The Seventy Interpreters noted.

Here, reader, I will resolve you a riddle in the Seventy, in Genesis 35. In Moses the story of Jacob in that place is thus: "They went from Beth-el; and when it was but a little space to Ephrath, Rachel travailed," &c. And afterward; "Israel went on and pitched his tabernacle beyond the tower Edar."

The Seventy invert the order of the history, and they make the encamping of Jacob beyond Migdal Eder to be before his coming to the place where Rachel died. For thus they write: "And Jacob, departing from Beth-el, pitched his tent over-against the tower Gader. And it came to pass when he approached to Chabratha to come to Ephratha, Rachel travailed," &c.

I suspect, unless I fail in my conjecture, that they inverted the order of the history, fixing their eyes upon that Migdal Eder which was very near Jerusalem. For when Jacob travelled from Beth-el to the place of Rachel's sepulchre, that tower was first to be passed by, before one could come to the place; and when Jacob in his journey travelled southward, it is very probable that tower was on that quarter of the city.

There was, indeed, a Migdal Eder near Beth-lehem, and this was near Jerusalem; and perhaps there were more places of that name in the land of Israel. For as that word denotes the Tower of a Flock, so those towers seem to have been built for the keeping of flocks; that shepherds might be there ready also a-nights; and that they might have weapons in a readiness to defend their flocks, not only from wild beasts, but from robbers also. And to this sense we suppose that expression, 'the Tower of the Keepers,' is to be taken in that saying, "From the Tower of the Keepers to the strong city," 2 Kings 17:9, 18:8.

Hence the Targumist Jonathan, to distinguish Migdal Eder of Beth-lehem from all others, thus paraphraseth Moses' words: "And Israel went forward and pitched his tabernacle beyond Migdal Eder, the place whence the Messias is to be revealed in the end of days." Which very well agree with the history, Luke 2:8. Whether Micah, chapter 4:8, speak of the same, inquire.