🔼The name Shelemiah in the Bible
There are quite a few men named Shelemiah in the Bible, and as is normal with names that end with יה (yah), in some cases this name is spelled with a final waw: שלמיהו. The following Shelemiahs probably overlap somewhat:
- A gatekeeper in the time of king David to whom fell the lot for Jerusalem's eastern gates (1 Chronicles 26:14).
- Two descendants of Bani, who had married and would divorce their foreign wives during purge of Ezra (Ezra 10:39, 10:41).
- The father of Hananiah, who restored a section of Jerusalem's fallen wall (Nehemiah 3:30).
- A priest whom Nehemiah put in charge of the store houses (Nehemiah 13:13).
- The grandfather of Jehudi, who ordered Baruch to present Jeremiah's scroll to king Jehoiakim's counsel (Jeremiah 36:14).
- A son of Abdeel, who was one of the men who arrested Jeremiah after his scroll was read to the king (Jeremiah 36:26). This man's name is spelled with a final waw.
- The father of Jehucal, whom king Zedekiah sent to Jeremiah with the request to pray for them (Jeremiah 37:3). In Jeremiah 38:1 the name of this man is spelled with the final waw.
- The father of Irijah, the captain of the guard at Jerusalem's Gate of Benjamin, who arrested Jeremiah on suspicion of defection (Jeremiah 37:13).
🔼Etymology of the name Shelemiah
The name Shelemiah consists of two elements, the final one being יה (Yah) = יהו (Yahu) = יו (Yu), which in turn are abbreviated forms of the Tetragrammaton יהוה, YHWH, or Yahweh.
The first part of our name comes from the verb שלם (shalem), meaning to be unbroken or whole:
For a meaning of the name Shelemiah, NOBSE Study Bible Name List reads Friend Of Yahweh, but that's a bit off focus. The verb שלם (shalem) doesn't really mean to be a friend; it only does so when a specific Hebrew context that would literally mean something like "a man of my peace," doesn't allow a literal translation, and is paraphrased as "my friend". Without this context, the meaning of friend should not be projected upon this verb.
Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names proposes Repaid Of The Lord. BDB Theological Dictionary does not offer an interpretation of this name but does list it under the verb שלם (shalem).