Zephath

ZEPHATH (zē'făth, Heb. tsephath, watchtower). A Canaanite city about twenty-two miles (thirty-seven km.) SW of the southern end of the Dead Sea, in the territory later occupied by the tribe of Simeon. It was utterly destroyed in the time of the Conquest by the tribes of Judah and Simeon and renamed “Hormah”—i.e., “devoted to God” in the sense of being destroyed (Judg.1.17). Cf. “Hormah” in Num.21.3 for the use of the word.


ZEPHATH ze’ făth (צְפַ֑ת). Zephath is apparently the ancient name of Hormah (חָרְמָֽה). It is located a few miles E of Beersheba. The site is often identified with Sebaita, but this has been objected to by G. F. Moore. Zephath was a Canaanite town which was totally destroyed by the men of Judah and Simeon (Judg 1:17). The word חָרַם, H3049, from which the name Hormah comes means “to ban,” “exterminate,” and it is likely that this name stems out of its annihilation by these southern tribes. (see Hormah.)

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