The major city in the northern Negeb desert, in the territory of the tribe of Simeon (Josh 19:2). A biblical tradition explains the derivation of the name (Gen 21:22-32): Abraham and Abimelech, king of Gerar, settled their dispute over a well (Heb. beer) by concluding a treaty with an offering of “seven” (Heb. sheba‘) ewes. A generation later, renewed contention between the shepherds of Isaac and Abimelech was resolved by another oath at Beer-sheba (Gen 26:26-33). Later, Samuel’s two sons were judges at Beer-sheba (1Sam 8:2), and David’s realm stretched “from Dan to Beer-sheba,” a geographical description that became standard for the limits of Israelite settlement in the promised land (2Sam 17:11; 2Sam 24:2; 1Kgs 5:5). The prophet Amos makes critical reference to the sanctity of this southern city (Amos 5:5; Amos 8:14).
2It had for its inheritance Beer-sheba, Sheba, Moladah,
Abraham and Abimelech Make a Covenant
22At that time Abimelech, with Phicol the commander of his army, said to Abraham, “God is with you in all that you do;23no ... View more
26Then Abimelech went to him from Gerar, with Ahuzzath his adviser and Phicol the commander of his army.27Isaac said to them, “Why have you come to me, seeing t ... View more
2The name of his firstborn son was Joel, and the name of his second, Abijah; they were judges in Beer-sheba.
11But my counsel is that all Israel be gathered to you, from Dan to Beer-sheba, like the sand by the sea for multitude, and that you go to battle in person.
2So the king said to Joab and the commanders of the army, who were with him, “Go through all the tribes of Israel, from Dan to Beer-sheba, and take a census of ... View more
5So I intend to build a house for the name of the Lord my God, as the Lord said to my father David, ‘Your son, whom I will set on your throne in your place, sha ... View more
5but do not seek Bethel,
and do not enter into Gilgal
or cross over to Beer-sheba;
for Gilgal shall surely go into exile,
and Bethel shall come to nothing.
14Those who swear by Ashimah of Samaria,
and say, “As your god lives, O Dan,”
and, “As the way of Beer-sheba lives”—
they shall fall, and never rise again.