Bible Dictionaries

Holman Bible Dictionary


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(i' ruh) Personal name meaning, “city” or “donkey's colt.” 1. Priest under David (2 Samuel 20:26 ). KJV and a few Bible students see “priest” here as a civil office rather than a religious one. Ira was apparently from Havoth-jair in Gilead (Numbers 32:41 ), though some Bible students think he was from Kiriath-jearim (1 Samuel 7:1 ). Ira is not identified as a Levite, and his function is not related to those of Abiathar and Zadok, the official priests. Thus some have concluded that he served on David's private staff as a personal priest to the king. Similarly, David's sons served as priests (2 Samuel 8:18 NRSV, REB, TEV). 2. Two of David's military heroes were named Ira (2Samuel 23:26, 2 Samuel 23:38 ). Ira from Tekoa was also an officer in charge of the sixth month's “national guard” army (1 Chronicles 27:9 ).

Copyright Statement
These dictionary topics are from the Holman Bible Dictionary, published by Broadman & Holman, 1991. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman & Holman.

Bibliography Information
Butler, Trent C. Editor. Entry for 'Ira'. Holman Bible Dictionary. 1991.

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