Dictionary of Bible Names

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Bible Meaning: Whiteness, white mountain
Strong's Concordance #H3844

Lebanon was the name of a mountain range, north of Israel, which separated Phoenicia (Tyre, Sidon, etc.) from Syria. The range and its sister range run parallel to the Mediterranean coast. The land between these ranges was known as "the valley of Lebanon" (Joshua 12:7).

Near the southern end of the mountain range lies Mount Hermon (Jabal ash-Shaykh) which rises 9,232 feet (2,814 meters) above sea level. Hermon denoted the northern most point, east of the Jordan River, that God gave the tribe of Manasseh as a Promised Land inheritance (Deuteronomy 1:7, Joshua 12:1, 1Chronicles 5:23).

The general area of Lebanon, at the time of Joshua, was populated with Hivites and Giblites (Judges 3:3, Joshua 13:5 - 6). Although the Israelites took Mount Hermon (Joshua 11:16 - 17) they were unable to conquer other northern areas including Tyre and Sidon (Judges 3:1 - 3).

Beautiful and Lush

Moses pleaded with God to allow him to enter the Promised Land and view these spectacular mountains. His request was denied, however, and he was only allowed to view Israel's inheritance from east of the Jordan (Deuteronomy 3:23 - 27).

Ancient Lebanon Map
Location of Ancient Lebanon

King Solomon purchased cedar trees from the area for Jerusalem's temple (1Kings 5). The timbers from this area were so beautiful that after the king finished the temple he built a magnificent royal building using them known as "the house of the forest of Lebanon" (1Kings 7:2).

When the temple was rebuilt, at the time of Ezra, cedars from Lebanon were again used in the construction (Ezra 3:7). The area around these mountains were well known for their lush forests of fir, pine and tall cedar trees (Isaiah 2:13, 37:24, 60:13). The location was also known for its fragrant wine (Hoshea 14:7).

Important Verses

Deuteronomy 1:7
Turn you, and take your journey, and go to the mount of the Amorites, and unto all the places nigh thereunto, in the plain, in the hills, and in the vale, and in the south, and by the sea side, to the land of the Canaanites, and unto Lebanon, unto the great river, the river Euphrates.

Deuteronomy 3:23, 25 - 26
And I (Moses) besought the Lord at that time, saying . . . I pray thee, let me go over, and see the good land that is beyond Jordan, that goodly mountain, and Lebanon. But the Lord was wroth with me for your sakes, and would not hear me . . .

1Kings 7:2 - 3
He (King Solomon) built also the house of the forest of Lebanon: the length thereof was an hundred cubits, and the breadth thereof fifty cubits, and the height thereof thirty cubits, upon four rows of cedar pillars, with cedar beams upon the pillars.

And it was covered with cedar above upon the beams, that lay on forty five pillars, fifteen in a row.

Psalm 29:5 - 6
The voice of the Lord breaketh the cedars . . . He maketh them also to skip like a calf: Lebanon and Sirion like a young unicorn.

Psalm 92:9, 12
For, lo, thine enemies, O Lord, for, lo, thine enemies shall perish; all the workers of iniquity shall be scattered . . . The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon.

Isaiah 60:1, 13
Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee . . . The glory of Lebanon shall come unto thee, the fir tree, the pine tree, and the box together, to beautify the place of my sanctuary: and I will make the place of my feet glorious.

Hosea 14:1, 4, 6
O Israel, return unto the Lord thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity . . . I will heal their backsliding, I will love them freely: for mine anger is turned away from him . . .

His branches shall spread, and his beauty shall be as the olive tree, and his smell as Lebanon.

Additional Studies

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