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Psalms, Samuel's History, were originally thus written. Further, perhaps, it may be over-bold to go; but a suspicion forces itself on us that in the characters of which the traces are before us to-day, we see the forms of the letters in which, more than three thousand years ago, the Pentateuch itself was penned, and which the “finger of God” impressed upon the two tables."
The following is the alphabet of the Moabite Stone, which can be compared with Mr. Mills's alphabet of the writing of the Old Roll of the Samaritan Pentateuch, and the Phænician alphabet, and its likeness to them will be seen at once.
MOABITE ALPHABET, 900 B.C.
w Ý 7 H I Y J A 4*
h dg ba XW A * * 197
en EU A FI Ir 9 x
b d gb a
THE PHENICIAN ALPHABET, 200 YEARS LATER THAN THE MOABITE,
k tz p 0 8 0 m It will hereby be observed that God gave and also preserved to these descendants of Shem a simple and short alphabet ; while apparently the great heathen nations had sought out many inventions for themselves soon after the confusion of Babel, as Dr. Birch tells us at this day of 900 hieroglyphic characters for ancient Egypt, and Sir Henry Rawlinson of 400 for ancient Assyria, while the original Chinese language is said to demand eighteen years of study to master its interminable signs.
Mr. Deutsch, of the British Museum, speaks of the Moabite Stone as “a most important find.” He remarks that it "illustrates to a hitherto unheard-of degree the history of our own European writing, that which we all use at this hour, for the originals of nearly the whole of the Greek, Roman, and other alphabets are found in these Moabite letters. This Stone takes us nearer to the derivation of our written characters than any other document or monument than has yet been found.”
Let us just collect what we know of the history of MOAB from the Bible.
The following are the names of Moabite persons preserved in our Sacred Volume :
Zippor, Balak, Eglon, Ruth, Orpah, Ithmah, Shomer, Sanballat, Mesha the king, and Chemosh the deity of the nation.
The names of MESHA and CHEMOSH are both prominent on this Moabite Stone.
The King MESHA of the Moabite Stone, who carved its characters, consummated the horrible offering of his own child to Chemosh, god of the Moabites, in the times of Elisha the prophet ; but he set up his monument to his own glory, and
related his previous victories over Israel some time before ; he vanishes out of history " with that act of supreme despair.”
MOABITE PLACES NAMED IN SCRIPTURE.
ASHTAROTH, ARNON (the river), AR-MOAB, AROER, BAMOTHBAAL, BAAL-MEON, Beth-DIBLATHAIM, Bozor, DIBON, Eglaim, HORONAIM, Kır or Kerak, KIRJATHAIM, Kirjath Huzoth, Kirharazeth, KERIOTH, KIRIATHAIM, Lubith, MEDEBA, Min-rim, NOBAH (Nebo), Pisgah, Peor, Zophim, Zoar.
The SIXTEEN names of places printed in capitals, i.e., twothirds of the whole number of twenty-five, mentioned in Scripture, are found also on this wonderful old Stone, imperfect as it is, through its breakage by the Arabs, inscribed nearly 3,000 years ago, though only just revealed to modern eyes. It contains internal evidence of its own date, from the nature of the record, which may be divided into three parts: the first describing the victories of Mesha over Israel ; the second, the buildings and erections of the said king; and the third, commencing the recital of a battle in the south towards Edom.
This Stone gives the history, from the Moabite point of view, of the rebellion of that king Mesha, who, after a struggle of uncertain duration, which is first noticed in a single verse of the Bible (2 Kings i. 1), was finally overcome by the combined armies of Judah and Israel.
The most interesting particular concerning this MOABITE STONE, after all, is its mention of the name of the God of the Hebrews, JEHOVAH, by its most ancient orthography, Yahveh (literally “ HE WHO WILL BE,” also “I AM"), the name which God adopts to all generations, as the memorial of His future purposes concerning Israel, is in itself a continual prophecy which was fulfilled in Him who is the Alpha and the Omega of the Book of Revelation. Mesha declares in his audacity that he took away the sacred vessels of Yahveh, and dragged them before Chemosh. Our readers will consult his history (2 Kings xiv. 4—27); its date is 175 years before the casting out of Israel—721 B.C.
N.B.— Further particulars concerning this stone may be found in the Preface to the cheap edition of “STONES CRYING OUT," price 38. 6d., published by the Buok Society, Paternoster-row, London.
THE SCHOOL AND THE GOSPEL FOR THE BUSHMEN OF
AUSTRALIA, “It is certain that attention needs to be powerfully drawn to the very unsatisfactory state of the social conditions of the working class in the pastoral districts in Australia.
“The Squatters' servants are a very numerous body of men, thinly scattered over a vast extent of country, and consequently labour under very many disadvantages. For them there is no museum, no free public library, no botanical gardens, no recreation of any kind, no holidays save Christmas-day; they work from sunrise to sunset, and frequently draft stock, carry rations, &c., on the Sabbath, ‘for there is no Sunday in the bush. If you remonstrate you are plainly told that there are plenty of men who will make no objection to such a trifling matter. Virtually they are disfranchised ; they cannot leave their flocks and herds to the mercy of the wind while they ride forty or fifty miles to the polling place. They have no means of educating their children, although they contribute their quota to the revenue. They are so scattered that they cannot call sensational public meetings; they are powerless to help themselves in these matters.
Squatters, as a rule, ignore the fact that property has its duties as well as its rights,' their idea is, You work, I pay ; there the matter ends. The way they house and feed their men is a proof that dispathy, not sympathy, exists between masters and men. “ Let me sketch a washpool hut as I found it last season1,
-an old slab hut, with bark roof, earthen floor, myriads of fleas, 30 feet long by 12, the walls 6 feet high. In this hovel twenty-eight men are supposed to sleep, not for one night, but for weeks. The weather being very showery, they could not sleep in the open air ; where they all stowed themselves was a mystery to me, -some on the table, some underneath, some on hurdles placed on the cross beams and wall plates. Every available inch of ground was covered with that “God-like creature man' rolled in a blanket. Three slabs formed the table on which their food was placed, neither plates, knives, nor forks, and the scramble at meal times was simply disgusting. Yet this happened on a large station shearing fifty thousand sheep yearly, on which the owner has been living for the last thirty years, and he is not considered a bad employer; neither is accommodation such as I have attempted to describe exceptional.
“ As must be expected, the major part of the bush natives can neither read nor write, and those that can do so are but poor scholars. As for their morals, the less said the better; and as for entertaining any religious views, they are little better than infidels, although professing the religion of their fathers. There are hundreds of huts in the bush with no Bible, and thousands of men without religion of any kind. "The harvest is plentiful ; where are the reapers ?'
“I beg to offer the following suggestions that seem to me perfectly feasible :-On most stations there is a book-keeper whose duties are very light, and salaries small. Generally they are well-educated men, and their services might be utilized at a trifling cost to educate the station children, say four hours a day, four days in the week. They could also teach an adult class of an evening. Shepherds would gladly send their children in from the out-stations. The parents should pay a slight fee, the squatter find a schoolhouse, and the Council of Education find books and pay a small salary-201. a year. I know many stations where twenty or thirty children are now running about cursing and swearing, never having been to school, and, as things are at present, never likely to go.
“Oh! that some one would couch a lance on behalf of the Bushmen and their children, so that some attempt should be made to soften the hearts of their employers, that they may be induced to pay more attention to the comfort of their servants, and make some endeavours to rescue them from scepticism and vice, the inevitable fruits of ignorance. "New England, Australia, 14th October, 1871."
“ E. K. V.
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