The Berean Expositor
Volume 6 - Page 121 of 151
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In different parts of the Museum there are many other records of Sennacherib, but
these must be left until we arrive at the rooms containing them.
[NOTE: Rooms and Table Cases have been altered since publication of Volume 6:]
The Moabite Stone.
pp. 72 - 75
The Moabite Stone is one of the most precious monuments in this section of the
Museum, and will well repay careful examination.
The stone measures 3 feet 10 inches high, 2 feet wide and 14 inches thick. The
inscription consists of thirty-four lines of writing. This writing, both with regard to its
characters and phraseology, is very much akin to Hebrew. Professor Sayce says:--
"The language of the inscription is noteworthy. Between it and Hebrew the difference
are few and slight. It is a proof that the Maobites were akin to the Israelites in language
as well as in race. The monument was raised by Mesha, king of Moab, and records the
deliverance of his land and people from the dominion of Israel."
The second book of Kings opens with the words:--
"Then Moab rebelled against Israel after the death of Ahab."
This brief statement is expanded in chapter 3: At verse 4 commences a more
detailed account of the rebellion:--
"And Mesha, king of Moab, was a sheepmaster, and rendered unto the king of Israel
an hundred thousand lambs, and an hundred thousand rams, with the wool. And it came
to pass, when Ahab was dead, that the king of Moab rebelled against the king of Israel."
The record goes on to describe the combination of the three kings of Israel, Judah and
Edom, and the defeat of the Moabites:--
"Then he (Mesha) took his eldest son, that should have reigned in his stead and
offered him for a burnt offering upon the wall. And there was great indignation against
Israel: and they departed from him, and returned to their own land" (verse 27).
There is a problem in the reference to the "great indignation" which we do not
undertake to solve here, our point being rather its bearing upon the Moabite Stone. The
record of Mesha declares plainly that he had experienced some signal deliverance, and
seeing that it followed upon the sacrifice of his first-born, what so natural as to infer that
it was the hand of his god Chemosh put forth for his salvation.
EBENEZER.--None can help being interested in the fact that here we have a literal
Ebenezer, or "A Stone of Help." Professor Sayce translates line three:--