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Morrish Bible Dictionary

Abijah

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1. Son and successor of Rehoboam, king of Judah. He began to reign in the eighteenth year of Jeroboam, king of Israel (B.C. 958) and reigned three years. He walked in the sin of his father Rehoboam, but for David's sake he was placed on the throne, that, as Jehovah had said, David might have 'a light alway before me in Jerusalem.' 1 Kings 11:36 ; 1 Kings 15:4 . "There waswarbetween Abijah and Jeroboam," and Abijah by a patriotic address to Israel sought to recover the ten tribes. This could not be; for the rupture in the kingdom had been brought about by God on account of their wickedness. Nevertheless Abijah trusted in Jehovah while he did not fail to rebuke Israel touching the golden calves they had erected. God smote Jeroboam and all Israel, and there fell 500,000 chosen men of Israel. Abijah also took the cities of Bethel, Jeshanah and Ephrain; and Jeroboam was not able to recover strength all the days of Abijah. 2 Chronicles 13 . In the above war Israel had 800,000 chosen men, and Judah 400,000. These numbers, together with the number slain, have been much called in question by critics, who say they ought to be 80,000 and 40,000, and 50,000 slain; which numbers are to be found in some of the early Latin copies and also in some early copies of Josephus. But the numbers in the Hebrew scriptures must have the preference: and what is there improbable in the numbers when we compare them with the number of men 'that drew sword' when David last numbered the people? 1 Chronicles 21:5 . Israel had 1,100,000; Judah had 470,000 and this was without Levi and Benjamin, who were not counted. This was about fifty years before the battle, ample time (notwithstanding the loss at the pestilence that followed the numbering) for a large increase. In 2 Samuel 24:9 , the number of fighting men in Israel is given as only 800,000. It is supposed that this does not include the standing army, which according to 1 Chronicles 27:1 , amounted to 24,000 x12 = 288,000, which with its officers would be about 300,000, and this added to 800,000 = 1,100,000. On the other hand, the fighting men of Judah are in Samuel said to be 500,000. David may have had 30,000 with him at Jerusalem, from whence Joab went out, which may be here included, but which are not included in 1 Chronicles 21:5 .

Abijah 'waxed mighty and married fourteen wives;' which may have been a snare to him. 2 Chronicles 13:1-22 . He is called ABIJAM in 1 Kings 14:31 ; 1 Kings 15:1-8 ; and ABIA in 1 Chronicles 3:10 ; Matthew 1:7 .

2. Son of Jeroboam I., king of Israel. His mother disguised herself and went to Ahijah the prophet to inquire whether her child should recover from his sickness. Jehovah revealed to the prophet who it was that came to him, and he told out to the mother the heavy judgement that should befall her husband and his house; but because there was "some good thing toward the Lord God of Israel" in Abijah, he should come to his grave peacefully. In mercy he was taken from the coming judgement. As his mother came to the threshold of the door the child died. 1 Kings 14:1-17 .

3. Descendant of Eleazar who gave his name to the eighth of the twenty-four courses of priests. 1 Chronicles 24:10 . The same is called ABIA in Luke 1:5 .

4. Daughter of Zechariah and mother of Hezekiah 2 Chronicles 29:1 : contracted into ABI in2Kings 18:2.

5. One ormore of the priests who returned from the captivity, one of whom sealed the covenant. Nehemiah 10:7 ; Nehemiah 12:4 17


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Bibliography Information
Morrish, George. Entry for 'Abijah'. Morrish Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/mbd/a/abijah.html. 1897.

Lectionary Calendar
Sunday, October 13th, 2019
the Week of Proper 23 / Ordinary 28
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