Judges 18:29 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Judges 18:29, NIV: They named it Dan after their ancestor Dan, who was born to Israel--though the city used to be called Laish.

Judges 18:29, ESV: And they named the city Dan, after the name of Dan their ancestor, who was born to Israel; but the name of the city was Laish at the first.

Judges 18:29, KJV: And they called the name of the city Dan, after the name of Dan their father, who was born unto Israel: howbeit the name of the city was Laish at the first.

Judges 18:29, NASB: And they named the city Dan, after the name of Dan their father who was born to Israel; however, the name of the city was previously Laish.

Judges 18:29, NLT: They renamed the town Dan after their ancestor, Israel's son, but it had originally been called Laish.

Judges 18:29, CSB: They named the city Dan, after the name of their ancestor Dan, who was born to Israel. The city was formerly named Laish.

What does Judges 18:29 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

The people of the tribe of Dan had a self-caused problem. They failed to conquer their allotted territory in Israel (Joshua 19:40–46; Judges 1:34–36). This forced them to live in limited space in the hill country of their territory, squeezed between foreign oppressors and territories occupied by Ephraim and Judah. Some portion of the small tribe—perhaps even all of them, eventually—decided to seek out a new home (Judges 18:1–7).

After robbing a man of his household idols and priest (Judges 18:14–20), the raiding party from Dan succeeded in migrating far to the north, beyond the northern end of the Sea of Galilee. They selected Laish, in part, because it was a soft target: unsuspecting, quiet, far from help, and peaceful (Judges 18:8–13). On arrival, the Danites slaughtered the Sidonian population and took it as their new hometown (Judges 18:27–28).

Now they rename the place after themselves, calling the town "Dan." This was the name of their ancestor, after whom their tribe was named. Dan (Genesis 30:5–6) was one of the twelve sons of Jacob, also called Israel (Genesis 35:10).