I pray thee, let me go over and see the good land that is
The land of Canaan, the land flowing with milk and honey; a land which he describes as a most excellent one, ( Deuteronomy 8:7 Deuteronomy 8:8 ) . To see this land, he was very desirous of going over the river Jordan, beyond which it lay with respect to the place where he now was:
that goodly mountain, and Lebanon;
or, "that goodly mountain, even Lebanon"; which lay to the north of the land of Canaan, and was famous for cedar and odoriferous trees. But if two distinct mountains are meant, the goodly mountain may design Mount Moriah, on which the temple was afterwards built, and of which Moses might have a foresight; and some by Lebanon think that is meant, which was built of the cedars of Lebanon, and therefore goes by that name, ( Zechariah 11:1 ) and a foreview of this made the mountain so precious to Moses, and desirable to be seen by him. So the Targum of Jonathan;
``that goodly mountain in which is built the city of Jerusalem, and Mount Lebanon, in which the Shechinah shall dwell''to which agrees the note of Aben Ezra, who interprets the goodly mountain of Jerusalem, and Lebanon of the house of the sanctuary. In the Septuagint it is called Antilibanus. Mount Libanus had its name not from frankincense growing upon it, as some have thought; for it does not appear that any did grow upon it, for that came from Seba in Arabia Felix; but from the whiteness of it, through the continual snows that were on it, just as the Alps have their name for the same reason; and so Jerom says F2 of Lebanon, that the snow never leaves from the tops of it, or is ever so overcome by the heat of the sun as wholly to melt; to the same purpose also Tacitus F3 says, and Mr. Maundrell F4, who was there in May, speaks of deep snow on it, and represents the cedars as standing in snow.
F2 In Hieremiam, c. 18. 14.
F3 Hist. l. 5. c. 6.
F4 Journey from Aleppo, p. 139, 140.