A general term for extensive wooded areas. In ancient Israel, forests were a source of timber for both local use and foreign export. Wood was important for a wide range of uses, such as domestic and industrial fuels, the construction of buildings, and the manufacture of furniture and household items. The highlands of Lebanon boasted forests of majestic cedars; oak and pistachio, the characteristic trees of the Mediterranean region, were especially common in the northern hill country. Stands of Aleppo pine, mixed with components of the oak forest, existed in Galilee, Samaria, and Judea. Scrub forests in the foothills, composed of mixed evergreens, once provided shelter for wild animals such as boar and lions (Ps 80:13; Amos 3:4). Biblical references to specific stands of trees, such as the forest of Hereth (1Sam 22:5), the forests of the south (Negeb), the forests of Arabia (Isa 21:13), the king’s forest (Neh 2:8), and the forest (wood) of Ephraim (2Sam 18:6), indicate the importance of these natural resource areas.

Ps 80:13

13The boar from the forest ravages it,
and all that move in the field feed on it.

Amos 3:4

4Does a lion roar in the forest,
when it has no prey?
Does a young lion cry out from its den,
if it has caught nothing?

1Sam 22:5

5Then the prophet Gad said to David, “Do not remain in the stronghold; leave, and go into the land of Judah.” So David left, and went into the forest of Hereth.

Isa 21:13

13The oracle concerning the desert plain.

In the scrub of the desert plain you will lodge,
O caravans of Dedanites.

Neh 2:8

8and a letter to Asaph, the keeper of the king's forest, directing him to give me timber to make beams for the gates of the temple fortress, and for the wall of ... View more

2Sam 18:6

6So the army went out into the field against Israel; and the battle was fought in the forest of Ephraim.

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