Easton's Bible Dictionary

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U

Ucal — Uzziel

Ucal

the name of a person to whom Agur's words are addressed ( Proverbs 30:1 ).

Ulai

the Eulaus of the Greeks; a river of Susiana. It was probably the eastern branch of the Choasper (Kerkhan), which divided into two branches some 20 miles above the city of Susa. Hence ( Daniel 8:2 Daniel 8:16 ) speaks of standing "between the banks of Ulai", i.e., between the two streams of the divided river.

Ummah

vicinity, a town of Asher ( Joshua 19:30 ).

Unction

( 1 John 2:20 1 John 2:27 ; RSV, "anointing"). Kings, prophets, and priests were anointed, in token of receiving divine grace. All believers are, in a secondary sense, what Christ was in a primary sense, "the Lord's anointed."

Unicorn

described as an animal of great ferocity and strength ( Numbers 23:22 , RSV, "wild ox," marg., "ox-antelope;" 24:8 ; Isaiah 34:7 , RSV, "wild oxen"), and untamable ( Job 39:9 ). It was in reality a two-horned animal; but the exact reference of the word so rendered (reem) is doubtful. Some have supposed it to be the buffalo; others, the white antelope, called by the Arabs rim. Most probably, however, the word denotes the Bos primigenius ("primitive ox"), which is now extinct all over the world. This was the auerochs of the Germans, and the urus described by Caesar (Gal. Bel., vi.28) as inhabiting the Hercynian forest. The word thus rendered has been found in an Assyrian inscription written over the wild ox or bison, which some also suppose to be the animal intended (Compare Deuteronomy 33:17 ; Psalms 22:21 ; 29:6 ; 92:10 ).

Unni

afficted.

1. A Levite whom David appointed to take part in bringing the ark up to Jerusalem from the house of Obed-edom by playing the psaltery on that occasion ( 1 Chronicles 15:18 1 Chronicles 15:20 ).

2. A Levite who returned with Zerubbabel from the Captivity ( Nehemiah 12:9 ).

Upharsin

and they divide, one of the words written by the mysterious hand on the wall of Belshazzar's palace ( Daniel 5:25 ). It is a pure Chaldean word. "Peres" is only a simple form of the same word.

Uphaz

probably another name for Ophir ( Jeremiah 10:9 ). Some, however, regard it as the name of an Indian colony in Yemen, southern Arabia; others as a place on or near the river Hyphasis (now the Ghana), the south-eastern limit of the Punjaub.

Ur

light, or the moon city, a city "of the Chaldees," the birthplace of Haran ( Genesis 11:28 Genesis 11:31 ), the largest city of Shinar or northern Chaldea, and the principal commercial centre of the country as well as the centre of political power. It stood near the mouth of the Euphrates, on its western bank, and is represented by the mounds (of bricks cemented by bitumen) of el-Mugheir, i.e., "the bitumined," or "the town of bitumen," now 150 miles from the sea and some 6 miles from the Euphrates, a little above the point where it receives the Shat el-Hie, an affluent from the Tigris. It was formerly a maritime city, as the waters of the Persian Gulf reached thus far inland. Ur was the port of Babylonia, whence trade was carried on with the dwellers on the gulf, and with the distant countries of India, Ethiopia, and Egypt. It was abandoned about B.C. 500, but long continued, like Erech, to be a great sacred cemetery city, as is evident from the number of tombs found there. (See ABRAHAM .)

The oldest king of Ur known to us is Ur-Ba'u (servant of the goddess Ba'u), as Hommel reads the name, or Ur-Gur, as others read it. He lived some twenty-eight hundred years B.C., and took part in building the famous temple of the moon-god Sin in Ur itself. The illustration here given represents his cuneiform inscription, written in the Sumerian language, and stamped upon every brick of the temple in Ur. It reads: "Ur-Ba'u, king of Ur, who built the temple of the moon-god."

"Ur was consecrated to the worship of Sin, the Babylonian moon-god. It shared this honour, however, with another city, and this city was Haran, or Harran. Harran was in Mesopotamia, and took its name from the highroad which led through it from the east to the west. The name is Babylonian, and bears witness to its having been founded by a Babylonian king. The same witness is still more decisively borne by the worship paid in it to the Babylonian moon-god and by its ancient temple of Sin. Indeed, the temple of the moon-god at Harran was perhaps even more famous in the Assyrian and Babylonian world than the temple of the moon-god at Ur.

"Between Ur and Harran there must, consequently, have been a close connection in early times, the record of which has not yet been recovered. It may be that Harran owed its foundation to a king of Ur; at any rate the two cities were bound together by the worship of the same deity, the closest and most enduring bond of union that existed in the ancient world. That Terah should have migrated from Ur to Harran, therefore, ceases to be extraordinary. If he left Ur at all, it was the most natural place to which to go. It was like passing from one court of a temple into another.

"Such a remarkable coincidence between the Biblical narrative and the evidence of archaeological research cannot be the result of chance. The narrative must be historical; no writer of late date, even if he were a Babylonian, could have invented a story so exactly in accordance with what we now know to have been the truth. For a story of the kind to have been the invention of Palestinian tradition is equally impossible. To the unprejudiced mind there is no escape from the conclusion that the history of the migration of Terah from Ur to Harran is founded on fact" (Sayce).

Uriah

the Lord is my light.

1. A Hittite, the husband of Bathsheba, whom David first seduced, and then after Uriah's death married. He was one of the band of David's "mighty men." The sad story of the curel wrongs inflicted upon him by David and of his mournful death are simply told in the sacred record ( 2 Samuel 11:2-12:26). ). (See BATHSHEBA; DAVID .)

2. A priest of the house of Ahaz ( Isaiah 8:2 ).

3. The father of Meremoth, mentioned in Ezra 8:33 .

Uriel

God is my light.

1. A Levite of the family of Kohath ( 1 Chronicles 6:24 ).

2. The chief of the Kohathites at the time when the ark was brought up to Jerusalem ( 1 Chronicles 15:5 1 Chronicles 15:11 ).

3. The father of Michaiah, one of Rehoboam's wives, and mother of Abijah ( 2 Chronicles 13:2 ).

Urijah

the lord is my light.

1. A high priest in the time of Ahaz ( 2 Kings 16:10-16 ), at whose bidding he constructed an idolatrous altar like one the king had seen at Damascus, to be set up instead of the brazen altar.

2. One of the priests who stood at the right hand of Ezra's pulpit when he read and expounded the law ( Nehemiah 8:4 ).

3. A prophet of Kirjath-jearim in the reign of Jehoiakim, king of Judah ( Jeremiah 26:20-23 ). He fled into Egypt from the cruelty of the king, but having been brought back he was beheaded and his body "cast into the graves of the common people."

Urim

lights (Vulg."doctrina;" LXX. "revelation"). See THUMMIM .

Usury

the sum paid for the use of money, hence interest; not, as in the modern sense, exorbitant interest. The Jews were forbidden to exact usury ( Leviticus 25:36 Leviticus 25:37 ), only, however, in their dealings with each other ( Deuteronomy 23:19 Deuteronomy 23:20 ). The violation of this law was viewed as a great crime ( Psalms 15:5 ; Proverbs 28:8 ; Jeremiah 15:10 ). After the Return, and later, this law was much neglected ( Nehemiah 5:7 Nehemiah 5:10 ).

Uz

fertile land.

1. The son of Aram, and grandson of Shem ( Genesis 10:23 ; 1 Chronicles 1:17 ).

2. One of the Horite "dukes" in the land of Edom ( Genesis 36:28 ).

3. The eldest son of Nahor, Abraham's brother ( Genesis 22:21 , RSV).

Uz, The land of

where Job lived ( 1:1 ; Jeremiah 25:20 ; Lamentations 4:21 ), probably somewhere to the east or south-east of Palestine and north of Edom. It is mentioned in Scripture only in these three passages.

Uzal

a wanderer, a descendant of Joktan ( Genesis 10:27 ; 1 Chronicles 1:21 ), the founder apparently of one of the Arab tribes; the name also probably of the province they occupied and of their chief city.

Uzza

strengh, a garden in which Manasseh and Amon were buried ( 2 Kings 21:18 2 Kings 21:26 ). It was probably near the king's palace in Jerusalem, or may have formed part of the palace grounds. Manasseh may probably have acquired it from some one of this name.

Uzzah

strength, a son of Abinadab, in whose house the men of Kirjath-jearim placed the ark when it was brought back from the land of the Philistines ( 1 Samuel 7:1 ). He with his brother Ahio drove the cart on which the ark was placed when David sought to bring it up to Jerusalem. When the oxen stumbled, Uzzah, in direct violation of the divine law ( Numbers 4:15 ), put forth his hand to steady the ark, and was immediately smitten unto death. The place where this occurred was henceforth called Perez-uzzah ( 1 Chronicles 13:11 ). David on this feared to proceed further, and placed the ark in the house of Obed-edom the Gittite ( 2 Samuel 6:2-11 ; 1 Chronicles 13:6-13 ).

Uzzen-sherah

a town probably near Beth-horon. It derived its name from the daughter of Ephraim ( 1 Chronicles 7:24 ).

Uzzi

the Lord is my strength.

1. The son of Bukki, and a descendant of Aaron ( 1 Chronicles 6:5 1 Chronicles 6:51 ; Ezra 7:4 ).

2. A grandson of Issachar ( 1 Chronicles 7:2 1 Chronicles 7:3 ).

3. A son of Bela, and grandson of Benjamin ( 1 Chronicles 7:7 ).

4. A Benjamite, a chief in the tribe ( 1 Chronicles 9:8 ).

5. A son of Bani. He had the oversight of the Levites after the return from captivity ( Nehemiah 11:22 ).

6. The head of the house of Jedaiah, one of "the chief of the priests" ( Nehemiah 12:19 ).

7. A priest who assisted in the dedication of the walls of Jerusalem ( Nehemiah 12:42 ).

Uzziah

a contracted form of Azari'ah the Lord is my strength.

1. One of Amaziah's sons, whom the people made king of Judah in his father's stead ( 2 Kings 14:21 ; 2 Chr 26:1 ). His long reign of about fifty-two years was "the most prosperous excepting that of Jehosaphat since the time of Solomon." He was a vigorous and able ruler, and "his name spread abroad, even to the entering in of Egypt" ( 2 Chronicles 26:8 2 Chronicles 26:14 ). In the earlier part of his reign, under the influence of Zechariah, he was faithful to Jehovah, and "did that which was right in the sight of the Lord" ( 2 Kings 15:3 ; 2 Chr 2 Kings 26:4 2 Kings 26:5 ); but toward the close of his long life "his heart was lifted up to his destruction," and he wantonly invaded the priest's office ( 2 Chronicles 26:16 ), and entering the sanctuary proceeded to offer incense on the golden altar. Azariah the high priest saw the tendency of such a daring act on the part of the king, and with a band of eighty priests he withstood him ( 2 Chronicles 26:17 ), saying, "It appertaineth not unto thee, Uzziah, to burn incense." Uzziah was suddenly struck with leprosy while in the act of offering incense ( 26:19-21 ), and he was driven from the temple and compelled to reside in "a several house" to the day of his death ( 2 Kings 15:5 2 Kings 15:27 ; 2 Chr 26:3 ). He was buried in a separate grave "in the field of the burial which belonged to the kings" ( 2 Kings 15:7 ; 2 Chr 26:23 ). "That lonely grave in the royal necropolis would eloquently testify to coming generations that all earthly monarchy must bow before the inviolable order of the divine will, and that no interference could be tolerated with that unfolding of the purposes of God, which, in the fulness of time, would reveal the Christ, the true High Priest and King for evermore" (Dr. Green's Kingdom of Israel, etc.).

2. The father of Jehonathan, one of David's overseers ( 1 Chronicles 27:25 ).

Uzziel

strength of God.

1. One of the sons of Kohath, and uncle of Aaron ( Exodus 6:18 ; Leviticus 10:4 ).

2. A Simeonite captain ( 1 Chronicles 4:39-43 ).

3. A son of Bela, and grandson of Benjamin ( 1 Chronicles 7:7 ).

4. One of the sons of Heman ( 1 Chronicles 25:4 ); called also Azareel (18).

5. A son of Jeduthan ( 2 Chronicles 29:14 ).

6. The son of Harhaiah ( Nehemiah 3:8 ).