The name Baal means 'lord, possessor, husband'
|"Baal||worship apparently had its origin in the belief that every tract of ground owed its productivity to a supernatural being, or baal, that dwelt there. The farmers probably thought that from the Baalim (plural for Baal), or fertility gods, of various regions came the increase of crops, fruit and cattle... Baal was adored in the high places of Moab as early as the days of Balaam and Balak (Num.22:41) ... In the time of the Judges he (Baal) had altars in Palestine (Jud.2:13; 6:28-32) and when Ahab married Jezebel, the daughter of Ethbaal, king of the Sidonians, the worship of Baal almost supplanted that of Jehovah. The struggle between the two religions culminated on Mt Carmel when the prophet Elijah met the priests of Baal (1 Kings 16:31, 32; 18:17-40) Though it ended in the slaughter of the priests of Baal, yet the cult soon recuperated until crushed by Jehu (11 Kings 10:18-28)…The worship of Baal was accompanied with lascivious rites (1 Kings14:24), the sacrifice of children in the fire by parents (Jer.9:5), and kissing the image (1 Kings 19:18; Hosea 13:2). Baal was often associated with the goddess Ashtoreth (Judges 2:13) and in the vicinity of his altar there was often an Asherah (Judges 6:30)." (Westminster Dictionary of the Bible article Baal)|