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REHOBOTH (rē-hō'bŏth, Heb. rehōvôth, broad places)

The name of a city built in Assyria by Asshur (kjv; niv “Nimrod”) (Gen.10.11 kjv; niv “Rehoboth Ir”). The home of Saul (Shaul in 1Chr.1.48), a king of Edom prior to the coming of a Hebrew monarch (Gen.36.31-Gen.36.37). Its location is not known.A well dug by Isaac in the Valley of Gerar after Abimelech had driven him from the land of the Philistines (Gen.26.9-Gen.26.22). Ruhaibah, near Beersheba, is the probable site, its ruins with numerous cisterns cut into solid rock indicating an ancient stronghold.

REHOBOTH rĭ hō’ bŏth (רְחֹבֹ֔ות; LXX Εὐρυχωρία, meaning broad places). 1. A well dug by Isaac SE of Beer-sheba. Genesis 26 relates Isaac’s troubles with Abimelech and the herdsmen of Gerar. The Philistines had filled in the old well so that Isaac’s servants had to dig new ones. But the herdsmen of Gerar claimed the first two for themselves (vv. 20, 21). When a third one was uncontested, Isaac named it “Rehoboth,” saying, “For now the Lord has made room for us, and we shall be fruitful in the land” (v. 22). Ruheibeh, c. twenty m. SE of Beer-sheba, bears a similar name and is generally accepted as the Biblical site.

2. Genesis 36:37 and 1 Chronicles 1:48 speak of Shaul of Rehoboth on the Euphrates (Heb. has only “river”). He is one of “the kings who reigned in the land of Edom before any king reigned over the Israelites.” This Rehoboth has not been even vaguely identified and certainly is not the one in S Judah.

3. Rehoboth-Ir (broad places city) is one of the places in N Mesopotamia that Nimrod the mighty hunter built (Gen 10:11). It too is unidentified. Some read Rehoboth-Ir in this context as a common noun rather than a separate city name and understand it to refer to the open squares or open suburbs of either Nineveh or Calah, which are the names preceding and following Rehoboth-Ir in the list.

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (1915)

re-ho’-both, re-ho’-both (rehobhoth, "broad places"; Euruchoria): One of the wells dug by Isaac (Ge 26:22). It is probably the Rubuta of the Tell el-Amarna Letters (Petrie, numbers 256, 260; see also The Expository Times, XI, 239 (Konig), 377 (Sayce)), and it is almost certainly identical with the ruin Ruchaibeh, 8 hours Southwest of Beersheba. Robinson (BR, I, 196-97) describes the ruins of the ancient city as thickly covering a "level tract of 10 to 12 acres in extent"; "many of the dwellings had each its cistern, cut in the solid rock"; "once this must have been a city of not less than 12,000 or 15,000 inhabitants. Now it is a perfect field of ruins, a scene of unutterable desolation, across which the passing stranger can with difficulty find his way." Huntington (Palestine and Its Transformation, 124) describes considerable remains of a suburban population extending both to the North and to the South of this once important place.