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Mizpah
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Mizpah

Mizpah - or Miz'peh, watch-tower; the look-out.

Several places in ancient Israel:

(1.) A place in Gilead, so named by Laban, who overtook Jacob at this spot (Gen. 31:49) on his return to Palestine from Padan-aram. Here Jacob and Laban set up their memorial cairn of stones to serve both as a witness to the covenant then entered into and as a landmark of the boundary between them.

(2.) A town in Gilead, where Jephthah resided, and where he assumed the command of the Israelites in a time of national danger. Here he made his rash vow; and here his daughter submitted to her mysterious fate (Judg. 10:17; 11:11, 34). Some scholars say it may be the same as Ramoth-Gilead (Josh. 20:8), and it is also believed by some that it is identical with the foregoing, the Mizpeh of Gen. 31:23, 25, 48, 49.

(3.) A region in Gilead, at the foot of Mount Hermon, inhabited by Hivites (Josh. 11:3, 8). The name in Hebrew here has the article before it, "the Mizpeh," "the watch-tower." The modern village of Metullah, meaning also "the look-out," probably occupies the site so called.

(4.) A town of Moab to which David removed his parents for safety during his persecution by Saul (1 Sam. 22:3). This was probably the same as Kir-Moab, now Kerak.

(5.) A city of Benjamin. It has been supposed to be the same as Nob by some scholars (1 Sam. 21:1; 22:9-19). It was some 4 miles north-west of Jerusalem, and was situated on the loftiest hill in the neighbourhood, some 600 feet above the plain of Gibeon. Tell en-Nasbeh is probably to be identified with Biblical Mizpah of Benjamin. When the Levite's concubine was raped by the men of Gibeah, the sons of Israel met at Mizpah of Benjamin, where they decided to attack the men of Benjamin for this grievous sin (Judg 20:1-11). After the debacle at Aphek, where they lost the ark to the Philistines, Samuel gathered all Israel to Mizpah to offer sacrifices to the Lord and ask Him to forgive their sin. To memorialize this event, Samuel set up a stone between Mizpah and Shen and named it Eben-Ezer ("stone of help"), because the Lord had helped them (1 Sam 7:5-12). Samuel gathered the people of Israel to Mizpah for the Lord to identify their first king. There, Saul was chosen by lot from all the tribes and families of Israel (1 Sam 10:17-24). After the Babylonians had destroyed Jerusalem, they appointed Gedaliah governor in Mizpah over the remaining residents. Many returned to Mizpah from where they had fled. The prophet Jeremiah came to Mizpah from Ramah, where the Babylonians had released him. Later Ishmael, a member of the royal family, assassinated Gedaliah. Despite Jeremiah's warning that the people would be a reproach and die if they went to Egypt, they persisted in going there (2 Kgs 25:23-26; Jer 40:6- 42:22).

(6.)Mizpeh, a city of Judah, (Joshua 15:38 ) in the district of the Shephelah or maritime lowland.