Thursday, December 11, 2014

Figure 44

View of the Jordan valley (kikkar) over to Israel from Mt. Nebo
The plaque indicates the location of various sites on the opposite side of the Jordan. The southern Dead Sea area and Bâb edh-Dhrâʿ are not visible from this location on top of Mt. Nebo. Tall el-Hammam is visible in the valley below Mt. Nebo.

The phrase, “Cities of the Plain”, in Genesis 13:12 and 19:29 is formed in what is known in Hebrew as the “construct state”. This means that the word “cities” has a very close association with the word “plain” (Heb. kikkār).

The etymology of the root word indicates that kikkār refers to something round, as in a “round loaf of bread” (1 Sam 2:36; Prov 6:26; Exod 29:23; Jer 37:21; 1 Chr 16:3; 1 Sam 10:3, Jud 8:5) or a “circular disk for payment” (2 Sam 12:30, 1 Kgs 20:39, 2 Kgs 5:5; 1 Chr 29:7; 2 Kgs 9:14; George L. Robinson, “Jordan,” in Dictionary of the Bible, One Vol., ed. James Hastings and John A. Selbie (New York, N.Y.: Scribner’s Sons, 1909), 761; R. Laird Harris, Gleason L. Archer, Jr., and Bruce K. Waltke, eds., “כִּכָּ֔ר, in TWOT (Chicago, Ill.: Moody, 1980), 503, no. 4673; Charles A. Briggs, Samuel R. Driver, and Francis Brown, “כִּכָּ֔ר, in BDB (Oxford, U.K.: Clarendon, 1997), no. 1046c).

Other references to the kikkār place it between Zarethan (Tell es-Saidiyeh;  Jonathan N. Tubb, “Sa‘idryeh. Tell Es-,” in OEANE, ed. Eric M. Meyers, vol. 4 (Oxford, U.K.: Oxford University Press, 1997), 452; Josh 3:16; 1 Kgs 7:46; 2 Chron 4:17) and Succoth (Tell Deir ‘Alla; Hendricus J. Franken, “Deir ‘Alla, Tell,” in OEANE, ed. Eric M. Meyers, vol. 2 (Oxford, U.K.: Oxford University Press, 1997), 138; Josh 13:27) in the Jordan Valley near the Jabbok River, east of the Jordan River (1 Kgs 7:46; 2 Chron 4:17; 2 Sam 18:23. See Map 1). This would place the kikkār in the northern region between the Sea of Galilee and the Dead Sea (see Fig. 47).

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