A word, an oracle, Jg 1:11, a place called also KIRJATH-SEPHER, a city of books; and KIRJATH-SANNAH, a city of literature, 15/type/leb'>Jos 5:15,15. Judging from the names, it appears to have been some sacred place among the Canaanites, and a repository of their records. It was a city in the south-west part of Judea, conquered from the Anakim by Joshua, but recaptured by the Canaanites, and resubdued by Othniel, and afterwards given to the priests, Jos 10:38-39; 15:15-17; 21:15. Its site is wholly lost. There was another Debir in Gad, and a third on the border of Benjamin, Jos 13:26; 15:7.
oracle town; sanctuary. (1.) One of the eleven cities to the west of Hebron, in the highlands of Judah (Jos 15:49; Jg 1:11-15). It was originally one of the towns of the Anakim (Jos 15:15), and was also called Kirjath-sepher (q.v.) and Kirjath-sannah (49). Caleb, who had conquered and taken possession of the town and district of Hebron (Jos 14:6-15), offered the hand of his daughter to any one who would successfully lead a party against Debir. Othniel, his younger brother (Jg 1:13; 3:9), achieved the conquest, and gained Achsah as his wife. She was not satisfied with the portion her father gave her, and as she was proceeding toward her new home, she "lighted from off her ass" and said to him, "Give me a blessing [i.e., a dowry]: for thou hast given me a south land" (Jos 15:19, A.V.); or, as in the Revised Version, "Thou hast set me in the land of the south", i.e., in the Negeb, outside the rich valley of Hebron, in the dry and barren land. "Give me also springs of water. And he gave her the upper springs, and the nether springs."
Debir has been identified with the modern Edh-Dhaheriyeh, i.e., "the well on the ridge", to the south of Hebron.
(2.) A place near the "valley of Achor" (Jos 15:7), on the north boundary of Judah, between Jerusalem and Jericho.
(3.) The king of Eglon, one of the five Canaanitish kings who were hanged by Joshua (Jos 10:3,23) after the victory at Gibeon. These kings fled and took refuge in a cave at Makkedah. Here they were kept confined till Joshua returned from the pursuit of their discomfited armies, when he caused them to be brought forth, and "Joshua smote them, and slew them, and hanged them on five trees" (Jos 10:26).
The king of Eglon, who acc. to Jos 10:3 joined other four kings against Joshua, but was defeated and put to death along with his allies at Makkedah.
2. City in the highlands of Judah near Hebron. It was one of the cities of the Amorites that was destroyed and its king slain. Joshua as the leader of Israel is represented as taking it, but in Judges we find that it was actually taken by Othniel, to whom Caleb gave his daughter Achsah in marriage for its capture. It was eventually given to the priests. Its former name was KIRJATH-SEPHER or KIRJATH-SANNAH. Jos 10:38-39; 11:21; 12:13; 15/7/type/leb'>15:7,15,49; 21:15; Jg 1:11-12; 1Ch 6:58. Identified with edh Dhaheriyeh, 31 25' N, 34 58' E.
3. Place on the north boundary of Judah, near the valley of Achor. Jos 15:7. Identified by some with Thoghret ed Debr, 31 49' N, 35 21' E.
4. Place on the boundary of Gad, mentioned after Mahanaim. Jos 13:26.
(a sanctuary), the name of three places of Palestine.
1. A town in the mountains of Judah,
one of a group of eleven cities to the west of Hebron. The earlier name of Debir was Kirjath-sepher, "city of book,"
and Kirjath-sannah, "city of palm."
It was one of the cities given with their "suburbs" to the priests.
Debir has not been discovered with certainty in modern times; but about three miles to the west of Hebron is a deep and secluded valley called the Wady Nunkur, enclosed on the north by hills, of which one bears a name certainly suggestive of Debir--Dewir-ban.
2. A place on the north boundary of Judah, near the "valley of Achor."
A Wady Dabor is marked in Van de Velde's map as close to the south of Neby Musa, at the northwest corner of the Dead Sea.
3. The "border of Debir" is named as forming part of the boundary of Gad,
and as apparently not far from Mahanaim.