BETH-SHEMESH Summary and Overview
BETH-SHEMESH in Easton's Bible Dictionary
house of the sun. (1.) A sacerdotal city in the tribe of Dan (Josh. 21:16; 1 Sam. 6:15), on the north border of Judah (Josh. 15:10). It was the scene of an encounter between Jehoash, king of Israel, and Amaziah, king of Judah, in which the latter was made prisoner (2 Kings 14:11, 13). It was afterwards taken by the Philistines (2 Chr. 28:18). It is the modern ruined Arabic village 'Ain-shems, on the north-west slopes of the mountains of Judah, 14 miles west of Jerusalem. (2.) A city between Dothan and the Jordan, near the southern border of Issachar (Josh. 19:22), 7 1/2 miles south of Beth-shean. It is the modern Ain-esh-Shemsiyeh. (3.) One of the fenced cities of Naphtali (Josh. 19:38), between Mount Tabor and the Jordan. Now Khurbet Shema, 3 miles west of Safed. But perhaps the same as No. 2. (4.) An idol sanctuary in Egypt (Jer. 43:13); called by the Greeks Heliopolis, and by the Egyptians On (q.v.), Gen. 41:45.
BETH-SHEMESH in Smith's Bible Dictionary
(house of the sun). 1. One of the towns which marked the north boundary of Judah. #Jos 15:10| It is now 'Ainshems, about two miles from the great Philistine plain, and seven from Ekron. 2. A city on the border of Issachar. #Jos 19:22| 3. One of the "fenced cities" of Naphtali. #Jos 19:38; Jud 1:33| 4. An idolatrous temple, or place in Egypt. #Jer 43:13| In the middle ages Heliopolis was still called by the Arabs Ain Shems.
BETH-SHEMESH in Schaff's Bible Dictionary
BETH-SHE'MESH (house of the sun). 1. A city on the north of Judah belonging to the priests. Josh 15:10; Josh 21:16; same as Ir-shemesh and Mount Heres, Josh 19:41; Jud 1:35; noted as the place to which the ark was returned, 1 Sam 6:9-20; now a heap of ruins near 'Ain Shems, about 14 miles west of Jerusalem. 2. A fenced city of Naphtali. Josh 19:38. Conder proposes 'Ain esh Shims?yeh. 3. A city on the border of Issachar, Josh 19:22; perhaps the same as No. 2. 4. A place in Egypt, Jer 43:13; same as Heliopolis, or On, See On.