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Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible


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RIZPAH . Daughter of Aiah, concubine of Saul, seized by the ambitious Abner after he had placed Ishbosheth (Ishbaal) on the throne. When accused by the king, Abner, who was the real ruler of Israel, promptly proffered the Northern Kingdom to David ( 2 Samuel 3:6 f.). A three years’ famine was divined to be due to the displeasure of Jehovah at the slaughter of the Gibeonites by Saul. When David inquired what expiation he should make, the Gibeonites refused money compensation, but demanded descendants of Saul to expose before Jehovah. The king gave them two of Rizpah’s, and three of Michal’s (Merab’s) sons, who were slain and exposed on Mount Gibeah ( 2 Samuel 21:1-14 ). Rizpah spread sackcloth on the rock, a sign that the land repented, and watched the dead till the anger of Jehovah relented and the rain came. Her vigil ended, she was at liberty to perform the rite of burial.

J. H. Stevenson.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Bibliography Information
Hastings, James. Entry for 'Rizpah'. Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible. 1909.

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