The Various Shapes of Moab in the Book of Numbers: Relating Text and Archaeology
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This paper explores the boundaries of Moab as depicted in the book of Numbers, with particular focus on the confusing details of Numbers 21. Combining archaeological, historical and literary methods, the paper argues that two different conceptions of Moab can be discerned, and that it is the interplay between these two conceptions that have traditionally caused scholars difficulties. The cause for these two conceptions arose from the literary problem of Israel's conquest of the land typically labelled, »the plains of Moab« and Deut 2:9's command that Israel must not harass the Moabites, which resulted in the plains of Moab being made the land of the Amorites.