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Bible Dictionaries

Morrish Bible Dictionary

Mephibosheth

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1. Son of Jonathan, the son of Saul. When five years old he fell from his nurse's arms or shoulder, and became lame on both his feet. When David came into power he inquired if there were any of Saul's descendants to whom he could show the kindness of God for Jonathan's sake, and Mephibosheth was found. All that had been Saul's possessions were given to Mephibosheth under the care of Ziba as his servant, and Mephibosheth was made to sit at the king's table continually. David and Jonathan had made a league together as to their seed. 1 Samuel 20:15,42 . David fully respected this and far exceeded it, for it was true grace in him to bring Mephibosheth to sit at his table.

When Absalom revolted, Ziba brought presents to David, and slandered Mephibosheth, saying that he sought the kingdom. David thereupon gave to Ziba all the possessions of Mephibosheth; but on hearing subsequently Mephibosheth's explanations, David divided the inheritance between them. His doing this, and the way he answered Mephibosheth, "Why speakest thou any more of thy matters? I have said, Thou and Ziba divide the land," makes it doubtful whether David was quite convinced of Mephibosheth's innocence. While the king was away Mephibosheth had not dressed his feet, nor trimmed his beard, nor washed his clothes; and when David decided that the land should be divided, he said, "Yea, let him take all, forasmuch as my lord the king is come again in peace." When Saul's descendants were required for a recompense to the Gibeonites David spared Mephibosheth for Jonathan's sake, nor was he mentioned when the king died. 2 Samuel 4:4; 2 Samuel 9:3-13; 2 Samuel 16:1-4; 2 Samuel 19:24-30; 2 Samuel 21:7 . In 1 Chronicles 8:34; 1 Chronicles 9:40 he is called MERIB-BAAL, 'Baal contendeth.'

2. Son of Saul and Rizpah: he and his brother Armoni were among the seven given up to death, on account of the famine that God brought upon the land because Saul's sin against the Gibeonites had not been atoned for. Rizpah protected the bodies by day and by night, until David caused their remains to be buried with those of Saul and Jonathan. 2 Samuel 21:8-14 .

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Bibliography Information
Morrish, George. Entry for 'Mephibosheth'. Morrish Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/mbd/m/mephibosheth.html. 1897.

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