Devarim – Shishi

Big, But Let’s Not Get Carried

By Rabbi Jack Abramowitz

God delivered Sichon into the hands of the Jews, who occupied the conquered land. No city in that territory could defend itself from the Jews because that land was given to them by God. They only attacked places that God specified were part of their inheritance.

They came to Bashan, where they were opposed by Og, an antediluvian giant. Og’s bed – possibly his cradle – had been made of iron, nine cubits long. (This would make Og in the vicinity of 13 feet tall. That’s pretty impressive, so let’s not go nuts imagining him Godzilla-sized or anything.) Despite Og’s intimidating stature (and, possibly, any merit he may have had for assisting Avraham way back in Genesis chapter 14 – see our synopsis on the fourth aliyah of parshas Lech Lecha), God told the Jews not to fear him. Og was likewise defeated and his land occupied.

The land captured from Sichon and Og was granted to the Tribes of Reuben and Gad, plus half the Tribe of Menashe, pending the conquest of mainland Israel.

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