Lesser known People in the Bible. Vol. # 1
As we travel through the pages of the bible , often we come across names of people whom are briefly mentioned and then we no longer hear from them again.
The bible has no shortage of interesting people. In this article I wanted to talk about some of the less known folks in the bible. Obviously I won't be able to get to them all , so I just picked out a few.
People sometimes joke around with a person who has a lot of children. They say.....hey you all don't watch much TV do you? The joke meaning that when the TV is off , then the 'baby making machine' must be up and running. :)
Well our first guest didn't have cable TV either. He judged Israel for eight years. His name is Abdon.
'his name means 'service' This wealthy man had forty sons and thirty nephews that rode on seventy ass colts. Judges 12:14
A modern day Abdon?
Abigail ('my father rejoices') - This attractive , wise and brave young lady , was first the wife of a man named Nabal a wealthy herder. Well it seems that Brother Nabal had the misfortune of insulting , the soon to be King , David , who at this time was the leader of a band of outlaws.
David commands his forces to suit up for battle......Brother Nabal is about to be pounced on by the lion , giant , and bear killer!
In a bold and daring move , Abigail , intercepted David , fed his men , and told him to take fell anger out on her.
When news reached Nabal as to what his wife had done , he feel over dead. David then took Abigail to be his wife.
You Go Girl!
Benaiah (ben i' uh) ( Yaweh has built) - This was one bad dude! He was commander of King David's group of mercenaries. He played a key role in the switch of power from David to Solomon.
When Solomon became king , he ordered Benaiah to kill all those who had opposed him. On completion of this deed , he was named supreme commander of Solomon's army.
His other feats include , entering a pit to kill a lion , he also , carrying only a staff , took on an egyptian soldier , who had a spear , he grabbed the spear away from the egyptian and killed the man with his own spear.
Damaris (possibly means "wife") - When the apostle Paul preached about the resurrection , in Athens , some people mocked him. However there was a woman named Damaris who joined paul and believed , Acts 17:34. She along with Dionysius the Areopagite , were mentioned by Luke. She was no doubt a well known woman.
Hilkiah - By order of King Josiah , the temple was being repaired. While this was in process , the High Priest Hilkiah , discovered the lost books of the law , which he sent to the king.
As the books were being read to him , King Josiah , rent his clothes , for the books revealed how far astray the Israelites had gone. 2 Kings 22:11
At his command Hilkiah , cleared Solomon's temple of all traces of pagan worship.
The scribe Ezra was a descendant of Hilkiah.
Huldah - She was the wife of King Josiah's wardrobe keeper. She is the only prophetess mentioned during the moniarchical period. She was so well respected that the king sought her advice when the book of the law was found in the temple.
Huldah foretold that the Lord would bring evil upon this place and upon it's people because they have forsaken me and have burned incense to other gods. 2 Kings 22:16-17
Ibzan - He was the tenth judge from the book of judges.
He was obviously a man of wealth with a high standing in society since he was able to marry all of his 30 daughters , outside of his clan. Judges 12:9. He also brought in wives for all 30 of his sons , which he would have had to provide substantial gifts to the bride's families.
Ibzan was a so called minor judge who seemed to fulfill a truly judicial role rather than the warlike one of the better known judges.
Keturah (incense) - Abraham took Keturah to be his wife after the death of his first wife Sarah.
Keturah had six son's characterized by the Jewish historian , Josephus , as "men of courage and of *sagacious minds" Their names are Zimran , Jokshan , Medan , Midian , Ishbak , and Shuah. Abraham gave them gifts and then sent them away from his son Issac , Genesis 25:6
*Sagacious - having acute mental discernment and keen practical sense , shrewd or profoundly wise.
Lysias - A Roman Commander who saved Paul from a mob of enraged Jews who were upset that he had desecrated the temple by bringing in some Greek believers. Lysia commanded a 1000 troop garrison , and he sent some in to rescue Paul. The following day Lysia called a meeting of the Sanhedrin , the Jewish governing council , to find out what Paul had done. However the meeting was cut short due to an uproar , and the soldiers had to rescue Paul once again.
Afterwards ,when Lysias heard of a plot to kill Paul , he sent nearly half his troops to escort Paul to Caesarea.
Malchus - When the Roman soldiers and the temple police arrested Jesus , Peter cut off the ear of Malchus. He was a slave to high priest Caiphas.
The arrest took place on the Mount of Olives , and is recorded in all four Gospels. Only John names the victim of Peter's attack , and only Luke says that Jesus healed the slave's wound.
Peter attacking Malchus Jesus heals Malchus
Simon #8 - There are many Simons in the bible. This particular Simon was a Tanner with whom Peter lodged with at Joppa. Simon the Tanner most likely was looked down on by Jewish society , which may be why his house was by the seaside , outside of town.
House of Simmon the Tanner , Tel Aviv Israel
Acts 9:43 - the very fact that Peter would stay with a tanner was definitely an issue with the Pharisees , as they felt this occupation was unclean.
A tanner working on an animal hide
Acts 10:6 , 32. Obviosly Peter had no problem with the man indicating that all were welcome to hear this new Gospel. It was on the roof top of Simon's home that Peter dreamed of a sheet filled with all kinds of animals and reptiles and birds of the air. Acts 10:12
Susanna # 1 - This particular Susanna was a rich young beautiful woman said to have launched the career of the prophet Daniel. Susanna was setup by to jokers who were absolutely obssessed with her. They demanded that she give in to their lustful scheme, and when she refused they made up lies against her accussing her of adultry , which was punishable by death.
Having been found gulity in an unjust trial , Susanna was condemmed to death.
As she was being led to her execution she prayed to God , and the Lord inspired Daniel , who was just a mere lad , to come to her defense. He ordered the accussers seperated , and then asked each one , under which tree did this crime take place. When one said one tree and the other said a different tree , it was obvious to everyone that they had fabricated the whole ordeal. By law they were dealt the same fate they had tried to put on the defenseless Susanna......Glory!!
Daniel establishes proof of Susanna's innocence
Susanna #2 - Here we have another Susanna. This woman became a member of the group traveling with Jesus , after he healed her of either an illness or demonic possession. Apparently she was a wealthy woman. She is only mentioned once in the bible , where she is identified as one of several women , including Mary Magdalene , and Joanna , the wife of Herod Antipa's steward , Chuza - who joined Jesus and his discples in Galilee and provided for them out of their means (Luke 8:3) Most likely these women supported the discples by giving money as well as their time in cooking and cleaning. Jewish rabbis would have criticized Susanna's decision to travel with a mixed group , as being scandalous. However Jesus welcomed women as disciples , several of whom remained faithful to the end as witnesses to his crucifixion and were among the first to hear of his resurrection.
Women listening to Jesus
Tychicus - Along with a fellow Ephesian named Trophimus ,
Tychicus was a trusted associate and traveling companion of Paul on a portion of his third missionary journey. He also served as a substitute pastor and as a courier who delivered at least two of Paul's letters: Ephesians and Colossians.
Paul wrote a letter introducing his messenger by saying "Tychicus will tell you all about my affairs; he is a beloved brother and faithful minister and fellow servant in the Lord. I have sent him to you for this very purpose , that you may know how we are and that he may encourage your hearts" Colossians 4:7-8 , and a similar message in Ephesians 6:21-22.
Silas - You probably have heard of this leading member of the Jerusalem church , as he took part in the ministries of both Paul and Peter. He was involved in many things......
He joined Timothy and Paul in sending two letters to the Thessalonians. Paul referred to him as ' one of the apostles of Christ' 1 Thess. 2:6
14 years later , Peter entrusted him with letters he sent to the persecuted Christians in Asia Minor.
When the church elders needed men to go to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas , they chose Silas and Judas Barsabbas , known as leading men among the brethren Acts 15:22. In the letter it introduces Silas as 'one of those who have risked their lives for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Acts 16:16-39 - Certainly a favorite of mine. Paul and Silas are put into prison in Philippi. Rather than resigning from the ministry , they began praying and singing praises to God. Suddenly an earthquake rocks the foundation of the prison and immediately , not only were all the prison doors opened , but everyone who was bound , their bands were loosed from their arms.
Silas then accompanied Paul and Timothy to Thessalonica.
Paul preached a sermon converting some of the synagogue members , which led to an uprising. The three men of God had to escape at nightfall.
The Three continued their missionary work unto cities and churches.
Silas later joined Peter in Rome. Peter in one of his letters referred to Silas as a 'Faithful Brother'.
Paul and Silas singing to God in Prison God sends and earthquake
Nimrod - The first on the earth to be referred to as a 'mighty man' Gen. 10:8 He was the grandson of Noah's son Ham.
NImrod and the Tower of Babel
Nimrod ruled in Mesopotamia after the flood. He was a renowned hunter , and traditionally said to be the first to eat meat and make war. He founded 7 cities.
According to the Jewish historian Josephus , "Nimrod was a bold man , and of great strength in hand" who thought to outsmart God by building a tower too high for rising waters in case God "should have the mind to drown the world again."
References for this article were taken from.....
- who's who in the bible - A Reader's Digest book
- Dakes Study Bible
- Free Pictures - online 'google search'