Moresheth-Gath

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Moresheth (Hebrew: מוֹרֶשֶׁת גַּת), also known as Moreseth-Gath, was a town of the tribe of Judah in ancient Israel mentioned in the Bible. It was located in the Shephelah region between Lachish and Achzib.

History[edit]

It is mentioned as the home town of the prophet Micah in the Biblical Book of Micah [1] and Book of Jeremiah.[2] The town was possibly also connected with Eliezer the prophet,[3] and may have been one of Rehoboams fortified towns [4][5] When mentioned in the bible, it is oft in connection with Lachish,[6] Keilah, Akzib and Mareshah.[7]

It may also be the city Muchrashti,[8] mentioned in the Amarna letters,[9] and not coincidentally, as the town was located on an important route to Egypt and the south, explaining its fortification by Rehoboam.[10]

Its strategic location lead to its capture by Sennacherib in his attack on Judah in 701 BC.[11] and later both Saladin and Vespasian camped nearby on the eve of sacking Jerusalem. [12]

Name[edit]

The name Moreseth-Gath means “possession of Gath", leading to speculation of a subservient relationship with the Philistine City. [13] However, among Jewish commentators, only Abraham ibn Ezra and David Kimhi consider Moresheth-gath as the name of a place. The Targum of Jonathan and Rashi translate these two words as by "those who caused you to inherit Gath" meaning the family of David, while Wellhausen renders the passage in Micah "Thou must let go Moresheth, O Gath."[14]

Location[edit]

  • Maresha. It was probably in the vicinity of Mareshah[21]) identification with which was discounted by Esusebius time.[22] However, although the text of Micah itself clearly differentiates identification with Mareshah there remains some support for this site.[23]
  • Some scholars have identified Tell Khirbat al-Bayḍā approximately 6 km) northeast of Maresha. While others suggest Tel-Goded near Maresha.[24] Tel-Goded is the today's Hebrew name of the Tell and is exactly 9.7 kilometres) southeast of Gath, thus most probably corresponding to Tell ej-Judeideh.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Micah 1:1 & 14
  2. ^ Jeremiah 26:18
  3. ^ 2 Chronicles 20:37
  4. ^ 2 Chronicles 11:8
  5. ^ Trent Butler, Holman Bible Dictionary
  6. ^ Micah 1:13-15
  7. ^ Joshua 15:44
  8. ^ Trent Butler, Holman Bible Dictionary
  9. ^ Bruce K. Waltke, A Commentary on Micah, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing page 39
  10. ^ 2 Chronicles 11:5-12
  11. ^ Micah 1:14
  12. ^ By John Phillips, Exploring the Minor Prophets: An Expository Commentary Kregel Academic page 161
  13. ^ Charles S. Shaw,The Speeches of Micah: A Rhetorical-Historical Analysis, Continuum International Publishing Group Page 45
  14. ^ Jewish Encyclopaedia
  15. ^ Charles S. Shaw,The Speeches of Micah: A Rhetorical-Historical Analysis, Continuum International Publishing Group Page 45
  16. ^ James D. G. Dunn, John William Rogerson, Eerdmans Commentary on the Bible,Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Page 703
  17. ^ Jerome, prologue to his commentary on Micah
  18. ^ Pilgrimage of St. Paula and Eustochium, ch. 14
  19. ^ Historia Ecclesiastica 9:17
  20. ^ Esusebius' Onomasticon
  21. ^ Micah 1:15
  22. ^ William George Smith, John Mee Fuller, Encyclopaedic dictionary of the Bible, Concept Publishing Company Page 422
  23. ^ William McClure Thomson, The Land and the Book, Volume 2 p360.
  24. ^ Moresheth Gath in Bible Places, also in "The Land of the Bible, A historical geography", page 439, by Yohanan Aharoni