THE MESHA INSCRIPTION
Good afternoon my fine friends!
Finally! It has cooled down here with a great thunderstorm yesterday and impeding rain right now. How very grateful we all are for this moisture. The land needed it so bad, many native plants have already wilted away. So sad and such a fire hazard. Since one year ago we have had only six days of rain and half of those were only scattered showers. Thank you, Jesus!
Speaking of thunderstorms, great thunderstorms of discrepancies erupted and still are presented concerning the Mesha Inscription…
Mesha, if you remember in 2Kings chapter 3, is the ruler of the small kingdom of Moab in the mid 800’s BC. Moab is located east of the Dead Sea on a high plateau. “He was a contemporary of Jehoshaphat, king of the southern kingdomof Judah (870–848 BC), and Joram, king of the northern kingdom of Israel (852–841 BC). Everything we know about Mesha from the Bible is recorded in 2 Kings 3. But we know a lot more about him from a record he left us, referred to as the Mesha Inscription, or Moabite Stone. It was discovered in Dhiban, Jordan, in 1868 by a French Anglican medical missionary by the name of F.A. Klein.”
Both the Bible and the inscription document the same event; the revolt of Mesha. However, each is recorded from different perspectives. The stela (stone slab) is three feet high and two feet wide. It had been broken into pieces shortly after it was discovered in 1868 by medical missionary F. A. Klein. Fortunately, an impression had been made before the stela was destroyed which greatly aided in the stela’s reconstruction. All but the last line (line 34) was able to be reconstructed.
The inscription records so closely the events, and the language, terminology and phraseology, are so much the same as the old testament that it could have been a chapter in the holy scriptures. The main difference is that “Mesha credits his successful revolt and recapture of Moabite territory, as well as other accomplishments, to Chemosh, national god of Moab. He does not, of course, record his defeat in the south at the hands of the coalition armies. Similarly, although the Bible records Mesha’s revolt, it gives no details on his successes. So each record, accurate in its own way, records events from a different perspective.”2
Many names and places are mentioned on the inscription that are also mentioned in the Bible. For example, the Arnon Gorge, the cities of Dibon and Qeriho, and people such as Ormi, Ahab, Joram, Ataroth, Nebo, Jahaz, Horanaim and even mentions Yahweh. Mesha mentions the Moabs raise sheep which the Bible also speaks of and of battle descriptions of several wars all of which the Bible speaks of.
But the most significant, and what has caused the most controversy, is Line 31. “At about the same time the Dan stela was found, French scholar Andre Lemaire was working on the Mesha Inscription and determined that the same phrase appeared there in line 31 (Bible and Spade, Summer 1995: 91–92). Lemaire was able to identify a previously indistinguishable letter as a ‘d’ in the phrase ‘House of David.’ This phrase is used a number of times in the Old Testament for the Davidic dynasty.”
What a stunning piece of history, of evidence that the Bible is true, real, factual, history! And along with the Dan stela, the authenticity of the Old Testament can no longer be disputed! God’s timing is superb!
Until next time, take care and God bless,
Mesha Inscription photo; By Unknown - Mbzt 2012, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=22090379