Bible Names H-M: Mesha
Mesha in Easton's Bible Dictionary
middle district, Vulgate, Messa. (1.) A plain in that part
the boundaries of Arabia inhabited by the
descendants of Joktan
(2.) Heb. meysh'a, "deliverance," the eldest son of
Chr. 2:42), and brother of Jerahmeel.
(3.) Heb. id, a king of Moab, the son of Chemosh-
Gad, a man of
great wealth in flocks and herds (2 Kings 3:4).
After the death
of Ahab at Ramoth-Gilead, Mesha shook off the yoke
but on the ascension of Jehoram to the throne of
king sought the help of Jehoshaphat in an attempt to
Moabites again to their former condition. The united
the two kings came unexpectedly on the army of the
gained over them an easy victory. The whole land was
by the conquering armies, and Mesha sought refuge in
stronghold, Kir-harasheth (q.v.). Reduced to
ascended the wall of the city, and there, in the
sight of the
allied armies, offered his first-born son a
Chemosh, the fire-god of the Moabites. This fearful
filled the beholders with horror, and they retired
the besieged city, and recrossed the Jordan laden
with spoil (2
The exploits of Mesha are recorded in the Phoenician
inscription on a block of black basalt found at
Dibon, in Moab,
usually called the "Moabite stone" (q.v.).
Mesha in Fausset's Bible Dictionary
1. King of Moab. frontDIBON on his victorious campaign
against Israel, and confirmation of Scripture.) Revolted at
Ahab's death (2 Kings 1:1; 2 Kings 3:4-5). Being
"sheepmasters" the Moabites had rendered tribute to Israel
ever since David's days (2 Samuel 8:2) in flocks, 100,000
lambs, and 100,000 rams with the wool. Isaiah (Isaiah 16:1)
counsels Moab to resume payment, "send the lamb to the ruler
... from Sela unto ... Zion." frontJEHORAM, JEHOSHAPHAT,
ELISHA, ENGEDI, CHEMOSH, on the confederacy against Mesha
and the superstitions indignation raised against Israel
because of their reducing him to such desperation that he
sacrificed his own son (Micah 6:7), so that the allies
departed to their own land.)
2. Firstborn of Jerahmeel's brother Caleb; father,
i.e. founder, of Ziph (1 Chronicles 2:42).
3. A descendant of Benjamin, born in Moab, son of
Shaharaim and Hodesh (1 Chronicles 8:8-9). 1 Chronicles 8:4.
Joktan's descendants "dwelt from Mesha, as thou goest unto
Sephar a mount of the East." The western port of Arabia;
Muss (Bothart), Mesene ("a fluviatile island") at the mouth
of the Tigris and Euphrates, near Bassora (Gesenius)
(Genesis 10:30); Beishe in the N. of Yemen (Knobel).
Mesha in Hitchcock's Bible Names
Mesha in Naves Topical Bible
-1. King of Moab
Tributary to Ahab
-2. Son of Caleb
-3. A place in possession of the Joktanites
-4. A Benjamite
Mesha in Smiths Bible Dictionary
1. The name of one of the geographical limits of the
Joktanites when they first settled in Arabia. Ge 10:30
2. The king of Moab who was tributary to Ahab, 2Ki
3:4 but when Ahab fell at Ramoth-gilead, Mesha refused to
pay tribute to his successor, Jehoram. When Jehoram
succeeded to the throne of Israel, one of his first acts was
to secure the assistance of Jehoshaphat, his father's ally,
in reducing the Moabites to their former condition of
tributaries. The Moabites were defeated, and the king took
refuge in his last stronghold, and defended himself with the
energy of despair. With 700 fighting men he made a vigorous
attempt to cut his way through the beleaguering army, and
when beaten back, he withdrew to the wall of his city, and
there, in sight of the allied host, offered his first-born
son, his successor in the kingdom, as a burnt offering to
Chemosh, the ruthless fire-god of Moab. His bloody sacrifice
had so far the desired effect that the besiegers retired
from him to their own land. (At Dibon in Moab has lately
been discovered the famous Moabite Stone, which contains
inscriptions concerning King Mesha and his wars, and which
confirms the Bible account. --ED.)
3. The eldest son of Caleb the son of Hezron by his
wife Azubah, as Kimchi conjectures. 1Ch 2:42
4. A Benjamite, son of Shabaraim by his wife Hodesh,
who bore him in the land of Moab. 1Ch 8:9
Mesha in the Bible Encyclopedia - ISBE
(1) (mesha`; Codex Vaticanus, Marisa; Codex Alexandrinus,
Marisas): Caleb's firstborn son, the father of Ziph,
probably the ancestor of the Ziphites (1 Ch 2:42).
(2) (mesha'; Codex Vaticanus, Misa; Codex Alexandrinus,
Mosa): A Benjamite, son of Shaharaim by his wife Hodesh,
born in the land of Moab (1 Ch 8:9).
(3) (mesha`; Mosa): A king of Moab. All the Biblical
information regarding this monarch is contained in 2 Ki 3.
Here we gather that Mesha was contemporary with Ahab,
Ahaziah and Jehoram. He was tributary to Israel, his annual
contribution consisting of 100,000 lambs and 100,000 rams.
after the death of Ahab he asserted his independence.
Jehoshaphat, king of Judah, and the king of Edom joined
forces with Jehoram in an attempt to quell the rebellion at
the instance of Elisha, who accompanied the host, water was
miraculously provided when the army of the allies was ready
to perish of thirst. Mesha came out against them and fell
upon the camp. His attack was repulsed with heavy slaughter,
and the defeated king was chased by the victors until he
took refuge in the great fortress of Kir-hareseth. A
vigorous siege was begun. Seeing that his case was
desperate, Mesha attempted, with 700 men, to break through
the lines. Failing in this, he offered his firstborn as a
burnt offering upon the wall. Then "there came great wrath
upon Israel" (by which, probably, panic is meant), and the
besiegers retired, leaving their conquest incomplete.
In his inscription (see MOABITE STONE) Mesha gives an
account of his rebellion, naming the places captured and
fortified by him. It is not surprising that he says nothing
of his defeat by Jehoram and his allies. There is, however,
one serious discrepancy. The time Moab was under the
supremacy of Israel, during the reign of Omri and half the
reign of Ahab, he puts at 40 years. According to Biblical
chronology, Omri and Ahab together reigned only 34 years.
If, with Mesha, we deduct half the reign of Ahab, the period
is reduced to 23 years. It is impossible to add to the
length of either reign. So great a difference cannot be
explained by the use of round numbers. Why Mesha should wish
to increase the time of his people's subjection is not
clear, unless, indeed, he thought in this way to magnify the
glory of their deliverer.
In Mesha the sentiment of patriotism was wedded to some
measure of military capacity. Judging by his inscription, he
was also a deeply religious man according to his lights.
Substitute "Yahweh" for "Chemosh," and his phraseology might
be that of a pious Hebrew king. The sacrifice of his son is
at once the mark of the heathen and an index of the strength
of his devotion.
(4) (mesha'; Masse): This appears to mark the western
boundary of the land occupied by the descendants of Joktan
(Gen 10:30). No certain identification is possible, but
several more or less probable have been suggested: e.g. (a)
The Greek Mesene, on the Persian Gulf, not far from the
mouth of the Tigris and the Euphrates; (b) the Syro-Arabian
desert, called Mashu in the Assyrian inscriptions; the name
here, however, could hardly cover such a vast tract as this;
more probably it denoted a place; (c) Dillmann would alter
the vowels and identify it with Massa', a branch of the
Ishmaelite stock (Gen 25:14; 1 Ch 1:30). This, however,
furnishes no clue to the locality, the territory of that
tribe being also unidentified.
Mesha in Wikipedia
The books of Samuel record that Moab was conquered by David
(floruit c.1000-970 BCE) and retained in the territories of
his son Solomon (d. 931 BCE). Later, King Omri of Israel
reconquered Moab after Moab was lost subsequent to King
Solomon's reign. The Mesha Stele, erected by Mesha, indicates
that it was Omri, king of the northern kingdom of Israel, who
conquered his land. The Mesha Stele records Mesha's liberation
of Moab c.850 BCE.
2 Kings 3:4 reports the same events from the point of view of
the Israelites, stating that "King Mesha of Moab ... used to
deliver to the king of Israel one hundred thousand lambs, and
the wool of one hundred thousand rams", before rebelling
against Jehoram (the Mesha Stele does not name the king
against whom Mesha rebelled). 2 Kings and the Mesha Stele
differ in their explanation for the success of the revolt:
according to Mesha, "Israel has been defeated", but 2 Kings
says the Israelites withdrew voluntarily when Mesha sacrificed
his own son to his god Chemosh. Aside from these attestations,
references to Mesha are scanty, if extant.
Mesha Scripture - 1 Chronicles 2:42
Now the sons of Caleb the brother of Jerahmeel [were], Mesha
his firstborn, which was the father of Ziph; and the sons of
Mareshah the father of Hebron.
Mesha Scripture - 2 Kings 3:4
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.
Mesha Scripture - Genesis 10:30
And their dwelling was from Mesha, as thou goest unto Sephar a
mount of the east.
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