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Bible Encyclopedias
Debir

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

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Debir (2)
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(Heb. Debir', רְּבַיר or רְּבַר, a sanctuary, often applied to the Tabernacle and Temple), the name of two or three places, and also of a man.

1. (רְּבַר, but in Judges and Chron. רְּבַיר; Sept. Δαβίρ [Δεβίρ in Joshua 15:15; Joshua 15:49; Joshua 21:15; Judges 1:1; Judges 1:11] v. r. Δαβείρ; Vulg. Dabir), a town in the mountains of Judah (Joshua 15:49), one of a group of eleven cities to the west of Hebron (Keil, Comment. in loc.), in a parched region (Judges 1:11-15). In the narrative it is mentioned as being the next place which Joshua took after Hebron (10, 38). It was the seat of a Canaanitish king (10, 39; 12:13), and was one of the towns of the Anakim, and from which they were utterly destroyed by Joshua (11, 21). The earlier name of Debir was KIRJATH-SEPHER (Joshua 15:15; Judges 1:11) and KIRJATH-SANNAH (Joshua 15:49). (See these names.) The records of its conquest vary, though not very materially. In Joshua 15:17, and Judges 1:13, a detailed account is given of its capture by Othniel, son of Kenaz, for love of Achsah, the daughter of Caleb, while in the general history of the conquest it is ascribed to the great commander himself (Joshua 10:38-39, where the name occurs with ה, local affixed, Debi'rah, רְּבַרָה, and this even with prefixed). It was one of the cities given with their "suburbs" (מַגְרָשׁ ) to the priests (Joshua 21:15; 1 Chronicles 6:58). Debir does not appear to have been known to Jerome, nor has it been discovered with certainty in modern times. About three miles to the W. of Hebron is a deep and secluded valley called the Wady Nunkur, enclosed on the north by hills of which one bears a name certainly suggestive of Debir-Dewir-ban. (See the narrative of Rosen in the Zeitsch. d. Morgenl. 1857, p. 50-64). The subject, and indeed the whole topography of this district, requires further examination: in the mean time it is perhaps some confirmation of Dr. Rosen's suggestion that a village or site on one of these hills is pointed out as called Isaiah the Arabic name for Joshua. Schwarz (Palest. p. 86) speaks of a Wady Dibir in this direction. Van deVelde (Memoir, p. 307) finds Debir at Dilbeh, six miles S.W. of Hebron, where Stewart (Tent and Khan, p. 223, 224) mentions a spring brought down from a high to a low level by an aqueduct (comp. "the upper and the nether springs" of Judges 1:14-15).

2. (רְּבַר; Sept. ἐπὶ τὸ τέτραρτον τῆς φάραγγος Ἀχώρ; Vulg. Debera), a place on the north boundary of Judah, "near the "Valley of Achor" (Joshua 15:7), and therefore somewhere in the complications of hill and ravine behind Jericho. De Saulcy (Narrat. 2:25) attaches the name Thour ed- Dabour to the ruined khan on the right of the road from Jerusalem to Jericho, at which travelers usually stop to refresh; but this is not corroborated by any other traveler, unless it be Schwarz (Palest. p. 95), and he is disposed to identify this site with this and the foregoing place, nor does the locality agree with the scriptural intimations. The name usually given to it by the Arabs is Khan Hatherurah. A Wady Dabor is marked in Van de Velde's map as lying close to the S. of Neby Musa, at the N.W. corner of the Dead Sea (see De Saulcy, Narrat. 2:53, 54), which probably gives a trace of the ancient town as located on the N.E. of this valley. (See TRIBE).

3. The "border (גְּבוּל ) of Debir" (לַרְבַּר, to Debir; Sept. Δεβίρ v. r. Δαβείρ and Δαιβών; Vulg. Dabir) is named as forming part of the boundary of Gad (Joshua 13:26), and as apparently not far from Mahanaim. Reland (Palaest. p. 734) conjectures that the name may be the same as LODEBAR (q.v.), which is written similarly (לארְבָר or לוֹרְבָר ), and lay in the same vicinity (2 Samuel 9:4-5). Lying in the grazing country on the high downs east of Jordan, the name is doubtless connected with

רָּבִר, dabar, the same word which is the root of Midbar, the wilderness or pasture (see Gesenius, Thes. Heb. p. 318).

4. (רְּבַיר; Sept. Δαρίρ v. r. Δαρείρ and Δαβίν; Vulg. Dabir); the king of Eglon, in the low country of Judah; one of the five Canaanitish princes who joined the confederacy summoned by Adonizedek of Jerusalem, and who were defeated, confined in a cave, and at length hanged by Joshua (Joshua 10:3; Joshua 10:23). B.C. 1613.

Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Debir'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/​encyclopedias/​eng/​tce/​d/debir.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.
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