🔼The name Abiezer: Summary
- My Father Is Help, Father Of Help
- From (1) the noun אב ('ab), father, and (2) the verb עזר (azar), to help.
🔼The name Abiezer in the Bible
There are two men named Abiezer in the Bible:
- One is a man from the tribe of Manasseh (Joshua 17:2), through Hammoleketh, the sister of Gilead (1 Chronicles 7:18), possibly also known as Iezer (Numbers 26:30). His descendants are called אבי העזרי, or Abi-hazeri; the Abiezrites. A famous Abiezrite is Joash, the father of Gideon, also known as Jerubbaal (Judges 6:11), and a city associated with the Abiezrites is Ophrah (Judges 6:24 and 8:32).
- The other Abiezer is mentioned among the mighty-men of king David (2 Samuel 23:27).
🔼Etymology of the name Abiezer
The name Abiezer consists of two elements. The first part comes from the familiar word אב ('ab), meaning father:
The noun אב ('ab) means father, but describes primarily a social relationship rather than a biological one. That social fatherhood was the defining quality of the community's alpha male, the one around whom all economy revolved and from whom emanated all instructions by which the 'sons' (בן, ben) operated. It's unclear where this word אב ('ab) comes from but the verb abu means to decide.
The added letter yod gives a possessive form: my father, or father of, depending on the context.
The second part of the name Abiezer comes from the verb עזר (azar), meaning to help or support:
The verb עזר ('azar), means to help or support, and is often used in military contexts, or to describe God's proverbial help. The nouns עזר ('azar) and עזרה ('ezra) both mean help. A much rarer but identically spelled noun עזרה ('azara) means enclosure and comes probably from an other root.
For a meaning of the name Abiezer, NOBSE Study Bible Name List reads The Father Is Help. Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names reads Father Of Help BDB Theological Dictionary has My Father Is Help.