ABIHU (Heb. אֲבִיהוּא), second son of Aaron and Elisheba, daughter of Amminadab (Ex. 6:23; Num. 3:2, et al.). He is always mentioned together with his elder brother Nadab. He was anointed and ordained for the priesthood (Num. 3:3; cf. Ex. 28:1; I Chron. 24:1) and participated with his father, brother, Moses, and the elders in the rites accompanying the making of the covenant at the theophany at Sinai, on which occasion they "saw God" and ate a festive meal (Ex. 24:1–10). Although the exact function of Abihu in these rites is not specified, it is clear that the story represents a very ancient tradition, and that Abihu once played a definite, prominent, and positive role in the now lost history of the Israelite priesthood. The death of Abihu occurred under mysterious circumstances. He was incinerated (although his clothes and those of his brother remained intact) together with Nadab, as the brothers offered "alien fire before the Lord" (Lev. 10:1–3; Num. 3:4; 26:61; cf. I Chron. 24:2). Aaron's cousins, Mishael and   Elẓaphan, were ordered to remove the bodies from the sacred precincts, and the customary mourning rites were suspended (Lev. 10:4–7). The precise nature of the incident is unclear, and neither the locale nor chronology is recorded. Some serious departure from the prescribed cultic ritual seems to be referred to. It has been suggested that they brought incense from outside the sacred area between the altar and the entrance to the Tent of Meeting. It was therefore impure. Abihu and his brother left no sons (Num. 3:4; I Chron. 24:2), and his priestly line was thus discontinued. Some scholars see behind the story of their deaths a forgotten tradition about interpriestly rivalries and the elimination of two priestly houses. The name Abihu may be variously explained as meaning "the Father (God) is" (i.e., exists), "He (God) is Father," and "Father is He" (a surrogate for God). For Abihu in Aggadah, see nadab . -BIBLIOGRAPHY: Noth, Personennamen, 18, 70, 143; Moehlenbrink, in: ZAW, 52 (1934), 214–5; Y. Kaufmann, Toledot, 1 (1937), 542; de Vaux, Anc lsr, 397. ADD. BIBLIOGRAPHY: M. Haran, in: J. Liver (ed.), Sefer Segal (1964), 33–41. (Nahum M. Sarna)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Abihu — ist der im Alten Testament erwähnte zweite Sohn Aarons (2. Mose 6,23). Er begleitet mit seinem Bruder Nadab und 70 Ältesten Mose und Aaron zur feierlichen Bundesschließung auf dem Sinai (2. Mose 24,1. 9). Als er und Nadab am Tage ihrer… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Abihu — Abihu, der Bruder Nadabs (s.d.) …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Abihu — Abihou est le deuxième des quatre fils d Aaron et d Elischbéba, sa femme ; frère de Nadab, Eleazar et Ithamar selon l Exode (chap. 6 vers. 23) et premier livre des Chroniques (chap.6 vers.3). Ayant joui dans un premier temps des faveurs de… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Abihu — /euh buy hyooh/, n. a son of Aaron who, with Nadab, was destroyed by fire from heaven for disobeying the Lord. Lev. 10:1 5. * * * …   Universalium

  • Abihu —    Father of Him; i.e., worshipper of God , the second of the sons of Aaron (Ex. 6:23; Num. 3:2; 26:60; 1 Chr. 6:3). Along with his three brothers he was consecrated to the priest s office (Ex. 28:1). With his father and elder brother he… …   Easton's Bible Dictionary

  • Abihu — (fl. ?13th cent BCE)    Israelite priest, second son of Aaron. With his brother, Nadab, he ascended Mount Sinai to behold God s revelation (Exodus 24:1 11). Later they made a fire sacrifice on the altar against God s command and were struck dead… …   Dictionary of Jewish Biography

  • Abihu — /euh buy hyooh/, n. a son of Aaron who, with Nadab, was destroyed by fire from heaven for disobeying the Lord. Lev. 10:1 5 …   Useful english dictionary

  • Nadab and Abihu — This article is about the sons of Aaron. For the Israeli singer songwriter, see Avihu Medina. Illustration of the sin of Nadab and Abihu, from a 1907 Bible card. In the Book of Exodus, the Book of Leviticus and the Book of Numbers, Nadab (Hebrew …   Wikipedia

  • Shemini — Shemini, Sh’mini, or Shmini (שמיני Hebrew for eighth,” the third word, and the first distinctive word, in the parshah) is the 26th weekly Torah portion ( parshah ) in the annual Jewish cycle of Torah reading and the third in the book of Leviticus …   Wikipedia

  • NADAB — (Heb. נָדָב; (God) has been generous ), eldest son of aaron and Elisheba daughter of Amminadab (Ex. 6:23; Num. 3:2, et al.). For details see abihu . (The two are always mentioned together and what applies to Abihu is also true of Nadab.) Nadab… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.