Tell en-Nasbeh is one of two sites often identified with Mizpah of Benjamin, and is located about 12 kilometers north of Jerusalem. The other suggested location is Neby Samwil, which is some 8 kilometers north-west of the Old City of Jerusalem, and situated on the loftiest hill in the vicinity, some 180 meters above the plain of Gibeon.
The first mention of Mizpah was in Genesis where Laban and his son-in-law Jacob made an agreement that God will watch over them while they were apart from each other. It was marked by the piling of rocks. It was a reminder of peace where each would not go beyond these rocks to attack the other.
When a Levite traveler's concubine was raped by the men of Gibeah, the other tribes of Israel met at Mizpah of Benjamin, where they decided to attack the men of Benjamin for this grievous sin. At the same time, the decision was made not to permit marriage between Israelite women and Benjaminite men.
After the return of the Ark of the Covenant, lost to the Philistines following the Israelites' defeat at the Battle of Aphek, Samuel gathered all Israel at Mizpah to offer a sacrifice to the Lord and ask Him to forgive their sin. The Israelites fought off a raid by the Philistines, taking advantage of the assembly, and drove them back as far as below Beth Car. To memorialize this event, Samuel set up a stone between Mizpah and Shen and named it Eben-Ezer ("stone of help"), because the Lord had helped them.
During the reigns of Asa, king of Judah, and Baasha, king of Israel, Mizpah was one of two cities which Asa built up from the stones Baasha had used to fortify Ramah (1 Kings 15:22; 2 Chronicles 16:6).
After the Babylonians had destroyed Jerusalem, they appointed Gedaliah governor in Mizpah over the remaining residents. Many returned to Mizpah from where they had fled. The prophet Jeremiah came to Mizpah from Ramah, where the Babylonians had released him. Later Ishmael, a member of the royal family, assassinated Gedaliah. Despite Jeremiah's warning that the people would be a reproach and die if they went to Egypt, they persisted in going there.