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Old Testament Hebrew Lexical Dictionary
Strong's #05650 - עֶבֶד
1) slave, servant
1a) slave, servant, man-servant
1c) servants, worshippers (of God)
1d) servant (in special sense as prophets, Levites etc)
1e) servant (of Israel)
1f) servant (as form of address between equals)
V) dbo (אהבד AhBD) - I. Serve:To provide a service to another or to work at a profession. [Hebrew and Aramaic] II. Do:[Aramaic only] KJV (318): (vf: Paal, Niphal, Hiphil, Hophal, Pual) serve, do, till, servant, work, worshipper, service, dress, labour, ear, make, go, keep, move, wrought - Strongs: H5647 (עָבַד), H5648 (עֲבַד)
Jeff Benner, Ancient Hebrew Research Center Used by permission of the author.
(1) a servant, (Knecht), who, amongst the Hebrews, was commonly a slave (Gklan, Leibeigener), Genesis 12:16, 17:23 39:17 Exodus 12:30, 44 Exodus 12:44 and so very frequently. Genesis 9:25, עֶבֶד עֲבָדִים “a servant of servants,” the lowest servant. The name of servant is also applied
(a) to a whole people when subject and tributary to another, Genesis 9:26, 27 27:37.
(b) to the servants of a king, i.e. his ministers and courtiers; e.g. עַבְדֵי פַרְעֹה Genesis 40:20, 41:10, 37 Genesis 41:37, 38 Genesis 41:38, 50:7 Exodus 5:21, 7:10 10:7 עַבְדֵי שָׁאוּל 1 Samuel 16:17, 18:22 28:7 to messengers, -2 Sam. 10:24 ; to military captains, Isaiah 36:9 and to the common soldiers themselves, 2 Samuel 2:12, 13 2 Samuel 2:13, 15 2 Samuel 2:15, 30 2 Samuel 2:30, 31 2 Samuel 2:31, 3:22 8:7 and so frequently.
(c) once figuratively (by zeugma) used of inanimate things, Genesis 47:19 compare Jdt_3:4. The Hebrews, in speaking to superiors, either from modesty or else lowly adulation, call themselves servants, and those to whom they speak lords, (see אָדוֹן ). Genesis 18:3, “pass not by thy servant,” i.e. me, Genesis 19:19, 42:11 44:16, 21 Genesis 44:21, 23 Genesis 44:23, 46:34 Isaiah 36:11; Daniel 1:12, 13 2:4 [Chal.]; so in prayers offered to God, Psalms 19:12, 14 Psalms 19:14, 27:9 31:17 69:18 86:2, Psalms 86:4, 119:17 Nehemiah 1:6,. Daniel 10:17, “how can the servant of my lord talk with my lord?” i.e. how can I talk with thee? עַבְדְּךָ thy servant is thus put for אָנֹכִי; so that the suffix of the first person may refer to it; see Genesis 44:32, “for thy servant became surety (i.e. I became surety) for the lad with my father.” Absent persons even, whom one wishes to commend to the favour of a patron, are called their servants; as Genesis 44:27, “thy servant, my father said to us,” Genesis 30:31, 32:20.
(2) עֶבֶד יְהֹוָה is figuratively applied in various senses. It is
(a) a worshipper of God; Nehemiah 1:10, הֵם עֲבָדֶיךָ וְעַמֶּךָ “they (the Israelites) are thy servants and thy people;” compare Chaldee Ezra 5:11, “we are the servants of the God of heaven,” i.e. we worship the God of heaven; Daniel 6:21, “O Daniel, servant of the living God,” i.e. who worshippest the living God. In this sense it is used as a kind of laudatory epithet applied to the pious worshippers of God; e.g. to Abraham, Psalms 105:6, 42 Psalms 105:42 to Joshua, Joshua 24:29; Judges 2:8 to Job, Job 1:8, 2:3 42:8 to David, Psalms 18:1, 36:1 78:70 89:4, 21 Psalms 89:21; Jeremiah 33:21, seqq.; Ezekiel 34:23 to Eliakim, Isaiah 22:20 to Zerubbabel, Haggai 2:23 and in plur. עַבְדֵי יְהֹוָה is often applied to godly men, Ps. 34:23 69:37 113:1 134:1 135:1, Psalms 135:9, 136:22 Isaiah 54:17, 63:17 65:8, Isaiah 65:9, -1315 ; Jeremiah 30:10, 46:27. In other places it is
(b) the minister, or ambassador of God, called and sent by God for accomplishing some service; Isaiah 49:6, נָקֵל מִהְיוֹתְךָ לִי עֶבֶד לְהָקִים אֶת שִׁבְטֵי יִשְׁרָאֵל וגו׳ “it is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant (i.e. messenger, and as it were instrument), to raise up the tribes of Israel … I will make thee to be a light for the nations,” etc., verse Isaiah 49:5. In this sense it is applied to the Messiah, Zechariah 3:8 to Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, whom God used as an instrument in chastising his people, Jerem. 25:9 27:6 43:10 commonly, however, there is the added notion of a familiar servant chosen and beloved of God, on account of piety and approved fidelity, to accomplish his objects; in this sense it is applied to angels (in the other hemistich מַלְאָכִים), Job 4:18 and to prophets, Amos 3:7; Jeremiah 7:25, 25:4 26:5 29:19 35:15 44:4 Daniel 9:6; Ezra 9:11 specially to Moses, Deuteronomy 34:5; Joshua 1:1, 13 Joshua 1:13, 15 Joshua 1:15; Psalms 105:26 to Isaiah, Isaiah 20:3. Sometimes both notions, that of a man piously worshipping God, and of a divine messenger, seem to have coalesced; this is the case in the passages in which it is used of Abraham, Moses, etc., and also especially, as I consider, where Israel or Jacob, i.e. the people of Israel, is called by this honourable and endearing name, Isaiah 41:8, Isaiah 41:9, 42:19 44:1, Isaiah 44:2, 21 Isaiah 44:21, 45:4 48:20 but still it is the godly who are especially to be understood, i.e. those truly called Israelites, ἀληθινοὶ Ἰσρ. Isaiah 43:10, 49:3 (on this place see my observation in the Germ. Trans. ed. 2), [this passage, whatever may be said about it, belongs to Christ]. And amongst these, this name belongs especially to the prophets, Isaiah 42:1, 44:26 49:3, Isaiah 49:5, 52:13 53:11. [All these passages speak of Christ.] That same Jacob who is called the servant of God, is sometimes in the other hemistich called the chosen of God, Isaiah 41:8, 42:1 45:4 sometimes his ambassador and friend, Isaiah 42:19 and even in the plur. ambassadors, Isaiah 44:26. But in all the passages concerning the servant of God in the latter half of Isaiah (-42:17 ; -49:19 ; -50:410 ; -52:1353:12 ), he is represented as the intimate friend and ambassador of God, aided by his Spirit, who is to be the restorer of the tribes of Israel, and the instructor of other nations. [Most of these passages refer to Christ, and to Him only.]
(3) (“servant, sc. of God”), [Ebed], pr.n. m.
(a) Judges 9:26, 28 Judges 9:28.
(b) Ezra 8:6.
the Third Week after Epiphany