Bathsheba meaning | Bathsheba etymology

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בת־שבע
Bathsheba in Biblical Hebrew
Bathsheba
Biblical female character
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The name Bathsheba in the Bible

Bathsheba, daughter of Ammiel, is the wife of Uriah, a Hittite and high ranking soldier in king David's army (2 Samuel 11:3). He's also unfortunate enough to be the king's neighbor. When Uriah is out fighting his king's war, David summons Bathsheba and impregnates her. To deal with this, he places Uriah front-center at the battle front and then withdraws his army (Uriah himself carries this order to general Joab—2 Samuel 11:14). Uriah subsequently dies by arrows at the battle of Rabbah.

This particularly gruesome act violates at least two out of the Ten Commandments, and God sends the prophet Nathan to king David to sort him out. King David unknowingly passes a death sentence over himself, but Nathan tells him that not he but his child will not live. After seven days David and Bathsheba's son dies nameless. But Bathsheba conceives again and this time the child is loved by God (12:24). David and Bathsheba name their son Solomon, but Nathan the prophet calls him Jedidiah.

Etymology of the name Bathsheba

The name Bathsheba consists of two elements, the first being the word בת (bat), meaning daughter. This peculiar word was formed from the word בן (ben), meaning son:

Abarim Publications Theological Dictionary

The second part of the name Bathsheba comes from either the word שבע (sheba'), meaning seven, or the highly similar שבע (shaba'), meaning to swear:

Abarim Publications Theological Dictionary

Bathsheba meaning

Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names and NOBSE Study Bible Name List agree that the name Bathsheba means Daughter Of An Oath.

The alternative, Daughter Of Seven, seems perfectly bizarre in English, but in Hebrew it holds a marvelous and magnificent meaning.

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