8:7–9 a good land . . . iron . . . copper. The description is more extensive than the familiar “flowing with milk and honey” found in Exodus, Leviticus, and frequently in Deuteronomy. Palestine certainly had more variety and more rainfall than the flat land of Goshen, but today much of the land is arid. The climate may have been different then, for a small difference in rainfall can significantly affect productivity. The land today has suffered from years of mismanagement—modern hills that were forested within recent memory are now barren. In Assyrian reliefs from about 800 b.c., Israel is depicted with lush vines and grapes, and there is no reason to deny the characterization of the land as pleasant (11:9–12).