na'-dab (nadhabh, "noble"; Nadab):
(1) Aaron's first-born son (Exodus 6:23; Numbers 3:2; 26:60; 1 Chronicles 6:3 (Hebrew 5:29); 24:1). He was permitted with Moses, Aaron, the 70 elders, and his brother Abihu to ascend Mt. Sinai and behold the God of Israel (Exodus 24:1,9). He was associated with his father and brothers in the priestly office (Exodus 28:1). Along with Abihu he was guilty of offering "strange fire," and both "died before Yahweh" (Leviticus 10:1,2; Numbers 3:4; 26:61). The nature of their offense is far from clear. The word rendered "strange" seems in this connection to mean no more than "unauthorized by the Law" (see zur, in BDB, and compare Exodus 30:9). The proximity of the prohibition of wine to officiating priests (Leviticus 10:8,9) has given rise to the erroneous suggestion of the Midrash that the offense of the brothers was drunkenness.
(2) A descendant of Jerahmeel (1 Chronicles 2:28,30).
(3) A Gibeonite (1 Chronicles 8:30).
(4) Son of Jeroboam I and after him for two years king of Israel (1 Kings 14:20; 15:25). While Nadab was investing Gibbethon, a Philistine stronghold, Baasha, who probably was an officer in the army, as throne-robbers usually were, conspired against him, slew him and seized the throne (1 Kings 15:27-31). With the assassination of Nadab the dynasty of Jeroboam was extirpated, as foretold by the prophet Ahijah (1 Kings 14). This event is typical of the entire history of the Northern Kingdom, characterized by revolutions and counter-revolutions.
John A. Lees
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