Rama

(Matt. 2:18), the Greek form of Ramah. (1.) A city first mentioned in Josh. 18:25, near Gibeah of Benjamin. It was fortified by Baasha, king of Israel (1 Kings 15:17-22; 2 Chr. 16:1-6). Asa, king of Judah, employed Benhadad the Syrian king to drive Baasha from this city (1 Kings 15:18, 20). Isaiah (10:29) refers to it, and also Jeremiah, who was once a prisoner there among the other captives of Jerusalem when it was taken by Nebuchadnezzar (Jer. 39:8-12; 40:1). Rachel, whose tomb lies close to Bethlehem, is represented as weeping in Ramah (Jer. 31:15) for her slaughtered children. This prophecy is illustrated and fulfilled in the re-awakening of Rachel's grief at the slaughter of the infants in Bethlehem (Matt. 2:18). It is identified with the modern village of er-Ram, between Gibeon and Beeroth, about 5 miles due north of Jerusalem. (See SAMUEL.)