Spiritual Non-Fiction posted February 23, 2022 Chapters:  ...23 24 -25- 26... 


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The Moabite Stone's Connection To Ancient Hebrews

A chapter in the book Sea Of Galilee

Sea Of Galilee #25

by Brett Matthew West


Written in a variant of the Phoenician alphabet closely related to the Paleo-Hebrew script used in Ancient Israel and Judah, the Mesha Stele, or Moabite Stone as it is also known by, has been dated to about 840BC.

The Moabite Stone contains significant Canaanite inscription in the name of King Mesha of Moab, that was located in Modern Day Jordan. Moab laid on the vast majority of the eastern shore of the Dead Sea, and often skirmished with the Hebrews.

During the Iron Age, that lasted from approximately the 12th Century BC to the 1st Century BC, the Phoenician alphabet was the language of the Phoenicians, Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, and Hebrews.

The Iron Age was the last of the three divisions of the prehistory, and proto-history, of humanity. The other two being the Stone Age, when stone tools were first used by mankind, and the Bronze Age.

Prehistory is generally dated to about 3.3 million years ago, and the beginning of recorded history when writing systems were invented. Proto-history occurs when a non-writing culture or civilization is noted by another culture in their writings. For example, when Egypt mentioned the Ancient Hebrews in their hieroglyphics.

The Moabite Stone depicts how the Moab god Chemosh allowed the Moabites to be subjugaled to the Hebrews. However, Chemosh later returned and aided Mesha in riding the Moabites of the Hebrews and restore the lands of Moab. Mesha's many building projects are also listed on the Moabite Stone.

The Anglican Missionary Frederick Augustus Klein, of the Church Missionary Society, discovered the Meshe Stele about 1868 in Ancient Diban, which stood south of Ammon, and east of the Dead Sea. Located along the King's Highway, a major trade route that connected Africa with Mesopotamia, Diban was first occupied in the Early Bronze Age.

The cornerstone of Moabite history, the Moabite Stone is the first major Canaanite inscription found in the Palestine region. It remains the longest Iron Age inscription discovered there. The Moabite Stone provides invaluable information concerning Moabite and Hebrew political relations of the 9th Century BC. With some differences, the Moabite Stone parallels 2 King's 3:4-28.

The Moabite Stone is the most extensive inscription recovered that referenced the kingdom of Israel (the House of Omri) and contained one of the earliest known extra-Biblical references to Israel's God Yahweh. The Merneptah Stele, the Tel Dan Stele, and one of the Kurkh Monoliths being the only other ones known to exist.

The oldest mention of the Dynasty of David outside of the Bible, the Tel Dan Stele was discovered in 1993 in Upper Galilee by archaeologist teammember Gila Cook. Its pieces helped construct an ancient stone wall and dated to the 9th Century BC. Written in Aramaic by Aramean King Hazael, the Tel Dan Stele detailed the death of Jehoram, Israel's King. The Stele also corroborated 2 Kings and the conquering of the Land of Israel.

The only known reference to Israel in Assyrian, and Babylonian records, the Kurkh Monolith was discovered in 1861 in the province of Diyarbakir, Turkey, by John George Taylor. He was the Consul-General of the Ottoman Eyalet of Kurdistan. The monolith contains "A-ha-ab-bu Sir-ila-a-a," which many experts on the topic translate to mean "Ahab, king of Israel."

In November of 1869, the Bani Hamida Bedouins broke the Moabite Stone after the Ottoman government ordered them to surrender the Stele to Germany. Fortunately, a papier-mache impression of the Stele had been achieved prior to this event's occurrence.

Main topics the Mesha Stele covered included:

-Moab being oppressed by King Omri of Israel
-Mesha's victories over Jehoram and Gad (one of the ten lost tribes of Israel) at Nebo, Jehaz, and Ataroth (in Gilead)
-Mesha's building projects
-Mesha's wars against the Moab city of Horonaim that are mentioned in Jeremiah 48 and Isaiah 15

This was a battle won by Moab against King Jehoram, the ninth King of the Northern Kingdom of Israel, an unnamed King of Edom, and Jehosaphat, the fourth King of Judah.

The discovery of the Khirbat Ataruz inscribed altar in Madaba, Jordan in 2010, provided validation evidence of the Moabite Stone's authenticity by Biblical archaeologists.

Sources:

Bible
worldhistory.org
historyofinformation.com
britannica.com
jewishencyclopedia.com

Next Time: Sea Of Galilee #26: Edom's Interactions With The Ancient Heebrews




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