🔼The name Abarim: Summary
- Regions Beyond, Crossings
- From the verb עבר (abar), to pass over, by or through.
🔼The name Abarim in the Bible
Abarim is the name of a mountain or mountain range in the vicinity of the Plain of Moab, just east of Israel (and "east" or קדם, qedem, also means "prior in time"). This mountain is so very special because Moses was given a birds-eye view of the promised land of Israel (Numbers 27:12, Deuteronomy 32:48-52). After he had seen it he was 'gathered to his people' and he was never to enter what he had seen and towards which he had led the people for forty years of suffering and wars. The reason that Moses could not enter was that he had struck the water-giving rock at Meribah with his rod (as he was told to do before — Exodus 17:6), while he was this time told to speak to it, while holding on to his rod.
The water-giving rock is an open allusion to the Messiah (and the name of Moses' successor Joshua is the Hebrew form of the Greek name Jesus) and striking it comes very close to the way Jesus was treated before his crucifixion. The task of Moses was to verbally surrender the Law of God to humanity, and any show of physical force in this regard is both severely tempting and highly corruptive. Still, Moses, the friend of God and the embodiment of the Torah, was kept in God's ultimate esteem. When he died God himself buried him in the valley in the land of Moab (Deuteronomy 34:6), close to Mount Abarim. Moses' body was even such a prize that none less than Michael the arch-angel and the Devil entered into a dispute over it (Jude 1:9).
We have chosen the name Abarim Publications (after Jeremiah 22:20) because we understand that neither our work, nor what we have seen, nor that we have seen, is salvific. What we do belongs to the wilderness years; no one has ever been reasoned into either the Promised Land, heaven or the New Creation.
But the Law of God is of extreme importance, and the study of it essential, even if it brings us no further than Abarim.
🔼Etymology of the name Abarim
The name עברים, Abarim, is a plural form of the Hebrew root עבר (abar), meaning to pass over, by, through:
The important verb עבר ('abar) means to pass or cross over (a river, border, obstacle or terrain). The derived noun עבר ('eber) describes what or where you end up when you do the verb: the other side or region beyond.
The name Abarim means Regions Beyond (NOBSE Study Bible Name List) or Crossings, The Passages (Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names).
Also note that the name Abarim is spelled the same as the plural of the name Hebrew (see for instance Genesis 40:15, 43:32, Exodus 2:6 and on) as well as the plural of transgression (Numbers 14:41).