& Meaning •
Meaning and etymology of the name Mesha
There are two versions of the name Mesha, or rather: in English two different Hebrew names are transliterated as the same Mesha. In Hebrew these two names are pronounced different and they mean different things too.
Mesha I ( - indeed pronounced as Mesha).
This version of the name Mesha is ascribed twice in the Bible. It's the name of a port city on the Red Sea, and mentioned first as a border of the territory of the sons of Joktan (Genesis 10:30). Mesha is also the name of a Benjaminite, a son of Shaharaim and Hodesh (1 Chronicles 8:9).
This version of the name Mesha comes from the verb (mush) meaning depart, remove. The verb occurs 20 times in the OT, denoting how God will not depart from Israel (Exodus 13:22), or the removal of sin from Israel (Zech 3:9). The form (mush) also means to feel, as in touch and recognize (Genesis 27:21; Psalm 115:7; Judges 16:26). Note the similarities with the names Mash and Moses.
For a meaning of this name Mesha, both NOBS Study Bible Name List and Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names both read Retreat.
Mesha II ( - pronounced Mesha' or Meshaq).
This version of the name Mesha is ascribed to the first born son of Caleb (1 Chronicles 2:42) who was also the father of Ziph. Mesha is also the name of a king of Moab, who was buddies with the notorious king Ahab of Israel but not with Ahab's son Jehoram (2 Kings 3:4-5).
The name Mesha written with the ayin looks like it has to do with the verb (yasha), meaning to be saved or delivered. The letter mem may come from the participle form, which is used to indicate that the action of the verb is ongoing: Saving, Delivering.
For a meaning of this version of the name Mesha, Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names reads Salvation. NOBS Study Bible Name List makes no distinction between the two versions.
Related names are
Shoa / Shua(h).
And also related is the word Hosanna.
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