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even from the predecessor of Balac-Peor then reigning. From Diblathaim, Moses sent messengers to Sehon king of the Amorites, to desire a passage through his country; which though he knew would be denied him, yet he desired to give a reason to the neighbour nations of the war he undertook. And though Edom had refused him as Sehon did, yet he had no warrant from God to enforce him. Moses also in sending messengers to Sehon observed the same precept, which he left to his posterity and successors for a law of the war, namely in Deut. xx. 10,11,12. in these words; When thou comest near unto a city to fight against it, thou shalt offer it peace, which if it do accept of and open unto thee, then let all the people found therein be tributaries unto thee, and serve thee; but if it refuse, &c. thou shalt smite all the males thereof with the edge of the sword. Which ordinance all commanders of armies have observed to this day, or ought to have done.
Of the book of the battles of the Lord mentioned in this story, and
of other books mentioned in scripture which are lost. NOW concerning the war between Israel and Sehon, Moses seemeth to refer a great part of this story to that book, entitled, m Liber bellorum Domini, “ The book of “ God's battles ;" and therefore passeth over many encounters, and other things memorable, with greater brevity in this place. His words, after the Geneva translation, are these; Wherefore it shall be spoken in the book of the battles of the Lord, what things he did in the Red sea and in the rivers of Arnon. The Vulgar copy differeth not in sense from this; but the Greek Septuagint vary. For the Greek writes it to this effect; n For thus it is said in the book ; The war of the Lord hath burnt, or inflamed, Zoob, and the brooks of Arnon. Junius, for the Red sea, which is in the Genevan and Vulgar edition, names the region of Suph, a country bordering the Dead sea towards the east, as he conjectureth. The text he readeth thus : Idcirco dici solet in recensione bellorum Jehovæ, contra Vahebum in regione Suph: et contra flumina, flumina Arnonis ; “ There“ fore it is spoken in repeating of the battles of Jehovah,
m Numb. xxi. 14.
chap. 10. sect. 4. g. 2. and of the
against Vaheb in the country of Suph; and against the
rivers, the rivers of Arnon.” In which words he understands, that amongst the wars which the Lord disposed for the good of the PJsraelites, there was in those times a famous memory in the mouth of most men, concerning the war of Sehon against Vaheb the king of the Moabites, and of his winning the country near Arnon, out of the possession of the Moabites. For this Vaheb was the immediate predecessor of Balak, who lived with Moses ; though it be written that this Balak was the son of Zippor, and not of Vaheb. For it seems (as it is plain in the succession of the 9 Edomites) that these kingdoms were elective, and not successive. And as Junius in this translation understandeth no special book of the battles of the Lord; so others, as Vatablus in his annotations, doubt whether in this place any special book be meant; and if any, whether it be not a prediction of wars in future ages to be waged in these places, and to be written in the book of Judges. Siracides, ch. xlvi. tells us plainly that those battles of the Lord were fought by Joshua. Who was there, saith he, before him, like to him? for he fought the battles of the Lord. But seeing the histories of the scripture elsewhere often pass over matters of great weight in few words, referring the reader to other books written of the same matter at large; therefore it seemeth probable, that such a book as this there was, wherein the several victories by Israel obtained, and also victories of other kings, making way for the good of the Is raelites, were particularly and largely written. And that the same should now be wanting, it is not strange, seeing so many
other volumes, filled with divine discourse, have perished in the long race of time, or have been destroyed by the ignorant and malicious heathen magistrate. For the books of Henoch, howsoever they have been in later ages corrupted, and therefore now suspected, are remembered in an epistle of Thaddæus, and cited by Origen Tepi ápxwv, and by Tertullian.
91 Chron. i.
p Numb. xxi. 26.
That work also of the patriarch Abraham, of formation, which others bestow on Rabbi Achiba, is no where found. The books remembered by Joshua, chap. x. ver. 13. and in the second of Samuel, chap. i. ver. 18. called the Book of Jasher, or Justorum, is also lost; wherein the stay of the sun and moon in the midst of the heavens is recorded, and how they stood still, till Israel had avenged themselves of their enemies; out of which also David took the precept of teaching the children of Juda to exercise their bows against their enemies.
Some think this to be the book of eternal predestination, in which the just are written, according to Psalm lxix. 28. where it is said, Let them be put out of the book of life, neither let them be written with the righteous. "Jerome thinks, that David by this book understood those of Samuel; Rabbi Solomon, that the books of the law are thereby meant, in which the acts of the just Abraham, of Isaac, Jacob, and Moses, are written; others, that it was the book of Exodus; others, as Theodoretus, that it was a commentary upon Joshua by an unknown author.
The book of Chozai, concerning Manasseh, remembered in the second of Chron. xxxiii. 18, 19. Of this book, also lost, s Jerome conceives that the prophet Isaiah was the author.
The same mischance came as well to the story of Solomon, written by Ahia Silonites, who met with Jeroboam, and foretold him of his obtaining the kingdom of Israel from the son of Solomon; as to the books of Nathan the prophet, and to those of Jeedo the seer, remembered in the second of Chron. ix. 29. with these have the books of Shemaiah and of Iddo, remembered in the second of Chron. xi. 15. perished; and that of Jehu the son of Hanani, of the actsof Jehoshaphat, cited in the second of Chron. xx. 34. Also
r Hieron. in quæst. super lib. Regum. s Hieron. in anuot. in Paralip.
that book of Solomon, which the Hebrews write Hascirim, of 5000 verses, of which that part called Canticum Canticorum only remaineth, 1 Kings iv. 32. and with this divers other of Solomon's works have perished, as his book of the natures of trees, plants, beasts, fishes, &c. 1 Kings iv. 33. with the rest remembered by Origen, Josephus, Jerome, Cedrenus, Ciccus Asculanus, Picus Mirandula, and others.
Of these and other books many were consumed with the same fire wherewith Nebuchadnezzar burnt the temple of Jerusalem. But let us return thither where we left.
SECT. VIII. Of Moses's sparing the issue of Lot ; and of the giants in those
parts; and of Sehon and Og. WHEN Moses had past Arnon, he encamped on the other side thereof at Abarim, opposite to the city of Nebo, leaving the city of Midian on his left hand, and attempting nothing upon the Moabites on that side. For Moab did at this time inhabit on the south side of Arnon, having lost all his ancient and best territory, which was now in the possession of Sehon the Amorite. For Moses was commanded by God not to molest Moab, neither to provoke them to battle, God having given that land to the children of Lot ; the same which was anciently possessed by the Emims, who were men of great stature, and comparable to those giants called Anakims, or the sons of Anak.
God also commanded Moses to spare the Ammonites, because they likewise were descended of Lot; who had expelled from thence those giants which the Ammonites called Zamzummims. For it seemeth that all that part, especially to the east of Jordan, even to the desert of Arabia, as well on the west as on the east side of the mountains of Gilead, was inhabited by giants. And in the plantation of the land promised, the Israelites did not at any time pass those mountains to the east of Basan, but left their country to them, as in the description following is made manifest. We find also, that as there were many giants both before and after
* Deut. ii. 9-12.
the flood; so these nations, which anciently inhabited both the border of Canaan, and the land itself, had among them many families of giant-like men. For the Anakims dwelt in Hebron, which sometimes was called the city of Arbah, which Arbah in u Joshua is called the father of the Anakims, and the greatest man of the Anakims. There had also been giants in the land of the Moabites, called Emims; and their chief city was Aroer or Ar, near the river of Ar
To the giants of the Rephaims, the Ammonites gave the name of Zamzummims, which were of the same ancient Canaanites; and their chief city was Rabba, afterwards Philadelphia. They were also called Zuzims, which is as much to say, as viri robusti, horrendique gigantes; “strong “men, and fearful giants," who inhabited other cities of Ham, or Hom, in the same province, and not far to the north of Aroer.
Now Moses having passed Arnon, and being encamped at Abarim, and having (as before) sent to Sehon, as he had done to Edom, to pray a passage through his country, was denied it. For Sehon being made proud by his former conquest upon Vaheb the Moabite, which nation the Amorites esteemed but as strangers and usurpers, (themselves being of the sons of Canaan, and the Moabites of Lot,) refused to grant Israel any entrance that way, and withal prepared to encounter Moses with as much speed as he could, because Moses encamped in the country of his new conquests, to wit, the plains of Moab, the forty-second and last mansion ; which Moses wasted with the multitude of his people and cattle. Towards him therefore hasting himself, they encountered each other at Jahaz; where Sehon with his children and people were broken and discomfited; and the victory so pursued by Moses, as few or none of the Amorites escaped. He also slaughtered all the women and children of the Amorites, which he found in Essebon, and all the other cities, villages, or fields, they being of the race of Canaan, as those of Basan also were ; and descended of Emoreus, or Amoreus; for Moses calleth the Basanites also
u Jos. xv. 13. xiv. 15.
* Deut. i. 8.