And they gave out of the tribe of the children of Judah, and out of the tribe of the children of Simeon, these cities which are here mentioned by name.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Joshua 21:9-10. Judah and Simeon — These are mentioned together, because the cities of Simeon lay within Judah’s portion. Families — That is, of the family, the plural number being put for the singular which is not unusual.
9-40. they gave … these cities which are here mentioned by name—It was overruled by the unerring providence of the Divine Lawgiver that the cities of the priests lay within the territories of Judah and Benjamin. This was a provision, the admirable wisdom and propriety of which were fully manifested on the schism that took place in the reign of Rehoboam.Judah and
Simeon are mentioned together, because the cities of Simeon lay within Judah’s portion.
and out of the tribe of the children of Simeon; which is joined with that of Judah, because the cities of it lay within it, Joshua 19:1,
these cities which are here mentioned by name; Joshua 21:13.And they gave out of the tribe of the children of Judah, and out of the tribe of the children of Simeon, these cities which are here mentioned by name.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
9. And they gave] We have now first a list of the cities of the priests of the line of Aaron.
out of the tribe of the children of Judah] The list now given divides itself into two parts:
(a) The nine cities which the sons of Aaron received in the country of Simeon and Judah (Joshua 21:9-16);
(b) The four cities which they received in the country of Benjamin (Joshua 21:17-19).Numbers 35:1-8, together with the necessary fields as pasturage for their cattle. The setting apart of the cities of refuge took place before the appointment of the Levitical towns, because the Lord had given commandment through Moses in Numbers 35:6, that they were to give to the Levites the six cities of refuge, and forty-two cities besides, i.e., forty-eight cities in all. From the introductory statement in Joshua 21:1, Joshua 21:2, that the heads of the fathers (see Exodus 6:14, Exodus 6:25) of the Levitical families reminded the distribution committee at Shiloh of the command of God that had been issued through Moses, that towns were to be given them to dwell in, we cannot infer, as Calvin has done, that the Levites had been forgotten, till they came and asserted their claims. All that is stated in these words is, "that when the business had reached that point, they approached the dividers of the land in the common name of the members of their tribe, to receive by lot the cities appointed for them. They simply expressed the commands of God, and said in so many words, that they had been deputed by the Levites generally to draw lots for those forty-eight cities with their suburbs, which had been appointed for that tribe" (Masius). The clause appended to Shiloh, "in the land of Canaan," points to the instructions in Numbers 34:29 and Numbers 35:10, to give the children of Israel their inheritance in the land of Canaan.
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