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  • PARALLEL BIBLE - Joshua 2:1


    CHAPTERS: Joshua 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24     

    VERSES: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

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    King James Bible - Joshua 2:1

    And Joshua the son of Nun sent out of Shittim two men to spy secretly, saying, Go view the land, even Jericho. And they went, and came into an harlot's house, named Rahab, and lodged there.

    World English Bible

    Joshua the son of Nun secretly sent two
    men out of Shittim as spies, saying, "Go, view the land, including Jericho." They went and came into the house of a prostitute whose name was Rahab, and slept there.

    Douay-Rheims - Joshua 2:1

    And Josue the son of Nun sent from Setim two
    men, to spy secretly: and said to them: Go, and view the land and the city of Jericho. n They went and entered into the house of a woman that was a harlot named Rahab, and lodged with her.

    Webster's Bible Translation

    And Joshua the son of Nun sent from Shittim two
    men to spy secretly, saying, Go, view the land, even Jericho. And they went, and came into the house of a harlot, named Rahab, and lodged there.

    Original Hebrew

    וישׁלח
    7971 יהושׁע 3091 בן 1121 נון 5126 מן 4480 השׁטים 7851 שׁנים 8147 אנשׁים 376 מרגלים 7270 חרשׁ 2791 לאמר 559 לכו 1980 ראו 7200 את 853 הארץ 776 ואת 853 יריחו 3405 וילכו 1980 ויבאו 935 בית 1004 אשׁה 802 זונה 2181 ושׁמה 8034 רחב 7343 וישׁכבו 7901 שׁמה׃ 8033

    Treasury of Scriptural Knowledge

    VERSE (1) -
    Nu 25:1; 33:49

    SEV Biblia, Chapter 2:1

    Ā¶ Y Josué, hijo de Nun, envió desde Sitim dos varones espías secretamente, diciéndoles: Andad, considerad la tierra, y a Jericó. Los cuales fueron, y entraron en casa de una mujer ramera que se llamaba Rahab, y posaron allí.

    Clarke's Bible Commentary - Joshua 2:1

    Verse 1. Joshua-sent-two
    men to spy secretly] It is very likely that these spies had been sent out soon after the death of Moses, and therefore our marginal reading, had sent, is to be preferred. Secretly-It is very probable also that these were confidential persons, and that the transaction was between them and him alone. As they were to pass over the Jordan opposite to Jericho, it was necessary that they should have possession of this city, that in case of any reverses they might have no enemies in their rear. He sent the men, therefore, to see the state of the city, avenues of approach, fortifications, &c., that he might the better concert his mode of attack.

    A harlot's house] Harlots and inn-keepers seem to have been called by the same name, as no doubt many who followed this mode of life, from their exposed situation, were not the most correct in their morals. Among the ancients women generally kept houses of entertainment, and among the Egyptians and Greeks this was common. I shall subjoin a few proofs.

    HERODOTUS, speaking concerning the many differences between Egypt and other countries, and the peculiarity of their laws and customs, expressly says: en toisi ai men gunaikev agorazousi kai kaphleuousi¯ oi de andrev, katĘ oikouv eontev, ufainousi. "Among the Egyptians the women carry on all commercial concerns, and keep taverns, while the men continue at home and weave." Herod. in Euterp., c. xxxv. DIodourUS SICULUS, lib. i., s. 8, and c. xxvii., asserts that "the men were the slaves of the women in Egypt, and that it is stipulated in the marriage contract that the woman shall be the ruler of her husband, and that he shall obey her in all things." The same historian supposes that women had these high privileges among the Egyptians, to perpetuate the memory of the beneficent administration of Isis, who was afterwards deified among them.

    NYMPHodourUS, quoted by the ancient scholiast on the OEdipus Coloneus of Sophocles, accounts for these customs: he says that "Sesostris, finding the population of Egypt rapidly increasing, fearing that he should not be able to govern the people or keep them united under one head, obliged the men to assume the occupations of women, in order that they might be rendered effeminate." Sophocles confirms the account given by Herodotus; speaking of Egypt he says: - ekei gar oi men arsenev kata stegav qakousin istourgountev¯ ai de xunnomoi ta Ęxw biou trofeia prosunousĘ aei. OEdip. Col. v. 352.

    "There the men stay in their houses weaving cloth, while the women transact all business out of doors, provide food for the family," &c. It is on this passage that the scholiast cites Nymphodourus for the information given above, and which he says is found in the 13th chapter of his work "On the Customs of Barbarous Nations." That the same custom prevailed among the Greeks we have the following proof from APULEIUS: Ego vero quod primate ingressui stabulum conspicatus sum, accessi, et de QUADAM ANU CAUPONA illico percontor. - Aletam. lib. i., p. 18, Edit. Bip.

    "Having entered into the first inn I met with, and there seeing a certain OLD WOMAN, the INN-KEEPER, I inquired of her." It is very likely that women kept the places of public entertainment among the Philistines; and that it was with such a one, and not with a harlot, that Samson lodged; (see Judg. xvi. 1, &c.;) for as this custom certainly did prevail among the Egyptians, of which we have the fullest proof above, we may naturally expect it to have prevailed also among the Canaanites and Philistines, as we find from Apuleius that it did afterwards among the Greeks. Besides there is more than presumptive proof that this custom obtained among the Israelites themselves, even in the most polished period of their history; for it is much more reasonable to suppose that the two women, who came to Solomon for judgment, relative to the dead child, (1 Kings iii. 16, &c.,) were inn-keepers, than that they were harlots. It is well known that common prostitutes, from their abandoned course of life, scarcely ever have children; and the laws were so strict against such in Israel, (Deut. xxiii. 18,) that if these had been of that class it is not at all likely they would have dared to appear before Solomon. All these circumstances considered, I am fully satisfied that the term hnwz zonah in the text, which we translate harlot, should be rendered tavern or inn-keeper, or hostess. The spies who were sent out on this occasion were undoubtedly the most confidential persons that Joshua had in his host; they went on an errand of the most weighty importance, and which involved the greatest consequences. The risk they ran of losing their lives in this enterprise was extreme. Is it therefore likely that persons who could not escape apprehension and death, without the miraculous interference of God, should in despite of that law which at this time must have been so well known unto them, go into a place where they might expect, not the blessing, but the curse, of God? Is it not therefore more likely that they went rather to an inn to lodge than to a brothel? But what completes in my judgment the evidence on this point is, that this very Rahab, whom we call a harlot, was actually married to Salmon, a Jewish prince, see Matt. i. 5. And is it probable that a prince of Judah would have taken to wife such a person as our text represents Rahab to be? It is granted that the Septuagint, who are followed by Hebrews xi. 31, and James ii. 25, translate the Hebrew hnwz zonah by pornh, which generally signifies a prostitute; but it is not absolutely evident that the Septuagint used the word in this sense. Every scholar knows that the Greek word pornh comes from pernaw, to sell, as this does from peraw, to pass from one to another; transire facio a me ad alterum; DAMM. But may not this be spoken as well of the woman's goods as of her person? In this sense the Chaldee Targum understood the term, and has therefore translated it atyqdnwp atta ittetha pundekitha, a woman, a TAVERN-KEEPER. That this is the true sense many eminent men are of opinion; and the preceding arguments render it at least very probable. To all this may be added, that as our blessed Lord came through the line of this woman, it cannot be a matter of little consequence to know what moral character she sustained; as an inn-keeper she might be respectable, if not honourable; as a public prostitute she could be neither; and it is not very likely that the providence of God would have suffered a person of such a notoriously bad character to enter into the sacred line of his genealogy. It is true that the cases of Tamar and Bathsheba may be thought sufficient to destroy this argument; but whoever considers these two cases maturely will see that they differ totally from that of Rahab, if we allow the word harlot to be legitimate. As to the objection that her husband is nowhere mentioned in the account here given; it appears to me to have little weight. She might have been either a single woman or a widow; and in either of these cases there could have been no mention of a husband; or if she even had a husband it is not likely he would have been mentioned on this occasion, as the secret seems to have been kept religiously between her and the spies. If she were a married woman her husband might be included in the general terms, all that she had, and all her kindred, chap. vi. 23. But it is most likely that she was a single woman or a widow, who got her bread honestly by keeping a house of entertainment for strangers. See below.


    John Gill's Bible Commentary

    Ver. 1. And Joshua the son of Nun sent out of Shittim two men , etc.] Or “had sent” f15 ; for this was done before the above order to depart: it is a tradition of the Jews f16 , that they were Caleb and Phinehas; but they were not young men, as in ( Joshua 6:23); especially the former; nor is it probable that men of such rank and figure should be sent, but rather meaner persons; yet such as were men of good sense and abilities, and capable of conducting such an affair they were sent about, as well as men of probity and faithfulness; two good men, Kimchi says they were, and not as they that went on the mission of Moses; these were sent from Shittim, the same with Abelshittim, in the plains of Moab, where Israel now lay encamped, ( Numbers 33:49), which Josephus calls Abila, and says it was sixty furlongs, or seven miles and better, from Jordan: to spy secretly ; or “silently” f18 ; not so much with respect to the inhabitants of the land, for it is supposed in all spies, that they do their business in the most private and secret manner, so as not to be discovered by the inhabitants, whose land they are sent to spy; but with respect to the children of Israel, that they might know nothing of it, lest they should be discouraged, thinking that Joshua was in some fear of the Canaanites, and under some distrust of the promise of God to give the land to them: the word for “smiths”, and also for persons deaf and dumb, coming from the same root, have furnished the Jewish writers with various conceits, as that these spies went in the habit of smiths with the instruments of their business in their hands; or acted as deaf and dumb persons, and so as incapable of giving an account of themselves, or of answering to any questions put to them, should they be taken up and examined; their commentators in general take notice of this: saying, go view the land, even Jericho ; especially Jericho, so Noldius f19 ; the land in general, and Jericho in particular, because it was a great city, as Kimchi notes; of this city, (see Gill on “ Luke 19:4”). Whether it had its name from the sweetsmelling balsam which grew in plenty about it, or from the form of it, being that of an half moon, is not certain, Strabo says of it, that here was a paradise of balsam, an aromatic, and that it was surrounded with hills in a plain, which bent to it like an amphitheatre. They were not sent to spy the land, as the spies in the times of Moses, to see what sort of land it was, and what sort of people dwelt in it; but to reconnoitre it, to know where it was best to lead the people at first, and encamp; and particularly to observe the passes and avenues leading to Jericho, the first city in it, nearest to them, of importance. Ben Gersom thinks it was to spy or pick out the thoughts of the inhabitants of the land, what apprehensions they had of the people of Israel, whether disheartened and dispirited at their near approach, and what were their intentions, resolutions, and preparations to act against them, offensively, or defensively; and which seems not amiss, since this was the chief information they got, and which they reported to Joshua upon their return; though Abarbinel objects to it as a thing impossible: and they went, and came into a harlot’s house, named Rahab ; they went from Shittim, and crossed the river Jordan, by swimming or fording, and came to Jericho; which, as Josephus says, was fifty furlongs, or seven miles and a half, from Jordan; and they went into a harlot’s house, not purposely for that reason, because it was such an one, but so it proved eventually; though the Targum of Jonathan says it was the house of a woman, an innkeeper or victualler; for Jarchi, Kimchi, and Ben Melech, interpret the word it uses of a seller of food f22 ; and if so, it furnishes out a reason why they turned in thither, where they might expect to have food and lodging; though the Jews commonly take her to be a harlot; and generally speaking, in those times and countries, such as kept public houses were prostitutes; and there are some circumstances which seem to confirm this in the context; and so the Greek version calls her, and is the character given of her in the New Testament: her name was Rahab, of whom the Jews have this tradition f23 , that she was ten years of age when Israel came out of Egypt; that she played the harlot the forty years they were in the wilderness, became the wife of Joshua, who had daughters by her, from whom came eight prophets, Jeremiah, Hilkiah, Maasia, Hanameel, Shallum, Baruch, the son of Neriah, Ezekiel, the son of Buzi, and some say Huldah the prophetess; but the truth is, she married Salmon, a prince of the tribe of Judah, (see Gill on “ Matthew 1:5”): and lodged there ; that is, they went thither in order to lodge.

    Matthew Henry Commentary

    Verses 1-7 -
    Faith in God's promises ought not to do away, but to encourage ou diligence in the use of proper means. The providence of God directe the spies to the house of Rahab. God knew where there was one tha would be true to them, though they did not. Rahab appears to have bee an innkeeper; and if she had formerly been one of bad life, which i doubtful, she had left her evil courses. That which seems to us mos accidental, is often overruled by the Divine providence to serve grea ends. It was by faith that Rahab received those with peace, agains whom her king and country had war. We are sure this was a good work; it is so spoken of by the apostle, Jas 2:25; and she did it by faith, suc a faith as set her above the fear of man. Those only are tru believers, who find in their hearts to venture for God; they take his people for their people, and cast in their lot among them. The spie were led by the special providence of God, and Rahab entertained the out of regard to Israel and Israel's God, and not for lucre or for an evil purpose. Though excuses may be offered for the guilt of Rahab' falsehood, it seems best to admit nothing which tends to explain i away. Her views of the Divine law must have been very dim: a falsehoo like this, told by those who enjoy the light of revelation, whateve the motive, would deserve heavy censure.


    Original Hebrew

    וישׁלח 7971 יהושׁע 3091 בן 1121 נון 5126 מן 4480 השׁטים 7851 שׁנים 8147 אנשׁים 376 מרגלים 7270 חרשׁ 2791 לאמר 559 לכו 1980 ראו 7200 את 853 הארץ 776 ואת 853 יריחו 3405 וילכו 1980 ויבאו 935 בית 1004 אשׁה 802 זונה 2181 ושׁמה 8034 רחב 7343 וישׁכבו 7901 שׁמה׃ 8033


    CHAPTERS: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
    VERSES: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

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