Jebusite

Jebusite

Overview
According to the Hebrew Bible
Hebrew Bible
The Hebrew Bible is a term used by biblical scholars outside of Judaism to refer to the Tanakh , a canonical collection of Jewish texts, and the common textual antecedent of the several canonical editions of the Christian Old Testament...

, the Jebusites ( ISO 259-3
ISO 259-3
ISO 259-3 is a standard for the phonemic conversion/representation of Hebrew in the Latin script. It is aimed on delivering the common structure of the Hebrew word throughout the different dialects or pronunciation styles of Hebrew, in a way that it can be reconstructed into the original Hebrew...

Ybusi) were a Canaan
Canaan
Canaan is a historical region roughly corresponding to modern-day Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, and the western parts of Jordan...

ite tribe who inhabited and built Jerusalem prior to its conquest by King David; the Books of Kings
Books of Kings
The Book of Kings presents a narrative history of ancient Israel and Judah from the death of David to the release of his successor Jehoiachin from imprisonment in Babylon, a period of some 400 years...

 state that Jerusalem was known as Jebus prior to this event. According to some Biblical chronologies
Chronology of the Bible
The chronology of the Bible is the elaborate system of genealogies, generations, reign-periods, and other means by which Hebrew Bible measures the passage of time and thus give a chronological framework to biblical history from the Creation until the historical kingdoms of Israel and Judah.The...

, the city was conquered by King David in 1003 BC, or according to other sources 869 BC.

The Tanakh
Tanakh
The Tanakh is a name used in Judaism for the canon of the Hebrew Bible. The Tanakh is also known as the Masoretic Text or the Miqra. The name is an acronym formed from the initial Hebrew letters of the Masoretic Text's three traditional subdivisions: The Torah , Nevi'im and Ketuvim —hence...

 portion of the Bible contains the only surviving ancient text known to use the term Jebusite to describe the pre-Israelite
Israelite
According to the Bible the Israelites were a Hebrew-speaking people of the Ancient Near East who inhabited the Land of Canaan during the monarchic period .The word "Israelite" derives from the Biblical Hebrew ישראל...

 inhabitants of Jerusalem; according to the Table of Nations at Genesis 10, the Jebusites are identified as a Canaan
Canaan
Canaan is a historical region roughly corresponding to modern-day Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, and the western parts of Jordan...

ite tribe, which is listed in third place among the Canaanite groups, between the Biblical Hittites
Biblical Hittites
The Hittites and children of Heth are a people or peoples mentioned in the Hebrew Bible. They are listed in Book of Genesis as second of the twelve Canaanite nations, descended from one Heth...

 and the Amorite
Amorite
Amorite refers to an ancient Semitic people who occupied large parts of Mesopotamia from the 21st Century BC...

s.
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Encyclopedia
According to the Hebrew Bible
Hebrew Bible
The Hebrew Bible is a term used by biblical scholars outside of Judaism to refer to the Tanakh , a canonical collection of Jewish texts, and the common textual antecedent of the several canonical editions of the Christian Old Testament...

, the Jebusites ( ISO 259-3
ISO 259-3
ISO 259-3 is a standard for the phonemic conversion/representation of Hebrew in the Latin script. It is aimed on delivering the common structure of the Hebrew word throughout the different dialects or pronunciation styles of Hebrew, in a way that it can be reconstructed into the original Hebrew...

Ybusi) were a Canaan
Canaan
Canaan is a historical region roughly corresponding to modern-day Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, and the western parts of Jordan...

ite tribe who inhabited and built Jerusalem prior to its conquest by King David; the Books of Kings
Books of Kings
The Book of Kings presents a narrative history of ancient Israel and Judah from the death of David to the release of his successor Jehoiachin from imprisonment in Babylon, a period of some 400 years...

 state that Jerusalem was known as Jebus prior to this event. According to some Biblical chronologies
Chronology of the Bible
The chronology of the Bible is the elaborate system of genealogies, generations, reign-periods, and other means by which Hebrew Bible measures the passage of time and thus give a chronological framework to biblical history from the Creation until the historical kingdoms of Israel and Judah.The...

, the city was conquered by King David in 1003 BC, or according to other sources 869 BC.

Ethnic origin


The Tanakh
Tanakh
The Tanakh is a name used in Judaism for the canon of the Hebrew Bible. The Tanakh is also known as the Masoretic Text or the Miqra. The name is an acronym formed from the initial Hebrew letters of the Masoretic Text's three traditional subdivisions: The Torah , Nevi'im and Ketuvim —hence...

 portion of the Bible contains the only surviving ancient text known to use the term Jebusite to describe the pre-Israelite
Israelite
According to the Bible the Israelites were a Hebrew-speaking people of the Ancient Near East who inhabited the Land of Canaan during the monarchic period .The word "Israelite" derives from the Biblical Hebrew ישראל...

 inhabitants of Jerusalem; according to the Table of Nations at Genesis 10, the Jebusites are identified as a Canaan
Canaan
Canaan is a historical region roughly corresponding to modern-day Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, and the western parts of Jordan...

ite tribe, which is listed in third place among the Canaanite groups, between the Biblical Hittites
Biblical Hittites
The Hittites and children of Heth are a people or peoples mentioned in the Hebrew Bible. They are listed in Book of Genesis as second of the twelve Canaanite nations, descended from one Heth...

 and the Amorite
Amorite
Amorite refers to an ancient Semitic people who occupied large parts of Mesopotamia from the 21st Century BC...

s. Prior to modern archaeological studies, most Biblical scholars
Biblical criticism
Biblical criticism is the scholarly "study and investigation of Biblical writings that seeks to make discerning judgments about these writings." It asks when and where a particular text originated; how, why, by whom, for whom, and in what circumstances it was produced; what influences were at work...

 held the opinion that the Jebusites were identical to the Hittites, which continues to be the case, though less so. However, an increasingly popular view, first put forward by Edward Lipinski
Edward Lipinski (orientalist)
Edward Lipiński, is a Belgian scholar specializing in Biblical and ancient Near Eastern studies.-Life:His first major work, published in 1965, was a monumental monograph entitled La royauté de Yahwé dans la poésie et le culte de l’ancien Israël. In 1969, he was appointed professor at the Louvain...

, professor of Oriental and Slavonic studies at the Catholic University of Leuven
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
The Katholieke Universiteit Leuven is a Dutch-speaking university in Flanders, Belgium.It is located at the centre of the historic town of Leuven, and is a prominent part of the city, home to the university since 1425...

, is that the Jebusites were most likely an Amorite
Amorite
Amorite refers to an ancient Semitic people who occupied large parts of Mesopotamia from the 21st Century BC...

 tribe; Lipinski identified them with the group referred to as Yabusi'um in a cuneiform
Cuneiform
Cuneiform can refer to:*Cuneiform script, an ancient writing system originating in Mesopotamia in the 4th millennium BC*Cuneiform , three bones in the human foot*Cuneiform Records, a music record label...

 letter found in the archive of Mari, Syria
Mari, Syria
Mari was an ancient Sumerian and Amorite city, located 11 kilometers north-west of the modern town of Abu Kamal on the western bank of Euphrates river, some 120 km southeast of Deir ez-Zor, Syria...

.

As Lipinski noted, however, it is entirely possible that more than one clan or tribe bore similar names, and thus that the Jebusites and Yabusi'um may have been separate people altogether. In the Amarna letters
Amarna letters
The Amarna letters are an archive of correspondence on clay tablets, mostly diplomatic, between the Egyptian administration and its representatives in Canaan and Amurru during the New Kingdom...

, mention is made of the contemporaneous king of Jerusalem was named Abdi-Heba
Abdi-Heba
Abdi-Heba was a local chieftain of Jerusalem during the Amarna period . Abdi-Heba's name can be translated as "servant of Hebat", a Hurrian goddess. Some scholars believe the correct reading is Ebed-Nob...

, which is a theophoric name invoking a Hurrian goddess named Hebat
Hebat
Hebat, also transcribed Kheba or Khepat, was the mother goddess of the Hurrians, known as "the mother of all living".- Family :Hebat is the consort of Teshub and the mother of Sarruma. Originally, as Kheba or "Kubau" it is thought she may have had a Southern Mesopotamian origin, being the divinised...

; unless a different ethnic group occupied Jerusalem in this period, this implies that the Jebusites were Hurrians themselves, were heavily influenced by Hurrian culture, or were dominated by a Hurrian maryannu
Maryannu
Maryannu is an ancient word for the caste of chariot-mounted hereditary warrior nobility which dominated many of the societies of the Middle East during the Bronze Age.The term is attested in the Amarna letters written by Haapi...

class.

Melchizedek


According to Genesis, the ruler of Jerusalem in the time of Abraham was Melchizedek
Melchizedek
Melchizedek or Malki Tzedek translated as "my king righteous") is a king and priest mentioned during the Abram narrative in the 14th chapter of the Book of Genesis....

(also Melchizedeq), and that as well as being a ruler, he was also a priest. Later, Joshua
Joshua
Joshua , is a minor figure in the Torah, being one of the spies for Israel and in few passages as Moses's assistant. He turns to be the central character in the Hebrew Bible's Book of Joshua...

 is described as defeating a Jebusite king named Adonizedek
Adonizedek
Adonizedek Adonizedek Adonizedek (variously transliterated as Adoni-zedec or Adoni-Zedek (in Hebrew, Adoni-Tzedek) was, according to the Book of Joshua, king of Jerusalem at the time of the Israelite invasion of Canaan...

. The first parts of their names mean king and lord, respectively, but though the zedek part can be translated as righteous (making the names my king is righteous and my lord is righteous), most Biblical scholars believe that it is a reference to a deity named Zedek
Zedek
Sydyk was the name of a deity appearing in a theogeny provided by Roman era Phoenician writer Philo of Byblos in an account preserved by Eusebius in his Praeparatio Evangelica and attributed to the still earlier Sanchuniathon.-Etymology and role in the Phoenician theogeny:Philo of Byblos gave the...

, who was the main deity worshipped by the Jebusites (making the names my king is Zedek and my lord is Zedek). Scholars are uncertain, however, whether Melchizedek was himself intended in the Genesis account to be understood as a Jebusite, rather than a member of another group in charge of Jerusalem prior to the Jebusites - Jerusalem is referred to as Salem rather than Jebus in the passages of Genesis describing Melchizedek.

Araunah


Another Jebusite, Araunah
Araunah
Araunah was a Jebusite who was mentioned in the Books of Samuel who owned the threshing floor on the summit of Mount Moriah that David purchased and used as the site for assembling an altar to God. The Scholar renders his name as Arunah....

 (referred to as Ornan by the Book of Chronicles) is described by the Books of Samuel
Books of Samuel
The Books of Samuel in the Jewish bible are part of the Former Prophets, , a theological history of the Israelites affirming and explaining the Torah under the guidance of the prophets.Samuel begins by telling how the prophet Samuel is chosen by...

 as having sold his threshing floor
Threshing floor
A threshing floor is a specially flattened surface, usually circular and paved, where a farmer would thresh the grain harvest and then winnow it, before the advent of threshing machines from the nineteenth century onwards. The threshing floor was either owned by the entire village or by a single...

 to King David, which David then constructed an altar on, the implication being that the altar became the core of the Temple of Solomon. Araunah means the lord in Hittite
Hittite language
Hittite is the extinct language once spoken by the Hittites, a people who created an empire centred on Hattusa in north-central Anatolia...

, and so most scholars, since they consider the Jebusites to have been Hittite, have argued that Araunah may have been another king of Jerusalem; some scholars additionally believe that Adonijah
Adonijah
Adonijah was the fourth son of King David according to the book of Samuel , which is contained in the Bible.-Life:After the death of his elder brothers Amnon and Absalom, he became heir-apparent to the throne, but Solomon, a younger brother, was preferred to him. Adonijah, however, when his father...

 is actually a disguised reference to Araunah, the ר (r) having been corrupted to ד (d). The narrative itself is considered by scholars to be aetiological and of dubious historicity
Historicity
Historicity may mean:*the quality of being part of recorded history, as opposed to prehistory*the quality of being part of history as opposed to being a historical myth or legend, for example:** Historicity of the Iliad**Historicity...

; Melchizedek, as a priest as well as king, was likely to have been associated with a sanctuary, probably dedicated to Zedek, and scholars suspect that the Temple of Solomon was simply a natural evolution of this sanctuary.

The Jebusite hypothesis


Some scholars have speculated that as Zadok
Zadok
Zadok was a high priest of the Israelites in Jerusalem after it was conquered by David.Zadok may also refer to:*Rabbi Zadok, tanna of the 1st-century CE*Zadok the Priest, an 18th-century coronation anthem by Handel...

 (also Zadoq) does not appear in the text of Samuel until after the conquest of Jerusalem, he was actually a Jebusite priest co-opted into the Israelite state religion. Harvard Divinity School Professor Frank Moore Cross
Frank Moore Cross
Frank Moore Cross, Jr. is Hancock Professor of Hebrew and Other Oriental Languages Emeritus at Harvard University, notable for his work in the interpretation of the Dead Sea Scrolls, his 1973 magnum opus Canaanite Myth and Hebrew Epic, and his work in Northwest Semitic epigraphy...

 refers to this theory as the "Jebusite Hypothesis," criticizes it extensively, but terms it the dominant view among contemporary scholars, in Canaanite Myth and Hebrew Epic: Essays in the History of the Religion of Israel.

Elsewhere in the Bible, the Jebusites are described in a manner that suggests that they worshipped the same God (El Elyon -- Ēl ‘Elyōn) as the Israelites (see, e.g., Melchizedek
Melchizedek
Melchizedek or Malki Tzedek translated as "my king righteous") is a king and priest mentioned during the Abram narrative in the 14th chapter of the Book of Genesis....

). Further support for this theory comes from the fact that other Jebusites resident in pre-Israelite Jerusalem bore names invoking the principle or god Zedek (Tzedek) (see, e.g., Melchizedek and Adonizedek). Under this theory the Aaronic lineage ascribed to Zadok
Zadok (High Priest)
Zadok , was a priest descended from Eleazar the son of Aaron, who aided King David during the revolt of his son Absalom, and was consequently instrumental in bringing King Solomon to throne...

 is a later, anachronistic interpolation.

Jebusite activities in the Bible


The Hebrew Bible describes the Jebusites as dwelling in the mountains, besides Jerusalem. According to the Book of Joshua
Book of Joshua
The Book of Joshua is the sixth book in the Hebrew Bible and of the Old Testament. Its 24 chapters tell of the entry of the Israelites into Canaan, their conquest and division of the land under the leadership of Joshua, and of serving God in the land....

, Adonizedek
Adonizedek
Adonizedek Adonizedek Adonizedek (variously transliterated as Adoni-zedec or Adoni-Zedek (in Hebrew, Adoni-Tzedek) was, according to the Book of Joshua, king of Jerusalem at the time of the Israelite invasion of Canaan...

 led a confederation of Jebusites, and the tribes from the neighbouring cities of Jarmut, Lachish
Lachish
Lachish was an ancient Near East town located at the site of modern Tell ed-Duweir in the Shephelah, a region between Mount Hebron and the maritime plain of Philistia . The town was first mentioned in the Amarna letters as Lakisha-Lakiša...

, Eglon
Eglon
Eglon may refer to:*Eglon, Canaan, a Biblical city*Eglon , a Biblical king*Eglon, West Virginia, a community in the U.S. state of West Virginia*Eglon, Washington, a community in the U.S. state of Washington on the Kitsap Peninsula...

 and Hebron
Hebron
Hebron , is located in the southern West Bank, south of Jerusalem. Nestled in the Judean Mountains, it lies 930 meters above sea level. It is the largest city in the West Bank and home to around 165,000 Palestinians, and over 500 Jewish settlers concentrated in and around the old quarter...

 against Joshua
Joshua
Joshua , is a minor figure in the Torah, being one of the spies for Israel and in few passages as Moses's assistant. He turns to be the central character in the Hebrew Bible's Book of Joshua...

, but was soundly defeated, and killed. However, states that Judah could not dislodge the Jebusites, who were living in Jerusalem ("to this day the Jebusites live there with the people of Judah").

portrays the Jebusites as continuing to dwell at Jerusalem, within the territory otherwise occupied by the Tribe of Judah
Tribe of Judah
According to the Hebrew Bible, the Tribe of Judah was one of the Tribes of Israel.Following the completion of the conquest of Canaan by the Israelite tribes after about 1200 BCE, Joshua allocated the land among the twelve tribes....

 and Tribe of Benjamin
Tribe of Benjamin
According to the Hebrew Bible, the Tribe of Benjamin בִּנְיָמִין was one of the Tribes of Israel.From after the conquest of the land by Joshua until the formation of the first Kingdom of Israel in c. 1050 BCE, the Tribe of Benjamin was a part of a loose confederation of Israelite tribes...

.

Certain modern archaeologists now believe that the conquest of Canaan by the Israelites under Joshua simply didn't happen, and that the Israelites actually originated as a subculture in Canaanite society; some biblical scholars believe that the accounts in the Book of Joshua are cobbled together from folk memory
Folk memory
Folk memories is a term sometimes used to describe stories, folklore or myths about past events that have passed orally from generation to generation. The events described by the memories may date back hundreds, thousands, or even tens of thousands of years and often have a local significance...

 of disconnected battles, with numerous different aggressors, which occurred over a time period of over 200 years. Nevertheless, this is no reason to conclude that the battle itself didn't happen; these scholars simply argue that if it did, then it had different protagonists, and for different reasons; though most of their peers in archaeology and biblical studies strongly reject those conclusions."

According to the Books of Samuel
Books of Samuel
The Books of Samuel in the Jewish bible are part of the Former Prophets, , a theological history of the Israelites affirming and explaining the Torah under the guidance of the prophets.Samuel begins by telling how the prophet Samuel is chosen by...

, the Jebusites still had control of Jerusalem at the time of King David, but David wished to take control of the city; understandably the Jebusites contested his attempt to do this, and since Jebus was the strongest fortress in Canaan they gloated that even the blind and lame could defeat David's army; an alternative, equally valid, translation of the Jebusite's statement is that they said David would have to defeat the blind and lame before anyone else. According to the version of the story in the masoretic text
Masoretic Text
The Masoretic Text is the authoritative Hebrew text of the Jewish Bible and is regarded as Judaism's official version of the Tanakh. While the Masoretic Text defines the books of the Jewish canon, it also defines the precise letter-text of these biblical books, with their vocalization and...

, David managed to conquer the city by a surprise attack, led by Joab
Joab
Joab the son of Zeruiah, was the nephew of King David and the commander of his army, according to the Hebrew Bible.- Name :...

, through the water supply tunnels (Jerusalem has no natural water supply except for the Gihon spring
Gihon Spring
The Gihon Spring was the main source of water for the City of David, the original site of Jerusalem. One of the world's major intermittent springs - and a reliable water source that made human settlement possible in ancient Jerusalem - the spring was not only used for drinking water, but also...

). Upon its discovery in the 19th century, Warren's shaft
Warren's Shaft
Warren's Shaft is an archaeological feature in Jerusalem discovered in 1867 by British engineer Sir Charles Warren . It runs from within the old city to a spot near the Gihon Spring, and after its 19th century discovery was thought to have been the centrepiece of the city's early water supply...

, part of a system which connects the spring to the city, has been cited as evidence for the plausibility of such a line of attack; however, the discovery, at the turn of the 21st century, of a set of heavy fortifications, including towers, around the base of the Warren's shaft system and the spring, has made archaeologists now regard this line of attack as implausible, as it would be an attack against one of the most heavily fortified parts, and hardly a surprise. According to many textual scholars the claim in the masoretic text could simply be a scribal error; the Septuagint version of the passage states that the Israelites had to attack the Jebusites with their dagger[s] rather than through the water shaft.

The Books of Kings
Books of Kings
The Book of Kings presents a narrative history of ancient Israel and Judah from the death of David to the release of his successor Jehoiachin from imprisonment in Babylon, a period of some 400 years...

 state that once Jerusalem had become an Israelite city, the surviving Jebusites were forced by Solomon
Solomon
Solomon , according to the Book of Kings and the Book of Chronicles, a King of Israel and according to the Talmud one of the 48 prophets, is identified as the son of David, also called Jedidiah in 2 Samuel 12:25, and is described as the third king of the United Monarchy, and the final king before...

 to become serf
SERF
A spin exchange relaxation-free magnetometer is a type of magnetometer developed at Princeton University in the early 2000s. SERF magnetometers measure magnetic fields by using lasers to detect the interaction between alkali metal atoms in a vapor and the magnetic field.The name for the technique...

s; though since some archaeologists believe that the Israelites were simply an emergent subculture in Canaanite society, it is possible that this is an aetiological explanation for serfs than a historically accurate one. It is unknown what ultimately became of these Jebusites, but it seems logical that they were assimilated by the Israelites. According to the "Jebusite Hypothesis," however, the Jebusites persisted as inhabitants of Jerusalem and comprised an important faction in the Kingdom of Judah, including such notables as Zadok
Zadok
Zadok was a high priest of the Israelites in Jerusalem after it was conquered by David.Zadok may also refer to:*Rabbi Zadok, tanna of the 1st-century CE*Zadok the Priest, an 18th-century coronation anthem by Handel...

 the priest, Nathan
Nathan
Nathan is a masculine given name. It is derived from the Hebrew verb נתן meaning to give . The meaning of the name in Jewish culture could be rendered "he [God] has given" or "he will give".The related name Elnathan could be rendered "Gift of God"...

 the prophet, and Bathsheba
Bathsheba
According to the Hebrew Bible, Bathsheba was the wife of Uriah the Hittite and later of David, king of the United Kingdom of Israel and Judah. She is most known for the Bible story in which King David seduced her....

, the queen and mother of the next monarch, Solomon
Solomon
Solomon , according to the Book of Kings and the Book of Chronicles, a King of Israel and according to the Talmud one of the 48 prophets, is identified as the son of David, also called Jedidiah in 2 Samuel 12:25, and is described as the third king of the United Monarchy, and the final king before...

. According to this hypothesis, after the disgrace of a rival faction in the struggle for succession to David, the family of Zadok became the sole authorized Jerusalem clergy, so that a Jebusite family monopolized the Jerusalem clergy for many centuries before becoming sufficiently attenuated to be indistinguishable from other Judeans or Judahites.

The Book of Chronicles states that the inhabitants of Jebus forbade King David from coming to Jerusalem shortly after he was made king. Joab
Joab
Joab the son of Zeruiah, was the nephew of King David and the commander of his army, according to the Hebrew Bible.- Name :...

 went up first and took the city and became chief and captain of David's armed forces.

Classical Rabbinical perspectives


According to classical rabbinical literature, the Jebusites derived their name from the city of Jebus, the ancient Jerusalem, which they inhabited. These rabbinical sources also argued that as part of the price of Abraham
Abraham
Abraham , whose birth name was Abram, is the eponym of the Abrahamic religions, among which are Judaism, Christianity and Islam...

's purchase of the Cave of Machpelah, which lay in the territory of the Jebusites, the Jebusites made Abraham grant them a covenant
Covenant (historical)
In a historical context, a covenant applies to formal promises that were made under oath, or in less remote history, agreements in which the name actually uses the term 'covenant', implying that they were binding for all time...

 that his descendants would not take control of Jebus against the will of the Jebusites, and then the Jebusites engraved the covenant into bronze
Bronze
Bronze is a metal alloy consisting primarily of copper, usually with tin as the main additive. It is hard and brittle, and it was particularly significant in antiquity, so much so that the Bronze Age was named after the metal...

; the sources state that the presence of the bronze statues are why the Israelites were not able to conquer the city during Joshua
Joshua
Joshua , is a minor figure in the Torah, being one of the spies for Israel and in few passages as Moses's assistant. He turns to be the central character in the Hebrew Bible's Book of Joshua...

's campaign.

The classical era rabbi
Rabbi
In Judaism, a rabbi is a teacher of Torah. This title derives from the Hebrew word רבי , meaning "My Master" , which is the way a student would address a master of Torah...

s go on to state that King David was prevented from entering the city of Jebus for the same reason, and so he promised the reward of captaincy to anyone who destroyed the bronzes - Joab
Joab
Joab the son of Zeruiah, was the nephew of King David and the commander of his army, according to the Hebrew Bible.- Name :...

 performing the task and so gaining the prize. The covenant is dismissed by the rabbis as having been invalidated due to the war the Jebusites fought against Joshua, but nevertheless David (according to the rabbis) paid the Jebusites the full value of the city, collecting the money from among all the Israelite tribes, so that the city became their common property.

In reference to a passage in the Books of Samuel
Books of Samuel
The Books of Samuel in the Jewish bible are part of the Former Prophets, , a theological history of the Israelites affirming and explaining the Torah under the guidance of the prophets.Samuel begins by telling how the prophet Samuel is chosen by...

 which refers to a saying about the blind and the lame, Rashi
Rashi
Shlomo Yitzhaki , or in Latin Salomon Isaacides, and today generally known by the acronym Rashi , was a medieval French rabbi famed as the author of a comprehensive commentary on the Talmud, as well as a comprehensive commentary on the Tanakh...

 quotes a midrash which argues that the Jebusites had two statues in their city, with their mouths containing the words of the covenant between Abraham and the Jebusites; one figure, depicting a blind person, represented Isaac
Isaac
Isaac as described in the Hebrew Bible, was the only son Abraham had with his wife Sarah, and was the father of Jacob and Esau. Isaac was one of the three patriarchs of the Israelites...

, and the other, depicting a lame person, representing Jacob
Jacob
Jacob "heel" or "leg-puller"), also later known as Israel , as described in the Hebrew Bible, the Talmud, the New Testament and the Qur'an was the third patriarch of the Hebrew people with whom God made a covenant, and ancestor of the tribes of Israel, which were named after his descendants.In the...

.

Modern usage


Many Palestinian Arabs, including such prominent figures as Yasir Arafat and Faisal Husseini
Faisal Husseini
Faisal Abdel Qader Al-Husseini was a Palestinian politician who was considered a possible future leader of the Palestinian people....

, have claimed that Palestinians descended from the Jebusites. This modern claim has appeared in the Palestinian Encyclopedia and in Palestinian Authority school textbooks but lacks support in the scholarly community.

External links