Simeon – Where Did They Go?

Simeon – Where Did They Go?

In my post-Rehoboam/Jeroboam Legacy I wondered where the tribe of Simeon went too.TwelveTribesofIsraelebible While reading about the Meunites I followed a reference to 1 Chronicles 4:41 that states the men of Simeon attacked two places and took them over for their living areas: Gedor east of the valley and the hill country of Seir. The important thing here is it was done during the time of Hezekiah. 2 Kings 18:9 gives the time stamps where this could be possible and it was just before Shalmaneser of Assyria conquered Hoshea son of Elah king of Israel and took Israel to the Habor River.habor_river

Maybe not a complete answer but it does clarify the mystery of Simeon a little better.



Map from and  and

The Tribes of Israel and Shechem

Shechem in Genesis 33 and 34 is a family and a town. In my tribe series, its importance is that it is the places where Simeon and Levi incur their father’s wrath by killing all the men of Shechem. It is also where Jacob built an altar and bought a piece of land that he later gave to Joseph.

After Joshua brought the children into the Promised Land they were instructed in Deuteronomy 27 to have some tribes stand on Mount Gerizim and pronounce blessings for Israel and the other tribes to stand on Mount Ebal to pronounce curses.

The land went to Ephraim in the allotment and Shechem became a city of refuge as stated in Joshua 17:17.

We see it again in Judges 9 being associated with Abimelech.

When the Northern Kingdom went into exile the Samaritans were brought in to occupy the land.  They accepted some of the beliefs of Israel; one thing they did was to build a shrine on Mt. Gerizim to offer sacrifices. Years later in John 4 Jesus meet the women at the well in a town of Sychar, which is believed to be Shechem. If you remember this meeting was at Jacob’s well.

Tribes of Israel – Simeon

Simeon is the second son of Jacob and Leah. His name may mean the one who hears because Leah was announcing that God had heard her because she was unloved.

Genesis 49:“Simeon and Levi are brothers— their swords are weapons of violence.
Let me not enter their council,
let me not join their assembly, for they have killed men in their anger and hamstrung oxen as they pleased.
Cursed be their anger, so fierce,
and their fury, so cruel! I will scatter them in Jacob and disperse them in Israel.

Many of the maps I have seen have Simeon surrounded by Judah in the Southern part of the country. I have never read anything about what they did when the two kingdoms separated but there are Ten Tribes in the Northern Kingdom if you count the east and west tribes of Manasseh as separate tribes. There is the saying “from Dan to Beersheba” that may still be showing there was a separate tribe of Simeon; Dan was the Northern most tribe and Beersheba is in the middle of the land that was allotted to Simeon and was the most important city in southern Israel. Ziklag (where David had a base in 1 Samuel 29) was considered one of their thirteen towns in Joshua 19. In Joshua, Judges and 1 Chronicles Simeon is mentioned several times as doing things with the men of Judah and they appear again in the reforms of some of the kings in 2 Chronicles. So they do appear to have been dispersed in Israel according to the word of Jacob.

They do appear in Ezekiel and Revelations in the list of who gets land and have men among the 144,000; they are on the blessing side in Deuteronomy 27 but are not mentioned in Moses’ blessings in Deuteronomy 33.

A notable accomplishment for the tribe in 1 Chronicles 4:42+43 was that they killed off the remaining Amalekites who were still living in the land of Seir, they were the people who attacked Israel as they were going to the Promise Land. See my Amalekite blog, please.

Map from and