And the Lord hearkened to the voice of Israel
In their prayers and vows; with acceptance heard, and answered them according to their wish:
and delivered up the Canaanites:
into their hands, gave them victory over them:
and they utterly destroyed them and their cities;
that is, "anathematized" them, and devoted them to destruction; for as yet they did not actually destroy them, since we read of Arad afterwards, ( Joshua 12:14 ) , but this they did in Joshua's time, when the whole land of Canaan came into their hands; for had they entered the land now, and took and destroyed the cities belonging to Arad, they would doubtless have proceeded, and pursued their conquests, and not have returned into the wilderness again to go round about Edom, in order to enter another way; many think, as Aben Ezra observes on ( Numbers 21:1 ) that this section was written by Joshua, after the land was subdued:
and he called the name of the place Hormah;
which before was called Zephath, and it seems to have its name from various disasters which happened at this place; as the defeat of the Israelites by the Amalekites, ( Numbers 14:45 ) , and here of the Canaanites by the Israelites, and afterwards of the inhabitants of this place by Judah and Simeon, ( Judges 1:17 ) it had its name from "Cherem", the anathema or destruction it was devoted to.