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ner, but one whom the lifting up the banner some how respects, or concerns. It is not however so natural, upon the whole, to under.stand this passage of one before whom an ensign of dignity was borne, because I have shewn that the original word is most probably to be understood of portable beacons, which are necessary to travellers in the night, but not, that I know of, ever considered as marks of dignity on the one hand; whilst, on the other, if it be understood of one of these Eastern flambeaux, for in that view the parti ciple pahul of the verb will signify the enlightened, and consequently dazzling, glistering, or something of that kind : and so the meaning of the spouse will appear to have probably been, that her bridegroom was dazzling beyond ten thousand, or was dazzling like a person surrounded by ten thousand lights.
The making out of another expression, which occurs twice in the same book, has also appeared somewhat difficult, but may be illustrated perhaps by the same thought. Terrible as an army with banners, nibanua noix ayummah kenidaggaloth, is the expression, which we meet with in the 4th, and again in the 10th verse of the vth chapter of Canticles, where it is to be remarked that the word army is not in the original; and as it is supposed by Buxtorf, in his Concordance, to be the feminine plural of the passive participle, and consequently may be understood to signify women
embannered, if that expression were allowable, women shone upon by lights, that is, according to the preceding explanation; the meaning may with ease be understood to be, “ My spouse is dazzling as women dressed in rich attire, surrounded by nuptial flambeaux, with which they are lighted home.” In this view, those words that follow this expression when first used, Turn away thine eyes from me, for they have overcome me, appear perfectly natural: as do also those that precede the second, Who is she that looketh forth as the morning, fair as the moon, clear as the sun ?
It may not be unfit to add, that those places that speak of the standards of the tribes, and these that I have endeavoured to illustrate in the Book of Canticles, are all the passages in which this Hebrew word occurs, excepting Ps. xx. 5, and Cant, ii. 4. The first wants ng illustration; and the applying this thought to the second, may, perhaps, give the easiest interpretation that can be found of that passage. Love, was the flambeaux by which the bridegroom conducted her to the house of wine : so love is compared to flaming wood, in this very book, ch. viii. 6, 7.
The word beacon occurs indeed in another place," in our version; but it is not there you daggal, in the original, which I am supposing signifies a portable beacon, but go toren, which may possibly incline my reader not to
* Is. XXX. 17.
admit that sense I have been affixing to these passages, as unwilling to suppose there are two words in so scanty a language signifying beacon: it ought however to be remembered, that though our version renders it beacon, it signifies properly no more than a sign, whatever that sign might be, whether the sticking up a spear, displaying a flag, making a smoke, or any thing else ; and it is somewhat strange that our translators should use so particular a term as beacon, to express a word of such a general meaning:
The Necessity of Guides in travelling through the
When Moses begged of Hobab not to leave Israel, because they were to encamp in the wilderness, and he might be to them instead of eyes. Numb. x. 3), he doubtless meant that he might be a guide to them in the difficult journies they had to take in the wilderness : for so Job, when he would express his readiness to bring forward on their journey those that were enfeebled with sickness, or hurt by accidents, and to guide them in their way that were blind, or ignorant of it, says, I was eyes to the blind, and feet was I to the lame, Job xxix. 15.
• See Numb. xxvi. 10.
Every body, accordingly, at all acquainted with the nature of such deserts as Israel had to pass through, must be sensible of the great importance of having some of the natives of that country for guides : they know where water is to be found, and can lead to places proper, on that account, for encampments. Without their help, travelling would be much more difficult in these deserts, and indeed often fatal. The importance of having these Arab guides appears, from such a number of passages in books of travels, that every one whose reading has at all turned this way, must be apprized of them; for which reason I shall cite none in particular. The application then of Moses to Hobab the Midianite, that is, to a principal Arab of the tribe of Midian, would have appeared pera fectly just, had it not been for this thought, that the cloud of the Divine Presence went before Israel, and directed their marches ; of what consequence then could Hobab's journeying with them be?
A man would take more upon himself than he ought to do, that should affirm the attendance of such an one as Hobab was of no use to Israel, in their removing from station to station : it is very possible, the guidance of the cloud might not be so minute as absolutely to render his offices of no value. But I will mention another thing, that will put the propriety of this request of Moses quite out of dispute. The sacred history expressly mentions several journies undertaken by parties of tne Israelites, while the main body laid still: so in Nunib. xiii. we read of a party that was sent out to reconnoitre the land of Canaan ; in ch. xx. of the messengers sent from Kadesh unto the King of Edom; in ch. xxxi. of an expedition against the idolatrous Midianites; of some little expeditions, in the close of ch. xxx; and more journies, of the like kind, were without doubt undertaken, which are not particularly rccounted. Now Moses, foreseeing something of this, might well beg the company of Hobab, not as a single Arab, but as a prince of one of their clans, that he might be able to apply to him from time to time, for some of his pevple, to be conductors to those he should have occasion to send out to different places, while the body of the people, and the cloud of the LORD, continued unmoved.
Nor was their assistance only wanted in res. pect to water, when any party of them was sent out upon some expedition; but the whole congregation must have had frequent need of them, for directions where to find fuel. Manna continually, and sometimes water, were given them miraculously ; their clothes also were exempted from decay while in the wilderness; but fuel was wanted to warm them some part of the year, at all times to bake and seethe the manna, according to Exod. xvi. 23, and was never obtained but in a natural way, that we know of: for this then they wanted the assist