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Ebal

Meaning: stony

This is the name of a mountain and 2 biblical men.

  1. Mount Ebal, a limestone mountain 3,076 feet above the level of the sea, and 1,200 feet above the level of the valley, on the north side of which stood the ancient city of Shechem

    Hebrew: הר עיבל‎ —transliteration: Har ‘Eival

    Satellite view of Mount Ebal in Israel (West Bank) / The modern name of the city of Shechem is Nablus.

    On this mountain, 6 of the tribes (Deuteronomy 27:12-13) were appointed to stand and respond according to the orders of Moses, where the law was read by the Levites (11:29; 29:4, 13).

    When you cross the Jordan, these shall stand on Mount Gerizim to bless the people: Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Joseph, and Benjamin.

    For the curse, these shall stand on Mount Ebal: Reuben, Gad, Asher, Zebulun, Dan, and Naphtali. —Deuteronomy 27:12-13 NASB

    After miraculously conquering Jericho and Ai, Joshua assembled all the Israelites between the 2 mountains of Shechem—Mount Ebal and Mount Gerizim.

    At that time Joshua built an altar to the Lord, the God of Israel, on Mount Ebal, just as Moses the servant of the Lord had commanded the people of Israel, as it is written in the Book of the Law of Moses, “an altar of uncut stones, upon which no man has wielded an iron tool.”

    And they offered on it burnt offerings to the Lord and sacrificed peace offerings.

    And there, in the presence of the people of Israel, he wrote on the stones a copy ofthe law of Moses, which he had written.

    And all Israel, sojourner as well as native born, with their elders and officers and their judges, stood on opposite sides of the ark before the Levitical priests who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord, half of them in front of Mount Gerizim and half of them in front of Mount Ebal, just as Moses the servant of the Lord had commanded at the first, to bless the people of Israel.

    And afterward he read all the words of the law, the blessing and the curse, according to all that is written in the Book of the Law. There was not a word of all that Moses commanded that Joshua did not read before all the assembly of Israel, and the women, and the little ones, and the sojourners who lived among them. —Joshua 8:30-35 ESV

    This mountain was also the site of the first great altar erected to Jehovah (Deuteronomy 27:5-8; Joshua 8:30-35).

    After this, the name of Mount Ebal does not again occur in Jewish history.

    Also see:

  2. Ebal, a descendant of Eber (1 Chronicles 1:22)

    He is also called Obal (Genesis 10:28)

  3. Ebal, a descendant of Seir the Horite (Genesis 36:23)

Article Version: September 3, 2017