54.] Mattanah (21:18). [55.] Nahaliel (21:19). [56.] Bamoth (32:19). [57.] Pisgah, put for the Mountains of Abarim, neat range of Abarim, of Nebo (verse 47). which Pisgah was part (21:20). [58.] By the way of Bashan Plains of Moab by Jordan, to the plains of Moab near Jericho (verse 48). by Jordan, near Jericho (Nu 21:33; Nu 22:1).
The points indicated in the above route as far as Kadesh have already been identified with considerable precision. It remains to consider how far the residue are capable of identification. For this purpose we have a few coincidences with modern or well-known localities, and several repetitions of the same or similar names, indicating a passage through the same spot from different directions. The rest must be supplied by conjecture, assisted by such suggestions as the nature of the region furnishes. It is a question whether the station Rithmah (Nu 33:18) was one reached by the Israelites before or after their first arrival at Kadesh; but as it is mentioned in immediate connection with Hazeroth, we may infer that it was either another name for Ksadesh itself, or a locality so near it as to permit the omission of Kadesh in the summary where it occurs. After their repulse by the Canaanites at the pass called Nukb es-Sufah, the Israelites may be supposed to heave retreated along the westerly shore of the 'Arabah till they reached the wady el-Kafafiyeb, or that of Abu Jeradeh, which would afford them an ascent to the mountainous region occupying the northern interior of the desert, somewhere near the summit of which we may place their next encampment, called Rimmon-parez. Libnah, where they next encamped, may not improbably be the same with Laban, given (De 1:1) as one of the extreme points of their region of wandering, and may have been situated on the western declivity of the mountains, in thee neighborhood of the wady el-Ain, running down from
'Ain el-Kudeirat. Thence they may have proceeded down wady el-Ain to its junction with the large wady el-Arish, where we may place the next station, Rissah, in the vicinity of el-Kusasby, opposite Jebel el-Helal. Pursuing this last valley southward, they next halted at Kehelathah, perhaps at its junction with eady el-Hasana, opposite Jebel Achmar, and thence eastward up wady el-Mayein, around the northern base of the Arait en-Nakahm, which we may identify with Mount Shapher, to the summit just beyond Ain el-Mamein, where we may locate their next station, Hartidali. Makheloth and Tabath may be located at suitable intervals along the northern base of the ridge el-Mukrah, and Tara at the intersection of the route southeasterly thence with the wady el-Jerafeh, which they would be likely to pursue (stopping at Mitheah on the way) to its intersection with the wady el-Jeib, in the 'Arabah, where we may locate Hashmonah. Thence is an easy stage to the next station, Loseroth, which is doubtless the same with Mosera, afterwards visited (De 10:6), and there identified with the vicinity of Mount Hor, where Aaron died. Here we have a fixed point, whatever may be thought of the preceding conjectural circuit, which doubtless occupied several years. We notice that Schwarz, although unable to fix these stations at this portion of the itinerary of the Israelites, believes that they must have been in this high, rocky plateau, now occupied by the tribe Azazumeh (Palestine, page 215).
From Mount Hor the next station indicated is Beneja.akan (q.v.), evidently identical with the wells (Beeroth) of the same name, mentioned subsequently in the reverse order between Kadesh and Mosera (De 10:6), and probably a general term for the well-watered region including the fountains el-Hufeiry, el-Buweirideh, el-Webeh, and el- Ghamr. At this last-named spot; having crossed the 'Arabah in a north- easterly direction, the Israelites may have pursued their route up wady el- Ghamr, avoiding their late track in that vicinity (for the same names do not reappear), and thus by a south-westerly, and then southerly course, have fallen again into wady el-Jerafeh, and followed it up to where it forks into wady el-Ghudhagidh. This last name is probably a relic of that of their next station, Hor-hagidgad, essentially the same with the Gudgodah (q.v.) afterwards visited by them (De 10:7) in retracing their steps through this region; for although the letters of the Arabic and Hebrews names are not identical (as given in Robinson's lists, Researches, 3, Appendix. 210, where the orthography was probably taken only by ear), yet they are equivalent in sound, and in both cases contain the same peculiar reduplication. Thence making a southerly circuit across the heads of several wadys running easterly from the little Jebel et-Tih, their next encampment was Jotbathah, coincident with the Jotbath of De 10:7, and there described as "a land of rivers and streams," which we may naturally locate at the intersection of the route thus indicated with the upper wady Jerafeh, where is a confluence of several branch wadys. Following up the chief of these, wady Mukutta et- Tawarik, in a south-easterly direction, they would fall in (at the station Ebronah) with the modern Haj route from Cairo, and follow it through the pass of 'Akabah to Eziongeber on the Red Sea. Thence they appear to have taken their first path through the 'Arabah to Kadesh again. The following is a table of a few of the most definite of these results:
Nu 33:30-35. De 10:6-7. CONJECTURAL SITE. (1) Moseroth. (2.) Mosera. Ain et-Taiyibeh. near the foot of Mount Hor. (2.) Bene-jaakan. (1) Beeroth of the 'Ain el- 'ebeh. children of Ja akan. (3.) Hor-hagidgad. (3.) Gudgodah. Wady el-Ghudhagidh. (4.) Jotbathah. (4.) Jotbath. Confluence of wady el-Aalibeh with el — Jerafeh.
2. The only events recorded during this period (and these are interspersed with sundry promulgations of the ceremonial law), are the execution of the offender who gathered sticks on the Sabbath (Nu 15:416), the rebellion of Korah (chapter 16), and, closely connected with it, the adjudgment of the pre-eminence to Aaron's house with their kindred tribe, solemnly conmirmed by the judicial miracle of the rod that blossomed. This seems to have been followed by a more rigid separation between Levi and the other tribes as regards the approach to the tabernacle than had been practically recognized before (27; 18:22; Nu 16:40).
We are not told how the Israelites came into possession of the city Kadesh- Barnea, as seems implied in the narrative of their second arrival there, nor who wvere its previous occupants. The probability is that these last were a remnant of the Horites, who, after their expulsion by Edom from Mount Seir SEE EDOM, may have here retained their last hold on the ter itory between Edom and the Canaanitish Amorites of "the south." Probably Israel took it by force of arms, which may have induced the attack of "Arad the Canaanite," who would then feel his border immediately threatened (Nu 33:40; Nu 21:1). This warlike exploit of Israel may perhaps be alluded to in Judges verse 4 as the occasion when Jehovah "went out of Seir" and "marched out of the field of Edom" to give his people victory. The attack of Arad, however, though with some slight success at first, only brought defeat upon himself and destruction upon his cities (21:3). We learn from 33:36 only that Israel marched without permanent halt from Eziongeber upon Kadesh. This sudden activity, after their long period of desultory and purposeless wandering, may have alarmed king Arad. The itinerary takes here another stride from Kadesh to Mount Hor. There their being occupied with the burial of Aaron may have given Arad his fancied opportunity of assaulting the rear of their march, he descending from the north whilst they also were facing southwards. In direct connection with these events we come upon a single passage in Deuteronomyr (10:6, 7), which is a scrap of narrative imbedded in Moses's recital of events at Horeb long previous. This contains a short list of names of localities, on comparing which with the itinerary we get some clew to the line of march from the region Kadesh to Ezion-geber southwards. SEE KADESH.
VII. From Kadesh to Canaan.
1. This third division of the Israelites' route is more susceptible of identification than either of the others, after having fixed by the foregoing process some important points, and in its latter portion is quite unmistakable. The Israelites evidently retraced their steps down the 'Arabah, perhaps keeping along its western side, at the farthest distance from the borders of Edom, till they arrived once more at the well-watered tract of the descendants of Jaakan, about half way between Kadesh and Mount Hor, or Mosera, to which they next crossed over, and where Aaron died (De 10:6), From this point, again avoiding the territory of the Edomites, they passed over by a considerable deflection, in a south- westerly direction, through wady el-Jerafeh to wady el-Ghudhagidh (which we have before identified with Gudgodah, or Hor-hagidgad), on their former track, around through Jotbath (De 10:7), and back again to the Red Sea at Ezion-geber and Elath (De 2:8, where, however, the two latter names occur in the reverse order). From this last point, having crossed the plain of the 'Arabah, they doubled the southern extremity of Mount Seir, through wady el-Ithm, and pitched at Zalmonah, probably in the edge of the eastern desert plain, near the junction of wady el-Amran. Pursuing thence their route northeasterly along the present road that skirts the base of Mount Seir, they next arrived at Punon, which we may locate near the intersection of their route with the Haj road from Damascus. Keeping still along the base of the Mount-Seir range, they next halted at Oboth, situated probably in the region of wady el-Ghuweit, where the first stream takes its rise, emptying into the. Dead Sea from the south. Pursuing the same road northwards that travelers at this day take along this route, they doubtless passed near Tufileh (Tophel, one of the points in their wanderings, De 1:1), and halted at Ije-abarim, probably near the wady el-Ahsy, which runs into wady el- Kurahy, the southern border of Moab. Their next stations are easily identified: the brook Zered can be no other than wady el-Deraah, the two forks of which inclose Kerak; the brook Arnon is conceded to be wady Mojeb; and Dihon-gad is evidently the modern Dhiban. From this last point they appear to have diverged considerably (apparently with a view to meet the hostile Sihon at Jahaz) to the east of the modern road, into the desert, where they passed through several unknown localities (in short stages, while waiting for the return of messengers asking leave of passage), Almon-Diblathaim, Beer, Mattanah, and Nahaliel [see each in its alphabetical place], and then returned by a slight north-westerly circuit to Bamoth (perhaps Jebel-Humeh), apparently some point opposite Pisgah, a peak (specially corresponding probably to Jebel Attarus) of the mountains inclosing the valley of the Jordan on the east. About this time the expedition was sent out against Sihon, Og, and the inhabitants of Bashan; upon the successful return of which they passed northward around the heights of Nebo (probably west of Heshbon), and so across the general range of Abarim by one of the valleys running south-westerly into the Jordan (probably wady Heshban). In this last vicinity they encamped in the plains of Moab, preparatory to crossing the Jordan opposite Jericho. (See each of the stations above-named in its alphabetical place.)
2. When we begin to take up the thread of the story at the second visit to Kadesh, we find that time had, in the interval, been busy at its destructive work, and we thus gain confirmation of the view which has been taken of such second visit. No sooner has the sacred historian told us of the return of the Israelites to Kadesh, than he records the death and burial of Miriam, and has, at no great distance of time, to narrate that of Aaron and Moses. While still at Kadesh a rising against these leaders takes place, on the alleged ground of a want of water. Water is produced from the rock at a spot called hence Meribah (strife). But Moses and Aaron displeased God in this proceeding, probably because they distrusted God's providence and applied for extraordinary i esources. On account of this displeasure, it was announced to them that they should not enter Canaan. A similar transaction has been already spoken of as taking place in Rephidim (Ex 17:1). The same name, Meribah, was occasioned in that as in this matter. Hence it has been thought that we have here two versions of the same story. But there is nothing surprising, under the circumstances, in the outbreak of discontent for want of water, which may well have happened even more than twice. The places are different, very wide apart; the time is different; and there is also the great variation arising out of the conduct and punishment of Moses and Aaron. On the whole, therefore, we judge the two records to speak of different transactions.
Relying on the ties of blood (Ge 32:8), Moses sent to ask of the Edomites a passage through their territory into Canaan. The answer was a refusal, accompanied by a display of force. We suggest as an explanation of this unnatural churlishness that perhaps the request chanced to be preferred to the native Horite "king" (probably the very Hadad last mentioned in the list in Ge 36:39) rather than to the phylarch of the Esauites contemporary with him (Ge 36:43). SEE ESAU. The Israelites, therefore, were compelled to turn their face southlward, and, making a turn around the end of the Elanitic gulf, reached Mount Hor, near Petra, on the top of which Aaron died. Finding the country bad for travelling, and their food unpleasant, Israel again broke out into rebellious discontent, and was punished by fiery serpents which bit the people, and many died, when a remedy was provided in a serpent of brass set on the flag-staff (Nu 21:4 sq.). There is near Elath a promontory known as the Ras Um Haye, "the mother of serpents," which seem to abound in the region adjacent; and, if we may suppose this the scene of that judgment, the event would thus be connected with the line of march, rounding the southern border of Mount Seir, laid down in De 2:8 as being "through the way of the plain (i.e. the 'Arabah) from Elath and from Ezion- geber," whence "turning northward," having "compassed that mountain (Mount Seir) long enough," they "passed by the way of the wilderness of Moab" (De 5:3,8). Still going northward, and probably pursuing the caravan route from Damascus, they at length reached the valley of Zered (the brook), which may be the present wady Kerek, that runs from the east into the Dead Sea. Hence they "removed and pitched on the other side of Arnon, which is in the border of Moab. between Moab and the Amoritest; (Nu 21:13). Beer (the well) was the next station, where, finding a plentiful supply of water, and being rejoiced at the prospect of the speedy termination of their journey, the people indulged in music and song, singing "the song of the well" (Nu 21:17-18). The Amorites being requested, refused to give Israel a passage through their borders, and so the nation was again compelled to proceed still in a northerly course. At length, having beaten the Amorites, and Og, king of Bashan, they reached the Jordan, and pitched their tents at a spot which lay opposite Jericho. Here Balak, king of the Moabites, alarmed at their numbers and their successful prowess, invited Balaam to curse Israel, in the hope of being thus aided to overcome them and drive them out. The intended curse proved a blessing in the prophet's mouth. While here the people gave way to the idolatrous practices of the Moabites, when a terrible punishment was inflicted, partly by a plague which took off 24,000, and partly by the avenging sword. Moses, being commanded to take the sum of the children of Israel, from twenty years upwards, found they amounted to 600,730, among whom there was not a man of those whom Moses and Aaron numbered in the wilderness of Sinai (Nu 26:47,64). Moses is now directed to ascend Alarim, to Mount Nebo, in the land of Moab, over against Jericho, in order that he might survey the land which he was not to enter on account of his having rebelled against God's commandment in the desert of Zin (Nu 27:12; De 32:49). Conformably with the divine command, Moses went up from the plains of Moab unto the mountains of Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, and there he died, at the age of 120 years: "His eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated" (Deuteronomy 34). Under his successor, Joshua, the Hebrews were forthwith led across the Jordan, and established in the Land of Promise.
Thus a journey, which they might have performed in a few months, they spent forty years in accomplishing, bringing on themselves unspeakable toil and trouble, and, in the end, death, as a punishment for their gross and sensual appetites, and their unbending indocility to the divine will (Nu 14:23; Nu 26:65). Joshua, however, gained thereby a great advantage, inasmuch as it was with an entirely new generation that he laid the foundations of the civil and religious institutions of the Mosaic polity in Palestine. This advantage may be assigned as the reason why so long a period of years was spent in the wilderness.
VIII. Literature. — Besides the incidental treatment of this subject in general works on sacred geography, the writings of travelers through the region in ques; tion, and comnentaries on the parts of Scripture relating to it, the following special treatises exist: — Laborde, Commentaire Geographique sur l' Exode et les Nombres (Paris and Leipz. 1841, fol.); Hase, Tabula Synoptica statonum Israelitarum, etc. (Norimb. 1739, fol.); Bertholdt, De rebus a Mose in AEgypto testis (Erl. 1795, 8vo); Plitt, Die 40 jahrige Reisen d. Israeliten durch d. Wuste (Cassel, 1775, 8vo); Calmet, De tranfretatione Erythkraei (in volume 1, page 214 sq. of his Dissertatiors in V.T., Wirceb. 1789, 8vo); Benzel, De transitu Israel per Mare Rubrum (in his Syntagma Dissertt. 2:137 sq.); Michaelis (ed.), Essai sur l'heure du passage des Hebreux de la Mer Rouge (Gottingen, 1758, 8vo); Zeibich, Durchgang d. Israeliten, etc. (in his Verm. Beitr. 1:42 sq.); also De dissidio in enarrando itinere Isr. per Mare (Viteb. 1752, 4to); Reimarus, Durchg. d. Israel. durchs rothe Meer (in Lessing's Beitrage, fragm. 3); Richter, Meer durch welches d. Israel. gegangen. etc. (Lpz. 1778, 8vo); Kleuker, Wanderung d. Israel. durchs rothe Meer (Frankf. 1778, 8vo); Moldenhauer, Prufung d. dritten Fragments (Hamb. 1779, 8vo); Luderwald, Durchg. d. Isr. durchs rothe Meer (Helmst. 1779, 8vo); Doderlein, Fragmente u. Antifragmente, 1:35-112; Ritter, Ueberg. d. Isr. durch d. roths Meer (in Henke's Magaz. 4:291 sq.); treatises, De transitu populi Israel. etc., in the Critici Sacr, Thes. Nov. 1:274, 292, 300; Auspitz, הִלּוּחוֹת בִּאֵר (s. 1. 1818, 8vo); Dietz, Vestimenta Israel. in deasrto (Wittenb. 1676, 4to); Dorsh, De educt. Israel ex AEgypto (Strasb. 1652, 4to); Holste, Iter Isr. ex AEg. ad Canaan (Rost. 1707, 4to); Klein, Israel's Wanderungen (Bamberg, 1839, 8vo); Raumer, Zug der Isr. zus AEgypto nach Canaan (Leipzig 1837, 8vo); Thierbach, id. (ib. eod. 8vo); also Durchg. d. Isr. durch einem Theil d s mittell. Meeres (Erfurt, 1830, 8vo); Unruh, Zug der Isr. aus AEg. nach Canaan (Langensl. 1860, 8vo); Zinck, De transitu Maris Erythraei (Augsb. 1778, 4to); Banadius, Itinerarium filiorum Israel (Antw. 1621, fol.); Lightfoot, Itinera Israelitarum (Works, 2:415); Anon. Journeys of the Children of Israel (Lond. 1832, 18mo); Seaton; (Church in the Wilderness (London, 1821, 2 vols. 12mo); Alexander, De exitu ex AEgypto (Hist. Ecclesiastes 2:1117); Bp. Lloyd, Origins of Jewish Church (in Whiston's Sacred History, 1:46); Berton, L'itineraire des Israelites (Par. 1860, 4to);
Tischendorf; De Isr. per Mare Rubrum transita (Lips. 1847, 8vo); Miss Corbaux, Exodus Papyri (London, 1855, 8vo); Krummacher, Israel's Waunderings in the Wilderness (London, 1837-8, 2 volumes, 12mo); Bram, Israel's Wanderung von Gosen bis zum Sinai (Elbeuf, 1859, 8vo); Forster, Israel in the Wilderness (Lond. 1865, 8vo); see the Stud. u. Krit. 1839, 2:397 sq.; Jour. Sac. Lit. April, 1859; April, 1860. The best map of the region where the passage of the Red Sea, was effected is Linant's, in the Atlas of the official surveys for the Suez Canal, entitled "Percement de l'lsthme de Suez" (Paris, 1855 sq.). SEE WILDERNESS.