Dictionary of Bible Names

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Bible Meaning: Holy place, a sanctum
Strong's Concordance #H6943

Kedesh (also known as Kedeshnaphtali, Judges 4:6) was the name of a city within the territory given to the tribe of Naphtali (Joshua 19:32, 37). It was designated both a Levitical city and one of the six special cities of refuge (Joshua 20:1 - 7).

There was also a city named Kedesh given to the tribe of Judah (Joshua 15:20) and another one designated Levitical within Isaachar's land (1Chronicles 6:72).

The king of Kedesh was one of thirty-one rulers defeated by Joshua and the Israelites after they entered the Promised Land (Joshua 12:22).

Kedesh in Naphtali was the home of Barak and the location where he and Deborah brought together a military force to free the people from domination by King Jabin. Both Deborah and Barak would serve as Judges in Israel from 1192 to 1152 B.C. Later in its history, the city was conquered by King Tiglath-pileser and its people were exiled to Assyria (2Kings 15:29).

Location of Kedesh in Ancient Israel Map

Important Verses

Joshua 15:20
This is the inheritance of the tribe of the children of Judah according to their families . . . And Kedesh, and Hazor, and Ithnan,

Joshua 20:2, 7
Speak to the children of Israel, saying, Appoint out for you cities of refuge, whereof I spake unto you by the hand of Moses . . . And they appointed Kedesh in Galilee in mount Naphtali, and Shechem in mount Ephraim, and Kirjatharba, which is Hebron, in the mountain of Judah.

Judges 4:6, 9 - 11
And she (Deborah) sent and called Barak the son of Abinoam out of Kedeshnaphtali, and said unto him, Hath not the Lord God of Israel commanded, saying, Go and draw toward mount Tabor, and take with thee ten thousand men of the children of Naphtali and of the children of Zebulun . . .

And she said, I will surely go with thee: notwithstanding the journey that thou takest shall not be for thine honor: for the Lord shall sell Sisera into the hand of a woman. And Deborah arose, and went with Barak to Kedesh.

And Barak called Zebulun and Naphtali to Kedesh: and he went up with ten thousand men at his feet: and Deborah went up with him.

Now Heber the Kenite, which was of the children of Hobab the father in law of Moses, had severed himself from the Kenites, and pitched his tent unto the plain of Zaanaim, which is by Kedesh.

2Kings 15:27, 29
In the two and fiftieth year of Azariah king of Judah Pekah the son of Remaliah began to reign over Israel in Samaria, and reigned twenty years . . .

In the days of Pekah king of Israel came Tiglathpileser king of Assyria, and took Ijon, and Abelbethmaachah, and Janoah, and Kedesh, and Hazor, and Gilead, and Galilee, all the land of Naphtali, and carried them captive to Assyria.

1Chronicles 6:72
And out of the tribe of Isaachar: Kedesh with her suburbs, Daberath with her suburbs . . .

Additional Studies

Dictionary of Biblical Names
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Series Notes
References are based on the
King James Bible translation (KJV).