The Oracle Concerning Moab

15:1 to 16:14

    For centuries Moab, east of the Dead Sea, had been the enemy of Isra'el. In Israel’s wilderness wanderings, Moabite women seduced Isra'el’s men (Numbers 31:15-17). In the time of the Judges, Israel was oppressed by Moab for eighteen years (Judges3: 12-14). Saul fought Moab (First Samuel 14:47) and David defeated Moab (Second Samuel 8:2 and 12). Solomon was influenced by his wives to build an altar to Moab’s god Chemosh (First Kings 11:7-8). Mesha, Moab’s king, had to pay tribute to Ahab, king of Isra'el (Second Kings 3:4). After Ahab died in 853 BC Mesha rebelled against Joram but was defeated (Second Kings 3:5-27). The destruction of Moab described in Isaiah, Chapters 15 and 16, caused the Moabites, under Assyrian attack, to flee south to Edom. The thrust of the oracle is to discourage Judah from attempting to join forces with Moab for security. Ultimately Moab will be reduced to hopeless poverty and be forced to rely on Judah’s only hope: the Messiah (16:5).

 

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