International Standard Bible EncyclopediaMixed Multitude
MINGLED PEOPLE; (MIXED MULTITUDE)
(1) "Mixed multitude" occurs in Numbers 11:4 as a translation of asaphcuph, "collection," "rabble." The same phrase in Exodus 12:38 Nehemiah 13:3 is the rendition of erebh. "Mingled people" is used also to translate `erebh, and is found in Jeremiah 25:20, 24; Jeremiah 50:37 Ezekiel 30:5, and in 1 Kings 10:15 the Revised Version (British and American) (the King James Version "Arabia"; compare the American Revised Version margin). In the last case both revised versions have followed the pointing of the Massoretic Text, and this pointing alone distinguishes "mingled people" (`erebh) from "Arabia" (`arabh); in the unvocalized text both words are equally `-r-b. Now "the traffic of the merchants, and of all the kings of the mingled people, and of the governors of the country" is very awkward, and the correction into "Arabia," as in the Massoretic Text (and English Versions of the Bible) of the parallel 2 Chronicles 9:14, is indicated. Probably the same change should be made in Ezekiel 30:5, reading "Ethiopia, and Put, and Lud, and Arabia, and Cub." A similar textual confusion seems to be responsible for either "and all the kings of Arabia" or "and all the kings of the mingled people" in Jeremiah 25:24. On all these verses see the commentaries.
(2) In Jeremiah 25:20; Jeremiah 50:37, "mingled people" is a term of contempt for the hybrid blood of certain of Israel's enemies. Something of this same contempt may be contained in Exodus 12:38, where a multitude of non-Israelite camp-followers are mentioned as accompanying the children of Israel in the exodus, and in Numbers 11:4 it is this motley body that seduced Israel to sin. But who they were, why they wished or were permitted to join in the exodus, and what eventually became of them or of their descendants is a very perplexing puzzle. In Nehemiah 13:3, the "mixed multitude" consists of the inhabitants of Palestine whom the Jews found there after the return from the exile (see SAMARIA). In accord with the command of Deuteronomy 23:3-5, the Jews withdrew from all religious intercourse whatever had been established with these.
NOTE.-The Hebrew noun for "mingled people" may or may not be connected with the verb translated "mingle" in Ezra 9:2 Psalm 106:35 Daniel 2:43. On this see the lexicons.
Burton Scott Easton
Smith's Bible DictionaryMixed Multitude
When the Israelites journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, the first stage of the exodus from Egypt, there were up with them "a mixed multitude." (Exodus 12:38; Numbers 11:4) They were probably the offspring of marriages contracted between the Israelites and the Egyptians; and the term may also include all those who were not of pure Israelite blood. In Exodus and Numbers it probably denoted the miscellaneous hangers-on of the Hebrew camp, whether they were the issue of spurious marriages with Egyptians or were themselves Egyptians, or belonging to other nations. The same happened on the return from Babylon, and in (Nehemiah 13:3) (comp. vs Nehe 13:23-30) a slight clue is given by which the meaning of the "mixed multitude" may be more definitely ascertained.
Strong's Hebrew6154. ereb -- mixture, mixed company...
ereb. 6154a >>. mixture, mixed
company. Transliteration: ereb Phonetic Spelling:
(ay'-reb) Short Definition: Arabia. Arabia, mingled people, mixed multitude
, woof ... /hebrew/6154.htm - 5k
628. asaphsuph -- a collection, rabble
... mixed multitude. By reduplication from 'acuph; gathered up together, ie A promiscuous
assemblage (of people) -- mixt multitude. see HEBREW 'acuph. << 627, 628. ...
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