Hebrew: Negeb

that arid district to the south of the Land of Israel through which lay the caravan route from central Israel to Egypt (Genesis 12:9; 13:1, 3; 46:1-6)

“The Negeb comprised a considerable but irregularly-shaped tract of country, its main portion stretching from the mountains and lowlands of Judah in the north to the mountains of Azazemeh in the south, and from the Dead Sea and southern Ghoron the east to the Mediterranean on the west.”

In Ezek. 20:46 (21:1 in Hebrew) three different Hebrew words are all rendered “south:”

  1. “Set thy face toward the south” (Teman, the region on the right, 1 Samuel 23:24)
  2. “Drop thy word toward the south” (Negeb, the region of dryness, Joshua 15:4)
  3. “Prophesy against the forest of the south field” (Darom, the region of brightness, Deuteronomy 33:23). In Job 37:9 the word “south” is literally “chamber,” used here in the sense of treasury (compare 38:22; Psalm 135:7). This verse is rendered in the Revised King James Version “out of the chamber of the south.”