Stranger and Sojourner
I. THE GER
1. Legal provisions
2. Relation to Sacrifice and Ritual
3. Historical Circumstances
II. THE TOSHABH
III. THE NOKHRI OR BEN NEKHAR
2. Exclusion of Some Races from the Assembly
IV. THE ZAR
Four different Hebrew words must be considered separately:
(1) ger, the American Standard"sojourner" or "stranger";
(2) toshabh, the American Standard Revised Version "sojourner";
(3) nokhri, ben nekhar, the American Standard Revised Version "foreigner";
(4) zar, the American Standard Revised Version "stranger."
I. The Ger.
This word with its kindred verb is applied with slightly varying meanings to anyone who resides in a country or a town of which he is not a full native land-owning citizen; e.g., the word is used of the patriarchs in Palestine, the Israelites in Egypt, the Levites dwelling among the Israelites (
1. Legal Provisions:
The dominant principles of the legislation are most succinctly given in two passages: He "loveth the ger in giving him food and raiment" (
2. Relation to Sacrifice and Ritual:
3. Historical Circumstances:
The historical circumstances were such as to render the position of the resident alien important from the first. A "mixed multitude" went up with the Israelites from Egypt, and after the conquest we find Israelites and the races of Palestine living side by side throughout the country. We repeatedly read of resident aliens in the historical books, e.g. Uriah the Hittite. According to
II. The Toshabh.
Of the toshabh we know very little. It is possible that the word is practically synonymous with ger, but perhaps it is used of less permanent sojourning. Thus in
III. The Nokhri Ben Nekhar.
2. Exclusion of Some Races from Assembly:
Deuteronomy further takes up a hostile attitude to Ammonites and Moabites, excluding them from the assembly of the Lord even to the tenth generation, while the children of the third generation of Edomites and Egyptians could enter it (23:3-8 (Hebrew 4-9)). From
IV. The Zar.
The remaining word zar means "stranger" and takes its coloring from the context. It may mean "stranger in blood," e.g. non-Aaronite (
Harold M. Wiener