Molech, literally, "the King" , called also Moloch, Milcom, and Malcham, was known in later times as "the abomination of the Ammonites" I Kings 11:5. He appears to have been the fire-god of the eastern nations; related to, and sometimes made identical with, Baal, the sun-god. The nature of the rite and of the impious custom called passing children through the fire to Molech is very doubtful. The practices appear to have been essentially connected with magical arts, probably also with unlawful lusts, and with some particular form of profane swearing. The rite in the time of Moses belonged to the region rather of magic than of definite idolatrous worship, and may have been practiced as a lustral charm, or fire-baptism, for the children of incest and adultery.
Stone him with stones - The commonest form of capital punishment. It was probably preferred as being the one in which the execution was the act of the whole congregation.
Defile my sanctuary - i. e. pollute the people as identified with their sanctuary.
Other Barnes' Notes entries containing Leviticus 20:5:
1 Kings 11:5
2 Kings 17:17
2 Kings 21:6
1 Timothy 1:10
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