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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

Amasa

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(Hebrew Amasa', עֲמָשָׂא , burden), the name of two men.

1. (Sept. Ἀμεσσά; but v. r. Ἀμεσσαϊ v , and in 1 Chronicles 2:17, even Ἀμεσσάβ .) The son of Abigail, a sister of King David, by Jether or Ithra (q.v.), an Ishmaelite (1 Chronicles 2:17; 2 Samuel 17:25; 1 Kings 2:5; 1 Kings 2:32); a foreign paternity that appears to have caused his neglect in comparison with the more honored sons of David's other sister Zeruiah; until on the occurrence of Absalom's rebellion, whose party he naturally joined, and of which he was made general, his good conduct probably of the battle, although defeated, led David to offer him not only pardon, but the command of the army in the room of his cousin Joab (2 Samuel 19:13), whose overbearing conduct had become intolerable to him, and to whom he could not entirely forgive the death of Absalom (q.v.). B.C. cir. 1023. But on the breaking out of Sheba's insurrection, Amasa was so tardy in his movements (probably from the reluctance of the troops to follow him) that David despatched Abishai with the household troops in pursuit of Sheba, and Joab joined his brother as a volunteer. When they reached "the great stone of Gibeon," they were overtaken by Amasa with the force he had been able to collect. Joab thought this a favorable opportunity of getting rid of so dangerous a rival, and immediately executed the treacherous purpose he had formed. (See ABNER). He saluted Amasa, asked him of his health, and took his beard in his right hand to kiss him, while with the unheeded left hand he smote him dead with his sword. Joab then put himself at the head of the troops, and continued the pursuit of Sheba; and such was his popularity with the army that David was unable to remove him from the command, or call him to account for this bloody deed (2 Samuel 20:4-12). B.C. cir. 1022. (See JOAB). Whether Amasa be identical with the Amasai who is mentioned among David's commanders (1 Chronicles 12:18) is uncertain (Bertheau, Erklar. p. 140). (See DAVID).

2. (Sept. Ἀμασίας .) A son of Hadlai and chief of Ephraim, who, with others, vehemently and successfully resisted the retention as prisoners of the persons whom Pekah, king of Israel, had taken captive in a successful campaign against Ahaz, king of Judah (2 Chronicles 28:12). B.C. cir. 738.

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Amasa'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/eng/tce/a/amasa.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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