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early in 1883, afforded an opportunity to visit the Ghôr at Beisan, as well as the tract lying north and east of Nâblous. The result of a personal examination of the ground was to convince him of the general correctness of Robinson's identification (adopted also by Capt. Conder) as against any other of the numerous proposed sites. Capt. Conder attempts no definite localization, but seems inclined to place Ænon as near Khûrbet ’Ainûn as the course of the Fâr'ah stream will allow. It is perhaps possible to determine the site still more precisely. The object of this paper is in part to advocate Robinson's view, and also to direct special attention to the western end of the Wâdy Beidân, three or four miles north of Sâlim, as the probable site of the New Testament Ænon. First a glance at
Leading Opinions Hitherto. 1. In the Ghôr, South of Beisån. Fourth century tradition placed both Ænon and Salim eight Roman miles to the south of Scythopolis, and not far from the Jordan (juxta Jordanem "). See Jerome (Onomasticon, articles Ænon and Salim). The latter was still pointed out, a village called Salumias. Jerome, in opposition to the then prevailing view, also considered this to have been the royal residence of Melchizedek. Epiphanius considered it to have been the Salem near Shechem.!
Drs. Robinson and Smith, who together explored that part of the Ghôr in 1852, found no trace of ruins, or of either name except the Wely or shrine of a Sheikh Sâlim at the foot of Tell Ridghah, less than two miles from the stream of the Jordan. The industrious
1 "Enon juxta Salim, ubi baptizabat Joannes, sicut in Evangelio cata Joannem scriptum est (iii. 23): et ostenditur nunc usque locus in octavo lapide Scythopoleos ad meridiem juxta Salim et Jordanem” (Jerome, Migne Patrol. Lat., vol. 23, tom. iii. 163).
“Sichem et Salem, quæ (Latine et Græce) Sicima vocata est, civitas Jacob, nunc deserta. Ostenditur autem locus in suburbanis Neapoleos juxta sepulcrum Joseph," etc. (ibid., 266).
“Salem, civitas Sicimorum, quæ est Sichem; sed et alia villa ostenditur usque in præsentem diem (juxta Æliam contra occidentalem plagam hoc nomine; in octavo quoque lapide a Scythopoli in campo vicus Salumias appellatur; Josephus vero Salem esse affirmat in qua regnavit Melchisedec, quæ postea dicta est Solyma, et ad extremum, Hierosolymæ nomen accepit” (ibid., 267).
“... Oppidum juxta Scythopolim, quod usque hodie appellatur Salem, et ostenditur ibi palatium Melchisedec, ex magnitudine ruinarum veteris operis ostendens magnificentiam" (ibid., vol. 22, tom. i. 445).
(See also Reland, Palestina, p. 721.)
inquiries of Tyrwhitt Drake and Capt. Conder were equally unsatisfactory. See report of Drake (P. E. F. Quarterly, 1875, p. 32): “Ænon and Salim have been identified by Van de Velde as Bir Sâlim and Sheikh Sâlim. Inquiries of the Arabs and the Fellahin in the above district resulted in not a man of them ever having heard of either of the places.”
Among the moderns who more or less confidently adopt this site are Van de Velde, Greswell, Andrews (Life of Our Lori), Edersheim (Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah, i. 393), Pressel (in Herzog's Encyclopädie, art. “Salim"; also Güder, art." Johannes der Taufer"), Caspari (Chronologisch -geog. Einleitung, $ 87), Ellicott (Life of Christ, p. 126, note, Amer.ed.), Grove (Smith's Dict. of the Bible, art.“Salim"), Hackett (ibid., Amer. ed., art. “Ænon").
Eusebius and Jerome appear simply to have reported current tradition, and, as the citations in the accompanying n te show, unlinked with any confirmatory historical facts. It is a manifest objection to the correctness of the tradition, that it places Ænon so near to the Jordan. The site identified by Van de Velde as Salim is but a little over a mile from the river, and the springs of the proposed Ænon not much farther. Now a spot within two or three miles at most from the river Jordan would scarcely call for special description as a place of “much water," this fact being evidently inserted by the evangelist to designate it as an appropriate locality for the administration of baptism. Considering that the Jordan valley had been the scene of the Baptist's public ministry for a year or more, the annexed reason for the choice of Ænon at the time seems plainly to indicate that it was not in the Jordan valley, at least in close proximity to the river itself. To add “for there was much water there" were quite superfluous, if John was still within a few minutes' walk of the river.
2. The majority of modern expositors take us to Southern Judea, chiefly supporting their opinion by the similarity of the two names with the Ain and Shilhim of Josh. xv. 32: 997 dingen. In Josh. xix. 7 Ain again occurs.
The En- of En-Rimmon, in Neh. xi. 29, is supposed to be the same. (See Wieseler Chron. Synopse der vier E77., p. 247.) It is also urged: “The Evangelist indicates plainly enough that his Ænon is to be looked for in Judea ; for, after having said (iii. 22) that Jesus and his disciples had baptized in the land of Judea (εν τη Ιουδαία γη), he immediately proceeds ήν δε και Ιωάνης βαπτίζων εν Αίνων εγγύς του Σαλείμ. Now it is certainly most natural to refer the comparison, here indicated by kaí, not merely to the act of baptizing, but of baptizing in the land of Judea ; there was no need of this clause to inform us that John baptized." (Ibid., Eng. Tr., p. 245.) So Meyer, briefly, that Ænon “in Judæa, nicht in Samarien, gelegen haben muss." But this is to pervert entirely the writer's kaí in iii. 23. It is intended to indicate, not identity of locality, but the simultaneousness of these two ministries at this junction of the Gospel history. John was still engaged in baptizing, --this being still further explained in verse 24, — " for John was not yet cast into prison.” The tenor of the passage is rather to distinguish the two locations apart than to identify the latter as belonging to the same region. Among those who adopt the above identification are Alford, Godet, Pressensé (Jesus Christ, Eng. Tr., p. 227; in his note he favors an etymology which he is scarcely justifiable in attributing to Wieseler, namely, that Ænon is a contraction (!) from En-Rimmon), Milligan and Moulton (Popular Commentary on the N. T.; the parenthetical statement that Shilhim of Josh. xv. 32 is “translated Salem in the Lxx," gives an incorrect impression of the fact).
The resemblance of a o'nbu (Shilchîm ; in codex Alex. of the Lxx Seleciu), with an Ain near it, to the Eadeij of the text, is but a slender support for this view. Against it is the drift of the Evangelist's narrative (according to the interpretation given above), the absence of historical or geographical data to establish it, and, finally, the absence of an abundance of water in any site to which the names given in Joshua can probably be assigned.
3. East of the Jordan. — This embraces a third class of conjectures. Dr. Lightfoot was at first inclined to locate Ænon in Galilee (see Harmony of the Gospels, part iii., published in 1650), but in his Chorographical Inquiry, dated 1671, he withdrew that opinion, and favored the hypothesis of an Ænon in Southern Peræa, believing that “we must look for it either in Galilee or Peræa,” for the reason that it was about this time that John was seized by Herod, and that he must, accordingly, have been baptizing at some point within Herod's dominions. The erudite Lampe argues at length to the same effect, that the scene of John's closing ministry was, in all probability, not remote from the Peræan capital of Herod Antipas, the city Julias, or from Machærus, the fortress of John's captivity.
Among recent writers, Edersheim is disposed to entertain favorably the view " that Ænon, near Salim, was actually within the dominions
1 Wieseler considers Aivóv in Josh. xv. 61 (according to the codex Vat. padwv) to be the same place as the Aiv in v. 32 (codex Alex.). It is difficult to see on what ground this assumption rests.
of Herod,” and, “in that case, may even have been in Peræa itself' (Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah, i., p. 657).
But against this hypothesis the words addressed to John by his disciples seem decisive : " he that was with thee beyond Jordan," etc. (John iii. 26). For, although the phrase "beyond Jordan" is certainly not to be taken in every case as denoting east of the river, it can scarcely be otherwise understood in the present instance. The first scene of the Baptist's activity, as described in the fourth Gospel, is “Bethany beyond Jordan" (i. 28). In describing the transactions of scene second, it is inconceivable that the writer should have used the phrase "beyond Jordan ” in a reverse and a rare sense, and without a glimpse of a reason for so doing.
4. 'Ain Farah (or 'Ain Wådy Farah) near Jerusalem. – This identification of Ænon, by Dr. Barclay, with one of the headsprings of the Wâdy Kelt, would scarcely detain us, except for its adoption by Mr. Trelawney Saunders, who has confidently inserted it in his New Testament Map of Western Palestine, recently constructed from the plates of the Palestine Exploration Fund. The following is the description of the spring as given in the P. E. F. Memoirs, vol. iii., p. 170: “ 'Ain Fârah is a very fine spring, surrounded with a thick growth of reeds and oleander bushes. Small fish have been found in the water.” It is interesting to compare with this the glowing description and the illustrative wood-cut in Dr. Barclay's City of the Great King (see pp. 558–569). It lies equally distant from 'Anâta (Anathoth) and Jeba (Geba), about three and one-half miles to the east, in the bed of a precipitous ravine. I was not myself fortunate enough to see the spring, though on two different occasions, while exploring the routes from Jericho to Bethel and Ai, I was a mile or two above the spot, among the steep gorges that converge towards it; and again, several miles below it, I climbed down into the bed of the wady, to which, for a part of the year, it furnishes a visible stream.1
The chief argument for the identification is the name Suleim, belonging to a small wâdy south of Anathoth. This similarity of name, and the existence of a copious spring in the neighborhood, constitute an argument certainly entitled to a hearing, but hardly sufficient to offset two historical improbabilities : first, that the Baptist should have been prosecuting his mission at this late period so near Jerusalem, the central seat of the opposition on the part of the Pharisees and the hierarchy; second, that he should have chosen this sterile tract, amid a tangle of precipitous ravines, as a suitable place for a multitude to gather about him and receive baptism.
| The volume of water is not sufficient to supply the channel below throughout the year. If the reader will take the trouble to consult the large map of the Pal. Ex. Fund, he will see that the permanent stream of the Wâdy Kelt does not begin at 'Ain Farah, but several miles lower down, at 'Ain el Kelt.
It is perhaps needless to add to the preceding Sepp's conjecture of Beit 'Ainûn, near Hebron (see his chapter on “ Der Täufer at Ænon," Leben Jesu Christi); Lightfoot's, referred to above, that Salim lay in Galilee, in the territory of Issachar; and others. Dr. Thomson, in his recent Central Palestine and Phænicia, remarks, p. 153: “Both Ænon and Salim, therefore, must be classed with Biblical sites not yet identified."
5. Near Salim, east of Náblous. - Robinson was the first to identify this village with the Laleipe of John's Gospel (Researches, iii. 333), leaving the suggestion, however, as a mere 'hypothesis, from the absence of sufficiently confirmatory data. He remarks upon the ruin 'Ainûn, which he had visited, situated on a small tell, about seven miles north-east of Sâlim, but finding "no Salim near, nor a drop of water," passes it by without pausing to account for this capital specimen of lucus a non; evidently, he attached but little importance to the name for the purpose of fixing more precisely the site for which he was seeking. Sâlim lies on the southern slope of the mountain Neby Belân, about four miles from Nâblous, and two and onehalf miles due east from Jacob's Well. “It is a small village resembling the rest, but evidently ancient, having rock-cut tombs, cisterns, and a tank. Olive trees surround it; on the north are two springs, about three-quarters of a mile from the village" (P. E. F. Memoirs, vol. ii., p. 230). “In the Samaritan Chronicle it is called Salem the Great, and the Samaritans understand it to be mentioned in Gen. xxxiii. 18. Sâlim is also possibly the Caphar Salama of I. Macc. vii. 31, which seems to have been in Samaria” (ibid.).
Robinson's identification of this Sâlim with that of John iii. 23 has been adopted by many recent authorities. See Conder's Tent Work in Palestine, chap. iii., also the Memoirs, cited above, and Hand-book of the Bible, p. 320; Rowland (art. “ Salim,” Imperial Bible Dict.) ; Porter (in Murray's Handbook for Syria and Palestine); Major Wilson (Bible Educator, vol. iv., p. 121).
As to Ænon, Conder seems disposed to locate it as near as possible to Khurbet 'Ainûn, but is content to leave it somewhere in the broad open valley of the upper Fâr'ah, between Salim and 'Ainơn. (Hand-book, p. 340) places it on the northern fork of the Fâr'ah at or