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Bible Dictionaries

Holman Bible Dictionary


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(mass' ssuh) Place name meaning, “to test, try.” Stopping place during the wilderness wandering near the base of Mount Horeb (Sinai). Moses gave the name in response to the people's desire to put God to the test by demanding water (Exodus 17:7 ). Massah became a reminder of Israel's disobedience or hardness of heart (Deuteronomy 6:16; Deuteronomy 9:22; Psalm 95:8 ). Massah often appears together with Meribah (meaning “to strive with, contend, find fault with”; Exodus 17:7; Deuteronomy 33:8; Psalm 95:8 ). Deuteronomy 33:8 gives a poetic account of the origin of the Levitical priesthood at Massah.

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Copyright Statement
These dictionary topics are from the Holman Bible Dictionary, published by Broadman & Holman, 1991. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman & Holman.

Bibliography Information
Butler, Trent C. Editor. Entry for 'Massah'. Holman Bible Dictionary. 1991.

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