a town in the Negeb, or south country of Judah ( Joshua 15:31 ), in the possession of the Philistines when David fled to Gath from Ziph with all his followers. Achish, the king, assigned him Ziklag as his place of residence. There he dwelt for over a year and four months. From this time it pertained to the kings of Judah ( 1 Samuel 27:6 ). During his absence with his army to join the Philistine expedition against the Israelites ( 29:11 ), it was destroyed by the Amalekites ( 1 Samuel 30:1 1 Samuel 30:2 ), whom David, however, pursued and utterly routed, returning all the captives ( 1 Samuel 30:26-31 ). Two days after his return from this expedition, David received tidings of the disastrous battle of Gilboa and of the death of Saul ( 2 Samuel 1:1-16 ). He now left Ziklag and returned to Hebron, along with his two wives, Ahinoam and Abigail, and his band of 600 men. It has been identified with 'Asluj, a heap of ruins south of Beersheba. Conder, however, identifies it with Khirbet Zuheilikah, ruins found on three hills half a mile apart, some seventeen miles north-west of Beersheba, on the confines of Philistia, Judah, and Amalek.
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(winding ), a place which possesses a special interest from its having been the residence and the private property of David. It is first mentioned in the catalogue of the towns of Judah in ( Joshua 15:31 ) and occurs, in the same connection among the places which were allotted out of the territory of Judah to Simeon. ( Joshua 19:5 ) We next encounter it in the possession of the Philistines ( 1 Samuel 27:6 ) when it was, at Davids request, bestowed upon him by Achish king of Gath. He resided there for a year and four months. ( 1 Samuel 27:6 1 Samuel 27:7 ; 1 Samuel 30:14 1 Samuel 30:26 ; 1 Chronicles 12:1 1 Chronicles 12:20 ) It was there he received the news of Sauls death. ( 2 Samuel 1:1 ; 4:10 ) He then relinquished it for Hebron. ( 2 Samuel 2:1 ) Ziklag is finally mentioned as being reinhabited by the people of Judah after their return from captivity. ( Nehemiah 11:28 ) The situation of the town is difficult to determine, and we only know for certain that it was in the south country.
A town assigned (Joshua 19:5; 1 Chronicles 4:30) to Simeon, but in Joshua 15:31 named, between Hornah and Madmannah, as one of the cities of the Negeb of Judah, "toward the border of Edom." It is said (1 Samuel 27:6) to have remained a royal city. In Nehemiah 11:28 it is in the list of towns reinhabited by the returning children of Judah. Its chief associations are with David. Achish the Philistine king of Gath gave it to David as a residence (1 Samuel 27:6; 1 Chronicles 12:1,20); it was raided by the Amalekites, on whom David took vengeance and so recovered his property (1 Samuel 30:14,26); here the messenger who came to announce Saul's death was slain (2 Samuel 1:1; 4:10).
The site of this important place is not yet fixed with certainty; Conder proposed Zucheilika, a ruin 11 miles South-Southeast of Gaza, and 4 miles North of Wady es-Sheri'a, which may be the "Brook Besor" (1 Samuel 30:9,10,21); Rowland (1842) proposed `Asluj, a heap of ruins South of Beersheba and 7 miles to the East of Bered. Neither site is entirely satisfactory. See Williams, Holy City, I, 463-68; BR, II, 201, PEF, 288, Sh XX.
E. W. G. Masterman
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