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Improvements in Isaiah
There are times when the Septuagint is immediately seen to be right, and valuable as a correction of the received text. Consider that intriguing passage in Isaiah 16:4: “Let mine outcasts dwell with thee, Moab” This has often been interpreted as a divine fiat that in the last days “Moab” (whoever that might mean) should grant a place of refuge for people of Israel fleeing for their lives. In the LXX: “Let the outcasts of Moab dwell with thee (Israel).” This is palpably right, for the same passage prophesies Messiah: “And in mercy shall the throne be established: and he shall sit upon it in truth in the tabernacle of David, judging and seeking judgement, and hasting righteousness.” At such a time there will be no outcasts of Israel needing sanctuary. But then those who have cherished hostility to God’s People over many years will need to “kiss the Son, lest he be angry.”
Out of the Dust: Moab
The meaning of the name Moab is obscure. It appears to signify “seed of a father” and may mean, from this, “desirable.” The origin of the people bearing the name is related in the book of Genesis. Their progenitor, Moab, was the son of Lot by an incestuous union with his elder daughter. Ben-Ammi, the father of the Ammonites, was the product of a similar union with his younger daughter.¹
David’s Love and Fury Under the Wing of Moab
I proceed with the exploits of David: for though the coincidences themselves are distinct, they make up a story which is almost continuous. David, we are told, had now won the hearts of all Israel. The daughters of the land sung his praises in the dance, and their words awoke the jealousy of Saul. “Saul had slain his thousands—David his ten thousands.” Accordingly the King, forgetful of his obligations to the gallant deliverer of his country from the yoke of the Philistines, and regardless of the claims of the husband of his daughter, sought his life. Twice he attacked him with a javelin as he played before him in his chamber: he laid an ambuscade about his house: he pursued him with bands of armed men as he fled for his life amongst the mountains.
Balaam and the Elders of Moab and of Midian
Through some or other of the channels of information enumerated in the last paragraph, Balak, King of Moab, is aware of the existence of a Prophet at Pethor, and sends for him. It is not unlikely, indeed, that the Moabites, who were the children of Lot, should have still maintained a communication with the original stock of all which continued to dwell in Aram or Mesopotamia.
Ruth and the Levirate Marriage Connection: The Scandalous Backstory
In order to better understand the book of Ruth we must also understand two similar stories: the scandalous narratives of Lot and his daughters, and of Judah and Tamar.
Jordan (/ˈdʒɔːrdən/; Arabic: ?????? Al-Urdunn), officially the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan (Arabic: ??????? ???????? ???????? Al-Mamlakah Al-Urdunnīyah Al-Hāshimīyah), is an Arab kingdom in Western Asia, on the East Bank of the Jordan River. Jordan is bordered by Saudi Arabia to the east and south, Iraq to the north-east, Syria to the north, Israel, Palestine and the Dead Sea to the west and the Red Sea in its extreme south-west. Jordan is strategically located at the crossroads of Asia, Africa and Europe. The capital, Amman, is Jordan’s most populous city as well as the country’s economic and cultural centre.
The seed of the father, or, according to others, the desirable land.
mō ́ab, mō ́ab-īts (Moab, מואב, mō'ābh, Moabite Stone, מאב, M-‛B; Greek (Septuagint) Μωάβ, Mōáb, ἡ Μωαβεῖτις, hē Mōabeítis, Μωαβῖτις, Mōabítis; Moabite, מואבי, מאבי, mō'ābhī; Moabites, מואב בּני, benē mō'ābh):
Kingdoms Around Israel and Judah (ca. 9th century BC)
Description: Kingdoms Around Israel and Judah (ca. 9th century BC)Artist: UnknownLegal: Image is in the public domain.Save image to disk
Moab (/ˈmoʊæb/; Moabite: mʾb; Arabic: مؤاب muʾāb; Hebrew: מוֹאָב, Modern mo'av, Tiberian mōʾāḇ; Ancient Greek: Μωάβ Mōáb; Assyrian Mu'aba, Ma'ba, Ma'ab; Egyptian Mu'ab) is the historical name for a mountainous tract of land in Jordan. The land lies alongside much of the eastern shore of the Dead Sea. The existence of the Kingdom of Moab is attested to by numerous archaeological findings, most notably the Mesha Stele, which describes the Moabite victory over an unnamed son of King Omri of Israel. The Moabite capital was Dibon. According to the Hebrew Bible, Moab was often in conflict with its Israelite neighbours to the west.
The Nabataeans, also Nabateans (/ˌnæbəˈtiːənz/; Arabic: الأنباط al-ʾAnbāṭ, compare to Ancient Greek: Ναβαταίος, Latin: Nabatæus), were an Arab people who inhabited northern Arabia and the Southern Levant, and whose settlements, most prominently the assumed capital city of Raqmu, now called Petra, in CE 37 – c. 100, gave the name of Nabatene to the borderland between Arabia and Syria, from the Euphrates to the Red Sea. Their loosely controlled trading network, which centered on strings of oases that they controlled, where agriculture was intensively practiced in limited areas, and on the routes that linked them, had no securely defined boundaries in the surrounding desert. Trajan conquered the Nabataean kingdom, annexing it to the Roman Empire, where their individual culture, easily identified by their characteristic finely potted painted ceramics, was adopted into the larger Greco-Roman culture. They were later converted to Christianity. Jane Taylor, a writer, describes them as “one of the most gifted peoples of the ancient world”.