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Bible Dictionaries

Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary


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the son of Ahimelech, and the tenth high priest among the Jews, and fourth in descent from Eli. 2 Samuel 8:17; 1 Chronicles 18:16 . When Saul sent to Nob to murder all the priests, Abiathar escaped the massacre, and fled to David in the wilderness. There he continued in the quality of high priest; but Saul, out of aversion to Ahimelech, whom he imagined to have betrayed his interests, transferred the dignity of the high priesthood from Ithamar's family into that of Eleazar, by conferring this office upon Zadok. Thus there were, at the same time, two high priests in Israel, Abiathar with David, and Zadok with Saul. In this state things continued, until the reign of Solomon, when Abiathar, being attached to the party of Adonijah, was, by Solomon, divested of his priesthood, A.M. 2989 and the race of Zadok alone performed the functions of that office during the reign of Solomon, to the exclusion of the family of Ithamar, according to the word of the Lord to Eli. 1 Samuel 2:30 , &c.

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Bibliography Information
Watson, Richard. Entry for 'Abiathar'. Richard Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary. 1831-2.

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