A Hittie in David's army, renowned for his valor. To save Bathsheba Uriah's wife from death for adultery, and secure her for himself, David caused Uriah to be exposed to death, 2Sa 11; 12:9; 23:29; 1Ki 15:5.
the Lord is my light. (1.) A Hittite, the husband of Bathsheba, whom David first seduced, and then after Uriah's death married. He was one of the band of David's "mighty men." The sad story of the curel wrongs inflicted upon him by David and of his mournful death are simply told in the sacred record (2Sa 11:2-12:26). (See Bath-sheba; David.)
(2.) A priest of the house of Ahaz (Isa 8:2).
(3.) The father of Meremoth, mentioned in Ezr 8:33.
("light of Jehovah".) (See DAVID; NATHAN; BATHSHEBA.)
1. One of the 30 commanders of the 30 bands of David's army (1Ch 11:41; 2Sa 23:19). A foreigner (as other of David's officers, Ittai of Gath, Ishbosheth the Canaanite, Zelek the Ammonite, 2Sa 23:37); a Hittite. Eliam son of Ahithophel being one of his fellow officers (2Sa 23; 23:39), Uriah naturally became acquainted with Bathsheba (an undesigned coincidence in Scripture confirming its truth) and married her. His tender devotion to her is implied in Nathan's comparison of her (2Sa 12:3) to the poor man's "one little ewe lamb ... which lay in his bosom as a daughter" (his all in all).
David's attempt to hide his sin by bringing Uriah home to his wife from the war with Ammon was foiled by Uriah's right sentiment as a soldier and chivalrous devotion to Israel and to God: "the ark and Israel and Judah abide in tents, and my lord Joab and the servants of my lord are encamped in the open fields; shall I then go into mine house to eat, drink, and lie with my wife?" This answer was well fitted to pierce David's conscience, but desire of concealment at all costs urged David on. The greatest saint will fall into the deadliest sin, once that he ceases to lean on God and God withdraws His grace. Though entrapped into intoxication by David Uriah still retained sense of duty enough to keep his word and not go home.
On the third day David, by a letter which he consigned to Uriah's charge, bade his ready tool Joab set this brave soldier in the forefront of the fight. So he fell the victim of adulterous passion which was reckless of all honour, gratitude, and the fear of God; the once faithful man of God had now fallen so low as treacherously to murder his true hearted and loyal soldier and servant, whose high sense of honour so contrasts with David's baseness. Happily Uriah fell unconscious of his wife's dishonour; she "mourned" his death with the usual tokens of grief, but apparently with no sense of shame or remorse; her child's death probably first awakened her conscience. Keil thinks Uriah's answer implies some suspicion of the real state of the case, which was perhaps whispered to him on reaching Jerusalem; but the narrative rather leaves the impression of Uriah answering with guileless, unsuspicious frankness.
2. High priest under Ahaz (Isa 8:2; 2Ki 16:10-16). (See AHAZ.) As high priest, made witness to Isaiah's prophecy concerning Maher-shalalhash-baz. An accomplice in Ahaz's idolatry, therefore not likely to assist God's prophet in getting up a prophecy after the event. He fashioned in unscrupulous subserviency an altar like the idolatrous pattern from Damascus furnished to him; this altar he put in the temple court E. of the place where God's altar had stood, and let Ahaz offer thereon his burnt offering, meat offering, drink offering, and blood of his peace offering; it was probably Abaz's pledge of submission to Assyria and its gods.
God's brazen altar Uriah put on the N. side of the Damascus altar, and Ahaz used it for his own private divinations. Uriah probably succeeded Azariah, high priest under Uzziah, and preceded the Azariah under Hezekiah. He is not named in the sacerdotal genealogy, 1Ch 6:4-15; where a gap occurs between Amariah (1Ch 6:11) and Shallum, father of Hilkiah (1Ch 6:13). Uriah's line ended probably in Azariah his successor, and Hilkiah was descended through another branch from Amariah in Jehoshaphat's reign.
4. Priest at Ezra's right when he read the law (Ne 8:4).
5. Son of Shemaiah of Kirjath Jearim. Prophesied, as Jeremiah did, against the land and Jerusalem, so that the king sought to kill him; he escaped to Egypt; thence Elnathan brought him, and Jehoiakim killed him with the sword and cast his body among the graves of the common people (Jer 26:20-23). His case was made a plea for not killing Jeremiah, as the notorious condition of the state showed that his murder did no good to Jehoiakim, but only added sin to sin and provoked God's vengeance. Uriah was faithful in delivering his message, faulty in leaving his work; so God permitted him to lose his life, whereas Jeremiah was saved. The path of duty is often the path of safety.
1. One of David's 30 heroes, the husband of Bathsheba. He was a Hittite, but, as the name indicates, doubtless a worshipper of Jahweh (2Sa 11; 12:9-10,15; 1Ki 15:6; Mt 1:6). After David's ineffectual attempt to use him as a shield for his own sin, he was killed in battle in accordance with the instructions of David to Joab. 2. High priest in the reign of Ahaz; called a 'faithful witness' in Isa 8:2, but subservient to the innovations of Ahaz in 2Ki 16:10-16. The omission of the name in 1Ch 6:4-15 may be due to textual corruption, since it appears in Josephus Ant. X. viii. 6, which is based on Chronicles. 3. A prophet, son of Shemaiah of Kiriath-jearim. His denunciations against Judah and Jerusalem in the style of Jeremiah aroused the wrath of king Jehoiakim. Uriah fled to Egypt, was seized and slain by order of Jehoiakim, and was buried in the common graveyard (Jer 26:20-23). 4. A priest (Ne 3:4,21), son (representative) of Hakkoz, doubtless one of the courses of the priests (1Ch 24:10). He was father (or ancestor) of Meremoth, an eminent priest (Ezr 8:33 [1Es 8:62 Urias]). 5. A man who stood on the right hand of Ezra when he read the Law (Ne 8:4 [1Es 9:43 Urias]).
George R. Berry.
1. A Hittite in David's army, with whose wife, Bathsheba, David committed adultery. The simple faithfulness of Uriah foiled David in his endeavour to cover his sin. David added to his iniquity by securing Uriah's death, with the connivance of Joab, at the hands of the children of Ammon. 2Sa 11:3-27; 12:9-15; 23:39; 1Ki 15:5; 1Ch 11:41. He is called URIAS in Mt 1:6.
2. Priest whom Isaiah employed as a faithful witness to record his prophecies. Isa 8:2. By the order of the king he built an altar at Jerusalem after the fashion of one seen by Ahaz at Damascus, 2Ki 16:10-16, where he is called URIJAH.
(light of Jehovah).
1. One of the thirty commanders of the thirty bands into which the Israelite army of David was divided.
Like others of David's officers he was a foreigner--a Hittite. His name, however and his manner of speech
indicate that he had adopted the Jewish religion. He married Bath-sheba a woman of extraordinary beauty, the daughter of Eliam--possibly the same as the son of Ahithophel, and one of his brother officers,
and hence, perhaps, Uriah's first acquaintance with Bath-sheba. It may be inferred from Nathan's parable,
that he was passionately devoted to his wife, and that their union was celebrated in Jerusalem as one of peculiar tenderness. In the first war with Ammon, B.C. 1035, he followed Joab to the siege, and with him remained encamped in the open field.
He returned to Jerusalem, at an order from the king on the pretext of asking news of the war--really in the hope that his return to his wife might cover the shame of his own crime. The king met with an unexpected obstacle in the austere, soldier-like spirit which guided all Uriah's conduct, and which gives us a high notion of the character and discipline of David's officers. On the morning of the third day David sent him back to the camp with a letter containing the command to Joab to cause his destruction in the battle. The device of Joab was to observe the part of the wall of Rabbath-ammon where the greatest force of the besieged was congregated, and thither, as a kind of forlorn hope to send Uriah. A sally took place. Uriah and the officers with him advanced as far as the gate of the city, and were there shot down by the archers on the wall. Just as Joab had forewarned the messenger, the king broke into a furious passion on hearing of the loss. The messenger, as instructed by Joab, calmly continued, and ended the story with the words, "Thy servant also Uriah the Hittite, is dead." In a moment David's anger is appeased. It is one of the touching parts of the story that Uriah falls unconscious of his wife's dishonor.
2. High priest in the reign of Ahaz.
He is probably the same as Urijah the priest, who built the altar for Ahaz.
(B.C. about 738.)
3. A priest of the family of Hakkoz, the head of the seventh course of priests.