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MA'ACAH (oppression), 2 Sam 3:3, or MA'ACHAH, 1 Chr 3:2, a daughter of Talmai, king of Geshur, was taken in battle by David, according to Hebrew tradition, and made one of his wives and bore him Absalom.

MA'ACAH, 2 Sam 10:6, or MAACHAH, 1 Chr 19:6-7, a small district or kingdom on the north-eastern frontier of Palestine, situated, like Tibeath and Tebach, in connection with which it is mentioned, between Argob to the west and the desert to the east. Its king brought into the field only 1000 men to the assistance of the Bene-Ammon against Joab. It can hardly have been in the region of Abel-beth-maachah.


  1. The daughter of Nahor, Abraham's brother, by his concubine Reumah. Gen 22:24.

  2. The father of Achish, who was king of Gath at the beginning of Solomon's reign, 1 Kgs 2:39; is also called Moach. 1 Sam 27:2.

  3. The daughter, or more probably the granddaughter, of Absalom, and the third wife of Rehoboam, mother to Abijah and grandmother to Asa. 1 Kgs 15:2; 2 Chr 11:20-22. In 2 Chr 13:2 she is called "Michaiah, the daughter of Uriel of Gibeah," "Michaiah," being a variation of "Maachah," and Uriel being the husband of Absalom's daughter Tamar. In the beginning of Asa's reign she held the dignity of queen-mother, 1 Kgs 16:2, 1 Kgs 16:10, 1 Kgs 16:13 ; 2 Chr 11:20-22; but when Asa came of age she lost the dignity as a punishment because she had introduced idolatry. 2 Chr 15:16.

  4. A concubine of Caleb, the son of Hezron. 1 Chr 2:48.

  5. A descendant of Benjamin, and the wife of Machir the Manassite. 1 Chr 7:12, 1 Chr 7:15-16.

  6. The wife of Jehiel, the founder of Gibeon, and the ancestor of the family of Saul. 1 Chr 8:29; 1 Chr 9:35.

  7. The father of Hanan, one of David's warriors. 1 Chr 11:43.

  8. The father of Shephatiah, chief of the Simeonites. 1 Chr 27:16.

MAACH'ATHI, Deut 3:14, or MAACH'ATHITES, the inhabitants of Maachah. Josh 12:5; Acts 13:11, Josh 13:13; 2 Sam 23:34; 2 Kgs 25:23; 1 Chr 4:19; Jer 40:8.

MAAD'AI (the ornament of Jehovah), one of the sons of Bani, who had taken a foreign wife. Ezr 10:34.

MAADI'AH, a priest who returned with Zerubbabel, Neh 12:5; is called Moadiah in v. 2 Sam 21:17.

MAA'I (compassionate), a Levite, one of the Bene-Asaph, who partook in the dedication of the walls of Jerusalem. Neh 12:36.

MAAL'EH-ACRAB'BIM (the ascent of scorpions). Josh 15:3. The form is given elsewhere as Akrabbim.

MA'ARATH (open place), a town in the mountains of Judah. Josh 15:59. The Pal. Memoirs suggest Beit Ummar, 7 miles north of Hebron, as its site.

MAASE'IAH (work of Jehovah).

  1. Three priests — one a descendant of Jeshua, Ezr 10:18, another of the sons of Harim, Ezr 10:21, and a third of the sons of Pashur, Ezr 10:22 — who had married foreign wives.

  2. A layman who divorced his foreign wife. Ezr 10:30.

  3. The father of Azariah. Neh 3:23.

  4. One who assisted Ezra when he read the Law to the people. Neh 8:4.

  5. A Levite who expounded the Law to the people, Neh 8:7.

  6. One whose descendants signed the covenant with Nehemiah. Neh 10:25.

  7. Two whose descendants dwelt in Jerusalem after the return from Babylon. Neh 11:5, 1 Kgs 15:7.

  8. Two priests who took part in the musical service at the dedication of the walls of Jerusalem. Neh 12:41-42.

  9. The father of Zephaniah. Jer 21:1; Jer 29:25.

  10. The father of the false prophet Zedekiah. Jer 29:21.

  11. A Levite appointed a porter for the ark by David. 1 Chr 15:18, 1 Chr 15:20.

  12. The son of Adaiah; partook in the revolution by which Joash was placed on the throne. 2 Chr 23:1.


13) An officer in the reign of Uzziah. 2 Chr 26:11.

14) A son of King Ahaz. 2 Chr 28:7.

15) The governor of Jerusalem under King Josiah. 2 Chr 34:8.

16) A doorkeeper at the temple. Jer 35:4.

MAASE'IAH (refuge of Jehovah), a priest, the father of Keriah, and the grandfather of Baruch and Seraiah, Jer 32:12; Jer 51:59.

MAAS'IAI (work of Jehovah), a priest. 1 Chr 9:12; comp. Neh 11:13.

MA'ATH (small), an ancestor of Jesus. Luke 3:26.

MA'AZ (anger), a son of Ram, a descendant of Judah. 1 Chr 2:27.

MAAZI'AH (Jehovah's consolation).

  1. Head of the twenty-fourth course of priests in the reign of David. 1 Chr 24:18.

  2. One of the priests who signed the covenant with Nehemiah. Neh 10:8.

MACCABEES, THE BOOKS OF THE, five in number, and containing the history of the Jewish rising under the leadership of the family of the Maccabees, belong to the Apocryphal books of the O.T. The first two books, however, which are found in the Vulgate, the earliest English versions, and also in the Cambridge Bible, were received into the canon of the Roman Catholic Church by the Council of Trent; the fifth exists only in Arabic.

  1. The first book begins with the accession of Antiochus Epiphanes to the Syrian throne in b.c. 175, and narrates the revolt of the Jews under Mattathias, their brilliant successes under Judas Maccabaeus, and the continuation of the contest under Jonathan and Simeon till the death of the latter, in b.c. 135. It was originally written in Hebrew, in the first decades of the first century before Christ, and afterward translated into Greek; but we know only the translation. Its character is very different from that of the historical books of the 0.T.; it is a simple exposition of merely human exploits. But the author is veracious, and his apparent ignorance of Roman or other foreign affairs does not impugn his trustworthiness when he speaks of Jewish affairs.

  2. The second book begins in the last time of the reign of Seleucus IV. Philopator, and ends with the victory of Judas Maccabaeus over Seleucus Nikanor in 160. It thus comprises a much shorter period than the first book; and where it relates the same events, it deviates very much from it. There can be no doubt, however, which of the two accounts is the more trustworthy. The second book is an extract from a larger work on the subject by one Jason of Cyrene, but we know neither this Jason nor his work, nor the epitomizer. The extract must have been made before the destruction of Jerusalem, and is written in an exaggerated and rhetorical style and with a definite religious tendency.

  3. The third book narrates the visit of Ptolomeus IV. Philopator to the temple of Jerusalem in 217; his demand to enter the holy of holies, and the punishment of his audacity by the hand of God; his attempt to take vengeance on the Jews of Alexandria, and the immediate interference of God on their behalf; and finally, his conversion into a friend and benefactor of the Jewish people. The style in which this book is written is as bombastic and affected as its contents are fabulous. The historical kernel is very small, and even this little is not correctly rendered.

  4. The fourth book begins with a philosophical dissertation on the supremacy of reason over the passions, and illustrates this subject with an account of the martyrdom of Eleazar, and the mother with her seven sons, following 2 Macc. 6, 7.

  5. The fifth book gives the history of the Jews from Heliodorus to Herodes — that is, from b.c. 184 to b.c. 86.

MACCABEES, THE FAMILY OF THE. The proper name of this family was "Asmonaeans" or "Hasmonaeans," from Chasmon, the great-grandfather of Mattathias "of the sons of Jehoiarib." 1 Chr 24:7. "Maccabaeus" was a surname originally given to Judas, one of the sons of Mattathias, and then extended first to the whole family and then to the whole party which arose against the despotism of the Seleucides. The meaning of this surname has been variously given as "the hammer," "the extinguisher," "destruction," and some regard it as a combination of the initial letters of the Hebrew sentence, "Who among the gods is like unto thee, Jehovah?" on Judas' banner.

When the emissaries of Antiochus 534 Epiphanes came to Modin and required the people to offer idolatrous sacrifices, Mattathias, a priest of the course of Joarib, slew the first Jew who approached the altar to renounce his faith, then the emissaries themselves, and then he fled to the mountains with his sons, in b.c. 168. Numbers of his country-men who held dear their religion joined him here, and thus the revolt began. In 166 Mattathias died, and his son, Judas, succeeded him as leader of the movement. After the brilliant victories at Beth-horon and Emmaus, Judas occupied Jerusalem, and the temple was purified exactly three years after its profanation. By the still more brilliant victory at Adassa, 161, over Seleucus Nikanor, the independence of the Jews was practically established, but Judas fell shortly after in the battle of Eleasa. The contest was continued with success by his two brothers, Jonathan, died 143, and Simon, died 135. Under the latter the office of high priest was made hereditary in the family of the Asmonaeans. Simon's son, Johannes Hyrcanus, 135-105, changed the traditional policy of the family and sought support with the Sadducees, and his two sons, Aristobulus I., 105-104, who assumed the title of king, and Alexander Jannseus, 104-78, pursued the same line of conduct. After the death of Alexandra, 78-69, a civil war broke out between her two sons, Aristobulus II. and Hyrcanus II. The Romans interfered, and Aristobulus II., 69-63, having been defeated by Pompey, was dethroned. His brother Hyrcanus II. succeeded, 63-40, as high priest and prince under Roman supremacy, but without the title of king. With Antigonus, 40-37, a son of Aristobulus II., the Asmonsean dynasty ceased to reign, and with Aristobulus' two grandchildren, Aristobulus and Mariamne, it became extinct. Herodes became its heir.

MACEDO'NIA (extended land), a noted country and kingdom lying north

Map of Macedonia.

of Greece. The kingdom was founded about b.c. 814, and became famous in the world's history in the time of its great rulers, Philip and Alexander. It was the first part of Europe which received the gospel, and hence its importance in biblical history.

Situation and Extent. — The boundaries of Macedonia varied at different periods, but in N.T. times Macedonia may be described as bounded on the north by the range of Haemus or the Balkan Mountains, separating it from Moesia; on the east by Thrace and the AEgean Sea; on the south by the province of Achaia (Greece); on the west by Epirus and Illyricum, from which it was separated by the Pindus range.


Physical Features. — Macedonia is situated in a great basin nearly surrounded by the mountains and the sea. There are two great plains, one watered by the river Axius, whose mouth is near Thessalonica, and the other by the Strymon, which flows into the AEgean Sea below Amphipolis. Between the mouths of these two rivers projects a peninsula divided into three points, on one of which is Mount Athos, whose peak rises nearly into the region of perpetual snow. Across the neck of this peninsula ran the great road (Via Ignatia) along which Paul and his companions passed.

History. — Macedonia is a name familiar to school-children in connection with King Philip of Macedon and his son Alexander the Great. The third great world-kingdom, the Macedonian empire, received its name from this comparatively little spot. Comp. Dan 8:5-8, 2 Chr 11:21. The Romans conquered the territory from Perseus. It was at first divided into four districts, afterward consolidated into one with its capital at Thessalonica,where the proconsul resided. There are numerous allusions to the Macedonians in the books of the Maccabees. In N.T. history Macedonia holds an important place because of the labors of the apostles. Paul was called there by the vision of the "man of Macedonia," and made a most successful missionary-tour. Acts 16:10; Acts 17:1-12. He visited it again, Acts 20:1-6. and probably for a third time. Comp. 1 Tim 1:3; Phil 2:24. His Epistles to the Thessalonians and Philippians show that the Macedonian Christians exhibited many excellent traits. The details of his work can be studied in connection with the cities of Macedonia visited by him. See Neapolis, Philippi, Apollonia, Thessalonica, Berea. Macedonia has been for many years under the control of the Turks, and is called Makadonia.

MACHAE'RUS is not mentioned in the Bible, but is supposed to be the castle in which John the Baptist was imprisoned and beheaded. It is nine miles east of the Dead Sea. Mark 6:21-29.

MACH'BANAI (one fat, thick, or who like my sons?) a Gadite chief who joined David at Ziklag. 1 Chr 12:13.

MACH'BENAH (hillock, or cloak), a name occurring in the genealogical list of Judah, 1 Chr 2:49, and probably signifying a town founded or colonized by Sheva and his family.

MA'CHI (decrease), the father of Geuel the Gadite, who went with Caleb and Joshua as a spy into Canaan. Num 13:15.

MA'CHIR (sold).

  1. The eldest son of Manasseh by an Aramite or Syrian concubine, 1 Chr 7:14; the father of Gilead, Num 26:29; Deut 27:1; Num 36:1; and a daughter, Abiah. 1 Chr 2:21, 1 Chr 2:24. At the time of the Conquest the family of Machir had become very large and powerful, and subdued the land to the east of the Jordan. Num 32:39; Deut 3:15.

  2. The son of Ammiel, in whose house Mephibosheth was received and lived until David called him to Jerusalem. 2 Sam 9:4-5; 2 Sam 17:27.

MA'CHIRITES, the descendants of Machir. Num 26:29.

MACH'NADE'BAI (what like the liberal?), one who divorced his foreign wife on command of Ezra. Ezr 10:40.

MACHPE'LAH (double cave), a field in Hebron containing the cave which Abraham bought of Ephron the Hittite as a burial-place for his family. A full account of the negotiations, carried on after the Oriental forms still prevalent, is given in Gen 23. That cave became the burial-place of Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Rebekah, Jacob and Leah. Gen 23:19; Gen 25:9; Gen 49:29-32; Gen 50:12-13. The name does not occur except in the book of Genesis. The cave Machpelah is one of the Bible sites which are positively known. It was situated on the western slope of a hill in Hebron, the town lying for the most part to the south and west.

Present Appearance. — A large structure called El Haram, "The Sacred Enclosure," surrounds the ancient cave. It stands high up the slope on the eastern side of the valley, conspicuous at a distance for its size. The outer wall, which contains not a single window, is 194 feet long, 109 feet wide, and from 48 to 58 feet high. The stones are of immense size (one of them 38 feet long and 4 wide), dressed and fitted with great care, and resemble those of the substructure of the temple at Jerusalem. Opinions differ as to the age of this building. Some ascribe it to David or Solomon, others to the period after the 536 Captivity, still others to the time of Herod, who rebuilt the temple; but there seems to be no good reason for disputing the view of Robinson, who regarded the external structure of the Haram as the work of Jewish hands, erected long before the destruction of the nation. Tristram and Stanley also accept the identification of Machpelah as certain, and hold it beyond doubt that the main stone enclosure was built by the kings of Judah, and most probably by Solomon or David. Within the enclosure is a mosque, which was probably erected in the time of Justinian as a Christian church. Visitors are rigidly excluded; but by a special firman of the sultan the Prince of Wales was admitted in 1862. He was accompanied by Dean Stanley, and a full account of the visit is found in Stanley's Jewish Church (first series, appendix ii.). In separate apartments they were shown tombs or cenotaphs purporting to be those of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Sarah, Rebekah, and Leah. These tombs were of stone and overhung with cloth embroidered with gold and silver. Joseph's tomb is shown in a structure joining the Haram on the west side. Between the tombs of Isaac and

Mosque at Hebron, covering the Cave at Machpelah.

Rebekah was a circular opening into a cavern below, which is supposed to be the real cave of Machpelah. Of the cave itself there is no detailed and trustworthy account. Captain Warren was told that it had not been entered for 600 years. The Moslems have a superstition that whoever attempts to enter it will be struck dead, and their fanaticism causes them to prohibit any one from making the attempt. It is thought to be possible that the embalmed body of Jacob may still be preserved in the cave, as Egyptian mummies have been found of as early a date. Since the visit of the Prince of Wales, the marquis of Bute (1866) and the Crown-Prince of Prussia (1869) have been admitted to the mosque. See Hebron.

It is to be hoped that the political changes going on in the East may open the way for explorers to solve the ancient mystery respecting the cave of Machpelah, and perhaps bring to light the embalmed body of Jacob.

MAD is the translation of various Hebrew and Greek words, sometimes denoting actual insanity, 1 Sam 21:13-15; 1 Cor 14:23, but generally signifying an uncontrollable excitement only, 537 caused either by fierce wrath, Deut 28:28, Num 32:34; 2 Kgs 9:11; Luke 6:11; Acts 26:11, or the frenzy of idolatrous worship, 1 Kgs 18:26, 1 Kgs 18:28, or real inspiration, 1 Sam 19:21-24; comp. 2 Kgs 9:11; Jer 29:26; Acts 2:13. Only once in Scripture is madness connected with demoniacal possession. John 10:20. Among the Orientals, as among all semi-civilized people, madness was generally looked upon partly with pity, because God's hand was laid heavily on the madman, partly with reverence, because the mad mind, being shut up against all ordinary impressions, was considered open to supernatural or spiritualistic influences. Thus it became possible for David to effect his escape from the court of Achish by feigning madness. 1 Sam 21:13-15.

MAD'AI (middle land), the third son of Japheth, from whom the Medes descended. Gen 10:2; 1 Chr 1:5.

MA'DIAN. Acts 7:29. See Midian.

MADMAN'NAH (dunghill), a town in the South of Judah, Josh 15:31, known in the time of Eusebius and Jerome as Menois, and not far from Gaza. Wilton would identify it with el-Minyay, 15 miles from Gaza; the Pal. Memoirs suggest Umm Deimneh, 12 miles northeast of Beersheba, as its more probable site. Madmannah corresponds with Beth-marcaboth, "house of chariots," in Josh 19:5; 1 Chr 4:31.

MAD'MEN (dunghill), probably the name of a place in Moab threatened with destruction in the denunciations of Jeremiah 48:2.

MADME'NAH (dunghill), a Benjamite village north of Jerusalem, the inhabitants of which were frightened away by the approach of Sennacherib along the northern road. Isa 10:31. If the places in Sennacherib's march are mentioned in order, Madmenah should be between Gibeah of Saul and Nob.

MA'DON (contention), a royal city of the Canaanites, Josh 11:1; Neh 12:19, whose king was slain by Joshua; probably Madin, near Hatthi.

MAG'BISH (gathering), probably the name of a place. Ezr 2:30, as all the names from Ezr 2:20-34, except Elam and Harim, are names of places. It is not in the corresponding list in Neh 7. The place was doubtless in the territory of Benjamin.

MAG'DALA (tower). In the chief manuscripts and versions the name is given as "Magadan." Magdala is found only in Matt 15:29. Christ came thither by boat over the Lake of Galilee after his miracle of feeding the four thousand on the mountain on the eastern side, Matt 15:39; and from thence he returned in the boat to the opposite shore. The parallel passage, Mark 8:10, has the "parts of Dalmanutha," on the western edge of the lake. The two regions or districts were probably near each other. The Magdala from which Mary Magdalene was named is perhaps identical with Migdal-el, Josh 19:38, and may be the modern el-Mejdel, a miserable little Moslem village of fifteen or twenty hovels, on the water's edge, at the south-east corner of the plain of Gennesaret.

MAG'DALA, COASTS OF. Matt 15:39. See Dalmanutha.

MAG'DIEL (the praise of God), one of the chiefs of Edom. Gen 36:43; 1 Chr 1:54.

MA'GI, a word of Median or Chaldaean origin, was the name of the sacerdotal caste which among the Medians, Persians, Chaldaeans, and other Eastern nations occupied an intermediate position of great influence between the despot, to whose council they often were called, and the people, whose leaders in revolt they often were. As the administrators of the religion of Zoroaster they were the priests among the population belonging to the Medo-Persian empire. They alone had the right to perform the religious ceremonies. Distinguished by a peculiar dress, living apart by themselves, and forming a complete hierarchy, they were engaged in keeping alive the sacred fire on the altar of Ormuzd and combating the evil plans of Ahriman. But they were not only the priests of the Persian nation; they were also its scholars. Deeply versed, according to the measure of the time, in philosophy and the sciences, especially astronomy, they accompanied the king even in war as his advisers, Jer 39:3; but as, at that time, a practical application of science did not mean the subjugation of natural powers and their employment for useful purposes, but the divination of future events and their possible modification through spiritual and mysterious agencies 538 the Magi became on this field mere soothsayers, fortune-tellers, dream-interpreters, not to say sorcerers and enchanters. When the Greeks became acquainted with Persian religion and civilization, and here discovered a system of divination and oracles quite different from their own, it was natural enough for them to throw a special odium on the representatives of this system ,- and in the Greek-Roman literature the Magi always appear as impostors. Not so in the O.T. During the Captivity the Jews became well acquainted with them, and Daniel describes them as men of wisdom, Dan 1:20; he intercedes for them with Nebuchadnezzar, Dan 2:24; and accepts a position as their chief or master. Dan 5:11.

The same impression of dignity, truthfulness, and aspiration after the true religion is conveyed by the narrative in Matt 2:1-14. Whence these Magi came we have no means of ascertaining, but it is a very probable inference that by the intercourse between the Magi and the exiled Jews some seeds of Messianic expectations were sown and took root among the former, and by special Providence these wise men were led to the cradle of the Messiah as a sign of the coming of the Gentiles. They were the forerunners of the heathen converts. The Christian legend represents them as three kings. Their memory is celebrated on Epiphany, the 6th of January, or the festival of Christ's manifestation to the Gentiles. See Star of the Wise Men.

MAG'IC was the art of influencing future events and changing their course by dark and secret means. The magician was believed to stand in connection with demons, and even with the gods themselves, and to be able to compel them to act according to his will. Of the religion of the Egyptians, Chaldceans, Persians, etc., magic formed an essential element, and of the Egyptian magicians, in their conflict with Moses and Aaron, Exodus gives a vivid account. Exodus 7:11-12, Josh 11:22; Neh 8:7. Of the religion of the Jews magic did not only not form a part, but the law forbade the consulting of magicians, under penalty of death. Lev 19:31; Num 20:6. Nevertheless, from their neighbors magic crept in among the Israelites too, and there were those among the people who believed in it and resorted to it. The most remarkable instance is that of Saul and the sorceress of Endor. 1 Sam 28:3-20. Also in the N.T. we find it mentioned. Acts 8:9-10; Acts 13:6-12; Acts 19:13-19.

MAG'ISTRATE is used in our translation both in its general sense, signifying civil olficers with legal authority, Ezr 7:25; Luke 12:11; Tit 3:1; and in a special sense, signifying the Roman colonial officers — the duum-viri, corresponding nearly to praetores. Acts 16:20, Josh 11:22, Gal 4:25, etc.

MA'GOG (region of Gog), the second son of Japheth, Gen 10:2; 1 Chr 1:5, and the name of a people descending from him, or the country inhabited by that people, and of which Gog was the king. Eze 38:2; Eze 39:1, 1 Chr 24:6, etc. In the Middle Ages the Syrians applied the name of Magog to Asiatic Tartary, and the Arabians to the region between the Caspian and the Black Seas. Generally the people of Magog are identified with the Scythians, who, in the times when Ezekiel wrote, were well known in Western Asia. Descending from the Caucasian mountain-regions in the beginning of the seventh century b.c, they conquered Sardis, the capital of Lydia, in 629, and defeated Cyaxares, king of Media, in 624. They penetrated even into Egypt, but were bribed off by Psammetichus. They were not expelled, however, from Western Asia until the beginning of the next century. By Ezekiel they are described as excellent horsemen, skilled in the use of the bow, Eze 38:15; Eze 39:3, and exactly the same traits are prominent in the descriptions of the Scythians by the classical historians. In Rev 20:7-9 the terms Gog and Magog are evidently used as types of the enemies of Christianity. See Gog.

MA'GOR-MIS'SABIB (terror on every side), a symbolical name given by Jeremiah, Jer 20:3, to the priest Pashuu, which article see.

MAG'PIASH (moth-killer), one of the chiefs who sealed the covenant with Nehemiah. Neh 10:20.

MAHA'LAH (sickness), a descendant of Manasseh by a sister of Gilead. 1 Chr 7:18.

MAHA'LALEEL (praise of God).

  1. The son of Cainan, the fourth in descent from Adam. Gen 5:12-13, Gen 5:15-17; 1 Chr 1:2; called Maleleel in Luke 3:37.
  1. A descendant of Perez or Pharez, whose family lived in Jerusalem after the return from the Captivity. Neh 11:4.

MA'HALATH (stringed instrument, harp, lyre).

  1. The daughter of Ishmael, and one of the wives of Esau, Gen 28:9; called Bashemath Gen 36:3-4, 1 Kgs 16:10, etc.

  2. The granddaughter of David, and one of the wives of Rehoboam. 2 Chr 11:18.

MA'HALATH, Ps 53 and MAHALATH-LEAN'NOTH, Ps 88, occurring only in the titles of these two Psalms, are by most commentators held to be the names of some musical instrument used in the performance of the Psalm, or to contain some musical instructions with respect to the melody. Others, however, deriving the word from a root meaning "sickness," consider it a condensed or enigmatical indication of the idea of the Psalm.

MA'HALI (sick), a son of Merari. Ex 6:19. The same as Mahli.

MAHANA'IM (two camps), a town east of the Jordan; named by Jacob. Gen 32:1-2. It was assigned to the Levites, Josh 13:26, 1 Kgs 20:30; Josh 21:38;1 Chr 6:80, and lay within the territory of Gad, north of the torrent Jabbok. Mahanaim became in the time of the monarchy a place of mark. 2 Sam 2:9, 2 Sam 2:12; 2 Sam 4:6. Abner fixed Ishbosheth's residence there, and David took refuge in it when driven out of the western part of his kingdom by Absalom. 2 Sam 17:24; 1 Kgs 2:8. Mahanaim was the seat of one of Solomon's commissariat officers, 1 Kgs 4:14, and it is alluded to in his Song, Song 6:13. Dr. Merrill locates Mahanaim in the Jordan valley, 6 miles north of the Jabbok, at a ruin called Saleikhat. Here water is abundant; the ruins are extensive and about 300 feet above the plain and near the dividing line between Gad and Manasseh. It answers the biblical requirement better than other suggested sites, like Mahneh and Gerasa.

MA'HANEH-DAN (the camp of Dan), a place "behind Kirjath-jearim," Jud 18:12, and "between Zorah and Eshtaol." Jud 13:25.

MAHAR'AI (swift, impetuous), a descendant of Zerah, and one of David's captains. 2 Sam 23:28; 1 Chr 11:30; 1 Chr 27:13.

MA'HATH (grasping).

  1. A Kohathite Levite. 1 Chr 6:35.

  2. Another Kohathite Levite in the time of Hezekiah. 2 Chr 29:12; 2 Chr 31:13.

MA'HAVITE, the designation of Eliel, one of David's warriors, 1 Chr 11:46; of uncertain signification.

MAHA'ZIOTH (visions), a Kohathite Levite, one of the sons of Heman, and chief of the twenty-third course of musicians. 1 Chr 25:4, 1 Chr 25:30.

MATHER-SHAL'AL-HASH'BAZ (hasting to the spoil, he speeds to the prey), the symbolical name given to the son of Isaiah to indicate the capture and plunder of Damascus and Samaria by the king of Assyria. Isa 8:1, Num 1:3.

MAH'LAH (disease), one of the daughters of Zelophehad, in favor of whom the laws of inheritance were altered. Num 27:1-11.

MAH'LI (sickly).

  1. A Levite, son of Merari. Num 3:20; 1 Chr 6:19, 1 Chr 6:29; 1 Chr 23:21; 1 Chr 24:26; Ezr 8:18; called Mahali, Ex 6:19.

  2. Another Levite, a grandson of Merari. 1 Chr 6:47; 1 Chr 23:23.

MAH'LITES, a family of Levites descending from Mahli. Num 3:33; Num 26:58.

MAH'ION (sickly), one of the sons of Elimelech and Naomi, and the first husband of Ruth; died in the land of Moab. Ruth 1:2, 1 Chr 6:5; Ruth 4:9-10.

MA'HOL (dance), father of four sons who next to Solomon had the greatest fame for wisdom. 1 Kgs 4:31.

MAIL. 1 Sam 17:5. See Arms.

MAIN'SAIL. Acts 27:40. See Ship.

MA'KAZ (end), a place where one of Solomon's officers resided. 1 Kgs 4:9. Conder suggests that it is the modern Mokkus.

MAKHE'LOTH (place of assemblies), a station of the Hebrews in the desert. Num 33:25.

MAK'KEDAH (place of shepherds), a royal city of the Canaanites in the plains of Judah, where Joshua executed the five confederate kings. Josh 10:10; Neh 12:16; Josh 15:41. Warren would identify it with el-Moghar, 25 miles north-west from Jerusalem, and Conder describes it as on the north side of the valley Sorek, 25 miles from Gibeon, close to the main road from Gaza to Lydda. There is a promontory divided 540 into three tops, the last of which falls abruptly and supports a large mud village upon the steep eastern side and huddled around the caves. There are still two caves wherein five men might crowd, and the entrance could be easily blocked with the great stones which lie scattered near. One cave has, curiously enough, five loculi rudely scooped in its side, and an enthusiast might contend that this was the very place of sepulchre of the five kings who were hidden at Makkedah.

MAK'TESH (mortar), a place in Jerusalem denounced by Zephaniah. Zeph 1:11. Ewald conjectures that it was the "Phoenician quarter" of the city, and the Targum identifies it with the Kedron. Jerome places it in the lower city, where were bazaars of merchants at the time of the siege by Titus.

MAL'ACHI (messenger of Jehovah), the last of the prophets, and called "the seal" because his prophecies form the closing book of the canon of the O.T. Of his personal life nothing is known but what can be gleaned from his book. He flourished after the Captivity, later than Haggai and Zechariah, at a time when the temple was completed, and was probably a contemporary of Nehemiah, b.c. 433. His prophecies are at once denunciatory of prevailing vices, and consolatory by the Messianic promise. Showing how vain were the murmurings of the people against the Lord, he reproves them for their neglect of his service, censures intermarriage with foreign wives, etc., and warns them that judgment will be established over them. He closes with a prophecy of the coming of Messiah, and foretells that Elijah will return as a forerunner of Messiah - a prediction which found its striking fulfilment by the mission of John the Baptist. Mal 4:6; Luke 1:17; Matt 11:14; Matt 17:12.

MAL'CHAM (their king).

  1. A Benjamite chief. 1 Chr 8:9.

  2. As occurring in Zeph 1:5, it is understood by some as an idol in general, by others as signifying Moloch.

MALCHI'AH (Jehovah's king).

  1. A Gershonite Levite, the ancestor of Asaph. 1 Chr 6:40.

  2. Two who had married foreign wives. Ezr 10:25, 1 Chr 24:31, the latter probably the same as Malchijah. Neh 3:11.

  3. Two who helped to repair the wall of Jerusalem. Neh 3:14.

  4. A priest who stood beside Ezra when he read the Law to the people in the street before the Water-gate. Neh 8:4.

  5. A priest, the father of Pashur, Neh 11:12; probably the same as Melchiah, Jer 21:1; Neh 11:12; Jer 38:1, and Malchijah.

  6. An officer in whose cistern Jeremiah was thrown, Jer 38:6, the dry cistern being used in Palestine as a dungeon.

MAL'CHIEL (God's king), a grandson of Asher, and the ancestor of the Malchielites. Gen 46:17; Num 26:45; 1 Chr 7:31.

MALCHI'JAH (Jehovah's king).

  1. The same as Malchiah, 5.

  2. A priest, chief of the fifth course in the reign of David. 1 Chr 24:9.

  3. One who had taken a foreign wife. Ezr 10:25.

  4. One who assisted in repairing the walls of Jerusalem, Neh 3:11; the same as Malchiah in Ezr 10:31.

  5. One who took part in the dedication of the walls of Jerusalem. Neh 12:42.

MALCHI'RAM (king of altitude), a son of Jehoiachin, king of Judah. 1 Chr 3:18.

MAL'CHISHU'A (king of help), 1 Chr 8:33; 1 Chr 9:39; 1 Chr 10:2, or MELCHISUA, 1 Sam 14:49; 1 Sam 31:2, one of the sons of King Saul.

MAL'CHUS (reigning), the high priest's servant whose ear Peter cut off when Josus was apprehended in the garden. Matt 26:51; Mark 14:47; Luke 22:50; John 18:10.

MALE'LEEL. Luke 3:37. See Mahalaleel. 1.

MAL'LOTHI (my fulness), a Kohathite Levite, son of Hem an, and chief of the nineteenth course of singers. 1 Chr 25:4, 1 Chr 25:26.

MAL'LOWS. Job 30:4. Several species of mallows grow in Bible lands and are eaten as potherbs by the poor. But it is believed that the Hebrew here denotes a plant of saline taste, or one that grows in salt places. The shrubby sea-oracle (Atriplex halimus), closely connected with the saltwort of our coasts, has both these qualifications, and is most generally agreed upon as the mallows of Job, although other plants have their advocates.


MAL'LUCH (reigning).

  1. A Merarite Levite, ancestor of Ethan. 1 Chr 6:44.

  2. Two who had married foreign wives. Ezr 10:29, Jud 1:32.

  3. A priest who returned with Zerubbabel, Neh 12:2, and signed the covenant with Nehemiah, Neh 10:4; probably the same as Melicu.

MAM'MON, a Chaldee or Syrian word denoting "wealth:" used twice by our Lord. Matt 6:24; Luke 16:9-11.

MAM'RE (fatness, strength), an Amorite chief with whom Abraham made an alliance, Gen 14:13, and who gave his name to certain localities in his possessions.

MAM'RE, a place near Hebron, so called after the Amorite chief, Gen 14:13, Jud 6:24; Gen 23:19; Gen 35:27, and it is also the name of a plain and a grove at Hebron by which Abraham dwelt and entertained three angels. Gen 13:18; Gen 18:1. It was near Machpelah. Gen 23:17, Acts 1:19; Gen 25:9; Gen 49:30; Gen 50:13. The grove of terebinths is supposed to have been the place called by the Arabs er-Rameh or Ramet-et-Khulil , one hour from Hebron. The site of Mamre is shown, on the sheet-maps of the Palestine Exploration Fund, at Ballatet Selta, or "oak of rest," a fine old tree near the modern Russian hospice. The tree is called Abraham's Oak. Near the site is a spring. See Hebron.

MAN is, in our English Bible, the rendering of four different Hebrew words.

  1. Adam, Gen 1:26, from a root which signifies "to be red" or "ruddy," which among the Shemites means as much as "fair." This word is generally used as the generic name for the human race. Gen 5:2; Gen 8:21; Deut 8:3.

  2. Ish, man as distinguished from woman, 1 Sam 17:33; then husband. Gen 3:16; Hos 2:16; superior, Prov 8:4; Ps 141:4; the male of animals. Gen 7:2, etc.

  3. Geber, from a root signifying "to be strong," denotes man in contradistinction from woman, Deut 22:5, or from children, Ex 12:37, though it is also used collectively. Job 4:17; Job 14:10.

  4. Methim, "mortal." Isa 12:14. See Adam and Son of Man.

MAN'AEN (consoler), one of the teachers of the church of Antioch, and foster-brother of Herod Antipas the tetrarch. Acts 13:1.

MAN'AHATH (rest).

  1. A descendant of Seir the Horite. Gen 36:23; 1 Chr 1:40.

2, A place in Benjamin. 1 Chr 8:6. Probably Malhah, 3 m. from Jerusalem.

MANA'HTHITES, THE, the descendants of Manahath or the inhabitants of the place of that name. 1 Chr 2:52.


  1. The first-born of Joseph. When he and his brother Ephraim were boys, and Jacob, their grandfather, was about to die, Joseph took them into the patriarch's presence to receive his blessing. On this occasion he adopted them into his own family as his own children, and predicted the superiority of Ephraim over Manasseh. Gen 48:5-20. Nothing further is known of the personal history of Manasseh. His oldest, and as it would seem his only, son was Machir, whose children were embraced by Joseph. On their way to Canaan the Israelites conquered a large territory east of the Jordan, and some of them whose possessions were chiefly in cattle desired to have their portion assigned them among the rich pastures and fruitful hills of Bashan and the surrounding country. This request was granted, and half the tribe of Manasseh received the territory stretching from near to Caesarea-Philippi along the Jordan down nearly to Mahanaim. The other half had its portion on the west of the Jordan, between Ephraim and Issachar, across the country from the Jordan to the Mediterranean.

Several great men, such as Gideon, and probably also Jephthah, issued from Manasseh. The eastern part of the tribe prospered much and spread to Mount Hermon, but they finally mixed with the Canaanites, adopted their idolatry, became scattered as Bedouins in the desert, and were the first to be carried away into captivity by the kings of Assyria. 1 Chr 5:25. The western Manasseh, of which only a few glimpses are visible in the later history of Israel, always showed itself on the right side; as, for instance, in the cases of Asa, 2 Chr 15:9, Hezekiah, 2 Chr 30:1, 2 Chr 30:11, 2 Chr 30:18, and Josiah. 2 Chr 34:6, 2 Chr 34:9.

  1. Son and successor of Hezekiah, king of Judah, ascended the throne at

the age of twelve years, b.c. 696. The former part of his reign was distinguished for acts of impiety and cruelty, 2 Kgs 21, and he succeeded in drawing his subjects away from the Lord to such an extent that the only kind of worship which was not allowed in Judah was that of Jehovah. 2 Kgs 21:2-9. Having supported the Babylonian viceroy in his revolt against Assyria, he was at last taken captive by the Assyrian king and ignominiously transported to Babylon. Upon his repentance, however, he was liberated, and returned to his capital, where he died b.c. 641, after having done much to repair the evils of his former life. 2 Chr 33:1-20.

MANAS'SEH (forgetting), the territory occupied by a tribe descended from Joseph, and divided into two portions, one east of the Jordan, and the other west of it.

1.East of the Jordan. — The country of Manasseh east of the Jordan included half of Gilead the Hauran, Bashan, and Argob. It extended from the middle of Gilead, on the south, to Mount Hermon and Damascus, on the north, 1 Chr 5:18-23, and from the Jordan and the Sea of Galilee, on the west, to the Arabian desert, on the east. It is even now the granary of Syria. The extensive pastures of Gilead and Bashan gave the best scope for the half-nomad and herdsman's life led by this portion of the tribe. Jud 5:15. The people were powerful and brave, taking a leading part in the wars of Gideon, of Jephthah, and of David. See also Gilead and Bashan.

  1. West of the Jordan. — The portion of the half tribe of Manasseh on the west of the Jordan extended from the Mediterranean to the Jordan, and lay between Asher and Issachar on the north and Ephraim on the south. Josh 17:7-10. They also gained some towns in Carmel within the bounds of Issachar, probably by capturing them from the ancient Canaanites. Josh 17:11-18. The dominant position of Ephraim seems to have obscured the power of Manasseh, and this portion of their country is frequently joined with Ephraim in the biblical allusions. For further notice see Palestine and Samaria.

MANAS'SITES, THE, descendants of Manasseh the patriarch. Deut 4:43; Jud 12:4; 2 Kgs 10:33.

MAN'DRAKES (Heb. love-plants). Modern Bible scholars apply this name to a member of the potato family (Mandragora officinalis).

Mandrake. (Atropa Mandragora. After Tristram.)

This is a stemless plant with a disk of leaves almost as long, but not nearly as broad, as those of the garden rhubarb, which it somewhat resembles, except in its blossoms. These are of a rich purple, and, appearing among the leaves very early, are followed about wheat-harvest by a round yellow pulpy fruit of the size of a large plum and of a sweet and agreeable flavor. The odor of the plant seems to be enjoyed by Orientals, Cant. Song 7:13, and by some Occidentals. Many strange superstitions are connected with this 543 plant, and the idea of Rachel's time still prevails that conception is ensured by eating the fruit of this plant. Gen 30:14-16.

MA'NEH. See Measures.

MAN'NA (Heb. what is this ?), a substance miraculously furnished to the children of Israel on their journey through the wilderness, and designed as a substitute for bread, the material for which they could not raise during their wanderings. It was called the bread from heaven, and its character and history are most fully described in Ex 16.

The most remarkable things about the manna of the Israelites were, 1. That double the quantity was supplied on the day preceding the Sabbath or seventh day; 2. That on the Sabbath or seventh day none was furnished; 3. That what they kept from the sixth day to the seventh was sweet and good, while what they kept from any other day to the next day bred worms and became offensive. These miracles were wrought in attestation of the sanctity of the Sabbath.

The manna of the Jews is described as "a small round thing," as small as "the hoarfrost on the ground," "like coriander seed" (in shape doubtless, perhaps in size and density), "of the color of bdellium," "and the taste of it like wafers made with honey." Wafers were small thin cakes of fine flour mingled with oil and used in various offerings. Lev 2:4; Num 7:12. If to this mixture was added a portion of honey, there would be the nourishment of the flour, the flavor of fresh oil, and the sweetness of honey.

For forty years this miraculous supply of food was furnished daily to between 3,000,000 and 4,000,000 of people. Deut 29:5-6. It ceased while they were encamped at Gilgal, immediately after they had celebrated the Passover for the first time in the Land of Promise. To commemorate this long-continued and wonderful miracle, Moses was instructed that a golden pot should be provided, Ex 16:33; Heb 9:4, and that an omer (or one man's portion) of the manna should be put up for preservation and placed in or near the ark, that succeeding generations might see with their own eyes the very substance on which their fathers were miraculously fed in their long and perilous journeyingS from Egypt to Canaan.

The manna which is now used in medicine as a mild laxative is the dried juice of the ash (Ornitfi), and is obtained from Southern Europe. It evidently has no connection with the food of the Israelites. Various natural exudations from Eastern shrubs and trees are called by this name, their sweet taste and the globular form under which they are ordinarily found occasioning a fancied resemblance to the manna of the Israelites. Especially notable is that which drops from the twigs of the tamarisk, or tarfa, in the deserts of Mount Sinai, and is gathered by the Arabs for food and sold to

Tamamnrisk or Manna Tree of the Sinaitic Peninsula.

travellers as a curiosity. Although the natives call this substance manna, the manna which the Israelites found in the same locality was entirely different in several particulars. The Arab manna falls only where the tamarisks grow and during early summer; it may be kept years without breeding worms; it cannot be ground or beaten into meal, Num 11:8, more than could thick honey; it comes on Sabbath and week-day in equal quantities. It is plain that the Israelites never saw their manna before or after the Exodus. Deut 8:3, Ex 17:16; Ex 16:15, Ex 16:32-33.


An Eastern traveller gives the following account (in part verified by the writer) of the modern manna of Arabia: "This substance is called by the Bedouins mann, and accurately resembles the description of manna given in the Scriptures. In the month of June it drops from the thorns" (the fresh stems; the tamarisk has no thorns) "of the tamarisk upon the fallen twigs, leaves, and thorns which always cover the ground beneath that tree in the natural state; the manna is collected before sunrise, when it is coagulated; but it dissolves as soon as the sun shines upon it. The Arabs clean away the leaves, dirt, etc., which adhere to it, boil it, strain it through a coarse piece of cloth, and put it in leathern skins. In this way they preserve it till the following year, and use it as they do honey - to pour over unleavened bread or to dip their bread into. I could not learn that they ever made it into cakes or loaves. The manna is found only in years when copious rains have fallen; sometimes it is not produced at all. I saw none of it among the Arabs, but I obtained a small piece of the last year's produce in the convent (of Mount Sinai), where, having been kept in the cool shade and moderate temperature of that place, it had become quite solid and formed a small cake. It became soft when kept some time in the hand; if placed in the sun for five minutes, it dissolved; but when restored to a cool place, it became solid again in a quarter of an hour. In the season at which the Arabs gather it, it never acquires that state of hardness which will allow of its being pounded, as the Israelites are said to have done in Num 11:8, Its color is a dirty yellow, and the piece which I saw was still mixed with bits of tamarisk leaves; its taste is agreeable, somewhat aromatic, and as sweet as honey. If eaten in any considerable quantity, it is said to be slightly medicinal. The quantity of manna collected at present, even in seasons when the most copious rains fall, is trifling, perhaps not amounting to more than 500 or 600 pounds. It is entirely consumed among the Bedouins, who consider it the greatest dainty which their country affords. The harvest is usually in June, and lasts for about six weeks."

Some authors have also suggested a lichen (Lecanora esculenta) as the manna of the Israelites. This small plant grows on the deserts and mountains of the East, in the neighborhood of the Caucasus especially. It forms small grayish lumps, sometimes as large as a hazel-nut, yielding the same nourishment to the tribes of the Asiatic steppes as does the larger lichen called tripe de roche to our Arctic explorers in their extremity. The natives consider that this food comes from heaven, and call it manna. In considerable quantity it is sometimes taken up by the wind and let fall at a distance. Parrot says that these "rains of manna" have been known to cover the ground in some parts of Persia to the depth of five or six inches.

The sugary exudation from the leaves and branches of the camel's thorn (Alhagi maurorum) of the Sinai deserts has been called Persian manna, and been believed by a few to have supplied the Israelites.

"Wherever the manna is referred to in Scripture, it is invariably regarded as a miraculous food sent directly from God. The Lord Jesus, when he accepted the manna as a type of himself - the living Bread which came down from heaven - corrects the error of those who, in seeking a sign from him, insinuated that the bread from heaven given by Moses, by which he secured the confidence of their fathers, was a greater miracle than the feeding of the five thousand, and says that it was the gift of God, and not of Moses. We are led to the same conclusion by comparing its properties and amount and the manner of its occurrence with what is known of the natural mannas, and we must regret all attempts to identify the 'corn of heaven' with any of them. Yet we have no doubt that this wilderness-food so closely resembled in general appearance the Egyptian manna as to justify the name given to it by those who first saw it. In the same way, emigrants apply names of familiar home-plants to the strange trees and plants they meet with because of some observed resemblance, though they are widely removed from each other in scientific character. The adopting a manna-like appearance for the miraculous food is in accordance with the general plan of God's miracles 545 as recorded in his word. For example, the Lord Jesus did not bring bread from heaven to feed the hungering multitudes on the green slopes of the Sea of Galilee, but employed the loaves and fishes which were the common food of the country, and by miraculously increasing the small supply found in the possession of one in the company made it sufficient for all. So, when his people hungered for flesh in the desert, God sent them quails — migrating birds which occasionally passed in flocks over the wilderness; and when they wanted bread, in full keeping with the locality, God gave them 'manna,' as if he were only multiplying the natural product of the wilderness." — W. Carruthers.

Manna is called the "corn of heaven" and "angels' food," Ps 78:24-25, perhaps in allusion to the mode by which it was supplied.

The phrase "hidden manna," Rev 2:17, figuratively describes the support which Christ furnishes to the true believer, of which the world does not and cannot partake. Comp. John 6:49, Josh 15:61.

MANO'AH (rest), a native of the town of Zorah, in the tribe of Dan, and the father of Samson, whose birth is recorded in Jud 13:1-23. Manoah is again mentioned, Jud 14:2-4 at the occasion of Samson's marriage, but seems to have died before the son, whose body was brought up from Gaza by his brethren, not, as Milton has it, by his father. Jud 16:31.

MAN'SLAYER. When manslaughter occurred by a blow in a sudden quarrel, by a stone or other missile thrown at random, Num 35:22-23, by the blade of an axe flying from its handle, etc., the manslayer was allowed to escape by retiring into one of the cities of refuge, on the principle that in these and other such cases the person slain had been delivered into the hands of the manslayer by the Almighty himself.

MAN'TLE is the rendering of four different Hebrew words denoting —

  1. A coarse fabric in the form of a plaid used by the Arabs for making beds in their tents. Jud 4:18.

  2. The garment which Samuel's mother made in imitation of the official priestly robe for her young son in the holy tent at Shiloh. 1 Sam 15:27.

  3. A wrapper with sleeves used by ladies. Isa 3:22.

  4. The chief garment of the prophet Elijah. 1 Kgs 19:13, 1 Kgs 19:19; 2 Kgs 2:8, 2 Kgs 2:13-14.

MA'OCH (breast-band?), the father of Achish, king of Gath, 1 Sam 27:2; called Maachah in 1 Kgs 2:39.

MA'ON (habitation), the founder of Beth-zur. 1 Chr 2:45.

MA'ON, one of the cities of Judah, in the mountains, Josh 15:55, and a district where David hid from Saul, and near which Nabal had possessions. 1 Sam 23:24-25. The name of Maon still exists in Main, a lofty conical hill 100 feet high, about 8 miles south from Hebron.

MA'ONITES, THE, mentioned in Jud 10:12 among the enemies of Israel; probably the same as the Mehunim.

MA'RA (bitter). Ruth 1:20. See Naomi.

MA'RAH (bitterness), a place in the wilderness of Shur or Etham, three days' journey, Num 33:8-9, from the place at which the Israelites crossed the Red Sea. There was at Marah a spring of bitter water, sweetened subsequently by the casting in of a tree which "the Lord showed" to Moses. Ex 15:23-24; Num 33:8-9. At 'Ain Hawarah, distant 47 miles from Aynn Mousa, is a spring whose fountain rises from a large mound in the Wadi el-Amarah, and is considered by the Arabs as the worst water in the district. The soil is impregnated with natron, which accounts for the bitterness. This spring has been identified with Marah. It is of course impossible to determine whether this is the precise spring of which the Israelites drank, but it is certain that it must have been in this neighborhood.

MAR'-ALAH (trembling),a boundary of Zebulun, Josh 19:11; Porter identifies it with M'alul, 4 miles southwest of Nazareth, where are the ruins of a temple.

MARANATH'A, an Aramaic expression signifying "our Lord has come." 1 Cor 16:22.

MAR'BLE, limestone of a compact texture and capable of receiving a high polish. Rev 18:12. The Bible word seems to be used, however, for almost any shining stone, and much of the material of Solomon's architectural work may have been common limestone. Some 546 of it was doubtless true marble, as was certainly much of the stone used in Herod's temple. This substance was probably used in very early times for building material, 1 Kgs 6:7, 1 Kgs 6:36; 1 Kgs 7:9-12; 1 Chr 29:2, and for many kinds of vessels. The colors of marble are various and beautiful, and pieces of all sizes may be so wrought together as to resemble a beautiful painting. Such was probably the pavement and columns of the Persian palace described in Esth 1:6.

MAR'CUS. Col 4:10. See Mark.

MARK'SUAH (possession), one of the settlers in Hebron, belonging to the family of Caleb. 1 Chr 2:42.

MARE' SHAH (top of a hill), a city of Judah in the low country. Josh 15:44. It was fortified and garrisoned by Rehoboam after the rupture with the northern kingdom. 2 Chr 11:8. Near it the great battle between Zerah and Asa was fought. 2 Chr 14:9-12. It is mentioned once or twice in the history of the Maccabtean struggles. 1 Mace. 5:2 Mace. 12:35. About b.c. 110 it was taken from the Idumaeans by John Hyrcanus. It was in ruins in the fourth century, when Eusebius and Jerome describe it as in the second mile from Eleutheropolis. The ruin el-Merash, about a mile and a half south-south-west of Beit Jebrin, marks the site of ancient Mareshah. In the rocky banks of the valley south of the ruin there are numerous excavated caverns resembling subterranean towns. Conder suggested el-Marah, south of the valley of Elah, as Mareshah, but lately has accepted M'erash as the site.

MARK, or JOHN MARK, as he is also called, Acts 12:12, Gal 4:25; Acts 15:37, was a Jew, probably a native of Jerusalem, where his mother, Mary, resided. Acts 12:12. She was a person of some repute among the early Christians, as Peter, when released from prison, naturally went to her house. Mark was probably converted through that apostle, who calls him "his son." 1 Pet 5:13, and the minute account of the young man who followed Jesus on the night of the betrayal, Mark 14:51-52, together with the omission of the name, points to the evangelist as the person concerned. Going with Paul and Barnabas, who was his cousin. Col 4:10, as their minister, Acts 12:25, on their first missionary journey, he left them at Perga, Acts 13:13, and in consequence became, the occasion of "sharp contention" between them. Acts 15:36-40. Afterward he appears as a companion of Paul in Rome. Col 4:10; Phile 24. He was with Peter when that apostle wrote his first Epistle, 1 Pet 5:13, but was at Ephesus with Timothy at a date probably later. 2 Tim 4:11. Respecting his after-life trustworthy details are wanting, but ancient writers agree in speaking of him as the "interpreter" of Peter, which may mean that he translated for the apostle, but more probably means that he wrote his Gospel in close conformity to Peter's preaching.

According to the unanimous testimony of antiquity, the second Gospel in our canon was written by Mark, and numerous details of the work indicate the close relation between its author and Peter. Many events are recorded as if from the lips of an eye-witness, and some have suggested that the Gospel is based upon a diary of Peter, sketching his fresh impressions of events as they occurred. The style shows the influence of that apostle. Peter's address to Cornelius, Acts 10, has been called the Gospel of Mark in a nutshell. A comparison of the accounts in Matt 16:13-23 and Mark 8:27-33 indicates that Peter himself (or an enemy of his, which is impossible) occasioned the omission of the praise, and yet the insertion of the rebuke. Mark alone mentions the two cock-crowings, Mark 14:72, thus increasing the guilt of Peter's denial.

Although written in Greek, the Gospel was designed for Roman readers, and is especially adapted to their minds, so easily impressed by exhibitions of energy and power. It exhibits Christ as the spiritual Conqueror and Wonder-worker, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, filling the people with amazement and fear. Mark introduces several Latin terms; he even substitutes Roman money for Greek, Mark 12:42, which Luke does not, and notices that Simon of Cyrene was the father of Alexander and Rufus, Acts 15:21, who probably were Christians in Rome. Rom 16:13. It is therefore most likely that the Gospel was written in that city. The great similarity between the Gospel of Mark and that of Matthew has led some to consider the former a mere 547 abridgment of the latter, but without sufficient reason. It occupies an independent position as the connecting-link between Matthew and Luke, Peter and Paul, the Jewish and the Gentile Christianity. The last part of the closing chapter, Mark 16:9-20, is not found in the two oldest and best manuscripts of the Bible, of which circumstance some have taken occasion to declare it a later addition. But it has been recognized as part of the Gospel and quoted by the Fathers of the second century - for instance, Irenaeus, whose testimony is older than the oldest manuscript. Possibly it was a later postscript of Mark, added to a second copy; hence its omission in some manuscripts.

MAR'KET, or MARKETPLACE. The market of an ancient Greek or Roman town occupied generally one side of an area, the other sides being occupied by public buildings, temples, courts, and offices of various kinds. Laws were promulgated here; judicial investigations were instituted; questions of philosophy and public interest were discussed; and all kinds of trade and business were carried on. It was frequented by business-men and by crowds of idlers and loungers. In a strictly Oriental city, such as Jerusalem, the market had not, like the forum, this character of being the centre of all public life. Still, it was always a lively place, generally situated just within the gate, and the principal scene of trade and traffic.

In the O.T. this word occurs only once, Eze 27:3; in the N.T. oftener. Matt 23:7:Mark 12:38; Luke 11:43; Luke 20:46; Acts 16:19, etc., and we learn from Matt 20:3 that not only were all kinds of produce offered for sale here, but hither resorted also the laborers to find employment.

MA'ROTH (bitterness), a place in the western plains of Judah. Mic 1:12.

MAR'RIAGE. Its origin is recorded in Gen 2:18-25, and its constitution is confirmed by our Lord. Matt 19:5-6; Mark 10:5-10. Marriage, in its primitive and normal state, is an inseparable union between one man and one woman for mutual comfort and happiness, and for the propagation of the race. It dates from Paradise before the fall. It is indissoluble except on account of fornication. Polygamy first appeared among the Cainites, Gen 4:19, and in spite both of the example of Noah and his sons, who were monogamists. Gen 7:13, and of the general discouragement and special restrictions which the Mosaic law placed in its way, it still prevailed up to the time of the Captivity. It must be noticed, however, that among the Hebrews polygamy never assumed those degraded and degrading forms under which we meet it among pagan nations, or even among the Mohammedans. A distinction was always made between the chief wife and the secondary wives, between the legitimate wife and the concubines; and thus the principle of monogamy was always retained, though not always carried out. The Mosaic law enjoined the kings not to multiply their wives, Deut 17:17; prohibited any one from marrying two sisters at the same time. Lev 18:18; asserted the matrimonial rights of each wife within certain limits, Ex 21:10-11; and entailed considerable ritual observances on the man. Lev 15:18. Nevertheless, instances of polygamy are of frequent occurrence, such as Gideon, Jud 8:30; Elkanah, 1 Sam 1:2; Saul, 2 Sam 12:8; David, 2 Sam 5:13; Solomon, 1 Kgs 11:3; the sons of Issachar, 1 Chr 7:4; Shaharaim, 1 Chr 8:8-9; Rehoboam, 2 Chr 11:21; Abijah, 2 Chr 13:21; Joash, 2 Chr 24:3.

After the Captivity the O.T. has no instance of polygamy on record, but the books of Ezra and Nehemiah and the post-Exilian prophets warned the Jews against mixed marriages with heathen women. The monogamic spirit of the Mosaic law, in consonance with the general spirit of the O.T., had now so far worked itself out into the details of practical life that monogamy had become the rule. Yea, in the period before the advent of Christ, a view had arisen among the Jews according to which even the propriety of marriage was doubted. It was the sect of the Essenes which represented this view, some of them rejecting marriage altogether, while others accepted it only with many restrictions. Nevertheless, instances of polygamy still occurred, as may be seen from the earliest commentators on 1 Tim 5:9. Herod the Great had at one time nine wives. Thus Christianity had to contend at once 548 against both extremes — the polygamists and the ascetics. With the former the contest was very short; polygamy soon disappeared from the Christian marriage. But in spite of Col 2:16-23, 1 Tim 4:3, and other passages of the N.T. in which the propriety of marriage is strongly inculcated, the unmarried state was still held to be more honorable and of greater holiness up to the very time of the Reformation.

In the pre-Mosaic period marriages between near relatives were not uncommon among the Hebrews. The great anxiety to keep the blood of the family pure, the strong feeling of exclusiveness toward foreigners, and the smallness of the tribe led naturally to such measures. By the Mosaic law, Lev 18:6-18, the degrees of relationship which made marriage illegal were sharply defined — mother, stepmother, sister, half-sister, granddaughter, aunt, daughter-in-law, brother's wife, stepdaughter, wife's mother, step-granddaughter, or wife's sister during the lifetime of the wife. With respect to a brother's wife, an exception was made in the case of the brother having died childless. Deut 25:5. In this case the brother married the widow, according to the so-called Levirate — from the Latin levir, "brother-in-law." — law, but the progeny which issued from this connection was in all legal respects to be reckoned as the progeny of the dead man. Marriages between Israelites and foreigners were comparatively rare; the marriages of Joseph with an Egyptian, Gen 41:45, of Manasseh with a Syrian, 1 Chr 7:14, of Moses with a Midianitish, Ex 2:21, and afterward with a Cushite, woman. Num 12:1, were exceptional cases. Absolute prohibition, however, did not exist except with respect to the Canaanites, Ex 34:16; Deut 7:3-4, though the legal disabilities of the Ammonites and Moabites, Deut 23:3, had nearly the same effect. On the whole, marriages between Israelite women and foreigners were much rarer than marriages between Israelites and foreign women. After the Captivity this latter form of intermarriage became so common as to endanger the national character of the people, and the prohibition against the Canaanites was then extended also to the Ammonites. Moabites, and Philistines. Neh 13:23-25.

Among the more special regulations of the Mosaic marriage-law may be mentioned: the high priest was forbidden to marry any but a virgin out of his own people. Lev 21:13-14. Thus the Levirate law could never be applied to him. The priests were forbidden to marry prostitutes and divorced women. Lev 21:7. An heiress was forbidden to marry out of her own tribe. Num 36:5-9, etc. Among the Jews divorce was not an act of the civil judicature, based on proper evidence on the part of the injured party. The husband could from a mere caprice, from having "found in her the nakedness of a thing," put away his wife by simply writing for her a bill of divorce, and a woman thus divorced could afterward marry whom she liked. Deut 24:1-4. In this Christianity made a great change, our Lord admitting only one sufficient reason for a divorce — adultery — and adding: "Whosoever marrieth her that is put away doth commit adultery." Matt 19:9. As the Mosaic law did not absolutely discountenance polygamy, its conception of adultery was limited to the unlawful intercourse with a married or betrothed woman, but the penalty was death to both the guilty parties. Lev 20:10; Deut 22:22-24, and the manner of execution seems to have been stoning. Eze 16:38-40; John 8:5. It depended, however, on the husband to transform the death penalty into a simple bill of divorce, and this seems to have been the prevailing custom in the time of the N.T. See Matt 1:19.

Generally, the marriage was negotiated exclusively by the parents, no regard being paid to the wishes of the young folks. This is still the case in Eastern countries, especially among the Mohammedans. Often, however, we find that the bridegroom exercised some influence on the choice of his wife, but there is no instance on record in which the consent and pleasure of the bride were asked for: from this humiliating subjection Christianity alone has succeeded in elevating woman. After the selection of the bride followed the espousal or betrothal — a contract made under oath and accompanied by presents; a written contract was not in use, however, until after the Captivity. A marriage-dowry was given — not by the father to his daughter, but 549 by the bridegroom to the parents of the bride. The primitive idea of the Hebrew marriage was evidently that the bride was bought, and in many cases the bridegroom paid the dowry in actual service; as, for instance, Jacob, Gen 29; Joseph, Gen 41:45; Moses, Ex 2:21; Dan 3:1; Othniel. Jud 1:12, etc. After the betrothal the bride was considered as a wife, and any unfaithfulness by her was punished as adultery. She remained, however, for some time in the parental house, and during this period all communications between her and the bridegroom were carried by the "friend of the bridegroom." When the marriage feast was to be consummated, the bridegroom came to the house of the bride anointed, arrayed in festive garment, with the nuptial turban on his head, Ps 45:8; Cant. Song 4:10-11; Isa 61:10; Cant. Song 3:11, and accompanied by a number of his friends — "the children of the bride-chamber." Matt 9:15. The bride he found veiled, adorned with jewels and the bridal chaplet, and surrounded by her maidens. Ps 45:13-14; Isa 49:18; Isa 61:10; Rev 19:8; John 21:2. In a great procession, with torchlights and lamps. Matt 22:1-10; Matt 25:1-10; Luke 14:8; John 2:1-10; Rev 19:9, he then carried her to his house, where the feast was prepared; and often this feast lasted for seven days.

Both in the O.T. and in the N.T. the betrothal, marriage-feast, and marriage have given rise to numerous allegorical and typical allusions, the relation between Jehovah and his chosen people being the point of comparison in the O.T., Isa 54:5; Jer 3:14; Hos 2:19, etc., that of Christ and his Church in the N.T. Matt 9:15; John 3:29; 2 Cor 11:2; Rev 19:7.

MARS' HILL, better known by the name of AREOPAGUS. This was a rocky height in Athens opposite the western end of the Acropolis. It rises gradually from the northern end and terminates abruptly on the south, over against the Acropolis, at which point it is about 50 or 60 feet above the valley. The court held here existed as a criminal tribunal before the time of Solon, and was the most ancient and venerable of all the Athenian courts. It consisted of all persons who had held the office of archon, and who were members of it for life unless expelled for misconduct. Before the time of Solon the court tried only cases of wilful murder, wounding, poison, and arson, but he gave it extensive powers. The council continued to exist even under the Roman emperors. Its meetings were held on the southeastern summit of the rock. On the eastern and western side is a raised block. From this spot Paul delivered his address to the men of Athens. Acts 17:22-31. He also "disputed" in the "market," or agora, "daily," Acts 17:17, which was south of the Areopagus, in the valley lying between this hill and those of the Acropolis, the Pnyx, and the Museum. "Certain philosophers of the Epicureans and of the Stoics" brought him up from the valley, probably by the stone steps, to the Areopagus Hill so that they might listen to him more conveniently. See Areopagus.

MAR'THA, the feminine form of an Aramaic word signifying "lord," "master," was the sister of Lazarus and Mary, and seems to have been the eldest of the family, as she is always mentioned before Mary and generally represented as the mistress of the house. She was more active in practical life than the younger sister, but lacked her concentration on the one thing needful; but she was, nevertheless, sincere, devoted, and beloved by Christ, John 11:5, and her energy, somewhat encumbered by the distractions of actual life, became at last concentrated in her faith in the Saviour.

MAR'TYR occurs thrice in the N.T. Acts 22:20; Rev 2:13; Ex 17:6. In other places the Greek word of the text is rendered with "witness," Matt 18:16; Luke 24:48, which is its original meaning. It was not until after the apostolic age that the word came to denote a witness who seals his testimony with his blood, but in the above passages we may observe it in a state of transition.

MA'RY, corresponding to the "Miriam "of the O.T.

  1. The virgin mother of our Lord (and hence "blessed among women"), was of the trib of Judah, of the lineage of David, and by marriage connected with Elisabeth, the mother of John the Baptist. who was of the tribe of Levi, of the lineage of Aaron. After the incidents belonging to the infancy of Jesus — the visit of the shepherds, the circumcision, the adoration of the wise men, the presentation

in the temple, and the flight into Egypt — Mary is mentioned only four times in the records of sacred history: at the marriage of Cana of Galilee, John 2:3; the attempt to speak to Jesus while he was teaching, Matt 12:46; Mark 3:21, 1 Chr 24:31; Luke 8:19; the crucifixion, John 19:26; and during the days succeeding the ascension. Acts 1:14. She was present at the marriage in Cana, which took place in the three months between the baptism of Christ and the Passover of the year 27, and at which Jesus wrought his first miracle, after she had called attention to the lack of wine at the feast. She also sought an interview with him, in company with others of the family, when he was preaching to a crowd in a country place. She was present at his crucifixion, and was there commended by the expiring Redeemer to the filial kindness and attention of the beloved John; and she is mentioned as one among the praying company in the upper room at Jerusalem after the ascension of our Saviour. A great multitude of legends have clustered around her name, referring to her life before the birth of Christ and after his death, but most of them are extremely fabulous, and none of them seems to contain any historical kernel.

  1. The wife of Cleophas, was present at the crucifixion and burial of our Lord, Matt 27:56, Josh 15:61, was among those who went to embalm him, Mark 16:1-10, was among the earliest to whom the news of his resurrection was announced, Luke 24:6, 1 Kgs 16:10, and on her way to the disciples with the intelligence she met her risen Lord and worshipped him. Matt 28:1, Gal 1:9.

  2. The mother of John Mark, Acts 12:12, and aunt to Barnabas, Col 4:10, a godly woman residing at Jerusalem at whose house the disciples were convened the night Peter was miraculously delivered from prison.

  3. The sister of Lazarus and Martha, and a devoted friend and disciple of our Saviour, from whom she received the testimony that she had chosen the good part which should not be taken from her. Luke 10:41-42. Compared with her sister, she appears of a more contemplative turn of mind and more occupied with the "one thing" needful. John 11:1; 1 Kgs 12:2.

  4. Mary Magdalene, or Mary of Magdala. Luke 8:2. The general impression that she was an unchaste woman is entirely without foundation. There is nothing to warrant the opinion that she was identical with the woman who was a sinner. On the contrary, she was a woman in good circumstances and of unblemished character. Having been relieved of a demoniacal possession by the divine power of our Saviour, she became his follower, Luke 8:2-3, and evinced her attachment to him and his cause to the very last. She was at his crucifixion, John 19:25, and burial, Mark 15:47, and was among those who had prepared the materials to embalm him, Mark 16:1, and who first went to the sepulchre after the resurrection; and what is particularly interesting in her history, she was the first to whom the risen Redeemer appeared, Mark 16:9, and his conversation with her is exceeded in interest and pathos by no passage of history, sacred or profane. John 20:11-18.

  5. A Christian woman in Rome to whom Paul sends his salutation. Rom 16:6.

MAS'CHIL is found in the title or inscription of thirteen Psalms — namely, 32, 42, 44, 45, 52-55, 74, 78, 88, 89, 142 — and is by some explained as an aesthetical term meaning "didactic," by others as a musical term referring to the melody.

MASH,Gen 10:23, or ME'SHECH, 1 Chr 1:17, a son of Aram, and the ancestor of one branch of the Aramaic race, settled probably at the Mons Masius of classical writers, the present Karja Baghlar, situated on the northern frontier of Mesopotamia.

MA'SHAL (entreaty), a Levitical city in Asher, 1 Chr 6:74: also called Misheal, Josh 19:26, and Mishal. Josh 21:30. It was near Mount Carmel.

MA'SON. The Hebrews no doubt learnt the art of masonry during their residence in Egypt, Ex 1:11, 2 Kgs 22:14, though at a later period we find Phoenician workmen employed by David and Solomon. 1 Kgs 5:17-18; 1 Chr 14:1. By the erection of the temple great skill in the art of masonry was evinced, both in the great wall which supported the temple-platform, and which consisted of huge blocks held together by lead, and in the temple-wall itself, in which the 551 stones were so accurately cut that they could be laid without the application of tools. In common buildings plastering with mortar was used both without and within. Lev 14:40-42; Matt 23:27. There seems also to have been a kind of plastering with mere mud. called untempered. Eze 13:10-15.

MAS'ORA. See Bible.

MAS'REKA (vineyard of noble vines), a place apparently in Idumaea, and seat of an early king of Edom. Gen 36:36; 1 Chr 1:47.

MAS'SA (gift, tribute), a son of Ishmael, Gen 25:14; 1 Chr 1:30, and probably the ancestor of the Masani, settled in the north-eastern part of Arabia, near the Babylonian frontier.

MAS'SAH (temptation), a name given to the place, also called Meribah, where the Israelites tempted Jehovah. Ex 17:7; Ps 95:8-9; Heb 3:8.

MAS'TER is in our translation often the rendering of a Greek word meaning "teacher," Luke 6:40; John 3:10; hence its frequent application to our Lord. Matt 22:16, Jud 6:24, Eze 23:36, etc.

MATHU'SALA, the Greek form of Methuselah. Luke 3:37.

MA'TRED (propelling), a daughter of Mezahab, and mother of Mehetabel, who was the wife of Hadar, king of Edom. Gen 36:39; 1 Chr 1:50.

MA'TRI (rain of Jehovah), a Benjamite family to which Saul the king belonged. 1 Sam 10:21.

MAT'TAN (a gift).

  1. One of Baal's priests, who was slain before his idolatrous altar at the deposition of Athaliah. 2 Kgs 11:18; 2 Chr 23:17.

  2. The father of Shephatiah, who wished to put Jeremiah to death. Jer 38:1.

MAT'TANAH (gift, present), a station of the Hebrews between the desert and the borders of Moab. Num 21:18-19. Maschana, on the Arnon, 12 miles from Dibon, has been suggested as marking Mattanah.

MATTAIVI'AH (gift of Jehovah).

  1. The original name of the son of Josiah who was made king by Nebuchadnezzar, 2 Kgs 24:17, and whose name was changed to Zedekiah, which see.

  2. A Levite singer of the sons of Asaph, 1 Chr 9:15, who, after the restoration of the temple, was the leader of the choir in the time of Nehemiah. Neh 11:17; Neh 12:8, Neh 12:25, John 12:35.

  3. A Levite, son of Heman, and chief of the ninth division of singers. 1 Chr 25:4, 1 Chr 25:16.

  4. A Levite, a descendant of Asaph, and ancestor of Jahaziel. 2 Chr 20:14.

  5. A Levite who assisted in the purification of the temple in the reign of Hezekiah. 2 Chr 29:13.

  6. A Levite, father of Zaccur, and ancestor of Hanan. Neh 13:13.

  7. Four persons who had married foreign wives in the time of Ezra. Ezr 10:26-27, 1 Kgs 20:30, 2 Kgs 18:37.

MAT'TATHA (gift of Jehovah), a son of Nathan, and grandson of David in the genealogv of Jesus. Luke 3:31.

MAt'TATHAH, one who had married a foreign woman in the time of Ezra. Ezr 10:33.


  1. Two persons in the genealogy of Jesus. Luke 3:25-26.

  2. The head of the Maccabaean family. See Maccabees.

MATTENA'I (gift of Jehovah).

  1. Two persons who had married foreign women in the time of Ezra. Ezr 10:33, 2 Kgs 18:37.

  2. A priest in the time of Joiakim. Neh 12:19.

MAT'THAN, a person in the genealogy of Christ. Matt 1:15.

MAT'THAT (gift of God), two persons in the genealogy of Jesus. Luke 3:24, 1 Chr 2:29.

MAT'THEW, derived from the same word as MATTHI'AS, Acts 1:23, Acts 11:26 (gift of God), apostle, and author of the first canonical Gospel. His original name was Levi, Mark 2:14; Luke 5:27, 1 Chr 2:29, which, like that of Simon and of Saul, was changed on his being called to the apostleship. He was a publican or tax-gatherer near the Sea of Galilee, on the route between Damascus and the Phoenician seaports, and was called by our Lord immediately from the toll-booth. This avocation was regarded by the Jews with contempt, but it doubtless gave him an extensive knowledge of human nature, and accurate business habits, which tended to fit him for his great work as an evangelist 552 The N.T. is silent in regard to his special labors, but he was among those who met in the upper room at Jerusalem after the ascension of our Lord. Acts 1:13. The tradition of his martyrdom in Ethiopia is legendary.

The Gospel according to Matthew was probably written in Palestine, and certainly for Jewish Christians. It presents Christ as the last and greatest Lawgiver and Prophet, as the Fulfiller of the 0.T., as the Messiah and King of the true people of Israel. Its arrangement is not strictly chronological, but topical, grouping together the works and sayings of Christ according to their similarity. Though a simple narrative in its form, and not proposing any definite design on the part of the author, it is in fact an historical proof that Jesus of Nazareth is the Messiah. The frequent references to the fulfilment of O.T. prophecy suggest this purpose. While it is not certain that it was the first in time, it deserves the first place in the N.T., forming, as it does, the best link between the O. and the N.T., between the Law and the Gospel. It occupies the same position in the canon of the N.T. as the Pentateuch in that of the O.T., giving us, in the Sermon on the Mount, a counterpart of the legislation from Mount Sinai, the fundamental law of the Christian Church. The genealogy, the revelation to Joseph, the visit of the Magi, peculiar to this Gospel, all combine to make the impression, as one begins to read, that here is the fulfilment, not the abolition, of the old dispensation; and this impression is deepened by the Sermon on the Mount, the parables of the kingdom of heaven, the discourse against the Pharisees, and the repeated citations from the O.T. prophecies which are declared to be fulfilled in Christ.

With respect to the language in which this Gospel first was written, two different views have been set forth: 1. That it was originally composed in Hebrew — i.e., Syro-Chaldaic, or Western Aramaic, the dialect spoken in Palestine by the Jewish Christians; 2. That it was written in Greek, as we now possess it. The testimony of the early Church unanimously favors the first view. Those Fathers who assert that Matthew wrote in Hebrew also assert that his work was translated into Greek, and unhesitatingly employ the present Greek Gospel as a faithful representative of the apostolic production. If we accept a Hebrew original, then we must also conclude that when the necessity for a Greek version became obvious, Matthew himself made, or caused to be made, the present Greek Gospel. Of this there is no positive and direct proof, but it accords with the testimony of the Fathers and accounts for the double assignment of dates which we find, and also for the universal acceptance of our Gospel. On the other side, it has been urged in favor of a Greek original or of the original character of our Gospel, not only that the testimony of the Fathers is insufficient, unsatisfactory, and at times confused, but that the evidence from the Gospel itself is abundantly conclusive on this point. The theory of a version by Matthew himself will account for the early citation of the present Greek text, but not so readily for certain facts in the Gospel itself. It agrees most exactly with the other two synoptists, Mark and Luke, in the discourses, especially those of our Lord, and differs from them most in the narrative portions. And further, where citations from the O.T. occur in the discourses, they are usually from the Septuagint, while those in the narrative appear to be independent translations from the Hebrew, It is argued that a mere translator could not have done this, but an independent writer, using the Greek tongue and wishing to conform his narrative to the oral teaching of the apostles, might have used for the quotations the well-known Greek O.T. used by his colleagues. The whole question is an open one, and it is to be hoped that some future archaeological discoveries will settle it. The drift of scholarly opinion, however, is toward the acceptance of a Greek original. In any case, there is no reason for doubting the genuineness of the canonical Gospel.

With regard to the time when it was written there is great uncertainty. Evidently, Jerusalem had not been destroyed, but its destruction is foretold, Matt 24, in a manner that is only explicable on the assumption of its being still a future event to the writer. On the other hand, it is evident that some time had elapsed 553 since the events it records had occurred. Matt 27:7-8; Matt 28:15. Some of the ancients give the eighth year after the Ascension as the date, others the fifteenth. If there was an original Hebrew Gospel, the earlier date belongs to it; but we would place our present Gospel between 60 and 66 - a period during which both Mark and Luke probably wrote their Gospels.

MATTHI'AS (gift of Jehovah), a disciple of Christ, and a constant attendant on his travels and ministry from their commencement until his ascension, was appointed by lot to supply the vacancy in the company of the twelve apostles occasioned by the apostasy of Judas. Acts 1:21 et seq. Of his afterlife and ministry nothing is known with certainty. According to one tradition, he preached in Ethiopia and suffered martyrdom there; according to another, he labored in Judaea and was stoned by the Jews.

MATTITHI'AH (gift of Jehovah).

  1. A Korahite Levite presiding over the offerings made in the pans. 1 Chr 9:31.

  2. A Levite appointed by David to play the harp. 1 Chr 15:18,1 Chr 15:21; 1 Chr 16:5; comp. 1 Chr 25:3, 1 Chr 25:21.

  3. One who had married a foreign wife in the time of Ezra. Ezr 10:43.

  4. A priest who stood at the right hand of Ezra when he read the Law to the people. Neh 8:4.

MAT'TOCK, an agricultural implement for loosening the ground; a pick-axe; a hoe. Isa 7:25. See Agriculture.

MAUL, a mace, club, or hammer, much used in Oriental warfare, and used with frightful effect. Prov 25:18.

MAUZ'ZIM (fortresses), in the margin of Dan 11:38, where the text has "god of forces." Its signification is uncertain, but it probably refers to the dedication by Antiochus Epiphanes of a temple in Antioch to Jupiter Capitolinus.

MAZ'ZAROTH, Job 38:32, or MAZZALOTH, 2 Kgs 23:5 (planets), the-name of the twelve signs of the zodiac.

Mattock or Egyptian Hoe. (After Wilkinson.)

MEAD'OW is in Gen 41:2 the rendering of an Egyptian word denoting rushes or water-plants in general. In Jud 20:33 the Hebrew words rendered with "meadow" would, by a slight change in the punctuation, read "cave," which seems more appropriate.

ME'AH (a hundred), a tower in Jerusalem, standing between the Sheepgate and the tower of Hananeel. Neh 3:1. See Jerusalem.

MEALS. See Eating and Feast.

MEA'RAH (a cave, cavern). In Josh 13:4 this word occurs as the name of a cave not far from Sidon; the margin reads, "the cave." Robinson, in his journey from Tyre to Sidon, observed many sepulchral grottoes hewn out of the hard limestone rock. This may be the spot spoken of by William of Tyre as the Tyrian cave in the territory of Sidon; Keil makes Mearah "the cave of Jezzin," east of Sidon, in Lebanon, a hiding-place of the Druses now; Ritter refers it to a district of deep caves like the ravines near Sidon and Dan.

MEASURES and WEIGHTS. The Jewish law contains two precepts respecting weights and measures. The first, Lev 19:35-36, refers to the standards kept in the sanctuary, and the second, Deut 25:13-15, to copies of them kept by every family for its own use. The models or standards of the weights and measures preserved in the temple were destroyed with the sacred edifice, and afterward the measures and weights of the people among whom the Jews dwelt were adopted; which, of course, adds to the perplexities of the subject.

I. Measures of Length. - The Hebrews, like all other ancient nations, took the standard of their measures of length from the human body. They made use, however, only of the finger, the hand, and the arm, not of the foot or the pace. The handbreadth or palm, 1 Kgs 7:26, was four digits, or the breadth of the four fingers - from three to three and a half inches.

A span. Lam 2:20, which expresses the distance across the hand from the extremity of the thumb to the extremity of the little finger, when they are stretched as far apart as possible, say nine to ten inches.

A cubit, the distance from the elbow to the extremity of the middle finger, or 554 about eighteen inches. The different expressions used in the O.T. about this measure — such as "after the cubit of a man," Deut 3:11; "after the first measure," 2 Chr 3:3; "a great cubit," Eze 41:8 — show that it varied.

A fathom, Acts 27:28, was from six to six and a half feet.

The measuring-reed,Eze 42:16, comprised six cubits, or from ten to eleven feet, and the measuring-line, Zech 2:1, a hundred and forty-six feet.

The furlong, Luke 24:13, was a Greek measure, and nearly the same as at present — viz., one-eighth of a mile, or forty rods.

The mile, mentioned only once. Matt 5:41, belonged to the Roman system of measurement, as stadium to the Greek. The Roman mile was one thousand six hundred and twelve yards. The Jewish mile was longer or shorter, in accordance with the longer or shorter pace in use in the various parts of the country.

The Sabbath day's journey, Acts 1:12, was about seven-eighths of a mile, and the term denoted the distance which Jewish tradition said one might travel without a violation of the law. Ex 16:29. It is supposed that this distance extended first from the tabernacle to the remotest section of the camp, and afterward from the temple to the remotest parts of the holy city.

The term a day's journey. Num 11:31; Luke 2:44, probably indicated no certain distance, but was taken to be the ordinary distance which a person in the East travels on foot, or on horseback or camel, in the prosecution of a journey — about twenty miles.

II. Measures of Capacity. — (1.) Dry. A cab, or kab (hollow), 2 Kgs 6:25, one-third of an omer, or two pints.

An omer (heap, sheaf), Ex 16:36, one-tenth of an ephah, or six pints.

The seah (measure), Gen 18:6; Matt 13:33; Luke 13:21, one-third of an ephah, or twenty pints, was the ordinary measure for household purposes.

The ephah — a word of Egyptian origin, but often occurring in the O.T., Ex 16:36; Lev 5:11; Num 5:15; Jud 6:19, etc. — ten omers, or three seahs, or sixty pints.

The homer (heap), Isa 5:10, when used for dry measure, one hundred omers, or six hundred pints.

The Greek word translated "bushel," Matt 5:15, is supposed by some to answer to the Hebrew word seah. The Roman bushel was very nearly the same with the English peck.

(2.) Liquid. — The log (basin).

Measures of Capacity.

Lev 14:10, six egg-shells full, one-tenth of a hin, or nearly one pint.

The hin — a word of Egyptian origin, but often used in the 0.T., Ex 29:40; Ex 30:24; Num 15:4, etc. — one-sixth of a bath or ten pints.

The bath (measured), the largest of the liquid measures, contained one-tenth of a homer, seven and a half gallons, or sixty pints. 1 Kgs 7:26; 2 Chr 2:10; Isa 5:10.

The firkin, John 2:6, was a Greek measure, containing seven and a half gallons.

III. Weights. — In the time of Moses the common weight was a shekel, which signifies a "weight." There were also the parts of a shekel, as the fourth, third, and half. The shekel, the maneh, and the talent were all originally names of weights. When the phrase "shekel of the sanctuary" is used, Ex 30:13, it means, not that this was different from the common shekel, but that it was a true standard weight, according to the authorized standard preserved in the sanctuary, or, as we should say, a sealed weight or measure, to denote that its accuracy is certified by authority. To weigh substances the Jews had —

The shekel, Am 8:5, half an ounce avoirdupois.

The mineh or mina, Eze 45:12, one hundred shekels, or fifty ounces, equal to three pounds two ounces avoirdupois.

The talent, 2 Sam 12:30, three thousand shekels, thirty maneh, fifteen hundred ounces, equal to ninety-three pounds twelve ounces avoirdupois.


MEAT, MEATS. The import of this word seems to have undergone a considerable change since our version was made, for in this it means food in general, or, when confined to one species of food, always meal, flour or grain, but never flesh, which is now its usual acceptation. A "meat-offering" in the Scriptures is always a vegetable and never an animal offering, a cake made of flour and oil. Lev 2; Lev 6:14-23.

Meat-Offering. At the first settling of the church there were many disputes concerning the use of meats offered to idols. Some newly-converted Christians, convinced that an idol was nothing, and that the distinction of clean and unclean creatures was abolished by our Saviour, ate indifferently of whatever was served up to them, even among pagans, without inquiring whether the meat had been offered to idols. They took the same liberty in buying meat sold in the market, not regarding whether it were pure or impure according to the Jews, or whether it had been offered to idols or not. But other Christians, weaker or less instructed, were offended at this liberty, and thought that eating of meat which had been offered to idols was a kind of partaking in that wicked and sacrilegious act.

This diversity of opinion produced some scandal until Paul stepped forward and gave his decision that all things were clean to such as were clean. Tit 1:15, and that an idol was nothing at all; that a man might safely eat of whatever was sold in the market, and need not scrupulously inquire from whence it came; and that if an unbeliever should invite a believer to eat with him, the believer might eat of whatever was set before him, etc.1 Cor 10:25, etc. But at the same time he enjoins that the laws of charity and prudence should be observed, that believers should be cautious of scandalizing or offending weak minds; for though all things might be lawful, yet all things were not always expedient.

MEBUN'NAI (building of Jehovah), one of David's warriors, 2 Sam 23:27; called Sibbechai in 2 Sam 21:18; 1 Chr 20:4, and Sibbecai in 1 Chr 11:29; 1 Chr 27:11.

MECH'ERATHITE, THE, the designation of one of David's warriors, 1 Chr 11:36; elsewhere called the Maachathite, probably with reference to some locality.

ME'DAD (love), one who, together with Eldad, prophesied in the Israelite camp in the wilderness. Num 11:26-27.

ME'DAN (contention), one of the sons of Abraham by Keturah. Gen 25:2; 1 Chr 1:32.

MED'EBA (waters of quiet), one of the most ancient cities of Moab. first mentioned with Heshbon and Dibon in the antique poem quoted in Num 21:30. It was afterward taken by the Israelites and allotted to the tribe of Reuben. Josh 13:16. The Ammonites were in possession of it during the reign of David, and there Joab gained his great victory over the combined hordes with their 32,000 chariots from Mesopotamia, Syria, Maacah, Zobah, and the whole region between the Jordan and the Euphrates. 1 Chr 19:7-15. In the time of Isaiah it had again reverted to Moab. Isa 15:2. After the return from the Captivity it was alternately in the possession of the Jews and of the Gentiles. John Maccabaeus was slain there, and his death was bloodily avenged by his brothers. The city afterward surrendered to Hyrcanus after a six months' seige. During the Christian period it was the seat of a bishopric.

Ruined Columns at Medeba. (After Tristram.)

Situation and Present Appearance. — The site of Medeba is 8 miles south-southwest of Heshbon, and 14 miles east of the Dead Sea, on the top of a hill, around 556 which the old city extended a considerable distance into the plain. On the southern side of the town lies a large pool 360 feet square. On the eastern and northern sides are other smaller pools. All three are now dry. These tanks may explain the name Medeba, "waters of quiet." The ruins of a large temple exist, of which two columns are standing. The access to the city on the east was by a paved road leading through a massive gateway. Within is a large square 280 paces long and 240 paces wide. The eastern extent of the city is over 1000 yards. Around the city, ruined villages lie thick in all directions, but most of them are very small.

ME'DIA. Name.— The name is the same as Madai, "middle land," one of Japheth's sons. Gen 10:2. The Hebrew word thus translated "Madai" is also rendered "Medes," 2 Kgs 17:6, etc., and "Media," Esth 1:3, etc., and also "Mede." Dan 11:1. In the period of which Herodotus writes the people of Media were called Aryans.

Situation and Extent. — The general boundaries seem to have been the river Araxes and the Caspian Sea on the north and north-east; Parthia and Hyrcania and the great salt desert of Iram on the east; Persia and Susiana on the south; Assyria and Armenia on the west. Its greatest length from north to south was 550 miles, its average breadth 250 to 300 miles, and its area 150,000 square miles, or about one-fifth more than the area of Great Britain. See map, "Lands of the Jewish Captivities."

Physical Features and Political Divisions. — Media was divided originally into six provinces, which in Greek and Roman times were reduced to two, Media Atropatene and Media Magna.

  1. Media Atropatene, the northern division, embraced the tract between the Caspian and the mountains, north of the Zagros. This is a tract lying on an average 3000 feet above the sea-level and diversified by mountains and valleys. The soil is tolerably fertile, and produces a great variety of vegetables and fruits.

  2. Media Magna, lying to the south and east of Atropatene. This tract is mountainous toward the west, but well wooded and fertile; while toward the east and south-east it is bare, rocky, and sandy, shading away into the great salt desert of Iram. Each of these provinces seems to have had Ecbatana for its capital.

Media was also divided into smaller divisions, concerning which there is little information. George Smith discovered on an octagonal cylinder of Sargon a list of twenty-four Median chiefs. This list belongs to b.c. 713, and is curious as showing the divided state of Media at that time (Assyr. Discoveries, p. 288). Media is now included in the dominions of the Shah of Persia.

History. — The early history of the Medes is very obscure. Their origin is given in Gen 10:2. Assyrian records show that about b.c. 880 an Assyrian monarch invaded their territory. Their first appearance in Scripture history is in connection with the captivity of Israel. 2 Kgs 17:6; 2 Kgs 18:11. Isaiah, in his prophecy against Babylon, reveals the agency and character of the Medes. Isa 13:17-18; John 21:2. But Media was not incorporated with Assyria, although Sargon, and afterward Sennacherib, subdued its people and exacted tribute. In b.c. 633 an independent kingdom was set up by Cyaxares, who in b.c. 625 took a leading part in the destruction of Nineveh. Media then became a great and powerful monarchy, comprising, besides Media proper, Persia, Assyria, Armenia, and other adjoining countries. It extended from the river Halys on the north-west to the Caspian Gates, and included the territory between the Black and Caspian Seas on the one side, and the Euphrates and Persian Gulf on the other. The empire was 1500 miles long, 450 miles wide, and had an area of 600,000 square miles. Under Cyrus the two kingdoms were united, b.c. 558. There are references in Scripture to this kingdom under the title of the "Medes and Persians." Dan 5:28; Dan 6:8, Jud 4:12, 2 Sam 20:15; comp. Esth 1:19. The only city in Media alluded to in the canonical Scriptures is Achmetha, or Ecbatana. Ezr 6:2. The Medes revolted unsuccessfully in the reign of Darius, son of Hystaspes, b.c. 500, and in that of Darius Nothus, b.c. 420. This region was absorbed in the Macedonian empire of Alexander the Great. Later an independent Median kingdom held sway until the Christian era, after which it became a part of the Parthian empire. Medes are mentioned in 557 connection with Parthians, etc., in the N.T. Acts 2:9.

MEDI'ATOR, one who interposes between two parties at variance with the view of effecting a reconciliation between them. Gal 3:19. The title belongs pre-eminently to the divine Redeemer, in and by whom God is reconciling the world unto himself. 1 Tim 2:5; Heb 8:6; Matt 12:24. He is the only mediator between God and men.

MED'ICINE. The scrupulous attention paid in Egypt to the dead was favorable to the development of the science of medicine; thus the more elaborate methods of embalming involved processes of anatomy and led to the study of this branch of medical science. Herodotus says that in Egypt every part of the human body was studied by distinct practitioners, and the teeth of the mummies often exhibit a dentistry which is not inferior in execution to the best workmanship of our days; also, the reputation of Egyptian physicians and surgeons was so great that members of their profession were invited to Persia by both Cyrus and Darius. That Moses, who was initiated in all the wisdom of Egypt, was possessed also of its medical knowledge may be inferred from the direct bearing which the Mosaic legislation has on sanitary relations. Its numerous hygienic and dietetic prescriptions had not only a ceremonial purpose, but were no doubt intended for the preservation and development of the race. They stood in the most perfect harmony with the climate and soil which the Hebrews inhabited, and it is a remarkable fact that during the whole course of their history the Hebrews were singularly exempted from those plagues and epidemics which devastated their neighbors. On the other side, however, this same law, which proved so beneficial in preventing diseases, did not encourage or favor the study of medicine. The science of medicine depends to a great extent on anatomy, but the great horror of uncleanliness, more especially uncleanliness from contact with a corpse, prevented the Hebrews from making a thorough study of anatomy and embarrassed the development of medical science among them. Solomon enjoyed a great fame as a physician. His works show that he was possessed of considerable knowledge of remedial treatment, Prov 3:8; Prov 6:15; Prov 12:18; Prov 17:22; Prov 20:30; Gen 29:1; Eccl 3:3;, and the Talmudists ascribe to him a "volume of cures." But Josephus speaks of his repute in magic and of the spells which he used, and Jewish tradition ascribes similar proceedings to various of the prophets. In the times of the N.T. the whole view taken of diseases and their cure was Greek, almost without a trace of any specifically Hebrew element, and the language of St. Luke, the "beloved physician," who practised in Antioch before he was called to labor in the Church, shows that he was a pupil of Hippocrates.

Among the diseases mentioned in the O.T. are ophthalmia, Gen 29:17, which seems to be more common in Syria and Egypt than anywhere else in the world, and which sometimes resulted in partial, or even total, blindness, 2 Kgs 6:18; barrenness of women, which the mandrake was believed to cure, Gen 20:18; burning boils. Lev 13:23, whose effect resembled that of fire, identical with our carbuncle; scab and scurvy. Lev 21:20; Lev 22:22; Deut 28:27— a skin-disease not necessarily incurable, and therefore not considered a curse, but only a blemish; a disease attacking the knees and legs and consisting in a "sore blotch that cannot be healed," Deut 28:35; the disease of King Antiochus, consisting in boils breeding worms; the disease of Herod the Great, consisting in ulcers breeding lice, etc. Other diseases, such as fever, leprosy, epilepsy, palsy, etc., are spoken of in separate articles. Medicaments were given in the form of liniments, plasters, decoctions, syrups, etc.. and, besides water, wine, vinegar, honey, milk, and oil, also mustard, pepper, salt, wax, gall of fish, poppy, laurel, saliva, and other stuffs were used. But one of the most common remedies was the bath. In many cases it was ceremonially enjoined, but its great value, both as a luxury and as a cure, was fully appreciated. It was enjoyed both in running water and in closed bath-rooms. Lev 15:13; 2 Kgs 5:10; 2 Sam 11:2. Public baths, however, as well as vapor-baths, were not introduced until after the Jews' contact with the Greeks and Romans. See Bath.

MEGID'DO (place of troops?), a 558 city of Manasseh, situated within the borders of Issachar, and formerly a royal city of the Canaanites, whose king and its neighboring towns were conquered by Joshua. Josh 12:21; Josh 17:11; Jud 1:27; 1 Kgs 4:12; 1 Kgs 9:15; 1 Chr 7:29. It has generally been identified with the place afterward called by the Romans Legio, now Lejjun,where are ancient foundations and prostrate columns. The neighboring stream, probably the "waters of Megiddo," is the largest perennial tributary of the Kishon, and feeds three or four mills. Jud 5:19. The valley or plain of Megiddo, also called "Megiddon," was part of the plain of Esdraelon. 2 Kgs 9:27; 2 Kgs 23:29-30; 2 Chr 35:22; Zech 12:11. Here Barak and Deborah gained a great victory over the Canaanites under Sisera, Jud 4:6-17, and it has been the great battle-field of Palestine. Ahaziah, mortally wounded, died there; Josiah was defeated by Pharaoh-necho, and mortally wounded, 2 Kgs 33:29; 2 Chr 35:20-24; and the place, in Hebrew, is called Armageddon, "city of Megiddo." Rev 16:16. The modern Lejjun, which has generally been regarded as representing Megiddo, is on the south-western edge of the great plain of Esdraelon, 6 miles from Mount Carmel, 11 from Nazareth, and 14 from Tabor. It commands the important pass to the plain of Philistia. A stream flows near it, and there is a large spring which some regard as the "waters of Megiddo." A few ruins remain, and from them a wide view is gained of the famous battleground. Conder declines to accept the above identification, and suggests Me-Jedd'a, a large ruin near Beisan, and 10 miles from Jenin, as Megiddo. There are four springs of clear water, and a considerable stream flowing to the northwest into the Nahr Jalud. This would place the valley of Megiddo in the broad valley leading from Jezreel to Bethshean.

MEHET'ABEET. (whom God does good to), the ancestor of Shemaiah. Neh 6:10.

MEHET'ABEL, daughter of Matred, and wife of Hadad, king of Edom. Gen 36:39; 1 Chr 1:50.

MEHI'DA (famous, noble), whose descendants returned from Babylon with Zerubbabel. Ezr 2:52; Neh 7:54.

MENHIR (price), a descendant of Judah. 1 Chr 4:11.

MEHOL'ATHITE, THE, a designation of Adriel, son of Barzillai, 1 Sam 18:19, signifying that he came from a place called Mehola.

MEHU'JAEL (smitten of God), a son of Irad, and descendant of Cain. Gen 4:18.

MEHU'MAN (true, faithful), one of the seven eunuchs of Ahasuerus. Esth 1:10.

MEHU'NIM (habitations), a family among the non-Israelites who returned from Babylon with Zerubbabel, Ezr 2:50; probably the same as the Mehunims, Ezr 2: Chr. 26:7, against whom King Uzziah waged a successful war, and who are also mentioned in 1 Chr 4:41 as a Hamitic tribe settled from of old in Palestine, and oppressing the Israelites. See Maonites.

MEJAR'KON (waters of yellowness), a town of Dan; named after a spring, Josh 19:46; probably the el'Aujeh.

MEK'ONAH (base, or standing-place), a place in the South of Palestine near Ziklag. Neh 11:28. Reland locates it 8 miles from Eleutheropolis, on the way to Jerusalem, and Conder suggests Mekenna, north of Beit Jibrin, as its site.

MELATI'AH (delivered by Jehovah), a Gibeonite who assisted in repairing the walls of Jerusalem. Neh 3:7.

MEL'CHI (Jehovah's king), two persons in the genealogy of Jesus. Luke 3:21, Acts 20:28.

MELCHI'AH. See Malchiah.

MELCHISHU'A. See Malchishua.

MELCHIZ'EDEK, or MELCHIS'EDEC, the Greek form under which the name occurs in the N.T. (kinq of righteousness), is mentioned in Gen 14:18-20 as king of Salem and priest of the Most High God, meeting Abram in the valley of Shaveh, bringing out bread and wine to him, blessing him, and receiving tithes from him; in Ps 110:4, where Messiah is described as a priest "after the order of Melchizedek ;" and finally, in Heb 5:6-7, where the typical relations between Melchizedek and Christ are elaborately defined, both being priests without belonging to the Levitical tribe, superior to Abram, of unknown beginning and end, and kings of righteousness and peace. The short 559 but impressive apparition of Melchizedek in Genesis, and the striking though mystical applications made of this apparition in the Psalms and the Epistle to the Hebrews, have given rise to various interpretations. One Jewish tradition considers him to be a survivor of the Deluge, the patriarch Shem, and thus entitled by his very age to bless the father of the faithful, and by his position as ruler of Canaan to confer his rights to Abram. Another tradition, equally old, but not so widely accepted, considers him to be an angel, the Son of God in human form, the Messiah. Modern scholars, arguing back from the expositions given in the Epistle to the Hebrews, consider him to be a descendant of Ham, living among and ruling his own kin; but, as Balaam was a prophet, so Melchizedek was a priest, among the heathens, constituted by God himself, and given a title above that of the ordinary patriarchal priesthood, even above that of Abram.

ME'LEA (full, fulness?), an ancestor of Joseph in the genealogy of Jesus. Luke 3:31.

ME'LECH (king), son of Micah, grandson of Mephibosheth. and therefore a descendant of Saul. 1 Chr 9:41.

MEL'ICU. Neh 12:14. See Malluch.

MEL'ITA (honey, or sweetness), an island in the Mediterranean upon which Paul was shipwrecked during his voyage to Rome. Acts 28:1-14. Two islands formerly bore the name Melita:(1) Melita, in the Adriatic Sea, and (2) Malta, in the Mediterranean. The location of the first would not answer the requirements of the scriptural narrative. Malta, the ancient Melita, is about 60 miles in circumference, and was successively subject to the Phoenicians, Greeks, Carthaginians, Romans, Vandals, Goths, Saracens, Normans, and French, until Charles V. surrendered it to the Knights of St. John, at Jerusalem, who in 1798 were dispossessed by Napoleon Bonaparte. In 1800 the French garrison surrendered to an English force, and the island has been ever since a dependency of the British crown. The island is 62 miles south-west of Sicily, is 17 miles long and 8 or 9 miles wide, and is now reckoned 960 miles from Gibraltar, 840 miles from Alexandria, and 1200 miles from Jerusalem. It is of an irregular oval shape, the coast indented with numerous bays. The soil, naturally barren, has been made productive; frost and snow are unknown.

According to Acts 27:1-44, it was about the time of the autumnal equinox, when sailing was dangerous, that Paul and his companions embarked at Caesarea for Italy. Mr. Smith of Jordan Hill, a nautical man, in his work On the Voyage and Shipwreck of St. Paul, has shown, from a personal examination of the localities of the shipwreck, compared with the incidents in the narrative of Luke, that the ship could not have been wrecked anywhere but at Malta. The following is a summary of his statements. Paul's company on the second day touched at Sidon, 78 miles from Caesarea. Loosing thence, they were forced by strong westerly winds to leave Cyprus on the left hand. Thence, favored by the landbreeze and currents, they arrived at Myra, in Lycia. At this port they were then transferred to a ship from Alexandria bound for Italy. Their progress, on account of unfavorable winds, was extremely slow, for it was "many days" before they came over against Cnidus, not more than 150 miles from Myra. Sailing in the direction of Salmone, the eastern promontory of Crete, they coasted along, with north-west winds, as far as Cape Matala, the south side of the island. Here, however, the land bends suddenly to the north, and they made for the Fair Havens, a roadstead near the port of Lasea, as being the nearest to Cape Matala. As the season of safe navigation had passed, Paul urged the officers to winter at Fair Havens, but his advice was overruled; and, improving a gentle north wind that blew, they set sail for Phenice, a harbor on the coast about 40 miles farther west. The harbor seems to have been the one now called Lutro, which opens in the same direction in which the wind Libe blows — i.e., toward the north-east — and is situated exactly opposite to the island of Clauda. But soon the weather changed; the ship was caught in a typhoon, and the wind euroclydon (east north-east), which blew with such violence, forced them to run under the south shore of Clauda, now Clozzo, about 20 miles south-west by west from Fair Havens. Here they availed 560 themselves of the smooth water to secure the boat and undergird the ship by frapping it round the middle with a cable, to prepare it to resist the fury of the storm. But, fearing they should be driven

Map of Place of Shipwreck, Si. Paul's Bay. The figures denote fathoms

toward the Syrtis — i.e., the quicksands of the coast of Africa — they lowered the gear; and the ship thus borne along was not only made snug, but had storm-sails set and was on the starboard tack — i.e., with her right side to the wind — which was the only course by which she could avoid falling into the Syrtis. On the next day they threw overboard the mainyard, an immense spar probably as long as the ship. The storm continued with unabated fury for eleven days more, and all hope was taken away. At length, on the fourteenth night, the seamen suspected the approach of land, probably from the noise of the breakers, sounded, and found the depth 20 fathoms, and then 15 fathoms. Fearing lest they should fall upon rocks, they cast four anchors out of the stern, and lightened the ship by throwing the wheat into the sea. When the day broke they succeeded in running the ship aground in a creek, where she went to pieces, but the whole ship's company escaped safe to land. The place proved to be a bay on the north-east side of Malta, now known as St. Paul's Bay, an inlet, with a creek, about 2 miles deep and a mile broad. Mr. Smith has shown by calculation that a ship starting late in the evening from Clauda, would, by midnight on the fourteenth day, be less than 3 miles from the entrance of St. Paul's Bay — i. e., a distance of 476 miles. In 1810 the British frigate Lively went to pieces on those very breakers, at the point of Koura, at the entrance of the bay. The crew, like Paul's shipmen, at the distance of a quarter of a mile, could not see the land, but they saw the surf on the shore. So, also, Mr. Smith has shown that every ship approaching the land must here pass over 20 fathoms, and not only must this depth be close to the spot where they had the indications of land, but it must bear east by south from the 15 fathom depth. The 15 fathom depth is, as nearly as possible, a quarter of a mile from the shore, which is here girt with mural precipices, and on which the sea must have been breaking violently. At the bottom of the Bay of St. Paul's there is a communication with the sea outside by a channel not more than a hundred yards in breadth, formed by the separation of Salmone Island, a long rocky ridge, from the main land. Near this channel, where "two seas meet," are two creeks, into one of which they ran the ship ashore; the forepart stuck fast in the mud and clay, while the stern was dashed to pieces by the force of the waves.

It has been asserted that no vipers exist in Malta, but Lewin saw a serpent there which he regarded as a viper; but even if not found on the thickly-populated island now, this would not prove that they did not exist in Paul's day and have since been exterminated.

MEL'ONS. Num 11:5. Melons of all kinds have ever been largely cultivated in Egypt, and during the heat of summer often form the chief food and drink of the lower classes. The muskmelon was grown there at the time of the Exodus, and perhaps the watermelon, which came from Persia. "A traveller in the East who recollects the intense gratitude which a gift of a slice of melon inspired while journeying over the hot and dry plains will readily comprehend the regret with which the Hebrews in the 561 Arabian desert looked back upon the melons of Egypt." — Kitto.

MEL'ZAR (probably of Persian origin, and signifying head cup-bearer), not a proper name, but the title of an officer, corresponding at once to our "steward" and "tutor." Dan 1:11, Ex 17:16.

MEM'PHIS (in Hebrew Noph), a city of ancient Egypt, Hos 9:6, situated on the western bank of the Nile. It is mentioned by Isaiah, Isa 19:13. Jeremiah, Jer 2:16; Jer 46:14, Acts 1:19, and Ezekiel. Eze 30:13-16, as Noph. The monuments of Memphis are believed to be of higher antiquity than those of Thebes. Memphis has three distinct names on the monuments:

(1) Seht-h'et, "the city of white walls;" (2) Men-nept, "the good abode ;" (3) Tepaneh, "the world of life." The sacred name was Ha-ptah, or Pa-ptah, " the house of Ptah." Its site is about 10 miles south of Cairo and 5 miles from the Great Pyramids and the Sphinx. From the ancient maps of Ptolemy, it appears that the sea extended about 40 miles farther south than at present. The deposits of mud carried down annually by the Nile, forming the Delta, have caused the sea to be filled in, so that in the times of the ancient Pharaohs the sea may have extended nearly to Memphis, making that city a seaport, instead of, as now, an inland site. Some infer that its name, Men-Nofer, implies that it was a coast-town, 3000 or 4000 years before Christ.

History. — Herodotus dates its foundation from Menes, the first king of Egypt. The city is said to have had a circumference of about 19 miles. The temple of Apis was one of its most noted structures. This temple stood opposite the southern portico of the temple of Ptah, and Psammetichus, who built that gateway, also erected in front of the sanctuary of Apis a magnificent colonnade supported by colossal statues or Osiride pillars such as may still be seen at the temple of Medeenet Haboo at Thebes. Through this colonnade the Apis was led with great pomp upon state occasions. At Memphis were the reputed burial-place of Isis and a temple. Memphis had also its Serapeum, which probably stood in the western quarter of the city. The Necropolis, near Memphis, was on a scale of grandeur corresponding with the city itself. At this place as capital for several centuries a Meraphite dynasty ruled over all Egypt, and Lepsius, Bunsen, and Brugsch agree in regarding the third, fourth, sixth, seventh, and eighth dynasties of the old empire as Memphite, reaching through a period of about 1000

Sarcophagus in the Serapenm at Memphis containing a Mummy of the Sacred Bull.

years. The city's overthrow was predicted Isa 19:13; Jer 46:19. The latest of these predictions was uttered nearly 600 years before Christ, and half a century before the invasion of Egypt by Cambyses, b.c. 625. The city never recovered from the blow inflicted by Cambyses. The rise of Alexandria hastened its decline. The caliph conquerors founded Old Cairo upon the opposite bank of the Nile, a few miles north of Memphis, and brought materials from the old city to build their new capital, a.d. 638. At length so complete was the ruin of Memphis that for a long time its very site was lost. Recent explorations have brought to light many of its antiquities, and specimens of its relics are now in museums in Europe and America. A little village stands upon a portion of the site of ancient Memphis.

MEMU'CAN, a Persian prince at the court of Ahasuerus. Esth 1:14.

MEN'AHEM (consoler) was the son of Gadi, and, having slain Shallum, king of Samaria, reigned in his stead. His reign, which lasted ten years, b.c. 771-760, was distinguished for cruelty and oppression. 2 Kgs 15:14-20.

ME'NAN, an ancestor of Joseph in the genealogy of Jesus. Luke 3:31.

ME'NE, ME'NE, TE'KEL, UPHAR'SIN. This sentence, which appeared on the wall of Belshazzar's banqueting-hall to warn him of the impending 562 destruction of Babylon, is in the pure Chaldee language, and reads, when translated literally, Mene,"he is numbered;" Mene, "he is numbered;" Tekel, "he is weighed;" Upharsin, "they are divided." "Peres," in the original language, is the same word with "Upharsin," but in a different case or number. It means. "he was divided." Dan 5:25.

ME'NI (fate, fortune), the marginal reading to Isa 65:11, a proper name designating some idol worshipped by the Jews in Babylon, but not yet identified with any known heathen god.

MEX'UCHA. See Seraiah.

MENU'CHAH (rest, ease), the marginal reading to Jud 20:43, rendered in the text by "with ease," but considered by some to be the name of a place: identical with Manahath.

MENU'CHITES, one of the marginal readings to 1 Chr 2:52; the same as Manahathites.

MEON'ENIM, THE PLAIN OF (oak of soothsayers), an oak or terebinth, Jud 9:37; comp. Deut 18:10, 2 Kgs 22:14; Mic 5:12, "soothsayers." The meaning of the name seems to connect it with some old diviners, probably of the pagan inhabitants. Conder suggests its identity with the plain of Mukhiah.

MEON'OTHAI (my dwelling), a descendant of Judah. 1 Chr 4:14.

MEPH'AATH (splendor, or lofty place), a Levitical city in Reuben, afterward belonging to Moab. Josh 13:18; Josh 21:37; 1 Chr 6:79; Jer 48:21. Jerome speaks of it as a military post, and it must have been one of the most easterly localities.

MEPHIB'OSHETH (extermination of idols).

  1. A son of Saul, who, with his brother and five others of the family, suffered a violent death at the hands of the Gibeonites. 2 Sam 21:8.

  2. Or Meribbaal, 1 Chr 8:34, was a son of Jonathan, and grandson of Saul, who at the age of five years fell from his nurse's arms and was ever after a cripple. When David was in quiet possession of his kingdom he sought out this branch of the family of Jonathan his friend, and not only gave him an honorable place in his palace, but restored to him the estates of his father. During Absalom's rebellion, however. Mephibosheth showed some signs of disaffection, and on David's return he lost one-half of his estates. 2 Sam 4:4; 2 Sam 9:6; 2 Sam 16:1-4; 2 Sam 19:24-30; 2 Sam 21:7. He is called Merib-baal in 1 Chr 8:34; 1 Chr 9:40.

ME'RAB, the eldest daughter of Saul, who promised her to David in marriage; but she married Adriel of Meholath, by whom she had five sons, and David took her sister Miehal. 1 Sam 14:49. The five sons of Merab suffered a violent death at the hands of the Gibeonites. 2 Sam 21:8.

MERAI'AH (rebellion) a priest in the days of Joiakim. Neh 12:12.

MERAI'OTH(rebellious). 1. Two priests in the line of Eleazar, respectively mentioned in [scripture]1 Chr. 6:6-7, 1 Chr 6:52; Ezr 7:3, and 1 Chr 9:11; Neh 11:11.

  1. A priest who went to Jerusalem with Zerubbabel, Neh 12:15; called Meremoth in Neh 12:3.

MER'ARI (bitter).

  1. The third son of Levi, and head of the family of the Merarites. Gen 46:11; Ex 6:16, Acts 1:19; 1 Chr 6:1, 1 Chr 6:16.

  2. The father of Judith. Jud 8:1; Jud 16:7.

MERARITES, THE, one of the three great families, of the tribe of Levi, numbering, when the census was taken in the wilderness, 6200 males above one month old, of whom 3200 were between thirty and fifty years of age, Num 3:34; Num 4:44, and divided into two branches, the Mahlites and the Mushites. Num 3:33. They marched between Judah and Reuben, pitched to the north of the tabernacle, and had charge of all the pillars, bars, boards, etc., belonging to the tabernacle and the surrounding court. Num 3:33-37; Num 4:29-33; Song of Solomon 7:8. When Canaan was conquered, twelve cities in the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and Zebulun were allotted to them. Josh 21:7, Josh 21:34-39; 1 Chr 6:63, 1 Chr 6:77-81.

MERATHA'IM (double rebellion), a symbolical name for Babylon. Jer 50:21.

MER'CHANTS. The earliest mode of commerce was by caravans. The commerce with India was carried on in this way by the merchants of Arabia and Egypt, and it was to the merchants of an Egyptian caravan that Joseph was sold. There was, however, considerable intercourse between many countries by water. The Phoenicians held the first rank in this respect, and their fleet passed through the Strait of Gibraltar 563 into the Atlantic. It must be noticed, however, that in those times a merchant always travelled himself from place to place, buying and selling his goods, and the Hebrew word for "merchant" means "traveller," "voyager." Gen 23:10; Gen 37:28; Eze 27:21, Eze 23:36; 1 Kgs 10:28; 2 Chr 1:16; Prov 31:14; Isa 23:2.

MERCU'RIUS, a character of the Latin mythology, identical with the Greek Hermes, the god of eloquence and lying, of commerce and cheating. An old myth told a story of Jupiter and Mercurius once wandering about unrecognized in Phrygia, and this myth, which probably belonged to the folk-lore of Asia Minor, led the simple people of Lystra to mistake Barnabas and Paul for the two pagan deities. Acts 14:11-13.

MER'CY-SEAT was the name of the lid or cover of the ark of the covenant. It was made of gold, two and a half cubits long and one and a half cubits broad, and two cherubs, also of gold, were placed one at each end, stretching their wings toward each other, and forming a kind of throne, upon which God was believed to be present in a peculiar manner to hear and answer prayer, and to make known his holy will. Ex 25:17-22; Ex 30:6; Ex 31:7; Ex 37:6-9; 1 Chr 28:11; 2 Chr 6:7, 2 Chr 6:8;Ps 80:1; Ps 99:1. Before and upon the mercy-seat the high priest sprinkled the blood of the sin-offerings on the day of atonement as a propitiation. Lev 16:11-16, which, under the new dispensation, received its typical signification. Heb 9:5; Rom 3:25. See Ark.

ME'RED (rebellion), mentioned in the genealogy, 1 Chr 4:17, as a son of Ezra, a descendant of Judah, and husband of Bithiah, a daughter of Pharaoh.

MER'EMOTH (heights).

  1. A priest who was appointed to weigh and register the gold and silver vessels belonging to the temple in the time of Ezra, Ezr 8:24-33, and who took active part in the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem. Neh 3:4.

  2. One who married a foreign wife and put her away. Ezr 10:36.

  3. A priest who sealed the covenant. Neh 10:5.

MER'IBAH (quarrel, strife).

  1. The fountain near Rephidim which issued from the rock in Horeb which Moses smote by the divine command; also called "Massah" ("temptation, trial"). Ex 17:1-7; Deut 6:16; Deut 9:22. Wilson and Warren would place this fountain in Wady Feiran, near Mount Serbal; Holland puts it in the pass al- Watiyeh, at the eastern end of Wady es-Sheikh.

  2. Another fountain, produced in the same manner and under similar circumstances as the preceding, near Kadesh, in the desert of Zin; also called waters of Meribah and Meribah Kadesh. Deut 33:8; Ps 95:8; Ps 106:32. This miracle occurred near the close of the wanderings of the Hebrews in the desert. Num 20:1-24; Eze 27:14; Deut 32:51; Ps 81:7; Eze 47:19. Some erroneously regard the two as identical, but this view is inconsistent with the scriptural narrative. See Kadesh.

MER'IB- BAAL. 1 Chr 8:34. See Mephibosheth.

MERO'DACH (death, slaughter), the name of an idol-god of the Babylonians; Belus, and represented by the planet Jupiter, and often applied as a surname to the Babylonish monarchs. Isa 39:1; Jer 50:2.

MERO'DACH-BAL'ADAN (Merodach, Worshipper of Baal), a king of Babylon, b.c. 721, who sent ambassadors to Hezekiah. 2 Chr 32:31; Isa 39:1. In 2 Kgs 20:12 he is called Berodach-baladan.

ME'ROM, WATERS OF (waters of the high place), the name of a lake in the northern part of Palestine, where Joshua crushed the confederacy of the northern tribes under Jabin. Josh 11:5, 1 Kgs 15:7. It is usually identified with "Lake Samachonitis" of Josephus and the modern el-Huleh of the Arabs, though Grove, Keil, and some others question this identification. Lake Huleh is 11 miles north of the Sea of Galilee. It is triangular in shape, about 6 miles long, 3 1/2 miles wide, 11 feet deep, and 270 feet below the Mediterranean, and is covered in parts by several acres of papyrus. The marsh around it is about 10 miles long, and is covered with reeds and rushes, but on the west there is a beautiful and fertile plain. The lake abounds in wild duck, pelican, and other fowl. On the north is an impenetrable jungle, the wallowing-place of buffaloes. The miasma from the marshes renders the district very unhealthy. (See cut, p. 564.)


Lake Huleh, or Waters of Merom, from the South-west.

MERON'OTHITE, a designation applied to Jehdeiah, 1 Chr 27:30, and Jadon, Neh 3:7, and probably referring to some place not known.

ME'ROZ (refuge), a place in the northern part of Palestine, the inhabitants of which were accursed for not having taken the field with Barak against Sisera. Jud 5:23. Wylie supposes the ruins el-Mazraah, near the river Kishon, to mark the site of Meroz; Wilson prefers Kefr-Musa, south of Tabor; and Thomson Meiron, 6 miles west of Safed, as the representative of Meroz.

ME'SECH, Ps 120:5, or ME'SHECH, Eze 32:26, a son of Japheth, whose descendants are supposed to have settled in Armenia. They had considerable commerce with Tyre. Eze 27:18. Some suppose the Muscovites were of this race.

ME'SHA (deliverance).

  1. A king of Moab who refused to pay to Jehoram, king of Israel, the annual tribute which he had been accustomed to pay to his father Ahab. For this offence Jehoram determined to punish him; and calling to his aid Jehoshaphat, king of Judah, and the king of the Edomites, he invaded the territory of Moab, signally defeated him, desolated the country, and at last the king and his army were closely besieged in a walled town. In this extremity Mesha attempted to cut his way through the enemy's ranks; but, failing in this, he made the horrible sacrifice of his eldest son to some idol-god, and it was done openly upon the wall, in sight of the camp of Israel, who, fearing to have incurred the anger of God by having given occasion to a human sacrifice, retreated to their own country. 2 Kgs 3:4-27. A most wonderful corroboration of the Scripture history is found in the famous Moabite Stone. See Dibon.

  2. A son of Caleb, and brother of Mareshah. 1 Chr 2:42.

  3. A Benjamite, son of Shaharaim. 1 Chr. 8:9.

ME'SHA (retreat), a place on the eastern border of the possessions of the Joktanites. Gen 10:30. Some regard it as Mesene or Meinan, at the mouth of the Pasitigris, where it empties into the Persian Gulf; others locate it in the Zomen range or Nej'd mountains of Arabia; and some place it in north-western Yunca, 565 at Moosa, a port on the Red Sea. The first is the more probable location of Mesha.

ME'SHACH. Dan 1:7. See Abednego.

ME'SHECH. Eze 27:13. See Mesech.

MESHELEMI'AH (whom Jehovah repays), a Levite, gatekeeper at the temple in the time of David, 1 Chr 9:21; 1 Chr 26:1-2, 1 Chr 26:9; he is called Shelemiah in 1 Chr 26:14.

MESHEZ'ABEEL (delivered by God).

  1. The grandfather of Meshullam, who assisted in rebuilding the wall. Neh 3:4.

  2. One who sealed the covenant. Neh 10:21.

  3. A descendant of Zerah, the son of Judah. Neh 11:24.

MESHIL'LEMITH (retribution, requital), a priest of the course of Immer, 1 Chr 9:12; called Meshillemoth in Neh 11:13.


  1. An Ephraimite in the reign of Pekah. 2 Chr 28:12.

  2. Neh 11:13. See Meshillemith.

MESHUL'LAM (friend).

  1. The grandfather of Shaphan the scribe in the reign of Josiah. 2 Kgs 22:3.

  2. A son of Zerubbabel. 1 Chr 3:19.

  3. A descendant of Gad in the reign of King Jotham of Judah. 1 Chr 5:13.

  4. Three Benjamites mentioned respectively in 1 Chr 8:17; 1 Chr 9:7-8.

  5. High priest in the reign of Ammon, 1 Chr 9:11; Neh 11:11; called Shallum in 1 Chr 6:12; Ezr 7:2.

  6. A priest of the course of Immer. 1 Chr 9:12.

  7. A Kohathite Levite in the reign of Josiah. 2 Chr 34:12.

  8. One who was sent by Ezra to induce the Levites to rejoin the caravan returning to Palestine. Ezr 8:16.

  9. One who assisted Ezra in abolishing marriages with foreign wives. Ezr 10:15.

  10. One who had married a foreign wife. Ezr 10:29.

  11. Two who assisted in repairing the wall. Neh 3:4, 1 Chr 24:6, 1 Kgs 20:30; Neh 6:18.

  12. A priest and a chief of the people who sealed the covenant. Neh 10:1, Ruth 4:20.

  13. Two priests in the days of Joiakim. Neh 12:13, Ex 17:16.

  14. A Levite porter, Neh 12:25; also called Meshemiah, 1 Chr 26:1, Shelemiah, 1 Chr 26:14, or Shullam. Neh 7:45.

  15. One who partook in the dedication of the walls of Jerusalem. Neh 12:33.

MESHUL'LEMETH (friend), wife of Manasseh and mother of Ammon, kings of Judah. 2 Kgs 21:19.

MESOBA'ITE, a designation applied to Jasiel, one of David's warriors, 1 Chr 11:47; it is not known what it refers to.

MESOPOTA'MIA (the region between the rivers), the name given by the Greeks and Romans to that tract of fertile country lying between the rivers Euphrates and Tigris. Acts 2:9; John 7:2. It was called by the Hebrews Aramnaharaim, or "Aram or Syria of the two rivers:" Gen 24:10; Deut 23:4; Jud 3:8, 1 Kgs 16:10; 1 Chr 19:6; and Padan-aram or "Plain of Syria," Gen 25:20; Matt 28:2-7; Gen 46:15; also Aram or "Syria." Num 23:7; Gen 31:20, Jud 6:24. On the Egyptian monuments, the upper part is called Naharina, and on the Assyrian, Nahiri. This region is now called by the Arabs el-Jezirah, or "the Peninsula" or "Island." Strabo and Pliny describe Mesopotamia as bounded on the east by the Tigris; on the south by the Euphrates and the Persian Gulf; on the west by the Euphrates; and on the north by Mount Taurus, the length being 800 miles, and the breadth, which is very irregular, 360 miles. The great plains of Mesopotamia possess a nearly uniform, level, good soil, but barren from want of irrigation. The exceptions are where the plains are intersected by hills or ranges of hills. The climate of these plains is characterized by great dryness, combined with very great variations in the temperature of the air. According to Mr. Layard, in March the pastures abound in rich and luxuriant herbage and the meadows are enamelled with flowers of every hue. See map, "Lands of Jewish Captivities."

We first hear of Mesopotamia in Scripture as the country of Nahor. Gen 24:10. Here lived Bethuel and Laban, and hither Abraham sent his servant to fetch Isaac a wife. v. Acts 7:38. A century later Jacob came on the same errand, and hence he 566 returned with his two wives after an absence of twenty-one years. No mention of Mesopotamia again occurs till the close of the wanderings in the wilderness. Deut 23:4. Though Drs. Beke and Merrill object to the view that Balaam came from the Mesopotamia beyond the Euphrates, and Dr. Beke proposed to place "Syria between the two rivers," near Damascus, his view has not been accepted. About half a century later, Mesopotamia appears as the seat of a powerful monarchy. Judg 3. The children of Amnion, having provoked a war with David, "sent a thousand talents of silver to hire them chariots and horsemen out of Mesopotamia, and out of Syria-maachah, and out of Zobah." 1 Chr 19:6. Assyrian inscriptions and the Scripture record show that Mesopotamia was inhabited in the early times of the empire, b.c. 1200-1100, by a vast number of petty tribes, each under its own prince, and all quite independent of each other, Jud 3:8-10; 2 Kgs 19:12-13; Isa 37:12, until subjugated by the kings of Assyria. Even after Mesopotamia became an Assyrian province it formed part of the great monarchies which successively arose in Upper Asia, the Babylonian, Persian, and Macedonian. The conquests of Cyrus brought it wholly under the Persian yoke, and thus it continued to the time of Alexander. The whole region is studded with mounds and ruins of Assyrian and Babylonian greatness. See Assyria.

MES'SENGER. The laws and edicts of the Jewish kings were proclaimed near the royal residence by public criers; but they were made known to more distant towns and provinces by messengers sent for that purpose. 1 Sam 11:7; 2 Chr 36:22; Am 4:5. The messengers stood in the gate, where the largest mass of people might be found, and proclaimed the law or message, as in Jer 11:6; Jer 17:19-20. At Jerusalem these messages were proclaimed in the temple, where a concourse of people was always found.

MESSI'AH is a Hebrew word signifying "anointed," and corresponding exactly to the Greek Christos. As in ancient times not only the king, but also the priest and the prophet, was consecrated to his calling by being anointed, the word "Messiah" often occurs in the O.T. in its literal sense, signifying one who has been anointed, 1 Sam 24:6; Lam 4:20; Eze 28:14; Ps 105:15; but generally it has a more specific application, signifying the One who was anointed, the supreme Deliverer who was promised from the beginning. Gen 3:15, and about whom a long series of prophecies runs through the whole history of Israel from Abram, Gen 12:3; Gen 22:18; Jacob, Gen 49:10: Balaam, Num 24:17; Moses, Deut 18:15, 1 Sam 30:18, and Nathan, 2 Sam 7:16; through the Psalmists and prophets, Ps 2; Ps 16; Ps 22; Ps 40; Ps 45; Ps 110; Isa 7:10-16; Isa 9:1-7; Isa 11; Isa 13; Isa 53; Isa 61; Jer 23:5-6; Mic 5:2; Mal 3:1-4, to his immediate precursor, John the Baptist. The character of these prophecies is very definite. The lineage from which Messiah should descend was foretold, Gen 49:10; Isa 11:1, the place in which he should be born, Mic 5:2, the time of his appearance, Dan 9:20, Gal 4:25; Hag 2:7; Mal 3:1, etc. Nevertheless, in the vanity of their hearts, the Jews mistook the true meaning of these prophecies. They expected a mere physical deliverer who would take revenge on their enemies and oppressors, and give into their hands the empire, the glory, and the wealth of the world. Thus many of them were unable to recognize the Messiah in Jesus of Nazareth; and when he and his disciples demonstrated the spiritual meaning of the prophecies and their glorious fulfilment. Matt 26:54; Mark 9:12; Luke 18:31; Luke 22:37; John 5:39; Acts 2:16-31; Acts 26:22-23; Eph 4:8; 1 Pet 1:11, the Jews felt scandalized. They expected a triumphant being, according to Ps 2; Jer 23:5-6; Zech 9:9, and that his triumph was to be accomplished by sufferings and death they did not understand.

MESSI'AS, the Greek form of Messiah. John 1:41; Gal 4:25.

MET'ALS. The Hebrews were from ancient times acquainted with all the principal metals - gold, silver, copper, iron, tin, and lead. They produced them from their own soil or procured them by commerce with foreign nations. Palestine and Syria are rich in copper and iron, and mining operations, as well as the various processes in the manufacture of metals, such as smelting, calcining, refining, 567 etc., are often alluded to. Job 28:1-11; Ex 20:5; Ex 32:2-4, Isa 32:20; Isa 1:25; Isa 40:19-20; Isa 44:12; Mal 3:3 . Whether they knew steel is uncertain. The Hebrew word thus translated in 2 Sam 22:36; Job 20:24; Ps 18:34; Jer 15:12 is translated "brass" in all other places, and means probably bronze. The "northern iron" of Jer 15:12 seems to correspond more closely to what we call steel. As zinc is not mentioned in the O.T., it is probable that composition of zinc and copper called brass was not known at all to the Hebrews. Where our translation has "brass," probably bronze, a composition of copper and tin, is meant.

Gold was not found in Palestine, but was brought thither from Ophir, 1 Kgs 9:27-28, Parvaim, 2 Chr 3:6, Raamah, Eze 27:22, Sheba, 1 Kgs 10:2, 1 Kgs 10:10; Ps 72:16; Isa 60:6, and Uphaz. Jer 10:9. It was plentiful. Abraham was very rich in cattle, in silver, and in gold. Gen 13:2. The army of Gideon took 1700 shekels of gold in nose-jewelry from the slaughtered Midianites. Jud 8:26. David gathered 100,000 talents of gold and the shields of gold from Hadadezer. 1 Chr 22:14; 2 Sam 8:7. The throne of Solomon was overlaid with gold, and his drinking-cups were of pure and solid gold. 1 Kgs 10:18, 1 Kgs 10:21, The Hebrews used gold, not as money, but only for ornaments - bracelets. Gen 24:22; chains, Gen 41:42; signets, Ex 35:22; necklaces, Ex 35:22 - for embroidery, Ex 39:3; 2 Sam 1:24, and for decoration, especially in the temple. 1 Kgs 6:21-22.

Silver was obtained from Lydia, Thrace, and Tarshish, 1 Kgs 10:22; 2 Chr 9:21; Jer 10:9; Eze 27:12, and in the days of Solomon it was as common in Jerusalem "as stones." 1 Kgs 10:21, 1 Kgs 10:27, It was lavishly used in the temple for the sockets of the boards. Ex 26:19; Ex 36:24, the hooks, fillets, and capitals of the pillars, Ex 38:10, 2 Sam 21:17, the bowls and chargers, Num 7:13, the trumpets, Num 10:2, the candlesticks and tables. 1 Chr 28:15-16, etc. Its principal use, however, was as money; though it was not coined until the middle of the eighth century b.c. In all the commercial transactions spoken of in the O.T. up to the taking of Samaria, in b.c. 721, silver, not gold, is used as payment as by Abram at the purchase of Ephron's field. Gen 23:16; by Abimelech in compensation to Abram, Gen 20:16; by the Ishmaelite merchants when they bought Joseph. Gen 37:28, etc.

Copper and iron were found in Palestine - "a land whose stones are iron and out of whose hills thou mayest dig brass," Deut 8:9; Job 28:2, The former, however, was much more used than the latter; arms, 2 Sam 21:16; Job 20:24; Ps 18:34, and armor, 1 Sam 17:5-6, 1 Sam 17:38, were made of it. Tin is first mentioned among the spoils of the Midianites, Num 31:22; like lead, it came from Tarshish, Eze 27:12, and it was principally used in the production of bronze. Lead found manifold applications in practical life - for inscriptions, being poured into the hollow letters carved in the stone, Job 19:24, for weights, etc.

ME'THEG-AM'MAH (curb of the metropolis). This word, in 2 Sam 8:1, is translated in the margin "the bridle of Ammah," and it may be rendered "the bridle or bit of the metropolis," meaning that David subdued the metropolis of the Philistines, probably Gath. Thus expressed, the passage corresponds closely with the parallel passage, 1 Chr 18:1: "Gath and her towns."

METHU'SAEL (man of God),father of Lamech, and the fourth in descent from Cain, Gen 4:18.

METHU'SELAH (man of dart, or he dies and it is sent - namely, the Flood), the son of Enoch, and, according to Hebrew chronology, 969 years old when he died, in the first year of the Flood. The longest-lived man was the son of the saintliest of his time. Gen 5:27; 1 Chr 1:3.

MEU'NIM. Neh 7:52. The same as Mehunim. Ex 2:50.

MEU'ZAL, in the margin of Ezr 27:19, means perhaps "from Uzal," the later Sanaa, the metropolis of Yemen.

MEZ'AHAB (waters of gold), the grandfather of Mehetabel, wife of Hadar, the last king of Edom, Gen 36:39; Gen 1 Chr, 1:50.

MI'AMIN (from the right hand).

  1. One who had married a foreign wife. Ezr 10:25.

  2. A priest who had returned with Zerubbabel, Neh 12:6; called Mijamin, Neh 10:7, and Miniamin, Heb 12:17.


MIB'HAR (choice), one of David's warriors. 1 Chr 11:38.

MIB'SAM (sweet odor).

  1. A son of Ishmael. Gen 25:13; 1 Chr 1:29.

  2. A son of Simeon. 1 Chr 4:25.

MIB'ZAR (a fortress), one of the chiefs or dukes of Edom. Gen 36:42; 1 Chr 1:53.

MI'CAH (who is like Jehovah?).

  1. An idolater in Mount Ephraim who persuaded a Levite to officiate as his priest, but had his idols stolen from him by a troop of Danites. Judg 17-18.

  2. The sixth of the minor prophets, is called the Morashite, from his birthplace Moresheh, a village in the neighborhood of Eleutheropolis, in the territory of Gath, westward from Jerusalem. He prophesied during the reigns of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, b.c. 750-698, and was a contemporary of Isaiah, whom he often resembles in style and expressions. Compare, for instance, Isa 2:2 with Mic 4:1, or Isa 41:15 with Mic 4:13.

The Book of Micah contains prophecies concerning Samaria and Jerusalem. Samaria is threatened with complete devastation, and Jerusalem with destruction and the captivity of its inhabitants. He admonishes them to repent, but he predicts also the return of the divine mercy and blessing, with a pardon of their sins. Then shall the mount of the temple be glorious and foreign nations will acknowledge Jehovah as their Lord, and henceforth there shall be no more war. In his prophecies concerning Messiah he is very precise. The prediction that Christ should be born in Bethlehem belongs to him. Song of Solomon 5:2. His style is poetic throughout, pure, rich in images and plays upon words, bold and lofty, but sometimes abrupt and obscure.

  1. A Reubenite, the ancestor of Beerah. 1 Chr 5:5.

  2. The son of Mephibosheth, and grandson of Jonathan, 1 Chr 8:34-35; 1 Chr 9:40-41; called Micha in 2 Sam 9:12.

  3. A Levite of the family of Asaph, 1 Chr 9:15; called Micha in Neh 11:17, Josh 11:22, and Michaiah in Neh 12:35.

  4. A Kohathite Levite, the son of Uzziel, 1 Chr 23:20; called Michah in 1 Chr 24:24-25.

  5. The father of Abdon, a high official in the reign of Josiah, 2 Chr 34:20; called Michaiah in 2 Kgs 22:12.

MICA'IAH, the son of Imlah the prophet, who predicted the defeat and death of Ahab if he went to war against Ramoth-gilead. 1 Kgs 22:8-28; 2 Chr 18:7, 2 Chr 18:27.

MI'CHA, a Levite who sealed the covenant. Neh 10:11. See Micah, 3 and Micah, 5.

MI'CHAEL (who like God?), a name of frequent occurrence in the sacred writings.

  1. Father of Sethur, the spy selected from the tribe of Asher. Num 13:13.

  2. A Gadite who settled in the land of Bashan, 1 Chr 5:13, and one of his ancestors. 1 Chr 5:14.

  3. A Gershonite Levite. 1 Chr 6:40.

  4. A chief of the tribe of Issachar in the time of David. 1 Chr 7:3.

  5. A Benjamite. 1 Chr 8:16.

  6. A Manassite chief who joined David at Ziklag. 1 Chr 12:20.

  7. The father of Omri. 1 Chr 27:18.

  8. A son of Jehoshaphat, murdered by his brother Jehoram. 2 Chr 21:2, 2 Chr 21:4.

  9. The ancestor of Zebadiah, who returned with Ezra. Ezr 8:8.

  10. The prince among the angels, the archangel, Jude 9, described in Dan 10:13, 2 Chr 11:21; Dan 12:1, as standing in a special relation to the Jewish nation, and in Rev 12:7-9 as leading the hosts of the angels.

MI'CHAH. See Micah, 6.


  1. See Micah, 7.

  2. See Michah, 3.

  3. An officer of Jehoshaphat. 2 Chr 17:7.

  4. See Micah, 4.

  5. A priest who assisted at the dedication of the walls of Jerusalem. Neh 12:41.

  6. An officer of Jehoiakim. Jer 36:11, 2 Kgs 11:13.

MI'CHAL, the second daughter of Saul, 1 Sam 14:49, and the wife of David, who paid in dowry one hundred slaughtered Philistines. She was passionately devoted to her young husband, and once saved him from the fury of her father. During David's exile she was married to another man, Phalti, 1 Sam 25:44; 2 Sam 3:15, with whom she lived for ten years. After the accession of David to the throne she was restored to him, 2 Sam 3:13-14, but an estrangement soon took place between them, and on the occasion of the greatest triumph 569 of David's life - the bringing up of the ark to Jerusalem - it came to an open rupture between them, after which her name does not again occur. 2 Sam 6:2.

MICH'MAS, or MICH MASH (something hidden), a town of Benjamin noted in the Philistine war of Saul and Jonathan. 1 Sam 13:11. Isaiah refers to it in connection with the invasion of Sennacherib in the reign of Hezekiah. Isa 10:28. After the Captivity it was repeopled. Ezr 2:27; Neh 7:31. Later it became the residence of Jonathan Maccabaeus and the seat of his government. 1 Mace. 9:73. In the time of Eusebius and Jerome it was "a very large village, retaining its ancient name, and lying near Ramah, in the district of AElia (Jerusalem), 9 miles therefrom." Michmash is identified with the modern village of Mukmas, about 5 miles north of Jerusalem, where are considerable ruins of columns, cisterns, etc. Immediately below the village the great wady spreads out to a considerable width - perhaps half a mile - and its bed is broken up into an intricate mass of hummocks and mounds, two of which, before the torrents of 3000 winters had reduced and rounded their forms, may have been the "teeth of cliff" - the Bozez and Seneh of Jonathan's adventure. 1 Sam 14:4. In plain view about a mile away is the ancient Geba or Gibeah, where Saul was encamped. 1 Sam 13:16.

MICH'METHAH (rocky?),a town facing Shechem, on the borders of Ephraim and Manasseh. Josh 16:6; Josh 17:7. The Pal. Memoirs suggest Mukhnab, in the plain of Mukhnab, east of Shechem, as its site.

MICH'RI (prize of Jehovah), aBenjamite, the ancestor of Elah. 1 Chr 9:8.

MICH'TAM occurs in the inscriptions of six Psalms - namely, 16 and 56-60 - but its true meaning is doubtful. Some derive it from a root denoting gold, and our translation gives it in the margin as "the golden Psalm." More probably, however, it is a musical expression whose signification has been lost.

MID'DIN (measures), one of the six cities mentioned with En-gedi, Josh 15:61, and in the desert west of the Dead Sea.

MID'IAN (strife). The territory of Midian extended, according to some scholars, from the Elanitic Gulf to Moab and Mount Sinai, or, according to others, from the Sinaitic peninsula to the desert and the banks of the Euphrates. The people traded with Palestine, Lebanon, and Egypt. Gen 37:28. Joseph was probably bought by them, perhaps in companv with Ishmaelites. See Gen 37:25, Gen 37:27-28, Eze 23:36, and Gen 25:2, Ex 6:4, Jud 4:12, Ex 17:16. Moses dwelt in Midian. Ex 2:15-21; Num 10:29. Midian joined Moab against Israel and enticed that nation into sin, for which it was destroyed. Num 22, Num 24, Num 25. Later, Midian recovered, became a powerful nation, and oppressed the Hebrews, but were miraculously defeated by Gideon. Jud 6:1-40; Jud 7:1-25; Jud 8:1-28; Ps 83:9, Rev 1:11; Isa 9:4; Hab 3:7. The Midianites henceforward became gradually incorporated with the neighboring Moabites and Arabians.

In the region east of Edom and Moab are many ancient ruins, and portions of the territory are of great fertility, producing bountiful crops for the modern Arabs - the tribe of Beni Sakk'r, which bears considerable resemblance in race, character, and habits to what is known of the ancient Midianites.

"Curtains of Midian," Hab 3:7, is a figurative expression denoting the borders or inhabitants of Midian.

MID'WIFE. The two midwives mentioned in Ex 1:15 are probably representatives or superintendents of a whole class, as such a number seems to stand in a decided disproportion to the needs of the Jewish nation at that time. The expression "upon the stools," in the following verse, refers to a kind of chair in which the patient sat during the birth, and which is still in use in modern Egypt.

MIG'DAL-EL (tower of God), a fortified city of Naphtali. Josh 19:38. Robinson thinks it may be the modern Mejdel, or Majeidil, ancient ruins being found on the seashore, 3 miles north of Tiberias.

MIG'DAL-GAD (tower of God), a town of Judah, near Lachish, Josh 15:37-39; now Mejdel, a prosperous village of 1500 inhabitants, 2 miles east of Ascalon. It is surrounded by olive trees and cultivated fields. Its houses are well built, its streets dirty. Broken 570 columns, hewn stones, and other ancient ruins are found there.

MIG'DOL (tower), the name of two places in Egypt.

  1. A place near the head of the Red Sea, Ex 14:2; Num 33:7-8; probably identical with Bir Makhdal, 10 miles west of Suez.

  2. A city and fortified place situated in the northern limits of Egypt toward Palestine. Jer 44:1; Eze 48:14. This name is rendered "tower" in the phrase "from the tower of Syene," Eze 29:10; Ex 30:6; but the margin correctly has "from Migdol to Syene" - i.e., Syene the most southern border of Egypt, and Migdol the most northern. The phrase is used to signify the whole of Egypt. In Egyptian the name is written Meshtol, "many hills," and in the Septuagint Magdolum.

MIG'RON (precipice), a town or place in the neighborhood of Gibeah. 1 Sam 14:2. Migron is also mentioned in Sennacherib's approach to Jerusalem. Isa 10:28. It was near Michmash, and Baedeker places its site on the western slope of the Wady Suiceinit, at ruins called Makrun.

MIJ'AMIN' (on the right hand).

  1. The head of the sixth course of priests in the time of David. 1 Chr 24:9.

  2. See Miamin. 2.

MIK'LOTH (staves).

  1. A Benjamite, the son of Jehiel, 1 Chr 8:32; 1 Chr 9:37-38.

  2. One of the leaders of David's army. 1 Chr 27:4.

MIKNE'IAH (possession of Jehovah), a Levite porter in the time of David. 1 Chr 15:18, 1 Chr 15:21.

MILALA'I (eloquent), a priest who assisted at the dedication of the walls of Jerusalem. Neh 12:36.

MIL'CAH (queen, or counsel).

  1. A daughter of Haran, and wife of Nahor, Abraham's brother. Gen 11:29; Gen 22:20, Ps 22:23; Gen 24:15, Gen 24:24, Luke 24:47.

  2. The fourth daughter of Zelophehad. Num 26:33; Deut 27:1; Isa 36:11; Josh 17:3.

MIL'COM. See Moloch.

MILE. See Measures.

MILE'TUM. 2 Tim 4:20. The same as Miletus.

MILE'TUS (crimson ?), a city and seaport of Ionia, in Asia Minor.

Situation. - Miletus was 36 miles south of Ephesus, and stood on the southwestern side of the Latmian Gulf, directly opposite the mouth of the river Meander. The sediment from the river had gradually filled up the gulf, and the city was a considerable distance from the sea. But in Paul's time it had four docks and a large commerce. The site is now some 10 miles inland.

History. - Miletus was originally a Carian city; then the capital of Ionia; the mother of no less than 80 cities on various coasts, more particularly in the Euxine and the strait leading to it. Its period of greatest prosperity was 500 years before Christ. The Persians captured it b.c. 494, and Alexander the Great b.c. 334, after which the city never regained its former celebrity. It was the native place of many men renowned in history, among the most distinguished of whom were Thales and Democritus. Luxury and wickedness were characteristic of the inhabitants.

Scripture References. - Paul stopped here on his voyage from Greece to Jerusalem returning from his third missionary-tour, and met the elders from Ephesus. Acts 20:15-38. From 2 Tim 4:20 it appears that Paul left Trophimus there sick, but it would appear that this must have been on another occasion, since, at the conclusion of this voyage, Trophimus was with the apostle at Jerusalem. Acts 21:29. This is supposed by many to indicate a later visit, after Paul's first imprisonment at Rome. One of the Epistles was sent to the Ephesians.

Present Appearance. - Near the site of the ancient city is a small Turkish village called Melas. The most noteworthy ruins of former grandeur are the theatre, with its many tiers of seats in good preservation, and the temple of Apollo, of which a few columns are yet standing. The wandering channels of the Meander are near by, although the mouth of the river is 10 miles away.

MILK, not only of cows, but also of camels, sheep, and goats, was used in Palestine, and is often spoken of in the O.T. Gen 32:15; Deut 32:14; Prov 27:27; Isa 7:21-22. The simplest spiritual food or the plain and easy truths of the gospel, wherewith the newborn soul is nourished and sustained, is compared to milk. Heb 5:12; 1 Pet 2:2. "A land flowing with milk and 571 honey," Josh 5:6, means a country of extraordinary fertility. The phrase "wine and milk," Isa 55:1, denotes all spiritual blessings and privileges.

MILL. The simplest mill for bruising grains was nothing more than two stones, between which they were broken. If one of the stones be hollowed out, so as to contain the corn to be pounded by another stone or by a piece of wood or metal, it is not a mill, but a mortar. When manna was given in the desert, "the people went about, and gathered it, and ground it in mills, or beat it in a

Women grinding at the Mill in the East.

mortar." Num 11:8. From these mills and mortars there must have been obtained at first only a kind of peeled grain which may be compared to our hominy. Yet we read that Sarah set before the three angels who visited Mamre cakes of fine meal, Gen 18:6, which presupposes a more elaborate implement. This consisted of two round stones, each about 2 feet in diameter and 6 inches high. The under one, or "nether millstone," Job 41:24, was immovable and somewhat lower around the edge than in the centre - that is, it was slightly convex on the top. The upper one was just the reverse, being concave on the bottom, or thicker at the circumference, so as to fit pretty closely to the other. In the centre there was a hole, and above this a funnel or hopper, into which the grain was poured, and thus it ran in between the stones and was broken by them into meal, which fell over the edge upon a board. On the top of the other stone there was an upright peg, by means of which it was turned around.

Frequent allusions are made in Scripture to these utensils. Of leviathan it is said that his heart is "as hard as a piece of the nether millstone." Job 41:24. At the siege of Thebes "a certain woman cast a piece of a millstone upon Abimelech's head, and all to brake his skull." Jud 9:53.

In the Law it was ordained: "No man shall take the nether or the upper millstone to pledge; for he taketh a man's life to pledge." Deut 24:6. Each family had its own mill; and as fresh bread was made every day, no more corn was ground at a time than was necessary for one baking. Hence the noise of the grinding-mills and the voices of the women working them were the first sounds heard in the streets on a morning. The sound was pleasing, because it was naturally associated with industry and the supports and enjoyments of life. The noise of the millstones in the morning, and the lighting up of candles in the evening, are circumstances belonging to inhabited places where men live together in social order; hence the striking power of the prediction, Jer 25:10, Gloomy shall be the silence of the morning, melancholy the shadows of the evening - no cheerful noise to animate the one, no enlivening ray to soften the gloom of the other. Desolation shall everywhere reign.

MIL'LET, the grain of the cultivated panic-grass (Panicum miliaceum) or of du-rah (variously spelled, but thus pronounced). Eze 4:9. Both these large grasses are often sown in the Levant, and perhaps both may be included under the term millet. Durah or Egyptian corn (Sorghum vulgare) resembles maize in size and general appearance, and is largely cultivated upon the Nile. Both the above are grown in Palestine and used for bread. (See cut, p. 572.)

MIL'LO (a mound, rampart). "Millo" is used for a part of the citadel of Jerusalem, probably the rampart, or entrenchment. 2 Sam 5:9; 1 Kgs 9:15, 1 Kgs 9:24; 1 Kgs 11:27; 1 Chr 11:8. The same, or part of it, was probably the "house of Millo;" margin "Beth Millo." 2 Kgs 12:20; 2 Chr 32:5. Some think it means the "stronghold of Zion." Lewin suggests that it refers to the whole of the 572 temple enclosure, while Conder curiously suggests that, from its root, it may mean a pool. The first seems the more probable view.

Millet (Sorghum Vulgare)

MIL'LO, HOUSE OF. 1. The place where Joash was murdered in Jerusalem. 2 Kgs 12:20. See Millo, above.

  1. Those who dwelt in the fortress of Shechem, Jud 9:6, Ruth 4:20; probably the same as "the tower" of Shechem. Jud 9:46, Lev 14:49.

MI'NA. See Money.

MINES, MIN'ING. Remains still exist of ancient Egyptian mines both on the border of the Ethiopian desert and in the Sinaitic peninsula, and, as Moses praises the Promised Land for its mineral wealth, Deut 8:9, it is probable that at the time of the Exodus the Jews understood how to extract metals from the earth. How well acquainted with all mining processes they were at another period appears from Job 28:1-11. See Metals.

MINI'AMIN (from the right hand), a Levite in the reign of Hezekiah who had charge of the freewill - offerings of the people in the cities of the priests. 2 Chr 31:15.

MIN'ISTER, as distinguished from servant, denotes one in voluntary attendance on another. Thus Joshua is called the minister of Moses, Ex 24:13; Ex 33:11, and Elisha the minister of Elijah. 1 Kgs 19:21; 2 Kgs 3:11. With various modifications of this, its general sense, it is applied in Scripture:

  1. To Christ, as the "minister of the sanctuary," Heb 8:2 - that is, as our High Priest; 2. To those persons who are appointed to preach the gospel and administer its ordinances, 1 Cor 4:1; 2 Cor 3:6; Eph 3:7; 1 Thess 3:2; 1 Tim 4:6; 3. To magistrates, Rom 13:16, as God's ministers to punish the evil and protect the good; and 4. To the angels, who stand ready to do the will of God. Ps 103:21; Dan 7:10; Heb 1:14.

MIN'NI, a portion of Armenia. Jer 51:27. See Armenia.

MIN'NITH (divisions), an Ammonitish place to which Jeplithah's victory extended, and from whence wheat was brought to Tyre. Jud 11:33; Eze 27:17; perhaps Minieh, south of Heshban.

MIN'STREL, a musician or singer. As seen from the case of Jairus, it was customary in the time of our Saviour to employ minstrels at funerals - that is, players on stringed instruments, flute players, and people hired to perform the official lamentation. Thus, when Christ came into the house to raise the daughter, "he saw the minstrels and the people making a noise." Matt 9:23.

MINT, well known herbs akin to garden sage, several species of which are wild or cultivated in Palestine. Mint was commonly used by the ancients in medicine and as a condiment. It is said to have been one of the bitter herbs eaten with the paschal lamb. Deut 14:22 required that the Jews should pay tithe of all produce of the ground, but they were more careful about trifles than about the , weightier matters. Matt 23:23.

Mint(mentha sylvestris)


MIPH'KAD (appointed place), the name of a gate of Jerusalem, Neh 3:31, either on the Zion side or a little south of the Sheep-gate.

MIR'ACLE, an action or event produced by a supernatural or divine agency for the purpose of authenticating the divine mission of the person who performs the act or is the subject of the event. A true miracle is above nature, but not against nature; it is a temporary suspension of the operation of the laws of nature, but not a violation of the laws themselves; it is the manifestation of a higher order which the lower order obeys. We have an analogy in the power of our will over the body, as by raising our hand we suspend the operation of the law of gravity. God controls and directs, extends and contracts, the forces of nature which are his agents, God alone can work miracles or enable men to perform them. If we believe in an almighty personal God, we shall have no difficulty in believing the possibility of miracles. The first miracle was the creation of the universe out of nothing by his will. In the case of Christ his person is the great moral miracle, and his miracles are the natural manifestations of his divine-human person, or simply his "works," as John calls them. If we believe in Christ as the sinless Son of man and Son of God, we shall find no difficulty in believing his miracles. The devil (who is called God's ape) can perform only pseudo-miracles - "lying wonders," juggleries, and sorceries. Deut 13:1; Matt 24:24; 2 Thess 2:9; Rev 13:13-14; Rev 16:14; Rev 19:20.

The N.T. (in Greek) uses three terms for miracles: (1) Sign, by which a divine power is made known and a divine messenger attested. Matt 12:38-39; Mark 16:1, Matt 16:6; Mark 8:11; Luke 11:16; Luke 23:8; John 2:11, 1 Sam 30:18, Heb 12:23, etc.; Acts 6:8; 1 Cor 1:22; (2) Wonder or portent, with regard to their astounding character. John 4:48; Acts 2:22, Acts 2:43; Acts 7:36; Rom 15:19; usually in connection with "signs;" (3) Power or powers, mighty deeds, with reference to their effect. Matt 7:22; Matt 11:20-21, Ex 11:23; Luke 10:13; Rom 15:19.

Miracles were necessary for the founding of religion as divine seals of revelation. Bishop Butler says: "Revelation itself is miraculous, and miracles are the proof of it." The miracles of Christ are appealed to as evidence of his divinity and Messiahship. Matt 9:6; Matt 11:4-5; John 10:47; John 20:29, John 20:31. They were wrought from the purest motives, for the glory of God and the benefit of the souls and bodies of men; they were wrought in open daylight, before great multitudes, in the face of his enemies, who did not deny them, but traced them to Beelzebub. Matt 12:24. Tested by external evidence and intrinsic propriety and conformity to his divine mission, they commend themselves to every honest and reasonable inquirer. The only alternative is truth or wilful fabrication, and the latter is a moral monstrosity in the case of Christ and the apostles.

The power of miracles continued in the apostolic age, but with the establishment and triumph of Christianity their necessity ceased, as the primitive creation gave way to preservation. Our faith must now chiefly rely on the moral miracles and internal evidences which continue throughout Christendom. But God may at any time renew the miraculous gifts of the apostolic age.

For a discussion of this subject see Mozley's Bampton Lectures on Miracles (delivered at Oxford, 1865), and Archbishop Trench's Notes on the Miracles of our Lord.

The chief miracles recorded in the O.T. are the Creation, the Flood, the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, the birth of Isaac, the burning bush, the miracles of Moses in Egypt, the crossing of the Red Sea, the pillar of cloud and fire, the quails and manna, the water from the rock, Aaron's rod budding, healing by looking up to the brazen serpent (symbol of faith in the crucified Redeemer, see John 3:14), Balaam's ass speaking, the crossing of the Jordan divided, the taking of Jericho, the standing still of the sun (which, however, is taken by many only as a poetic hyperbole), Elijah fed by ravens, restores a dead child to life, brings rain from heaven by prayer, is taken up to heaven in a chariot of fire, miracles of Elisha, Jonah preserved by a whale or shark (a type of the resurrection, see Matt 12:40). No miracles are reported of John the Baptist, which is an indirect proof of the miracles of Christ and his apostles.



The conception by the Holy Ghost....................Nazareth. Luke 1:35.

Water turned into wine.............................Cana. John 2:1-11.

The Capernaum nobleman's son cured...............Cana. John 4:46-54.

Draught of fishes......Sea of Galilee. Luke 5:1-11.

Demoniac cured......Capernaum. Mark 1:23-26.

Peter's mother-in-law healed..Capernaum. Mark 1:30,1 Chr 24:31.

Leper healed..........Capernaum. Mark 1:50-45.

Centurion's servant healed..........Capernaum. Matt 8:5-13.

Widow's son raised from the dead..........Nain. Luke 7:11-17.

Tempest calmed.................Sea of Galilee. Matt 8:23-27.

Demoniacs of Gadara cured..Gadara. Matt 8:28-34.

Man sick of the palsy cured......Capernaum. Matt 9:1-8.

Jairus's daughter raised to life............Capernaum. Matt 8:18-26.

Woman diseased with issue of blood healed. .........Capernaum. Luke 8:43-48.

Sight restored to two blind men...........Capernaum. Matt 9:27-31.

Dumb demoniac cured............Capernaum. Matt 7:32,1 Sam 15:33.

Diseased cripple at Bethesda cured..........Jerusalem. John 5:1-9.

A withered hand cured..........Judaea. Matt 12:10-13.

Demoniac cured..........Capernaum. Matt 12:22,Heb 12:23.

Five thousand fed........Decapolis. Matt 14:15-21.

Canaanite woman's daughter cured......near Tyre. Matt 15:22-28.

Man deaf and dumb cured........Decapolis. Mark 7:31-37.

Four thousand fed...........Decapolis. Matt 15:32-39.

Christ's transfiguration........Mt. Tabor or Hermon. Matt 17:1-8.

Blind man restored to sight.....Bethsaida. Mark 8:22-26.

Boy possessed of a devil cured.........Mt. Tabor or Hermon. Matt 17:14-21.

Man born blind restored to sight......Jerusalem. John 9.

Woman cured of eighteen years' infirmity......Galilee. Luke 13:11-17.

Dropsical man cured.........Galilee. Luke 14:1-4.

Ten lepers cleansed....Samaria. Luke 17:11-19.

Two blind men restored to sight............Jericho. Matt 20:30-34.

Lazarus raised from the grave to life......Bethany. John 11.

Fig tree blasted...........Mt. Olivet. Matt 21:18-21.

The ear of Malchus healed......Gethsemane. Luke 22:50, Jer 25:51.

The resurrection.................Jerusalem. John 20:1.

Draught of fishes................Sea of Galilee. John 21:1-14.

The ascension to heaven........Mt. Olivet. Luke 2:42-51.


The outpouring of the Spirit on the day of Pentecost.....................................................Jerusalem. Acts 2:1-11.

Miracles by the apostles........Jerusalem. Acts 2:43; Am 5:12, 2 Sam 20:15, Ex 17:16.

Lame man cured...............Jerusalem. Acts 3:7.

Death of Ananias and Sapphira................Jerusalem. Acts 5:5, 1 Kgs 16:10.

Apostles delivered from prison.............Jerusalem. Acts 5:19.

Miracles by Stephen...............Jerusalem. Acts 6:8.

Miracles by Philip..........Samaria. Acts 8:6, 1 Kgs 15:7, 2 Kgs 11:13.

Aeneas made whole................Lydda. Acts 9:34.

Dorcas restored to life..............Joppa. Acts 9:40.

Peter delivered from prison...........Jerusalem. Acts 12:6-10.

Elymas struck blind.............Paphos. Acts 13:11.

Miracles by Paul and Barnabas............Iconium. Acts 14:3.

Lame man cured............Lystra. Acts 14:10.

Paul restored........................Lystra. Acts 14:20.

Unclean spirits cast out...........Philippi. Acts 16:18.

Paul and Silas delivered from prison.............Philippi. Acts 16:25, Acts 11:26.

Special miracles...........Ephesus. Acts 19:11, Jud 4:12.

Eutychus restored to life..........Troas. Acts 20:10-12.

Paul unhurt by a viper..............Melita. Acts 28:5.

Father of Publius and many others healed................Melita. Acts 28:8, Gal 1:9.


MIR'IAM (rebellion).

  1. The daughter of Amram, and the sister of Moses and Aaron, 1 Chr 6:3, is supposed to have been ten or twelve years older than Moses; and, being appointed to watch the ark of bulrushes in which her infant brother was laid among the flags of the river, she was there when Pharaoh's daughter came down and discovered it, and proposed to go for a nurse, concealing her relation to the child. She immediately called her mother as the nurse, and the infant was placed under her care. Ex 2:4-10. After the passage of the Red Sea, she led the choir of the women of Israel in the sublime song of deliverance, Ex 15:20, but afterward, having joined Aaron in murmuring against Moses, she was smitten with leprosy, and restored only in answer to the prayers of Moses. Num 12:1-15. She died and was buried at Kadesh. Num 20:1.

  2. A descendant of Judah. 1 Chr 4:17.

MIR'MA (fraud), a Benjamite born in the land of Moab. 1 Chr 8:10.

MIR'RORS. See Looking-glass.

MIS'GAB (high place), a place in Moab. Jer 48:1. It appears to be mentioned also in Isa 25:12, in Hebrew, rendered "high fort." It seems to refer to some special fortress, probably Kir-hareseth.

MISH'AEL (who is what God is?).

  1. A son of Uzziel, the uncle of Moses and Aaron. Ex 6:22; Lev 10:4.

  2. One who stood at Ezra's left hand when he read the Law to the people. Neh 8:4.

  3. One of Daniel's companions, who received the Babylonian name of Meshach. Dan 1:6-7,Rev 1:11, Acts 1:19; Heb 2:17. See Meshach and Abed-nego.

MI'SHAL, and MI'SHEAL (entreaty), a town in the territory of Asher. Josh 19:20; Josh 21:30.

MI'SHAM (purification, or swift-going), a Benjamite. 1 Chr 8:12.

MISH'MA (a hearing, report).

  1. A son of Ishmael, Gen 25:14; 1 Chr 1:30, whose descendants may be represented by the present Arabian tribe of the Bene-Misma.

  2. A son of Simeon. 1 Chr 4:25.

MISHMAN'NAH (fatness), a Gadite who joined David at Ziklag. 1 Chr 12:10.

MISH'RAITES, THE, one of the four families which proceeded from Kijrath-jearim and founded towns, 1 Chr 2:53; not further mentioned.

MIS'FERETH. See Mizpar.

MIS'REPHOTH-MAIM (burnings of water), a place in Northern Palestine. Josh 11:8; Josh 13:6. Thomson treats Misrephoth-maim as identical with a collection of springs called Ain-Musheirifeh, on the seashore, close under the Ras en-Nakhura; but this is far from Sidon. Conder suggests that it is identical with the present village Sarafeud. near Sidon.

MITE, the lowest denomination of Jewish money - two mites making a farthing - and probably of the value of two mills of our currency. Mark 12:41-44; Luke 21:1-4.

MITH'CAH (sweetness), a station of the Hebrews in the desert. Num 33:28-29.

MITH'NITE, THE, the designation of Joshaphat, one of David's warriors, 1 Chr 11:43, referring probably to some place of the name of Methen.

MITH'REDATH (given by Mithra, the sun-god).

  1. The treasurer of Cyrus, to whom he gave the vessels of the temple. Ezr 1:8.

  2. A Persian officer stationed in Samaria. Ezr 4:7.

MI'TRE, the head-dress of the Jewish priest, was of fine flax or linen, made with many folds, making in length eight yards, finished with elegance and taste, and wreathed round the head in the shape of an Eastern turban. It bore upon its front a gold plate, on which was inscribed "Holiness to the Lord." Ex 28:4, 2 Kgs 18:37, Gen 36:39; Ex 29:6; Ex 39:28, Ex 39:30; Lev 8:9; Lev 16:4.

MITYLE'NE (hornless), the chief town and capital of the isle of Lesbos. Situated on the east coast, Mitylene is the intermediate place where Paul stopped for the night between Assos and Chios. Acts 20:14-15. The town itself was celebrated in Koman times for the beauty of its buildings. In Paul's days it had the privileges of a free city. The island has been subject to Turkey, but the people are chiefly Greek.

MIXED MULTITUDE, an expression occurring Ex 12:38; Num 11:4, and Neh 13:3, and denoting people who congregated with the Israelites without being of pure Israelite blood. 576 By some it is explained as referring to the offspring of mixed marriages between Israelites and those nations among which they lived; by others as referring simply to those hangers - on who are always found hovering on the outskirts of a great camp.

MI'ZAR (smallness), a hill named in Ps 42:6; possibly a summit or peak on the eastern ridge of Lebanon.

MIZ'PAH, and MIZ'PEH (watch-tower), the name of several places in Palestine.

  1. On Mount Gilead, also called Mizpeh of Gilead, Jud 11:29, and elsewhere probably Ramoth-mizpeh, Josh 13:26, and Ramoth-gilead, 1 Kgs 4:13 and elsewhere, the place where Laban and Jacob set up a heap of stones as a witness and landmark between them. Gen 31:23,Deut 23:25, Gen 24:48, 2 Kgs 5:52. Here also the Israelites assembled to fight against the Ammonites, Jud 10:17: and here Jephthah was met by his daughter. Jud 11:29. Some suppose that this was the place also where the tribes assembled to avenge the great sin committed in Benjamin, Jud 20:1, Num 1:3; Jud 21:1, Jud 21:5, Acts 21:8, but this is more usually applied to the Mizpah in Benjamin. See No. 6. This Mizpah has been identified with a high peak east of the Jordan, 3 miles north-west of Ramoth-gilead, called Jebel Osh'a, or "the Mount of Hosea." Conder suggests Remtheh, 25 miles west of Bozrah, but Merrill, with greater probability, locates it at Kulat er Rubad on the Wady 'Ajlun, about 10 miles east of the Jordan. This summit commands a wide view, and is in harmony with the name Mizpeh, or "watch-tower."

  2. Mizpeh of Moab, where the king of that nation was living when David committed his parents to his care, 1 Sam 22:3; possibly now Kerak.

  3. The land of Mizpeh, in the North of Palestine, the residence of the Hivites, Josh 11:3; possibly identical with -

  4. The valley of Mizpeh, Josh 11:3, 1 Kgs 15:8, whither the confederate hosts were pursued by Joshua; perhaps the modern Buka'a, the great country of Coele-Syria, between Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon.

  5. A city in Judah, Josh 15:38:possibly identical with the modern Tell es-Safiyeh, or, as Conder has suggested, at Kirhbet el-Musheirifeh, near Gaza. The position fits and the name is the Arabic equivalent of the Hebrew. This is the place others have identified with Misrephothmaim, which See.

  6. A city in Benjamin, Josh 18:26, where Israel assembled. 1 Sam 7:5-7, 1 Sam 7:11-12, 1 Sam 7:16. Here Saul was elected king. 1 Sam 10:17-21. Asa fortified Mizpah. 1 Kgs 15:22; 2 Chr 16:6; it was where Gedaliah was assassinated, 2 Kgs 25:23, Gal 4:25; Jer 40:6-15; Jer 41:1-16; the men of Mizpah joined in rebuilding a part of the wall of Jerusalem. Neh 3:7, 2 Sam 20:15, Acts 1:19. Messepha of 1 Mace. 3:46, which is probably identical with this place, and about 3i miles west of north from Jerusalem, is the modern village of Neby Samwil, standing on a peak which rises about 600 feet above the plain of Gibeon. This village is claimed as the most probable site for Mizpah by Robinson, Porter, Baedeker, and others. It is 3006 feet above the sea-level, and the highest mountain near Jerusalem. From its summit the most extensive view in Southern Palestine is obtained, embracing the Mediterranean, Jerusalem, the Mount of Olives and the mountains of Moab. Upon its summit is a mosque, once a Christian church, built by the Crusaders on the spot where pilgrims first saw Jerusalem. Grove, Stanley, Bonar, Major Wilson, and others would identify Mizpah with Mount Scopus, one of the summits just north of Jerusalem in the continuation of the Olivet range. From this place the traveller gets a very complete view of the Holy City, and from there the emperor Titus looked down upon it. Not far away is the modern village of Shafat. Conder notes that a part of the ridge is called Arkub es-Suffa, or "the ridge of the view." Ensebius and Jerome located Mizpah near Kirjathjearim, and Conder notes a Shufa immediately south of Kuryet el-Anab (Kirjath-jearim), a name having exactly the same meaning with Mizpah - viz., "place of view." Conder also says that there is a place called Umni Suffa. equivalent to the Hebrew Mizpah, existing on the road from Samaria to Jerusalem, which would be a suitable position for the Mizpah of Neh 3:Jeremiah, 40-41. which is not necessarily the Mizpah of Samuel. (Quarterly, 1876, p. 171.) But his final conclusion is that Mizpah and Nob are identical. Whether the Mizpah of Hosea 5:1, was in Benjamin or in Gilead is uncertain.


MIZ'PAR (number), one who returned with Zerubbabel, Ezr 2:2,- called Mispereth in Neh 7:7.

MIZ'RAIM (limits, borders), the name by which the Hebrews generally designated Egypt, apparently from Mizraim, the son of Ham. Gen 10:6, 2 Kgs 11:13. This name is in the dual form, and denoted either lower and upper Egypt or two divisions of that land. Gen 45:20; Gen 46:34; Gen 47:6, Gen 47:13. Sometimes it seems to be employed to designate lower Egypt, to the exclusion of Pathros or upper Egypt. Isa 11:11:Jer 44:15. See Egypt.

MIZ'ZAH (fear), a grandson of Esau, and one of the chiefs of Edom. Gen 36:13, 2 Sam 21:17; 1 Chr 1:37.

MNA'SON (remembering), a native of Cyprus, but a resident of Jerusalem, was an early convert to Christianity, and is mentioned. Acts 21:16, as the host of the apostle Paul.

MO'AB (of the father), a name used for the Moabites, and also for their territory. Num 22:3-14; Jud 3:30; 2 Sam 8:2; 2 Kgs 1:1; Jer 48:4. The territory of the Moabites, originally inhabited by the Emims, Deut 2:10, lay on the east of the Dead Sea and the Jordan, strictly on the south of the torrent Arnon, Num 21:13; Ruth 1:1-2; Am 2:6; but in a wider sense it included also the region anciently occupied by the Amorites. Num 21:32-33, Rev 22:1; Num 26:3; Num 33:48; Deut 34:1. The territory was 50 miles long and 20 wide. It was divided into three portions, each bearing a distinct name:

(1) Land of Moab, Deut 1:5, lying between the Arnon and the Jabbok; (2) The field of Moab, a tract south of the Arnon, Ruth 1:2; (3) The plains of Moab, the tract in the Jordan valley opposite Jericho, Num 22:1.

Physical Features. - Except the narrow strip in the valley of the Jordan, Moab is nearly all table-land, consisting of an uneven or rolling plateau, elevated above

Mountains of Moab.

the Mediterranean about 3200 feet. At the north this plateau slopes gently into a plain, and on the east into the Syrian desert. The principal streams are the Arnon and the Jabbok and the Jordan. It is admirably suited for pasture, as shown by Mesha. who paid a tribute of 100,000 lambs and 100,000 rams. 2 Kgs 3:4.


History. - The race of Moab, having its origin about the time of the destruction of the cities of the plain, and cradled in the mountains above Zoar, gradually extended over the region east of the Dead Sea, expelling the ancient original inhabitants, the Emim. Deut 2:11. Five hundred years later, when the Israelites were approaching the Promised Land, the Moabites had become a great nation. But they had been driven south of the Arnon by the warlike Amorites. Num 21:13; Jud 11:18. Balak and Midian called Balaam to curse the chosen people. Num 22:4-5. The Israelites mastered the region from north of the Arnon, but Moab was allowed to hold the cities of the tract taken by the Israelites from the Amorite king, while the tribe of Reuben, to whom the district was assigned, dwelt in tents and tended their flocks on the fine pasture-ground. The district south of the Arnon remained in the possession of Moab. The idolatries of Moab, and especially the worship of its god Chemosh, exercised an irresistible charm for the Israelites, and the Reubenites were greatly corrupted. The relations between the Moabites and Israelites were at times amicable, but more frequently hostile. During the period of the Judges the Moabites compelled the Israelites to pay tribute until King Eglon was killed by Ehud. Judg 3. Ruth, the great-grandmother of David, was a Moabitess, and David entrusted the care of his father and mother to the king of Moab. 1 Sam 22:4. Saul conducted a successful campaign against Moab, and David inflicted a terrible punishment upon them. 2 Sam 8:2. After Solomon's death Moab fell to the northern kingdom, and after Ahab's death the Moabites refused to pay tribute. The Moabites invaded Judaea in the reign of Jehoshaphat, and were discomfited. Later, their own country was overrun by Jehoram and Jehoshaphat, the towns destroyed, the wells stopped, etc., and Mesha, shut up in his capital, sacrificed his own son. 2 Kgs 3:6-27. At a later period Moab was sometimes dependent and sometimes independent. It was allied with the Chaldaeans against Judah in the reign of Jehoiakim, 2 Kgs 24:2, and the destruction of God's chosen people was received with a delight for which God threatened punishment. Eze 25:8-11; Zeph 2:8-10. The fulfilment of these prophecies is noted at the end of this article.

Modern Discoveries and Present Condition. - Among the travellers who have visited Moab are Burckhardt, Seetzen, Buckingham, Irby and Mangles, De Saulcy, Porter, Tristram, Palmer, Drake, Paine, and Merrill. A large number of ruins have been discovered. Palmer counted eight fortified towns in view from a single eminence. The principal ruins are those of Rabbath-moab, Kerak, Dibon, Medeba, Main, and Umm Rasas. At Kerak (Kir-hareseth) are very interesting and remarkable ruins. Dibon is noted as the place at which the famous Moabite Stone was discovered. This stone corroborates the Bible history of King Mesha. Hopes were entertained that other tablets of that character might be found, but Palmer, who investigated every written stone reported by the Arabs, came to the conclusion that there does not remain above ground a single inscribed stone of any importance. Everything in Moab speaks of its former wealth and cultivation. The soil is badly tended by the few Arab tribes who inhabit it, but there are extensive fields of grain. The Arabs are an essentially pastoral people, having great herds of cattle. Sour or fresh milk often takes the place of water, and the modern traveller finds the customs the same as in the time of Sisera. Jud 4:18-19.

Prophecies Fulfilled. - Jeremiah describes Moab as very prosperous, but the prophetic threats of its doom are most terrific, as set off against the restoration of Israel. Jer 48. Porter indicates how completely those various prophecies have been fulfilled, but some of his statements require confirmation. From Salcah he saw upward of thirty deserted towns. Jer 48:15-24. The neglected and wild vineyards and fig trees are rifled by the Bedouin every year in their periodical raids, vs. Jer 48:32-33. The inhabitants hide themselves in the mountain-fastnesses, oppressed by the robbers of the desert on the one hand and the robbers of the government on the other, vs. Acts 20:28, Jer 48:44. Cyril Graham, who explored this region, found cities with buildings in a good state of preservation, yet everywhere uninhabited. "In the whole of these vast plains, north and 579 south, east and west, Desolation reigns supreme." The long-predicted doom of Moab is now fulfilled, and the forty eighth chapter of Jeremiah is verified on the spot by the traveller. There are twenty-seven references to Moab in this chapter, and one hundred and twenty one in the Scriptures. See Ar, Dibon, Kir-hareseth, Moabite Stone. See p. 232.

MOADI'AH. See Maadiah.

MOL'ADAH (birth), a city in the South of Judah, Josh 15:21-26; given to Simeon, and occupied by Shimei, Josh 19:2; 1 Chr 4:28; settled after the Captivity, Neh 11:26. Probably el-Milh, 10 miles east of Beersheba, marks the site of ancient Moladah. There are ruins of a fortified town, two wells, one with water at the depth of 40 feet; and the wells are surrounded with marble troughs. Arab tradition says that Abraham dug these wells and watered his flocks here.

MOLE. In Lev 11:30 the Hebrew word is believed to denote the chameleon, already described. The most recent criticism would have this vexed verse read thus: "And the gecko and the monitor and the true lizard and the sand lizard and the chameleon." Another word rendered "mole," in Isa 2:20, means "the burrower." As no true moles have been found in Palestine, this term may comprehend the various rats and weasels that burrow about ruins. The interesting mole-rat (Spalax typhlus), a quadruped about 10 inches long, and whose habits are indicated by its name, is doubtless one of these burrowers, if not the only one intended.

MO'LECH (the ruler), Lev 18:21. or MIL'COM, 1 Kgs 11:5, or MO'LOCH, Acts 7:43, the name of an idol-god worshipped by the Ammonites with human sacrifices, especially children. The Rabbins tell us that it was made of brass and placed on a brazen throne, and that the head was that of a calf with a crown upon it. The throne and image were made hollow, and a furious fire was kindled within it. The flames penetrated into the body and limbs of the idol; and when the arms were red-hot, the victim was thrown into them, and was almost immediately burned to death, while its cries were drowned by drums. Though warned against this idolatry, common to all the Canaanite tribes, though probably not of Canaanite origin, the Jews were repeatedly allured to adopt it. 2 Kgs 23:10; Eze 20:26. In the Valley of Hinnom they set up a tabernacle to Molech, and there they sacrificed their children to the idol.

MO'LID (begetter), a descendant of Judah. 1 Chr 2:29.

MON'EY. Commerce, in its most primitive state, is a mere bartering, one kind of goods being exchanged for another. The next stage in commercial development is the invention of a common means of exchange, the establishment of the precious metals - gold and silver - as standards of value, the employment of money. This money, however, was not coined. It was simply the metal itself, kept in ingots, rings, etc., and used according to its weight, and when, in the period before the Captivity, the O.T. speaks of money - pieces of gold and silver, shekels, mina, talent, etc. - a certain weight of precious metal is meant thereby, and nothing more. Coined money does not occur among the Jews until after the Captivity, but then we meet successively with Persian, Greek, Syrian, Roman, and national

Shekel. Ascribed to Simon Maccabseus.

Jewish coins. The first Jewish coins were struck by Simon Maccabaeus, who, about b.c. 139, obtained permission to coin money from the Syrian king Antiochus VII. Shekels, half-shekels, etc., of gold, silver, and copper, were struck, showing on one side a vase, perhaps representing a pot of manna, and on the other side an almond branch with three flowers, perhaps representing Aaron's staff". After this time coins were struck by the Asmonaean princes, the Idumaean kings, during the first revolt under Eleazar, and during the second under Barcochebas; and besides these national Jewish coins, foreign coins of Persian, Greek, and Roman make circulated in 580 great multitude in Palestine. Of these latter the following are mentioned in the Bible.

Golden Daric.

The daric, dram, or drachm, Ezr 2:69, is a Persian gold coin equal to about five dollars and fifty cents.

The stater or piece of money, Matt 17:27, a Greek or Roman silver coin (a shekel in weight), in value over fifty cents. The stater, or coined shekel, of the Jews is often found in the cabinets of antiquaries at the present day.

Roman Penny, or Denarius.

The penny, Matt 22:19, or denarius, a Roman silver coin equal to an Attic drachma, or about sixteen American cents. "Shilling" would be a more correct translation.

Assarion (farthing). Actual size. (From specimen in British Museum.)

The farthing. Matt 10:29, a Roman silver coin equal to one cent and a quarter.

Another piece of money equal to one fourth of a farthing is called by the same name, Matt 5:20; and the mite, Mark 12:42, was half of this last farthing, or about two mills of our currency.

MONEY-CHANGERS. Every Israelite who had reached the age of twenty was required by the Law, Ex 30:13-15, to pay one half-shekel, as an offering to Jehovah, into the sacred treasury whenever the nation was numbered. As this offering should be paid in exact Hebrew coins, dealers in such coins established their booths in the temple and exacted high premiums from the Jews, who from all parts of the world came to Jerusalem during the great festival. But they were expelled by our Lord. Matt 21:12; Mark 11:15.

MONTH. The ancient Hebrews called the months by their numbers - first month, second month, third month, etc. - though at the same time they also applied a special name to each month. This double nomenclature had nothing to do, however, with the double course of months which the Jews employed after leaving Egypt, one making the civil and the other the sacred year. The former commenced from the first new moon in October - and this was used in civil and agricultural concerns only - and the latter from the first new moon in April, because they left Egypt on the fifteenth of that month, and it was used in regulating the time of their feasts, etc. The prophets use this reckoning. "From the time of the institution of the Mosaic Law downward, the month appears to have been a lunar one. The cycle of religious feasts, commencing with the Passover, depended not simply on the month, but on the moon; and the new moons themselves were the occasions of regular festivals." Num 10:10; Num 28:11-14.

The length of the month was regulated by the changes of the moon, but, twelve lunar months making only 354 days and 6 hours, the Jewish year was short of the true solar year by twelve days. To compensate for this difference, the Jews every three years intercalated a thirteenth month, which they called Ve-adar, the second Adar, and thus their lunar year became equal to the solar. The changes of the moon were carefully watched, and a formal announcement made of the appearance of the new moon by sound of trumpets and beacon-fires. Num 10:10; Ps 81:3. These observations were continued throughout Jewish history, though it is evident that the Jews were in possession of calculations by which the course of the moon could be predicted. 1 Sam 20:5, 1 Sam 20:24, 1 Sam 20:27.

The names of the Hebrew months are as follows:


MOON, Deut 33:14, or LES'SER LIGHT. Gen 1:16. The Hebrew year was a lunar year, and the new moon regulated many of the feasts and sacred services of the Jews. It was always the beginning of the month, and this day they called Neomenin, new-moon day or new month, and celebrated it with special sacrifices. Num 28:11-15.

The heathens have generally worshipped the moon, under the names of "Queen of Heaven," "Venus," "Urania," "Succoth-benoth," "Ashtaroth," "Diana," "Hecate," or perhaps "Meni," etc. Deut 4:19; Deut 17:3; Job 31:26-27. The Jews were warned against this kind of idolatry, Deut 4:19; Deut 17:3, but they nevertheless burnt incense to the moon, 2 Kgs 23:5; Jer 8:2, and their women worshipped her as the queen of heaven and offered cakes of honey to her. Isa 7:18; Jer 44:17-19, Jer 44:25.

MO'RASTHITE, the designation of the prophet Micah, as a native of Moresheth-gath. Jer 26:18; Mic 1:1.

MOR'DECAI (little man, or worshipper of Mars), a captive Jew of the family of Saul, resident at the court of Ahasuerus. An uncle of his died, leaving an orphan daughter named Hadassah, whom Mordecai adopted, and who afterward became the queen of Persia. Mordecai fell under the displeasure of Haman, one of the king's principal officers of state, and to be revenged on the despised Jew he laid a plan for the extermination of the whole body of Jews in the empire. His purpose was, however, defeated by the interposition of the queen, Haman lost his life and Mordecai was elevated to wealth and power.


  1. The Plain, Plains, or Oaks of Moreh. It is twice noticed in Scripture; first as the halting-place of Abram after his entrance into the land of Canaan. Gen 12:6. It was near Shechem, Gen 12:6, and the mountains Ebal and Gerizim. Deut 11:30.

  2. The Hill of Moreh, where the Midianites and Amalekites were encamped before Gideon's attack upon them. Jud 7:1. It lay in the valley of Jezreel, on the north side. It is identified with Ain Jalood, the spring of Harod, and Gideon's position was on the northeast slope of Jebel Fukua (Mount Gilboa), between the village of Nuris and the spring. Little Hermon is 1815 feet above the Mediterranean. On the south is Gilboa. and on the north Tabor.

MOR'ESHETH-GATH (possession of wine-press), a town near Eleutherropolis, the birthplace of Micah, Mic 1:14; hence he is called the "Morasthite." Mic 1:1; Jer 26:18.

MORI'AH (chosen of Jehovah?).

  1. The land where Abraham was directed to go and offer Isaac as a sacrifice. Gen 22:2.

  2. A mount on which Solomon built the temple in Jerusalem. 2 Chr 3:1. It was in the eastern part of the city, overlooking the valley of the Kedron, and where was the threshing-floor of Araunah, 2 Sam 24:24; 1 Chr 21:24. It lay north-east of Zion, from which it was separated by the Tyropoeon valley. Solomon erected the temple upon the levelled summit of the rock, and then immense walls were erected from its base on the four sides, and the interval between them and the sides filled in with earth or built up with vaults, so as to form on the top a large area on a level with the temple. Most authorities agree in regarding this as the place whither Abraham went to offer Isaac, and therefore identical with


No. 1, above. Samaritan tradition, however, claims that the place of Abraham's altar was on Mount Gerizim, and Stanley and Grove are inclined to accept the Samaritan claim: but the arguments in favor of this view are far from satisfactory. For a description of Moriah of Jerusalem, upon which now stands the Mohammedan mosque of Omar, see IV. Topography, under Jerusalem.

MORN'ING. See Day, Watch.

Morning Watch. See Watch.

Morning Star. See Stars.

MOR'TAR. See Lime.

MOSE'RA, and MOSE'ROTH (bond, bonds), a station in the journey of the Israelites through the wilderness, and near Mount Hor. Deut 10:6; Num 33:30-31.

MOS'ES (Heb. Mosheh, *drawn out - i.e. of the water; Coptic Mo-use, watersaved), the leader and creator of the Jewish nation. This table shows the pedigree of Moses:

His life falls naturally into three divisions, of forty years each, according to the account preserved in Stephen's speech. Acts 7:23, 1 Kgs 20:30, Eze 23:36.

  1. Moses was born in the dark hour of Hebrew story when a son was an object of the murderous search of the Egyptian spies. His father was Amram, his mother Jochebed, his tribe was Levi, and this fact may have determined the choice of Levi for the priesthood. Moses was the youngest child of the family; Miriam was the oldest, and Aaron came between. For three months his parents hid the babe, but at last it was no longer possible, and Jochebed, with a trembling heart, but it may be with a dim consciousness that God had great things in store for him, laid him in the little basket of papyrus she had deftly woven, pitched with bitumen within and without, and, carrying it down to the brink of one of the canals of the Nile, she hid it among the flags. The child was tenderly watched "afar off" by Miriam, who, less open to suspicion than the mother would be, stood to see what would be done to him. The daughter of the Pharaoh, the oppressor, came to the sacred river to bathe, attended by her maidens, who, surprised to find the basket, which had providentially floated down to the princess' bathing-place - or had Jochebed purposely put it there? - call the attention of their mistress to the discovery. The basket is fetched by one of them, and when opened a little babe, evidently one of the Hebrews' children, but exceedingly fair, is revealed to view. The woman-heart of the princess, who was a childless wife according to tradition, yearned over the little one. Her yearning was of God. Then Miriam drew near, gathered from the conversation that the child's life was to be spared, proposed to get a nurse for him among the Hebrew women, and thus it came to pass that Jochebed again had her child at her breast, but this time as his hired nurse. The biblical history of this period closes with the child Moses in the palace under tutors and governors, and increasing in wisdom and in stature, and in the favor of God and of man. There is a break in this history, as in that of the greater than Moses, between the infancy and the manhood.

  2. The second division of Moses' life was totally different in its character from the first. Moses, at the age of forty, is learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians. The adopted grandson of the Pharaoh, initiated in the secrets of the priests, to whose order he belonged, he had a brilliant and useful worldly career before him. Had he remained in his advantageous surroundings, he would have been one of the great Egyptian sages - probably the greatest of them all. But God intended him to occupy a much more exalted position. There was needed by him a period of meditation. He must be cut off from books, and by direct contact with Nature in all her moods learn what books cannot give. The providential occasion of this violent change was Moses' slaying of an Egyptian taskmaster who had ill-treated a Hebrew. This was no secret, as he hoped it would be. The news, indeed, had been carried to


Pharaoh, and so Moses was compelled to flee. It is probable that the murder was intended to impress upon the Hebrews his desire to help them - that he, the king's son, would be their deliverer; for it seems impossible to resist the conclusion that the pious teachings of his mother had not been forgotten, and that many prayers had been put up by him as he determined to be his brethren's saviour. But we see now that it was no wonder that this attempt at an insurrection proved abortive, and likewise that Moses had much to learn before he could properly lead the great Exodus. Moses fled from the prominence, the refinement, and the luxury of the court to the obscurity, the roughness, and the poverty of the wilderness. He became the shepherd of Jethro and the husband of his daughter Zipporah. Ex 2. This second period lasted forty years, and again a wondrous transformation took place. The transition was made at Horeb when one day he saw a "bush" - probably an acacia tree - which was said to be on fire and yet was unconsumed. He drew near to examine the wondrous sight, and the Angel of the Lord appeared to him and gave him his prophetic call. But now the would-be leader of forty years agone was full of excuses, deprecated his abilities, and disparaged his appearance. Accordingly, God appointed Aaron as his spokesman and brought about their meeting. Ex 3-4. Thus informed of the divine name, Ex 3:14, promised divine aid, and strengthened by miracles, Ex 4:1-7, Moses, at the age of eighty, now both a scholar and a practical man of affairs, starts out upon the deliverance of his people. On his way to Egypt his son Gershom was smitten by a mysterious illness, Zipporah thought because circumcision had not been performed. Accordingly, although loath to do it, she herself circumcised Gershom. Ex 4:24-26. The child recovered.

  1. Arrived at Goshen, Moses and Aaron at once began the discharge of their commission. But their primary efforts only increased the subject people's burdens, and the two brothers were well nigh in despair. Then began the series of miraculous visitations recounted in Ex 7-12. The last of the plagues so stunned the Egyptians that they precipitately drove the Israelites out. See Plagues, Exodus. The Israelites were prepared and went ready for the journey, which, instead of being one of three days into the desert, Ex 5:3, was one of forty years. Through all this time the Israelites were miraculously protected, fed, and led. Moses went in and out before them to the divine satisfaction, although his conduct by no means pleased every one. Nor had Moses always the proper control over himself. He flung down the God-engraven tables of the Law, enraged at the idolatry of the frivolous people while he was for forty days in the Mount with God. Ex 32:19. But the most damaging act of this nature was at Kadesh-meribah. The people murmured for water. Moses was commanded to speak to the rock; instead, he struck the rock twice with his rod. It was because on this occasion God was not honored that Moses and Aaron were forbidden to enter the Promised Land. Num 20:11-12.

But to counterbalance this evil trait there were many good ones. He makes mention of one of these - viz., his meekness. Num 12:3. Besides, he was characterized by disinterestedness, impartiality, faithfulness, and courage. When he had risen superior to the fears which daunted him when he received the divine call, he was unwavering. The people might murmur or break out into rebellion, he was ready to plead with God for them; yea, when they had so grievously sinned that God declared he would destroy them, Moses asked that his name might be blotted out of the book of God rather than behold their destruction. Ex 32:32.

In addition must be mentioned his eminent services as lawgiver. It is indeed a vexed question how much credit should be given to him as the publisher of a code marked throughout by "Thus saith the Lord." We are safe in saying that the Law, as we have it recorded in the Scriptures, was divinely inspired, and that Moses made the record as directed of the Lord. The Decalogue is a moral miracle in ancient legislation, and retains its power to this day in all Christian lands. See Law. As an historian Moses also is to be honored. The five books commonly called the Pentateuch, 584 which he wrote, contain the only reliable history of the creation of man and the beginning of the human as well as of the Jewish race. See Pentateuch. But there are also other compositions attributed to him - namely, Ps 90 and the book of Job. In regard to these there is no certainty, but the ninetieth Psalm seems to fit in well with the circumstances of the Wandering, and the book of Job is perhaps his in its first draft; the Talmud makes him the author, and several commentators have adopted this view. See Job. We know Moses to have had the poetic gift, for in the Pentateuch there are several exhibitions of it:

  1. "The song which Moses and the children of Israel sung" (after the passage of the Red Sea, Ex 15:1-19).

  2. A fragment of a war-song against Amalek, Ex 17:16:

"As the hand is on the throne of Jehovah,

So will Jehovah war with Amalek

From generation to generation."

  1. A fragment of a lyrical burst of indignation, Ex 32:18:

"Not the voice of them that shout for mastery,

Nor the voice of them that cry for being


But the noise of them that sing do I hear."

  1. The song of Moses, composed on the east side of Jordan. Deut 32:1-43.

  2. The prophetic blessing of Moses upon the tribes. Deut 33:1-29.

As a leader and as a prophet Moses comes before us. As the former "his life," says Dean Stanley in Smith's Dictionary of the Bible, "divides itself into the three epochs of the march to Sinai, the march from Sinai to Kadesh, and the conquest of the Transjordanic kingdoms. Of his natural gifts in this capacity we have but few means of judging. The two main difficulties which he encountered were the reluctance of the people to submit to his guidance and the impracticable nature of the country which they had to traverse. The incidents with which his name was specially connected, both in the sacred narrative and in the Jewish, Arabian, and heathen traditions, were those of supplying water when most wanted. In the Pentateuch these supplies of water take place at Marah, at Horeb, at Kadesh, and in the land of Moab. Of the first three of these incidents, traditional sites bearing his name are shown in the desert at the present day, though most of them are rejected by modern travellers. The route through the wilderness is described as having been made under his guidance. The particular spot of the encampment is fixed by the cloudy pillar. But the direction of the people, first to the Red Sea and then to Mount Sinai, is communicated through Moses or given by him. On approaching Palestine the office of the leader becomes blended with that of the general or the conqueror. By Moses the spies were sent to explore the country. Against his advice took place the first disastrous battle at Hormah. To his guidance is ascribed the circuitous route by which the nation approached Palestine from the east, and to his generalship the two successful campaigns in which Sihon and Og were defeated. The narrative is told so shortly that we are in danger of forgetting that at this last stage of his life Moses must have been as much a conqueror and victorious soldier as Joshua."

But as a prophet Moses is evidently the revealer of the will of God, and preeminent because with him the divine revelations were made "mouth to mouth, even apparently, and not in dark speeches," and he beheld "the similitude of Jehovah." Num 12:8. He saw the flame in the bush; for two periods of forty days each he was in the thick darkness with God, Ex 24:18; Ex 34:28; and above all was he favored with the vision of the trailing garments of the Almighty, and he heard a voice which "proclaimed the two immutable attributes of God, justice and love," in words which became part of the religious creed of Israel and of the world. Ex 34:6-7. But perhaps the most remarkable fact is yet to be mentioned. Moses frequently met God in the tent of the congregation, which he removed outside the camp.Ex 33:9. No wonder that the subject of so many and so familiar interviews with God should be regarded with peculiar veneration by the Hebrews, the Mohammedans, and the Christians.

When Moses was one hundred and twenty years old his eye was not dim nor his natural force abated. Deut 34:7. He was able, on the day of his death, to stand on Nebo, a height of the Pisgah 585 range, and thence look across the Jordan and up and down the Promised Land. Bitter was his disappointment at not being allowed to enter, but meekly he submitted to the will of God. He had been so much with God that to die was simply to be always with Him whose voice he had heard and whose glory he had seen. But since his death would make a great change to his people, he prepared the way for it. He addressed the people and warned them against apostasy. He then gave a public charge to Joshua, his successor. He then uttered the song, Deut 32, and blessed the people. Deut 33. Quietly, it would appear, unattended, perhaps secretly, the aged yet strong man climbed the Pisgah range, stood on the height of Nebo, and viewed the extensive prospect. "As he gazed upon it the words fell upon his ears, 'This is the land which I sware unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, saying, I will give it unto thy seed; I have caused thee to see it with thine eyes;' and then, not in sternness or in anger, but in utmost love, like a mother lifting her boy into her arms, the Lord added, 'But thou shalt not go over thither,' and in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, the soul of Moses had passed within the veil and was at home with God." - Rev. W. M. Taylor, D.D., Moses the Lawgiver, N.Y., 1879, p. 439. "And he buried him in a valley in the land of Moab, over against Beth-peor; but no man knoweth of his sepulchre unto this day." Deut 34:6. In the words of the Rabbins, "Jehovah kissed him to death" (or rather into life eternal). His remains were removed from all reach of idolatry - the sin of sins, forbidden in the first commandment. As Thomas Fuller quaintly says, "God buried also his grave." Vainly have men sought to find it. The familiar lines of Mrs. C. F. Alexander's ode, "The Death of Moses," may be appropriately quoted here:

"And had he not high honor?

The hillside for his pall,

To lie in state while angels wait,

With stars for tapers tall;

And the dark rock-pines,like tossing plumes,

Over his bier to wave;

And God's own hand, in that lonely land,

To lay him in his grave."

Centuries passed on. The land had witnessed many changes; the promised One stood upon the Promised Land when once more Moses is seen by mortal sight. Upon the slopes of Hermon he appeared in company with Elijah to talk with Jesus of the decease Jesus should accomplish at Jerusalem. Luke 9:31. Thus was the type brought face to face with the Pattern. And this resurrection leads to the conclusion which some hold - that Moses, like Christ, was raised from the dead after a brief sleep in the grave.

Moses was of God's special preparation, the resultant of many forces. Wrought upon by inspiration, he was able to be legislator, statesman, leader, poet, saint, because he was so variedly trained. An exceptional man in original gifts, he was equally exceptional in his opportunities. To be of Hebrew extraction, and therefore by descent to share in the glorious hopes of his race, was to have a grand start Godward. To be the adopted child of Pharaoh's daughter, to breathe "the atmosphere of courts," to be acquainted as an equal with the nobility of the land, was to gain an intimate knowledge of statecraft from the best exponents of it. To be trained for the priesthood, initiated into the holy mysteries, learned in all the learning of the Egyptians, was to be thoroughly furnished unto religious service. To be exiled and compelled through many years to eat "the bread of carefulness," to be a keeper of sheep and a dweller in tents amid the sublimity of Sinaitic scenery, was to have time for reflection and for communion with God. Thus, when at eighty he returned to Egypt, he was able to debate with scholars and to sympathize with slaves. He towered above all his brethren. He was alone in the loneliness of genius. He was accessible in his feeling for the oppressed. But Moses was unique in other ways. He alone has held friendly converse with Jehovah. What though he was slow of speech? He was lofty of thought. What though he was timid? He had the promise of divine strength. And the good qualities he showed during the Wandering are such as come from fellowship with the Highest, while his bad qualities - his occasional infirmity of temper, for example - are mere spots upon the sun or temporary obscurations of the light, the times he forgot God. But when he fell all observed it, just as 586 all notice the fallen monarch of the forest; when he stood firm few marked it, as few remark the upright tree.

The above article is a mere sketch. To write fully the life of Moses would be to write the history of Israel during the Exodus. The reader will refer to the separate articles incidentally mentioned. We close by a brief study of the character of Moses, following the Rev. Dr. W.M. Taylor in his book above quoted.

Three qualities give him immortal interest and prominence. 1st. Faith. By faith he esteemed "the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt." Heb 11:26. "Never more alluring prospects opened up before any man than those which the world held out to him. The throne of the greatest monarchy of his age was within his reach. All that wealth could procure, or pleasure bestow, or the greatest earthly power command, was easily at his call. But the glory of these things paled in his view before the more excellent character of those invisible honors which God set before him. This faith sustained him in the solitudes of Midian and animated him amidst all the conflicts attendant on the Exodus and all the difficulties that confronted him in the wilderness. This faith gave him courage in the hour of danger and calmness in the time of trial." (pp. 459, 460.)

2d. Prayerfnlness. "In every time of emergency his immediate resort was to Jehovah. He was not speaking to a stranger, but was like a son making application to his father; and so he never pleaded in vain." (p. 461.) His was the prayer of faith.

3d. Humility. "He coveted no distinction and sought no prominence; his greatness came to him, he did not go after it. And his humility was allied with or flowed naturally out into two other qualities, disinterestedness and meekness. (See Num 11:29 and 1 Chr 12:3 for striking illustrations.) He gave up his own ease and comfort to secure the emancipation of his people; and while laboring night and day for them, he had no thought whatever of his own interests. His office brought him no emolument." In this he was like Nehemiah. He was free from all charge of nepotism. His meekness was shown in silently listening to complaints against himself. He appealed unto God. (pp. 462-3.)

The only blot upon this beautiful character is a lack of patience or self-control, but this was more evident in the earlier portion of his life, nor was it prominent enough to belie his eulogy.

Moses was a type of Christ. The parallel is readily traced. "As Moses, in the early part of his career, refused the Egyptian monarchy because it could be gained to him only by disloyalty to, God, so Jesus turned away from the kingdoms of the world because they were offered on condition that he would worship Satan; as Moses became the emancipator of his people, so was Jesus; as Moses, penetrating to the soul of the symbolism of idolatry, introduced a new dispensation wherein symbolism was allied to spirituality of worship, so Jesus, seizing the spirituality of the Mosaic system, freed it from its national restrictions, and ushered in the day when the true worshipper would worship the Father anywhere; as Moses was pre-eminently a lawgiver, so Jesus, in his Sermon on the Mount, laid down a code which not only expounds but fulfils the Decalogue; as Moses was a prophet, so Jesus is the great Prophet of his Church; as Moses was a mediator, so Jesus is the Mediator of the new covenant, standing between God and man, and bridging, by his atonement and intercession, the gulf between the two. We cannot wonder, therefore, that in the vision of the Apocalypse they who have gotten the victory over the beast and his image are represented as singing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb. Rev 15:3." (p. 466.)

God buried Moses. It was fitting, therefore, that he too should write his epitaph. Here it is given by his inspiration, and, though written only in a book, having a permanence as great as if it had been graven with an iron pen in the rock for ever: "And there arose not a prophet since in Israel like unto Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face, in all the signs and the wonders which the Lord sent him to do in the land of Egypt, to Pharaoh, and to all his servants, and to all his land, and in all that mighty land, and in all the great terror which Moses showed in the sight of all Israel." Deut 34:10-12. (p. 468.)


Moses, Song of. This wonderful ode celebrates more fitly the miraculous deliverance of the children of Israel from Egyptian bondage. It is the national anthem, the Te Deum of the Hebrews. It sounds through the psalms of Israel, through the thanksgiving hymns of the Christian Church, through the touching songs of liberated slaves, and it will swell the harmony of the saints in heaven. Allusion to it is made in Rev 15:2-3; "They stand on the sea of glass mingled with fire . . . and sing the song of Moses the servant of God."

MOTH. By this word is meant the clothes-moth, which, in its caterpillar state, is very destructive to woven fabrics. The eggs of this miller, being deposited on fur or cloth, produce a small, soft worm which immediately forms a house for itself by cutting from the cloth, which it thus weakens and destroys. In Job 4:19 man is said to be "crushed before the moth" that is, more easily than the moth. There are also references to the destructiveness of this insect in Job 13:28; Ps 39:11; Isa 50:9; Isa 51:6, Jer 51:8; Hos 5:12; Matt 6:19-20; Jas 5:2. In Ps 6:7 the word "consumed" properly means "moth-eaten." As much of the treasure of the ancients consisted in costly garments, we may readily understand why the moth was considered so noxious an insect, and this will teach us the true import of our Saviour's words. Matt 6:19-20. It was common in Asia to lay up stores of precious garments, which descended as an inheritance to children, for their modes of dress never changed; but the moth was a formidable enemy to such treasures, so as to render it useless to take much pains to lay them up.

MOTH'ER. Besides in the literal sense, the word is used in the O.T. in reference to a grandmother, 1 Kgs 15:10, and a stepmother. Gen 37:10. It has also a poetical use, as applied to a political leader, Jud 5:7, a nation, as we say "mother-country." Jer 50:12; Eze 19:2. As the position of woman is always the test of the true civilization of a people, it is pleasing to notice in what respect and affection the mothers stood. See Prov 10:1; Gen 15:20; Prov 17:25; Prov 29:15; Prov 31:1, Prov 31:30, and compare the commands given by Moses. Ex 20:12; Deut 5:16; Gen 21:18, Deut 21:21; Lev 19:3. The queen-mother was in royal times a very much honored person. 1 Kgs 2:19. See Queen.

MOULD'Y, in Josh 9:5, Jud 4:12, properly means "crumbs."

MOUNT, MOUNTAIN, the translation of three words, of which the commonest, like our word, applies to both a single mountain and a range. The mountains mentioned in the Bible are Sinai, Ebal, Gerizim, Zion, and Olivet, and the range of Lebanon. Eze 18:6. Worship upon mountains was forbidden. Dean Stanley gives (Sinai and Palestine) the following list, quoted in Ayre's Treasury of Bible Knowledge, of Hebrew words used in reference to mountains or hills. It will be noticed the majority are in common use with us:

"Head, rosh, Gen 8:5; Ex 19:20; Deut 34:1; 1 Kgs 18:42 (A.V. 'top'). Of a hill (gibeah), Ex 17:9-10.

"Ears, aznoth, Aznoth-tabor, Josh 19:34; possibly in allusion to some projection on the top of the mountain.

"Shoulder, chuteph, Deut 33:12; Josh 15:8; Josh 18:16 ('side'), all referring to the hills on which Jerusalem is placed. Josh 15:10, 'the side of Mount Jearim.'

"Side, tzad (see the word for the 'side' of a man in 2 Sam 2:16; Eze 4:4, etc.). Used in reference to a mountain in 1 Sam 23:26; 2 Sam 13:34.

"Loins or flanks, chisloth, Chisloth-tabor. Josh 19:12, and occurs also in the name of a village, probably situated on this part of the mountain, Ha-chesulloth - i.e. the 'loins,' Josh 19:18.

"Rib, tzelah. Only used once, in speaking of the Mount of Olives, 2 Sam 16:13, and there translated "side.'

"Back, shechem. Probably the root of the name of the town Shechem, which may be derived from its situation, as it were, on the back of Gerizim.

"Elbow, ammah. The same word as that for 'cubit.' It occurs in 2 Sam 2:24 as the name of a hill near Gibeon.

"Thigh, yarchah (see the word for the 'thigh' of a man in Jud 3:16,2 Chr 11:21), Applied to Mount Ephraim, Jud 19:1, 1 Sam 30:18, and to Lebanon. 2 Kgs 19:23; Isa 37:24. Used also for the 'sides' of a cave. 1 Sam 24:3.

"The word translated 'covert' in 1 Sam 25:20 is aether, from eathar, to hide, ... and probably refers to the shrubbery or thicket through which Abigail's path 588 lay. In this passage 'hill' should be 'mountain.'"

MOURN, MOURNERS. The Hebrews, at the death of their friends and relations, gave all possible demonstrations of grief and mourning. Gen 50:10. They wept, tore their clothes, smote their breasts, fasted and lay upon the ground, went barefooted, pulled their hair and beards or cut them, and made incisions on their breasts or tore them with their nails. Lev 19:28; Jud 21:5; Deut 14:1; Jer 16:6. The time of mourning was commonly seven days, but it was lengthened or shortened according to circumstances. That for Moses and Aaron was prolonged to thirty days. Num 20:29; Deut 34:8. They mourned excessively for an only son, as his death cut off the name of the family. Zech 12:10.

The priest mourned only for near relatives, but the high priest for none. Lev 21:1-12.

During the time of their mourning they continued sitting in their houses and ate on the ground. The food they took was thought unclean, and even themselves were judged impure. Hos 9:4. Their faces were covered, and in all that time they could not apply themselves to any occupation, or read the book of the Law, or say their usual prayers. They did not dress themselves, or make their beds, or uncover their heads, or shave, or cut their nails, or go into the bath, or salute anybody. Nobody spoke to them unless they spoke first. Job 2:11-13. Their friends commonly went to visit and comfort them, bringing them food. They also went up to the roof or upon the platform of their houses to bewail their loss. Isa 15:3. They sometimes went to the graves to lament their dead, and so the Oriental women do at this day. The Jews had a kind of prayer, or rather benediction of God, as of Him who raises the dead, which they repeated as they mourned, or even passed the graves of their dead.

The mourning-habit among the Hebrews was not fixed either by law or custom. Anciently, in times of mourning, they clothed themselves in sackcloth or haircloth - that is, in coarse or ill-made clothes, or brown or black stuff. 2 Sam 3:31.

They hired women to weep and mourn, and also persons to play on instruments, at the funerals of the Hebrews. Jer 9:17; Matt 9:23. All that met a funeral procession or a company of mourners

Eastern Mourners at the Grave.

were to join them as a matter of civility, and to mingle their tears with those who wept. Something like this is still customary in Turkey and Persia, where he who meets the funeral takes the place of one of the bearers, and assists in carrying the bier until they meet some one by whom he is relieved.

The custom of hiring women to weep and mourn is common at this day in many of the Eastern nations. See Burial.

The wailing of the Jews at the exposed part of the foundation-wall of the temple every Friday is a curiosity, particularly because it shows how customs of lamentation can be handed down, for they mourned in the same spot in Jerome's day.

MOUSE (the corn-eater). Tristram found twenty-three species of mice in Palestine. In Lev 11:29, and Isa 66:17 this word is doubtless used generically, including as unclean even the larger rat, jerboa, dormouse, and sandrat. Mice are often in the East nearly as destructive to the crops as locusts. They made great havoc in the fields of the Philistines after that people had taken the ark of the Lord. 1 Sam 6:4-5.

In the twelfth century they destroyed the young sprouts of grain in some parts of Syria for four successive years and 589 came near to producing a general famine, and they abound in those regions at the present day. A modern traveller, in speaking of Hamath, says: "The western part of its territory is the granary of Northern Syria, though the harvest never yields more than ten for one, chiefly in consequence of the immense numbers of mice, which sometimes wholly destroy the crops."

MOWING means reaping with a sickle, for the heat dries up' the grass before it is high enough for the scythe. Ps 129:7.

MOW'INGS, KING'S. Grass cut with a sickle (never with a scythe) was used in Palestine for "soiling" cattle, but not made into hay, as in colder countries. The "mower" was always a reaper. Amos 7:1, seems to allude to some right of the king to the first grass in certain districts for his cavalry horses.

MO'ZA (a going forth).

  1. The second son of Caleb, the son of Hezron, by his concubine Ephah. 1 Chr 2:46.

  2. A descendant of Saul. 1 Chr 8:36-37; 1 Chr 9:42-43.

MO'ZAH (going forth), a town of Benjamin, Josh 18:26; possibly modern Beit Mizza, 5 miles north-west of Jerusalem, on the Jaffa road.

MUF'FLERS are supposed to have been a covering for the face such as is now worn by women of the East. Isa 3:19.

MUL'BERRY TREES. All agree that this is a mistranslation, but many different renderings are suggested. Some of the best recent authorities advocate the aspen or poplar, a few species of which grow in Palestine. The "going" in the tree-tops, which was to be the sign that God went out before the host, 2 Sam 5:23-24, may have been the rustle of these leaves, which are proverbial for their readiness to tremble before the slightest breeze.

MULE, the name of the offspring of the horse and the ass. 2 Sam 13:29. It is smaller than the former, and is a remarkably hardy, patient, obstinate, sure-footed animal, living ordinarily twice as long as a horse. Mules are much used in Spain and South America for transporting goods across the mountains. So also in the Alps they are used by travellers among the mountains where a horse would hardly be able to pass with safety. In the United States mules are much used for draught.

Even the kings and most distinguished nobles of the Jews were accustomed to ride upon mules. See passage above cited, and also 2 Sam 18:9; 1 Kgs 1:33; 1 Kgs 10:25; 1 Kgs 18:5; 2 Chr 9:24; Esth 8:10, 2 Kgs 22:14. It is probable that the Jews purchased, but did not raise, mules. Lev 19:19.

MUP'PIM (serpent ?), a descendant of Benjamin, Gen 46:21; called Shupham in Num 26:39.

MUR'DER. The Jewish law calls a murderer one who slays another from enmity, hatred, or by lying in wait. Otherwise it is manslaughter, but the avenger of blood might kill the unintentional murderer if he overtook him before he reached the city of refuge. For intentional murder there was no pardon; the city of refuge, and even the altar, furnished no asylum, nor might money be taken in satisfaction. Ex 21:14, Ex 21:28-29; Num 35:30-32; 1 Kgs 2:5-6, 1 Kgs 2:28-34. It was one of the most odious and abominable crimes, Deut 19:13; John 21:9; Num 35:33-34, and was a subject of early and severe legislation. Gen 9:6. See Cities of Refuge.

A remarkable regulation made it legal to kill a housebreaker taken at night in the act, but murder if killed during the day. Ex 22:2-3. For the punishment of murder see Punishments.

MUR'RAIN. Ex 9:3. See Plagues of Egypt.

MU'SHI (forsaking), the son of Merari, the son of Kohath. Ex 6:19; Num 3:20; 1 Chr 6:19, 1 Chr 6:47; 1 Chr 23:21, 1 Chr 23:23; 1 Chr 24:26, 1 Chr 24:30.

MU'SHITES, THE, descendants of Mushi. Num 3:33; Num 26:58.

MUS'IC. 1 Sam 18:6. This was an important part of the festivities and religious services of the Jews. In their annual pilgrimages to Jerusalem their march was thus enlivened. Isa 30:29. This is still the custom in Oriental pilgrimages. The practice of music was not restricted to anv one class of persons. 1 Chr 13:8; 1 Chr 15:16. The sons of Asaph, Heman, and Jeduthun were set apart by David for the musical service, and "the number of them, with their brethren, that were instructed in the songs of the Lord" was two hundred and eighty-eight. They were divided, like 590 the priests, into twenty-four courses, which are enumerated. 1 Chr 25. Of the 38,000 Levites, "four thousand praised the Lord with the instruments," 1 Chr 23:5, being more than one in ten of the whole available members of the tribe of Levi. Each of the courses or classes had one hundred and fifty-four

Stringed Instruments, Cymbals, etc.

musicians and three leaders, and all were under the general direction of Asaph and his brethren. Each course served for a week, but upon the festivals all were required to be present, or four thousand musicians. Heman, with one of his leaders, directed the central choir,

Wind Instruments and Sistrum.

Asaph the right, and Jeduthun the left wing. These several choirs answered one another, as is generally supposed, in that kind of alternate singing which is called "antiphonal," or responsive. The priests, in the mean time, performed upon the silver trumpets. 2 Chr 5:11-14; Num 10:2. It is necessary to suppose that, to ensure harmony from such a number of voices as this, some musical notes were used. This truly regal direction of sacred music continued after the death of David until the Captivity; for though under the impious reign of some kings the whole of these solemnities fell into disuse, they were revived by Hezekiah and Josiah. And although during the Exile the sweet singers of Israel hanged their harps upon the willows by the waters of Babylon, yet two hundred musicians returned with Ezra to the Holy Land. Ezr 2:65.

Musical Instruments. Eccl 2:8. They were invented by Jubal, the son of Lamech, Gen 4:21, and had appropriate names. Gen 31:27. They may be divided into three classes - stringed instruments, wind instruments, and such as gave their sounds on being struck. Of stringed instruments were the harp, the instrument of ten strings, the sackbut, and the psaltery. They are described under their proper names.

The instruments of music mentioned in 1 Sam 18:6 as used by women are supposed to have been metallic triangles, as the name indicates. The instrument of ten strings resembled a modern guitar, having its strings stretched over something not unlike a drum; and it was played with the fingers. See separate titles.

MUS'TARD. Matt 13:31-32; Matt 17:20; Luke 17:6. There can no longer be any question that this plant is the black mustard (Sinapis nigra), which often grows wild in our own country. In the fertile and warm soil of Palestine, especially when cultivated, this herb must have reached considerable size. Dr. Thomson has seen it there as tall as the horse and his rider, and the ground near the Sea of Galilee is often "gilded over with its yellow flowers." The Bible does not say, as is often supposed, that the birds build nests in the mustard, but only that they lodge there, as they often do in much smaller plants. Flocks of 591 goldfinches and linnets are accustomed to settle in these plants and eat the seed, of which they are very fond. "Small as a grain of mustard-seed" was a proverbial expression of which Christ made use. Divested of the Orientalisms of the language, which our Saviour used in

Mustard. (Sinapis nigra. After Dr. Carruthers.)

popular teaching, the following is an accurate paraphrase of his well-known parable, as suggested in Smith's Bible Dictionary: "The gospel dispensation is like a grain of mustard-seed which a man sowed in his garden; which indeed is one of the least of all seeds, but which, when it springs up, becomes a tall branched plant, on the branches of which the birds come and settle, seeking their food."

MUTH-LAB'BEN, in the title to Ps 9, is thus explained by the Rev. A.R. Fausset: "Labben is an anagram for Nabal, 'the fool' or 'wicked,' concerning the dying (ninth) of the fool." This interpretation harmonizes well with the contents of the Psalm. But the titles to the Psalms are often enigmas.

MY'RA (flowing, weeping), an ancient port in Lycia, on the south-west coast of Asia Minor. Acts 27:5. It was on the river Andriacus, about 2 1/2 miles from its mouth. The magnificent ruins of the city stand upon a hill not far from the sea.

MYRRH, a gum, the thickened sap of a low thorny tree (Balsamodendron opsobalsamum) which grows chiefly in Arabia. Myrrh is sold for medical purposes in small globules of a white or yellow color, of a strong and agreeable smell, but a bitter taste. It was an ingredient of the holy ointment, Ex 30:23, and of the embalming substance.

Myrrh. (Balsamodendron. After Dr. Birdwood.)

John 19:89. It was also used as an agreeable perfume, Esth 2:12; Ps 45:8; Prov 7:17, and a valuable gift. Matt 2:1,Rev 1:11. In Matt 27:34 it is said that they gave Jesus to drink vinegar mixed 592 with gall, which, in Mark 15:23, is called wine mingled with myrrh. It was probably the sour wine which the Roman soldiers used to drink mingled with myrrh and other bitter substances, very much like the bitters of modern times.

The myrrh of Gen 37:25; Gen 43:11 represents a different Hebrew word, and, being brought from Palestine or Gilead, was doubtless another substance - probably Gum ladanum, obtained from the cistus, a shrubby plant growing in those districts. This gum is sold in dark-colored, soft masses, of a more agreeable odor than opium, and possessing similar, though weaker, medical properties, for which it was valued.

MYR'TLE, a beautiful, fragrant, and ornamental shrub (Myrtus communis),

Myrtle. (Myrtus communis.)

which abounds in Northern Palestine and once grew about Jerusalem. "In the bazaars of Jerusalem and Damascus the dried flowers, leaves, and berries of the myrtle are to be seen in separate heaps, offered for sale as a perfume, and a fragrant water is distilled from the blossom. Both leaves, bark, and root are used in Damascus for tanning the finest leather, and give it a delicate scent." - Tristram. The seeds of a tropical species of the myrtle, collected and dried before they are ripe, are called pimento, or allspice. For the rich hue of its green polished leaves, its agreeable fragrance and beautiful flowers, this shrub is used by the Bible writers, in contrast with the noxious, useless brier, to illustrate the prosperity and glory of the Church. Isa 41:19; Isa 55:13; Zech 1:8-11. The myrtle furnished the wreaths of ancient heroes and victors. Branches of the myrtle were gathered, among others, to cover the booths and tents of the Jews at the celebration of the feast of tabernacles. Lev 23:40; Neh 8:15.

MY'SIA (beech region ?), a province in the north-western angle of Asia Minor, and separated from Europe by the Propontis and the Hellespont, having Lydia on the south, Bithynia on the east, and including the Troad. Mysia was anciently celebrated for its fertility, and it is at this day a beautiful and fertile country, but poorly tilled. Acts 16:7-8; Acts 20:5.

MYS'TERY, in the N.T. usage, is a spiritual truth hitherto hidden, incapable of discovery by mere reason, but now revealed, though yet beyond the full understanding of our finite intelligence. The Greek word means "secret doctrine," and is mostly used in the plural ("the mysteries"), denoting certain religious ceremonies and celebrations. The gospel is termed a "mystery," because it was long hidden. Eph 3:9; Col 1:26; 1 Tim 3:9. In the same sense various doctrines are called mysteries, Rom 11:25; 1 Cor 15:51; Eph 1:9; 1 Tim 3:16, and truths as well which required elucidation and received it. Matt 13:11; 1 Cor 13:2. Again, the import of the seven stars and seven candlesticks. Rev 1:20, of the woman arrayed in scarlet, Josh 17:7, the deeper significance of marriage, as symbolizing the union of Christ and his Church, Eph 5:32, are mysteries.

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