Page images

ion is also espoused by Thomas gain upon the Egyptians, upon Aquinas, Tostat, Paul de Bur- their chariots and upon their gos, Grotius, Genebrard, Vata- horsemen. And Moses stretchblus, and someRabbins. But not ed forth his hands over the sea, to enter into a nice discussion of and the sea returned to his all these opinions, not to uno strength when the morning dertake to refute them, partic. appeared, and the Egyptians ularly, and not to deny that the fled against it; and the Lord Red Sea may have its ebbing overthrew the Egyptians in and flowing, we need only al- the midst of the sea. But the lege the text of Moses, and children of Israel walked in the other sacred authors, who have midst of the sea, upon dry mentioned this miraculous pas. land, and the waters were a sage: we may see plainly that no wall unto them, on the right other account can possibly be hand, and on the left.” supported, but that which sup- And in the canticle that poses the Hebrews to pass

Hebrew's to pass Moses sung at their coming through the sea from shore to out of the Red Sea he says, shore, in a vast space of dry Exod. xv, 8. “With the blast ground, which was left void by of thy nostrils, (or with the the waters at their retiring, wind of thy fury,) “the waters Exod. xiv, 16, 17, “Lift thou were gathered together; the up thy rod, and stretch out thine food stood upright as an heap, hand over the sea, and divide it; and the depths were congealed and the children of Israel shall in the heart of the sea." And go on dry ground through the the Psalmist says, Ps. Ixxxviii, midst of the sea: and Moses 13. "He divided the sea and stretched out his hand over the caused them to pass through, sea; and the Lord caused the and he made the waters sea to go back by a strong stand as an a heap.” He east wind all that night, and elsewhere, that the sea fled at made the sea dry land, and the the sight of God, Ps. civ, 3, 4. waters were divided. And the that the Lord made himself a waters were a wall unto them, path in the sea; that he walkon their right hand and on their ed in the midst of the waters, left. When the Egyptians like. Ps. Ixxxvii, 19; Isa. Ixiii, 11, wise were entered the sea, the &c. says that the Lord divided Lord said unto Moses, Stretch the waves before his people, oui thine hand over the sea, that he conducted them that the waters may come a- through the bottom of the


He says

abyss, as the horse is led heard the fame of the wonder. through the midst of a field. ful event. The words of DioHabakkuk, iii, 15, says, that dorus are to this effect, "Among the Lord made himself a road the neighboring Ichthyophagi, to drive his chariot and horses there is an old tradition, deacross the sea, across the mud livered down from their ancesof great waters. Lastly the tors, that formerly the sea part. author of the book of Wisdom, ing, and the waters falling back, xix, 7, 8; sec also Wisdom x, some on one side, and some on 17, 18, says that the dry land the other, opposite to it, the appeared all on a sudden, in a whole gulf, i.e. as to its breadth, place where water was before; was dry, and the bottom of it that a free passage was open- appeared of a green color; but ed in a moment through the some time after the sea returnmidst of the Red Sea, and that ed again to its usual place.” It a green field was seen in the is not reasonably to be doubted, midst of the abyss, &c. See but this tradition refers to the the commentators upon Exod. miraculous passage of the Isxiv. M. Le Clerc's Disserta- raelites through the sea. We tions upon the passage over may from this and other testithe Red Sea, and Calmet's monies observe the falsehood Dissertation upon the same of that opinion, which will have subject. It is thought that the the Red Sea to be named from place where the Hebrews pas- the red color of its waters, or sed the Red Sea, is two or of the sand at the bottom. This, three leagues below the north- in a degree is confirmed by a ern point at the place called passage in the wisdom of Solo. Kolfum, or Clysma, where mon, chap. xix, 7, “Where some of the ancients have tes- water stood before, dry land tified, that in their time might appeared, and out of the Red still be seen the ruins of the Sea, a way without impediwheels of Pharoah's chariots, ment, and out of the violent and evident. marks of these stream, a green field.” Conchariots.

cerning the name, as we have On account of the miracu- already seen, several opinions lous passage of Israel through have been entertained. The this sea, it has been famous in Hebrew name Jam-Suph sigall ages, especially with those nifies weedy sea, and several nations acquainted with the his- ancient writers mention it a tory of Moses; but others have place producing abundance of weeds, though a late traveller side is a low 'sandy coast, and as. I shall soon show, contra. a very easy landing place. It dicts this. This sea grows nar- was proposed to Mr. Niebuhr, rower the farther north it ex- when in Egypt, to inquire upon tends. Thevenot says, that for the spot, whether there were four or five days he kept along not some ridges of rocks where its coast, going to mount Sinai, the water was shallow, so that and that no where did he ob.

an army at particular times serve it to be more than eight might pass over. Secondly, or nine miles over. The water whether the Etesian winds, of this sea lying in a warm clic which blow strongly all summate, and receiving but a few mer from the north-west, could large rivers, is remarkably salt. not blow

not blow so violently against After passing into this sea from the sea, as to keep it back on the ocean, a ship draws seve. a heap, so that the Israelites ral inches less water than be. might have passed without a fore. (Modern Geography.) miracle. Saith Mr. Bruce, a As no river falls into it of suf- copy of these queries was left ficient force to counteract the for me, to join my inquiries tides, it is more affected by likewise. But, I confess, howtheir motions, than other in- ever learned the gentlemen were land seas. The winds gener- who proposed these doubts, I ally blow from north to south, did not think they merited and being periodical, like the any attention to solve them. monsoons of India, they de. If the Etesian winds, blowing cide the season for sailing in from the north-west in summer to or out of this sea. Before could keep up the sea as a wall I quit this article, I will quote on the right, or to the south, a few sentences from a learned of fifty feet high, still the difmodern traveller. At the place ficulty would remain of build. where he supposed the Israel. ing the wall on the left hand, ites passed through, he says or to the north. Beside, water the sea is not quite twelve standing in that position for a miles broad; they might, there. day, must have lost the nature fore, easily have crossed it in of a fluid. Whence came that one night. There is, saith he, cohesion of particles, which about fourteen fathom of wa. hindered that wall to escape at ter in the channel; and nine at the sides? This is as great a the sides; with good anchorage miracle as that of Moses. If every where; on the farthest the Etesian winds had done that once, they must have re-bout 12 degrees, or 1470 miles, peated it maay a time before it is in general about 120 broad, and since, from the same cause. terminating in an extensive

“Yet," saith he, referring to western branch, while the east. the passage which we have ern ascends, but little beyond quoted in this article, “Diodo- the parallel of mount Sinai. rus says, the indigenous inhab. The tide here never rises more itants of that very spot had a

than three feet and six inches. tradition from father to son, Between lat. 22, 30 and 29. from their very earliest and re- REHB, a city of the tribe motest ages, that once this di- of Asher, in the north part of vision of the sea did happen the tribe, given for a dwelling here. The words of this au- to the Levites of the family of thor are of the most remarka. Gershom, Josh. xix, 23. This ble kind. We cannot think city was in Syria upon the this pagan is writing in favor road of Hamath, Numb. xiii, of revelation. He knew not 21, &c. and probably between Moses, nor says a word about Libanus and Anti-Libanus. Pharaoh and his host, yet re. The city of Dan or Laish was cords the miracle of the divis in the canton of Rehob. From ion of the sea in words nearly this place the people of Asher as strong as those of Moses, could not drive ow the anfrom the mouths of unbiassed cient inhabitants, Judg. vii, 31. and undesigning pagans.” Lat. 33, 16.

Mr. Clogher, in his journey Rehob, a kingdom in the to mount Sinai, says, “that north-west part of Canaan, 1 from the fountains of Moses, Sam. x, 6–8. which are seven or eight hours REHOBOTH, a river of journey, southerly, from Suez, Idumea. Saul a descendant of may be now seen the aperture Esau, who reigned in Idumea, of the mountain on the west- was a native of the country ern side of the sea, through bordering upon the river Rewhich Israel passed into the hoboth. Lat. 33, 30. water? The aperture is west Rehoboth, a town seated south-west from the fountains; on the Tigris, near Nineveh, the breadth of the sea there is and near the mouth of the about four or five hours travel.” river Lycus. Mr. Pinkerton says that the REHOBOTH, a town of Red Sea, from the strait of Ba- Edom, where Saul king of E. belmandel to Suez extends a. dom was born, Gen. xxxvi,37.

REBOBOTH, the name giv. some of the Rephaim living en to a well, which was dug by here before the conquests of Isaac, east from Gerar; so cal- Joshua. .led, because that the Lord there REPHAIMS, the ancient made room for him, Gen. xxvi, giants of Canaan. There were 22.

anciently several families of REHUM. See Samaritans. them in this country. It is com

REKEM, a city of Judea, monly thought that they were of the tribe of Benjamin, Josh. descended from one

one called xviii, 27.

Rephah, or Bapha; but others REMETH, a city of the imagine, that the word Rephatribe of Issachar, Josh. xix, im properly signifies giant, in 21; and the same with Ra- the ancient language of this moth, i Chron. vi, 73.

people. There were of the REMMON, or Rimmon, Rephaim, beyond Jordan, at a city of the tribe of Simeon, Ashteroth Karnaim, in the Josh. xix, 7; and probably the cime of Abraham, when Che. same that is ascribed to Judah, dorlaomer made war against Neh. xi, 29. Eusebius places them, Gen. xiv, 5. There it to the south of Judah, six- were also some of them in this teen miles from Eleutheropo. country in the times of Moses. lis to the south.

Og king of Baashan, was one REMMON-METHOAR, of the posterity of the Rephaa city bordering upon the im, Josh. xii, 4. Also in the tribe of Zebulon, Josh. xix, time of Joshua there were some 13; to the east of that tribe, of their descendants in the land Lat. 32, 44.

of Canaan, Joshua xvii, 15. REPHAIM, the name of a Lastly we hear of them still in valley near to Jerusalem, Josh. David's time, in the city of Xv, 8, &c.

The road from Gath, 1 Chron. xx, 4, 5, 6. Jerusalem to Bethlehem, Mr. The giants Goliah, Sippai, Maundrel informs us, goes Lahmi, and others, were some through this valley, which is remains of the Rephaim. Their famous for being the theatre of magnitude and strength are many victories gained by king known from scripture. David over the Philistines. The valley of the Rephaim, Hence it has been supposed to or giants, was a famous place receive its name from the Re- in Joshua's time, Josh. xv, 8, phaim being subdued here, or xviii, 16, and also in king Da. perhaps more probably from vid's, 2 Sam. v, 18, 22. It is

« PreviousContinue »