Deuteronomy 2:31-3:14 (21 p'sukim)
Deuteronomy 2:31-3:14 Tree of Life Version (TLV)
31 “Adonai said to me, ‘See, I have begun to give Sihon and his land over to you—begin to take possession in order to take hold of his land.’
32 “Then Sihon came out against us—he and all his people—to battle at Jahaz. 33 Adonai our God gave him over to us, and we struck him down along with his sons and all his people. 34 We captured all his cities at that time, and utterly put under a ban of judgment every city—men, women and children. We left no survivor. 35 We took only the livestock as plunder for ourselves, as the spoils of the cities we captured. 36 From Aroer which is on the edge of the Wadi Arnon and the city by the wadi, all the way up to the Gilead, there was not a town too high for us. Adonai our God gave everything over to us. 37 Only you did not come near the land of the sons of Ammon—all along the Wadi Jabbok and the cities of the hill country and wherever Adonai our God had commanded.
3 “Next we turned and went up the way to the Bashan. King Og of the Bashan came out against us—he and all his people—for battle at Edrei. 2 But Adonai said to me, ‘Do not fear him, for I have handed him over and all his people and his land. You will do to him as you did to Sihon king of the Amorites, who lived in Heshbon.’
3 “So Adonai our God also handed over King Og of the Bashan and all his people, and we struck him down until no survivor was left. 4 We captured all his cities at that time—there was not a town that we did not take from them—sixty cities, the whole region of Argob, the kingdom of Og in the Bashan. 5 All these were cities fortified with high walls, gates and bars, in addition to a great many unwalled towns. 6 We utterly destroyed them, just as we did to Sihon king of Heshbon, utterly destroying every city—men, women and children. 7 But all the livestock and the spoils of the cities we took as plunder for ourselves.
8 “So at that time we took from the hand of the two kings of the Amorites the land across the Jordan, from the Wadi Arnon to Mount Hermon. 9 (Sidonians call Hermon Sirion, and the Amorites call it Senir.) 10 We took all the cities of the plain and all the Gilead and all the Bashan, as far as Salcah and Edrei, cities of the kingdom of Og in the Bashan. 11 (For only King Og of the Bashan survived from the remnant of the Rephaim. In fact, his bed was made of iron—is it not in Rabbah of the Ammonites? Nine cubits was its length and four cubits its width, according to the cubit of a man.)
Possession East of Jordan
12 “This land we took in possession at that time—from Aroer by the Wadi Arnon and half the hill country of the Gilead and its cities—I gave to the Reubenites and Gadites. 13 The rest of the Gilead and all of the Bashan, the kingdom of Og, I gave to the half-tribe of Manasseh—all the region of the Argob. (All the Bashan is called the land of Rephaim. 14 Jair son of Manasseh took all the region of Argob, as far as the border of the Geshurites and the Maachathites. He called them—the Bashan—after his own name, Havvoth-jair’s Villages, as it is the case to this day.)
31 כָּל־הַפְּקֻדִים֙ לְמַ֣חֲנֵה דָ֔ן מְאַ֣ת אֶ֗לֶף וְשִׁבְעָ֧ה וַחֲמִשִּׁ֛ים אֶ֖לֶף וְשֵׁ֣שׁ מֵא֑וֹת לָאַחֲרֹנָ֥ה יִסְע֖וּ לְדִגְלֵיהֶֽם׃ פ
32 אֵ֛לֶּה פְּקוּדֵ֥י בְנֵֽי־יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל לְבֵ֣ית אֲבֹתָ֑ם כָּל־פְּקוּדֵ֤י הַֽמַּחֲנֹת֙ לְצִבְאֹתָ֔ם שֵׁשׁ־מֵא֥וֹת אֶ֙לֶף֙ וּשְׁלֹ֣שֶׁת אֲלָפִ֔ים וַחֲמֵ֥שׁ מֵא֖וֹת וַחֲמִשִּֽׁים׃
33 וְהַ֨לְוִיִּ֔ם לֹ֣א הָתְפָּקְד֔וּ בְּת֖וֹךְ בְּנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֑ל כַּאֲשֶׁ֛ר צִוָּ֥ה יְהוָ֖ה אֶת־מֹשֶֽׁה׃
34 וַֽיַּעֲשׂ֖וּ בְּנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֑ל כְּ֠כֹל אֲשֶׁר־צִוָּ֨ה יְהוָ֜ה אֶת־מֹשֶׁ֗ה כֵּֽן־חָנ֤וּ לְדִגְלֵיהֶם֙ וְכֵ֣ן נָסָ֔עוּ אִ֥ישׁ לְמִשְׁפְּחֹתָ֖יו עַל־בֵּ֥ית אֲבֹתָֽיו׃
3 וְאֵ֛לֶּה תּוֹלְדֹ֥ת אַהֲרֹ֖ן וּמֹשֶׁ֑ה בְּי֗וֹם דִּבֶּ֧ר יְהוָ֛ה אֶת־מֹשֶׁ֖ה בְּהַ֥ר סִינָֽי׃
2 וְאֵ֛לֶּה שְׁמ֥וֹת בְּֽנֵי־אַהֲרֹ֖ן הַבְּכ֣וֹר׀ נָדָ֑ב וַאֲבִיה֕וּא אֶלְעָזָ֖ר וְאִיתָמָֽר׃
3 אֵ֗לֶּה שְׁמוֹת֙ בְּנֵ֣י אַהֲרֹ֔ן הַכֹּהֲנִ֖ים הַמְּשֻׁחִ֑ים אֲשֶׁר־מִלֵּ֥א יָדָ֖ם לְכַהֵֽן׃
4 וַיָּ֣מָת נָדָ֣ב וַאֲבִיה֣וּא לִפְנֵ֣י יְהוָ֡ה בְּֽהַקְרִבָם֩ אֵ֨שׁ זָרָ֜ה לִפְנֵ֤י יְהוָה֙ בְּמִדְבַּ֣ר סִינַ֔י וּבָנִ֖ים לֹא־הָי֣וּ לָהֶ֑ם וַיְכַהֵ֤ן אֶלְעָזָר֙ וְאִ֣יתָמָ֔ר עַל־פְּנֵ֖י אַהֲרֹ֥ן אֲבִיהֶֽם׃ פ
5 וַיְדַבֵּ֥ר יְהוָ֖ה אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֥ה לֵּאמֹֽר׃
6 הַקְרֵב֙ אֶת־מַטֵּ֣ה לֵוִ֔י וְֽהַעֲמַדְתָּ֣ אֹת֔וֹ לִפְנֵ֖י אַהֲרֹ֣ן הַכֹּהֵ֑ן וְשֵׁרְת֖וּ אֹתֽוֹ׃
7 וְשָׁמְר֣וּ אֶת־מִשְׁמַרְתּ֗וֹ וְאֶת־מִשְׁמֶ֙רֶת֙ כָּל־הָ֣עֵדָ֔ה לִפְנֵ֖י אֹ֣הֶל מוֹעֵ֑ד לַעֲבֹ֖ד אֶת־עֲבֹדַ֥ת הַמִּשְׁכָּֽן׃
8 וְשָׁמְר֗וּ אֶֽת־כָּל־כְּלֵי֙ אֹ֣הֶל מוֹעֵ֔ד וְאֶת־מִשְׁמֶ֖רֶת בְּנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֑ל לַעֲבֹ֖ד אֶת־עֲבֹדַ֥ת הַמִּשְׁכָּֽן׃
9 וְנָתַתָּה֙ אֶת־הַלְוִיִּ֔ם לְאַהֲרֹ֖ן וּלְבָנָ֑יו נְתוּנִ֨ם נְתוּנִ֥ם הֵ֙מָּה֙ ל֔וֹ מֵאֵ֖ת בְּנֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵֽל׃
10 וְאֶת־אַהֲרֹ֤ן וְאֶת־בָּנָיו֙ תִּפְקֹ֔ד וְשָׁמְר֖וּ אֶת־כְּהֻנָּתָ֑ם וְהַזָּ֥ר הַקָּרֵ֖ב יוּמָֽת׃ פ
11 וַיְדַבֵּ֥ר יְהוָ֖ה אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֥ה לֵּאמֹֽר׃
12 וַאֲנִ֞י הִנֵּ֧ה לָקַ֣חְתִּי אֶת־הַלְוִיִּ֗ם מִתּוֹךְ֙ בְּנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל תַּ֧חַת כָּל־בְּכ֛וֹר פֶּ֥טֶר רֶ֖חֶם מִבְּנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֑ל וְהָ֥יוּ לִ֖י הַלְוִיִּֽם׃
13 כִּ֣י לִי֮ כָּל־בְּכוֹר֒ בְּיוֹם֩ הַכֹּתִ֨י כָל־בְּכ֜וֹר בְּאֶ֣רֶץ מִצְרַ֗יִם הִקְדַּ֨שְׁתִּי לִ֤י כָל־בְּכוֹר֙ בְּיִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל מֵאָדָ֖ם עַד־בְּהֵמָ֑ה לִ֥י יִהְי֖וּ אֲנִ֥י יְהוָֽה׃ ס
14 וַיְדַבֵּ֤ר יְהוָה֙ אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֔ה בְּמִדְבַּ֥ר סִינַ֖י לֵאמֹֽר׃
Yesterday, I discussed the issue of Biblical morality and also the dispossession of lands and property from the Pre-Canaanite nations, I also dispelled any notions that the "Giants" that lived prior to the Flood of Noah somehow "survived".
We come now to today's pesukim and again we are confronted with more tales of "Giants", and Og King of Bashan is mentioned along with his bed, see pesuk 11 of ch. 3.
According to Delitzsch, "Even in Abraham's time, the giant tribe of Rephaim was living in Bashan (Genesis 14:5). But out of the remnant of these, king Og, whom the Israelites defeated and slew, was the only one left. For the purpose of recalling the greatness of the grace of God that had been manifested in that victory, and not merely to establish the credibility of the statements concerning the size of Og (“just as things belonging to an age that has long passed away are shown to be credible by their remains,” Spinoza , etc.), Moses points to the iron bed of this king, which was still in Rabbath-Ammon, and was nine cubits long and four broad, “after the cubit of a man,” i.e., the ordinary cubit in common use (see the analogous expression, “a man's pen,” Isaiah 8:1). הלה , for הלא , synonymous with הנּה . There is nothing to amazing in the size of the bed or bedstead given here. The ordinary Hebrew cubit was only a foot and a half, probably only eighteen Dresden inches (see my Archäologie , ii. p. 126, Anm. 4). Now a bed is always larger than the man who sleeps in it. But in this case Clericus fancies that Og “intentionally exceeded the necessary size, in order that posterity might be led to draw more magnificent conclusions from the size of the bed, as to the stature of the man who was accustomed to sleep in it.” He also refers to the analogous case of Alexander the Great, of whom Diod. Sic. (xvii. 95) affirms, that whenever he was obliged to halt on his march to India, he made colossal arrangements of all kinds, causing, among other things, two couches to be prepared in the tents for every foot-soldier, each five cubits long, and two stalls for every horseman, twice as large as the ordinary size, “to represent a camp of heroes, and leave striking memorials behind for the inhabitants of the land, of gigantic men and their supernatural strength.” With a similar intention Og may also have left behind him a gigantic bed as a memorial of his superhuman greatness, on the occasion of some expedition of his against the Ammonites; and this bed may have been preserved in their capital as a proof of the greatness of their foe.
(Note: “It will often be found, that very tall people are disposed to make themselves appear even taller than they actually are” (Hengstenberg, Diss. ii. p. 201). Moreover, there are still giants who are eight feet high and upwards. “According to the N. Preuss. Zeit. of 1857, there came a man to Berlin 8 feet 4 inches high, and possibly still growing, as he was only twenty years old; and he was said to have a great-uncle who was nine inches taller” ( Schultz ).)
Moses might then refer to this gigantic bed of Og, which was known to the Israelites; and there is no reason for resorting to the improbable conjecture, that the Ammonites had taken possession of a bed of king Og upon some expedition against the Amorites, and had carried it off as a trophy to their capital.
(Note: There is still less probability in the conjecture of J. D. Michaelis, Vater, Winer, and others, that Og's iron bed was a sarcophagus of basalt, such as are still frequently met with in those regions, as much as 9 feet long and 3 1/2 feet broad, or even as much as 12 feet long and 6 feet in breadth and height (vid., Burckhardt , pp. 220, 246; Robinson, iii. p. 385; Seetzen , i. pp. 355, 360); and the still further assumption, that the corpse of the fallen king was taken to Rabbah, and there interred in a royal way, is altogether improbable.)"
I happen to agree with Delitzsch.
Have a good Shabbat.