Selah, the Geographical Place

In our English Bibles the word “Selah,” most often found in the Psalms, is spelled the same as “Selah” which also indicates the name of a place. In English the words appear to be the same, but are in fact spelled differently in Hebrew. The name “Selah” (Strong’s H5554) means rock, and only appears twice in the Bible. This geographical location is in Edom.

“(King Amaziah) … slew of Edom in the valley of salt ten thousand, and took Selah by war, and called the name of it Joktheel unto this day.” - Second Kings 14:7
“Send ye the lamb to the ruler of the land from Sela …” – Isaiah 16:1
Selah was a dwelling place high in the mountains of Edom. Edom was populated by the descendants of Esau.

“And Jacob sent messengers before him to Esau his brother unto the land of Seir, the country of Edom.” – Genesis 32:3 “Thus dwelt Esau in Mount Seir: Esau is Edom.” – Genesis 36:8
Esau had a reddish complexion and probably had red hair. (Genesis 25:25) He and Edom were made for each other because the soil and rocks of Edom are red.

The Lord has harsh things to say about Esau and Edom.

“And I hated Esau, and laid his mountains and his heritage waste for the dragons of the wilderness.” – Malachi 1:3
Selah (H5554) means “rock,” and the same word is used in Obadiah.

“The vision of Obadiah. Thus saith the Lord GOD concerning Edom; … Behold, I have made thee small among the heathen: thou art greatly despised. The pride of thine heart hath deceived thee, thou that dwellest in the clefts of the rock. – Obadiah 1:1-3
North of Edom was Moab, and north of Moab was Ammon. All of these countries were in what is known as Jordan today. The capitol of Jordan is Amman.

“Send ye the lamb to the ruler of the land from Sela to the wilderness … so the daughters of Moab shall be at the fords of Arnon.” – Isaiah 16:1-2
You can see the confederacy between Selah (the King James Version translators varied the spelling – Selah, Sela) Moab and Ammon. The Arnon River was claimed by the Ammonites as being the southern limit of their territory between Ammon and Moab. (Judges 11:13) Edom, Moab and Ammon were adjacent to each other on the east side of the Jordan River.

And this was the location of Selah in Edom. There is more to this story which will follow.

Pray for the unsaved. Come quickly Lord Jesus! Praise His name!

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