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Easton's Bible Dictionary

 

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Jabesh-Gilead
        a town on the east of Jordan, on the top of one of the green
        hills of Gilead, within the limits of the half tribe of
        Manasseh, and in full view of Beth-shan. It is first mentioned
        in connection with the vengeance taken on its inhabitants
        because they had refused to come up to Mizpeh to take part with
        Israel against the tribe of Benjamin (Judg. 21:8-14). After the
        battles at Gibeah, that tribe was almost extinguished, only six
        hundred men remaining. An expedition went against Jabesh-Gilead,
        the whole of whose inhabitants were put to the sword, except
        four hundred maidens, whom they brought as prisoners and sent to
        "proclaim peace" to the Benjamites who had fled to the crag
        Rimmon. These captives were given to them as wives, that the
        tribe might be saved from extinction (Judg. 21).
        This city was afterwards taken by Nahash, king of the
        Ammonites, but was delivered by Saul, the newly-elected king of
        Israel. In gratitude for this deliverance, forty years after
        this, the men of Jabesh-Gilead took down the bodies of Saul and
        of his three sons from the walls of Beth-shan, and after burning
        them, buried the bones under a tree near the city (1 Sam.
        31:11-13). David thanked them for this act of piety (2 Sam.
        2:4-6), and afterwards transferred the remains to the royal
        sepulchre (21:14). It is identified with the ruins of ed-Deir,
        about 6 miles south of Pella, on the north of the Wady Yabis.

Bibliography Information
Easton, Matthew George. M.A., D.D., "Biblical Meaning for 'Jabesh-Gilead' Eastons Bible Dictionary".
bible-history.com - Eastons; 1897.

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