7 occurrences in 7 dictionaries

Reference: Bethsaida


Place of fishing, 1. A city in Galilee, on the western shore of the lake of Gennesareth, a little north of Capernaum; it was the birthplace of the apostles Philip, Andrew, and Peter, and was often visited by our Lord, Mt 11:21; Mr 6:45; 8:22.

2. A city in Gaulonitis, north of the same lake, and east of the Jordan. Near this place Christ fed the five thousand. It lay on a gentle hill near the Jordan separated from the sea of Galilee by a plain three miles wide, of surpassing fertility, Lu 9:10. Compare Mt 14:13-22; Mr 6:31-45. This town was enlarged by Philip, tetrarch of that region, Lu 3:1, and called Julias in honor of Julia, the daughter of Augustus. It is now little but ruins.

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house of fish.

(1.) A town in Galilee, on the west side of the sea of Tiberias, in the "land of Gennesaret." It was the native place of Peter, Andrew, and Philip, and was frequently resorted to by Jesus (Mr 6:45; Joh 1:44; 12:21). It is supposed to have been at the modern 'Ain Tabighah, a bay to the north of Gennesaret.

(2.) A city near which Christ fed 5,000 (Lu 9:10; comp. Joh 6:17; Mt 14:15-21), and where the blind man had his sight restored (Mr 8:22), on the east side of the lake, two miles up the Jordan. It stood within the region of Gaulonitis, and was enlarged by Philip the tetrarch, who called it "Julias," after the emperor's daughter. Or, as some have supposed, there may have been but one Bethsaida built on both sides of the lake, near where the Jordan enters it. Now the ruins et-Tel.

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("house of fish".) A city of Galilee, W. of and close to the sea of Tiberias, in the land of Gennesareth (Mr 6:45-53; Joh 6:16-17; 1:44; 12:21). Andrew, Peter, and Philip belonged to it, Near Capernaum and Chorazin (Mt 11:21; Lu 10:13). When Jesus fed the 5,000 on the N.E. of the lake, they entered into a boat to cross to Bethsaida (Mr 6:45), while John says" they went over the sea toward Capernaum." Being driven out of their course, Jesus came to them walking on the sea; they landed in Gennesaret and went to Capernaum; so that Bethsaida must have been near Capernaum.

In Lu 9:10-17 another Bethsaida, at the scene of feeding the 5,000, is mentioned (though the Curetonian Syriac and later Sinaitic omit it), which must have been therefore N.E. of the lake; the same as Julias, called from the emperor's daughter Julia. The miracle was wrought in a lonely "desert place," on a rising ground at the back of the town, covered with much "green grass" (Mr 6:39). In Mr 8:10-22 a Bethsaida on the E. side of the lake in Gaulonitis (now Jaulan) is alluded to; for Jesus passed by ship from Dalmanutha on the W. side "to the other side," i.e. to the E. side. Thus, Caesarea Philippi is mentioned presently after, Bethsaida being on the road to it; and the mount of the transfiguration, part of the Hermon range, above the source of the Jordan (Mr 9:2-3); the snow of Hermon suggested the image, "His raiment became white as snow."

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A place on the shore of the Sea of Galilee, whither Christ went after feeding the five thousand (Mr 6:45, cf. Lu 9:10), and where He healed a blind man (Mr 8:22); the home of Philip, Andrew, and Peter (Joh 1:44; 12:21). It was denounced by Christ for unbelief (Mt 11:21; Lu 10:13). The town was advanced by Philip the tetrarch from a village to the dignity of a city, and named Julias, in honour of C

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This name signifies 'house of fish.'

1. BETHSAIDA OF GALILEE, a town from whence came Philip, Andrew, and Peter, Joh 1:44; 12:21; and against which the Lord pronounced a 'woe' because it had not repented at His mighty works. Mt 11:21; Lu 10:13. After the Lord had fed the 5,000 on the east of Jordan He sent His disciples to Bethsaida on the western shore. Mr 6:45. It was near the shore on the west of the Sea of Galilee, in the same locality as Capernaum and Chorazin: there are ruins in the district, but its exact situation cannot be identified.

2. BETHSAIDA JULIAS, a town near the N.E. corner of the same lake. A blind man was cured there, Mr 8:22; and near to it the 5,000 were fed, Lu 9:10-17: also related in Mt 14:13-21; Mr 6:31-44; Joh 6:1-14. It was called 'Julias,' because Philip the tetrarch enlarged the town, giving it the above name in honour of Julia, daughter of Augustus. It is identified by some with et Tell, 32 54' N, 35 37' E. A few rude houses and heaps of stones are all that mark the spot. (The context of the above passages shows that the events recorded could not have taken place at or near the Bethsaida on the west of the lake.)

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(house of fish) of Galilee,

Joh 12:21

a city which was the native place of Andrew, Peter and Philip,

Joh 1:44; 12:21

in the land of Gennesareth,

Mr 6:46

comp. Mark 6:53 and therefore on the west side of the lake. By comparing the narratives in

Mr 6:31-53

and Luke 9:10-17 it appears certain that the Bethsaida at which the five thousand were fed must have been a second place of the same name on the east of the lake. (But in reality "there is but one Bethsaida, that known on our maps at Bethsaida Julias." L. Abbot in Biblical and Oriental Journal. The fact is that Bethsaida was a village on both sides of the Jordan as it enters the sea of Galilee on the north, so that the western part of the village was in Galilee and the eastern portion in Gaulonitis, part of the tetrarchy of Philip. This eastern portion was built up into a beautiful city by Herod Philip, and named by him Bethsaida Julias, after Julia the daughter of the Roman emperor Tiberius Caesar. On the plain of Butaiha, a mile or two to the east, the five thousand were fed. The western part of the town remained a small village.--ED.)

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BETHSAIDA, a city whose name in Hebrew imports a place of fishing or of hunting, and for both of these exercises it was well situated. As it belonged to the tribe of Naphtali, it was in a country remarkable for plenty of deer; and as it lay on the north end of the lake Gennesareth, just where the river Jordan runs into it, it became the residence of fishermen. Three of the Apostles, Philip, Andrew, and Peter, were born in this city. It is not mentioned in the Old Testament, though it frequently occurs in the New: the reason is, that it was but a village, as Josephus tells us, till Philip the tetrarch enlarged it, making it a magnificent city, and gave it the name of Julias, out of respect to Julia, the daughter of Augustus Caesar.

The evangelists speak of Bethsaida; and yet it then possessed that name no longer: it was enlarged and beautified nearly at the same time as Caesarea, and called Julias. Thus was it called in the days of our Lord, and so would the sacred historians have been accustomed to call it. But if they knew nothing of this, what shall we say of their age? In other respects they evince the most accurate knowledge of the circumstances of the time. The solution is, that, though Philip had exalted it to the rank of a city, to which he gave the name of Julias, yet, not long afterward, this Julia, in whose honour the city received its name, was banished from the country by her own father. The deeply wounded honour of Augustus was even anxious that the world might forget that she was his daughter. Tiberius, whose wife she had been, consigned the unfortunate princess, after the death of Augustus, to the most abject poverty, under which she sank without assistance. Thus adulation must under two reigns have suppressed a name, from which otherwise the city might have wished to derive benefit to itself; and for some time it was called by its ancient name Bethsaida instead of Julias. At a later period this name again came into circulation, and appears in the catalogue of Jewish cities by Pliny. By such incidents, which are so easily overlooked, and the knowledge of which is afterward lost, do those who are really acquainted with an age disclose their authenticity. "But it is strange," some one will say, "that John reckons this Bethsaida, or Julias, where he was born, in Galilee, Joh 12:21. Should he not know to what province his birthplace belonged?" Philip only governed the eastern districts by the sea of Tiberias; but Galilee was the portion of his brother Antipas. Bethsaida or Julias could therefore not have been built by Philip, as the case is; or it did not belong to Galilee, as John alleges. In fact, such an error were sufficient to prove that this Gospel was not written by John. Julias, however, was situated in Gaulonitis, which district was, for deep political reasons, divided from Galilee; but the ordinary language of the time asserted its own opinion, and still reckoned the Gaulonitish province in Galilee. When, therefore, John does the same, he proves, that the peculiarity of those days was not unknown to him; for he expresses himself after the ordinary manner of the period. Thus Josephus informs us of Judas the Gaulonite from Gamala, and also calls him in the following chapters, the Galilean; and then in another work he applies the same expression to him; from whence we may be convinced that the custom of those days paid respect to a more ancient division of the country, and bade defiance, in the present case, to the then existing political geography. Is it possible that historians who, as it is evident from such examples, discover throughout so nice a knowledge of geographical arrangements and local and even temporary circumstances, should have written at a time when the theatre of events was unknown to them, when not only their native country was destroyed, but their nation scattered, and the national existence of the Jews extinguished and extirpated? On the contrary, all this is in proof that they wrote at the very period which they profess, and it also proves the usual antiquity assigned to the Gospels.

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