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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature


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(Heb. Zabud', זָבוּד , given; Sept. Ζαβούθ v.r. Ζαββούθ ), son of Nathan the prophet (1 Kings 4:5). B.C. 1012. He is described as a priest (A. V. "principal officer"), and as holding at the court of Solomon the confidential post of "king's friend," which had been occupied by Hushai the Archite during the reign of David (2 Samuel 15:37; 2 Samuel 16:16; l Chronicles 27:33). This position, if it were an official one, was evidently distinct from that of counselor, occupied by Ahithophel under David, and had more of the character of private friendship about it, for Absalom conversely calls David the "friend" of Hushai (2 Samuel 16:17). Azariah, another son of Nathan, was "over all the" (household) "officers" of king Solomon; and their advancement may doubtless be ascribed not only to the young king's respect for the venerable prophet, who had been his instructor, but to the friendship he had contracted with his sons during the course of education. The office, or rather honor, of "friend of the king" we find in all the despotic governments of the East. It gives high power, without the public responsibility which the holding of a regular office in the State necessarily imposes. It implies the possession of the utmost confidence of, and familiar intercourse with, the monarch, to whose person "the friend" at all times has access, and whose influence is therefore often far greater, even in matters of state, than that of the recognized ministers of government. In the Vat. MS. of the Sept. the word "priest" is omitted, and in the Arabic of the London Polyglot it is referred to Nathan. The Peshito-Syriac and several Hebrew MSS. for "Zabud" read "Zaccur." The same occurs in the case of ZABBUD).

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Zabud'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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