The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire BibleJoshua 15:9
And the border was drawn from the top of the hill…
Moriah, and went round in a circuit, so Jarchi and Kimchi:
unto the fountain of the water of Nephtoah;
which lay at the bottom of
it; which, according to the Jewish writers, is the same with the
fountain of Etam, from whence a stream flowed to the dipping room in
the water gate of the temple, where the high priest for the first time
dipped himself on the day of atonement F16;
and went out to the cities of Mount Ephron;
Jerom F17 speaks of an
Ephron in the tribe of Judah, which was a very large village in his
time, and went by the name of Ephraea, and was twenty miles from Aelia
or Jerusalem to the north; and which Eusebius better places eight miles
from it; and Jarchi observes, that the line went to the north side, and
the border enlarged to this place; near to this mountain were cities,
and it is not improbable that one of them might have its name from it;
but whether this, or what mountain is here meant, is uncertain: some
have thought of Ephraim, with its towns, mentioned in (2 Chronicles 13:19) ; which
seems to have been in the tribe of Ephraim; though Reland F18 places it
in the tribe of Benjamin:
and the border was drawn to Baalah, which [is] Kirjathjearim;
Kirjathbaal, or the city of Baal, (Joshua 15:60) ; where it is probable
there was a temple of Baal; and when it came into the hands of the
Israelites, they changed its name to Kirjathjearim, or the city of the
woods, because of the great number of trees which grew about it; for
which reason it might have been pitched upon by the Heathens for their
idolatrous service; it was one of the cities of the Gibeonites,
(Joshua 9:17) ; and, according to Eusebius and Jerom F19, it was nine or
ten miles from Jerusalem, as you go to Lydda; it is also called Baalah
in (1 Chronicles 13:6) ; and Baale of Judah, (2 Samuel 6:2) .
F16 T. Bab. Yoma, fol. 31. 1. & Gloss. in ib. & T. Bab. Zebachim, fol.
54. 2. Kimchi in loc.
F17 De loc. Heb. fol. 91. A.
F18 Palestin. Illustrat. tom. 2. p. 765.
F19 Apud ib. tom. 1. p. 488.