Judges 1:33
Neither did Naphtali drive out the inhabitants of Bethshemesh, nor the inhabitants of Bethanath; but he dwelt among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land: nevertheless the inhabitants of Bethshemesh and of Bethanath became tributaries unto them.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(33) Neither did Naphtali.—See Joshua 19:32-38. Beth-shemesh.—The name means “house of the sun,” and the place was probably a great centre of Baal-worship; but this Beth-shemesh in Naphtali is not the same as Ir-shemesh (“city of the sun”) in Joshua 15:10, which was on the borders of Judah. It is the “mount of the sun” (Har-cheres) in Judges 1:35. In Isaiah 19:18, alluding to another “city of the sun” (On, i.e., Heliopolis), the prophet calls it not Is-ha-Cheres, “the city of the sun,” but Ir-ha-Heres, “the city of overthrow,” with one of those scornful plays on words of which the Jews were fond.

Beth-anath.—Nothing is known of this town. The name perhaps means “house of echo,” and some identify it with Baneas or Paneas, a place at which the echo was famous.

Nevertheless.—The tribe of Naphtali was in the same unhappy condition as that of Asher, living in the midst of a Canaanite population of superior strength to themselves. They had, however, so far succeeded as to reduce the two chief towns (out of nineteen—Joshua 19:38) to a tributary condition.

1:21-36 The people of Israel were very careless of their duty and interest. Owing to slothfulness and cowardice, they would not be at the pains to complete their conquests. It was also owing to their covetousness: they were willing to let the Canaanites live among them, that they might make advantage of them. They had not the dread and detestation of idolatry they ought to have had. The same unbelief that kept their fathers forty years out of Canaan, kept them now out of the full possession of it. Distrust of the power and promise of God deprived them of advantages, and brought them into troubles. Thus many a believer who begins well is hindered. His graces languish, his lusts revive, Satan plies him with suitable temptations, the world recovers its hold; he brings guilt into his conscience, anguish into his heart, discredit on his character, and reproach on the gospel. Though he may have sharp rebukes, and be so recovered that he does not perish, yet he will have deeply to lament his folly through his remaining days; and upon his dying bed to mourn over the opportunities of glorifying God and serving the church he has lost. We can have no fellowship with the enemies of God within us or around us, but to our hurt; therefore our only wisdom is to maintain unceasing war against them.It is an evidence of the power of the Canaanite in this portion of the land that it is not said (compare Judges 1:30) that the Canaanites dwelt among the Asherites, but that the Asherites (and Judges 1:33, Naphtali) "dwelt among the Canaanites;" nor are the Canaanites in Accho, Zidon, and the other Asherite cities, said to have become tributaries. 27-36. The same course of subjugation was carried on in the other tribes to a partial extent, and with varying success. Many of the natives, no doubt, during the progress of this exterminating war, saved themselves by flight and became, it is thought, the first colonists in Greece, Italy, and other countries. But a large portion made a stout resistance and retained possession of their old abodes in Canaan. In other cases, when the natives were vanquished, avarice led the Israelites to spare the idolaters, contrary to the express command of God; and their disobedience to His orders in this matter involved them in many troubles which this book describes. Beth-shemesh; a place differing from that Beth-shemesh, Joshua 15:10.

Neither did Naphtali drive out the inhabitants of Bethshemesh, nor the inhabitants of Bethanath,.... Of which places See Gill on Joshua 19:38,

but he dwelt among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land; in the same disgraceful manner as Asher did, owing to cowardice or sloth:

nevertheless, the inhabitants of Bethshemesh, and of Bethanath, became tributaries unto them; these two cities did at length exert themselves, and got the mastery over the Canaanites, as to make them pay tribute to them; though they ought to have expelled them, and even destroyed them, according to the command of God, but avarice prevailed over them.

Neither did Naphtali drive out the inhabitants of Bethshemesh, nor the inhabitants of Bethanath; but he dwelt among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land: nevertheless the inhabitants of Bethshemesh and of Bethanath became tributaries unto them.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
33. Naphtali] inhabited the eastern part of Upper Galilee; Jdg 1:18. On the S. the territory was bounded by Zebulun and Issachar, on the W. by Asher. It is curious that only two cities are named as having stood out against Naphtali; perhaps the list is not complete, cf. Jdg 4:2 ff. (Hazor). Beth-shemesh and Beth-anath (Joshua 19:38) i.e. ‘temple of the sun(-god),’ ‘temple of (the goddess) Anath,’ were Canaanite sanctuaries, as the names shew; their sites are unknown; possibly ‘Ainîtha, 6 m. N.W. of Ḳades (Kadesh of Naphtali), may be Beth-anath. Both names occur also in Judah, Joshua 15:10; Joshua 15:59; Jdg 1:35 n.

became tributary unto them
] had to do forced labour for them.

Judges 1:33Naphtali did not root out the inhabitants of Beth-shemesh and Beth-anath, two fortified towns, the situation of which is still unknown (see at Joshua 19:38); so that this tribe also dwelt among the Canaanites, but did not make them tributary.
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