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Dictionaries :: Hebron

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Easton's Bible Dictionary

Hebron:

a community; alliance. (1.) A city in the south end of the valley of Eshcol, about midway between Jerusalem and Beersheba, from which it is distant about 20 miles in a straight line. It was built "seven years before Zoan in Egypt" (Gen 13:18; Num 13:22). It still exists under the same name, and is one of the most ancient cities in the world. Its earlier name was Kirjath-arba (Gen 23:2; Jos 14:15; 15:3). But "Hebron would appear to have been the original name of the city, and it was not till after Abraham's stay there that it received the name Kirjath-arba, who [i.e., Arba] was not the founder but the conqueror of the city, having led thither the tribe of the Anakim, to which he belonged. It retained this name till it came into the possession of Caleb, when the Israelites restored the original name Hebron" (Keil, Com.). The name of this city does not occur in any of the prophets or in the New Testament. It is found about forty times in the Old. It was the favorite home of Abraham. Here he pitched his tent under the oaks of Mamre, by which name it came afterwards to be known; and here Sarah died, and was buried in the cave of Machpelah (Gen 23:17-20), which he bought from Ephron the Hittite. From this place the patriarch departed for Egypt by way of Beersheba (37:14; 46:1). It was taken by Joshua and given to Caleb (Jos 10:36,37; 12:10; 14:13). It became a Levitical city and a city of refuge (20:7; 21:11). When David became king of Judah this was his royal residence, and he resided here for seven and a half years (2Sa 5:5); and here he was anointed as king over all Israel (2Sa 2:1-4,11; 1Ki 2:11). It became the residence also of the rebellious Absalom (2Sa 15:10), who probably expected to find his chief support in the tribe of Judah, now called el-Khulil.

In one part of the modern city is a great mosque, which is built over the grave of Machpelah. The first European who was permitted to enter this mosque was the Prince of Wales in 1862. It was also visited by the Marquis of Bute in 1866, and by the late Emperor Frederick of Germany (then Crown-Prince of Prussia) in 1869.

One of the largest oaks in Palestine is found in the valley of Eshcol, about 3 miles north of the town. It is supposed by some to be the tree under which Abraham pitched his tent, and is called "Abraham's oak." (See OAK.)

(2.) The third son of Kohath the Levite (Exd 6:18; 1Ch 6:2,18).

(3.) 1Ch 2:42, 43.

(4.) A town in the north border of Asher (Jos 19:28).

Hitchcock's Bible Names Dictionary

Hebron:

society; friendship

Smith's Bible Dictionary

Hebron:

(alliance).

(1.) The third son of Kohath, who was the second son of Levi (Exodus 6:18; Numbers 3:19; 1 Chronicles 6:2; 6:18; 23:12). He was the founder of a family of Hebronites (Numbers 3:27; 26:58; 1 Chronicles 26:23; 26:30-31) or Bene‐Hebron (1 Chronicles 15:9; 23:19).

(2.) A city of Judah (Joshua 15:54) situated among the mountains (Joshua 20:7). 20 Roman miles south of Jerusalem, and the same distance north of Beersheba. Hebron is one of the most ancient cities in the world still existing; and in this respect it is the rival of Damascus. It was a well‐known town when Abraham entered Canaan, 3,800 years ago (Genesis 13:18). Its original name was Kirjath‐arba (Judges 1:10). "the city of Arba;" so called from Arba the father of Anak (Joshua 15:13-14; 21:13). Sarah died at Hebron; and Abraham then bought from Ephron the Hittite the field and cave of Machpelah, to serve as a family tomb (Genesis 23:2-20). The cave is still there, and the massive walls of the Haram or mosque, within which it lies, form the most remarkable object in the whole city. Abraham is called by Mohammedans el‐Khulil, "the Friend," i.e. of God, and this is the modern name of Hebron. Hebron now contains about 5,000 inhabitants, of whom some fifty families are Jews. It is picturesquely situated in a narrow valley, surrounded by rocky hills. The valley runs from north to south; and the main quarter of the town, surmounted by the lofty walls of the venerable Haram, lies partly on the eastern slope (Genesis 37:14 compare Genesis 23:19). About a mile from the town, up the valley, is one of the largest oak trees in Palestine. This, say some, is the very tree beneath which Abraham pitched his tent, and it still bears the name of the patriarch.

(3.) One of the towns in the territory of Asher (Joshua 19:28) probably Ebdon or Abdom.

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The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.


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