Prayer points for dating
In Deut., xxxii, 10, it is used in parallelism with midbar , and in Ps. Such also is çiyyah , which means, literally, dryness, but refers at times to the desert: so, 'areç çiyyah , "a land of drought", or "a desert" ( Hosea 2:5 ).A word may be said here concerning the chief deserts referred to in the Bible . In the Pentateuch this tract is treated as a whole as "the desert", but, as a rule, special parts of it are referred to, as the desert of Sin, the desert of Sinai, the desert of Cades, the desert of Pharan, etc.It was not fertilized by streams of water, but springs were to be found there ( Genesis 16:7 ), and in places cisterns to collect the rainfall.Midbar is the word generally used in the Pentateuch for the desert of the Exodus; but of the regions of the Exodus various districts are distinguished as the desert of Sin ( Exodus 16:1 ), the desert of Sinai ( Exodus 19:1 ), the desert of Sur ( Exodus ), the desert of Sin ( zin ) ( Numbers ), etc.Very frequently the word 'arabah has a mere geographical sense.Thus it refers to the strange depression extending from the base of Mount Hermon , through the Jordan Valley and the Dead Sea, to the Gulf of Akabah.Four words are chiefly used in Hebrew to express the idea : The more general word.
A combination of these senses seems to have been the reason why in the poetical books the word is used of the wilderness.
Books have been written to discuss the geography of this region.
Suffice it to say that it comprises the ground over which the Israelites travelled from their crossing of the Red Sea till their arrival in the Promised Land.
The word means a steppe, a desert plain; and it conveys the idea of a stretch of country, arid, unproductive, and desolate.
In poetic passages it is used in parallelism with the word midbar .