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Dictionaries :: Shechem

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Below are articles from the following dictionary:
Easton's Bible Dictionary

Shechem:

shoulder. (1.) The son of Hamor the Hivite (Gen 33:19; 34).

(2.) A descendant of Manasseh (Num 26:31; Jos 17:2).

(3.) A city in Samaria (Gen 33:18), called also Sichem (12:6), Sychem (Act 7:16). It stood in the narrow sheltered valley between Ebal on the north and Gerizim on the south, these mountains at their base being only some 500 yards apart. Here Abraham pitched his tent and built his first altar in the Promised Land, and received the first divine promise (Gen 12:6,7). Here also Jacob "bought a parcel of a field at the hands of the children of Hamor" after his return from Mesopotamia, and settled with his household, which he purged from idolatry by burying the teraphim of his followers under an oak tree, which was afterwards called "the oak of the sorcerer" (Gen 33:19; 35:4; Jdg 9:37). (See MEONENIM.) Here too, after a while, he dug a well, which bears his name to this day (Jhn 4:5,39-42). To Shechem Joshua gathered all Israel "before God," and delivered to them his second parting address (Jos 24:1-15). He "made a covenant with the people that day" at the very place where, on first entering the land, they had responded to the law from Ebal and Gerizim (Jos 24:25), the terms of which were recorded "in the book of the law of God", i.e., in the roll of the law of Moses; and in memory of this solemn transaction a great stone was set up "under an oak" (Gen 28:18; 31:44-48; Exd 24:4; Jos 4:3,8,9), possibly the old "oak of Moreh," as a silent witness of the transaction to all coming time.

Shechem became one of the cities of refuge, the central city of refuge for Western Palestine (Jos 20:7), and here the bones of Joseph were buried (24:32). Rehoboam was appointed king in Shechem (1Ki 12:1,19), but Jeroboam afterwards took up his residence here. This city is mentioned in connection with our Lord's conversation with the woman of Samaria (Jhn 4:5); and thus, remaining as it does to the present day, it is one of the oldest cities of the world. It is the modern Nablus, a contraction for Neapolis, the name given to it by Vespasian. It lies about a mile and a half up the valley on its southern slope, and on the north of Gerizim, which rises about 1,100 feet above it, and is about 34 miles north of Jerusalem. It contains about 10,000 inhabitants, of whom about 160 are Samaritans and 100 Jews, the rest being Christians and Mohammedans.

The site of Shechem is said to be of unrivalled beauty. Stanley says it is "the most beautiful, perhaps the only very beautiful, spot in Central Palestine."

Gaza, near Shechem, only mentioned 1Ch 7:28, has entirely disappeared. It was destroyed at the time of the Conquest, and its place was taken by Shechem. (See SYCHAR.)

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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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