Baruch in the Bible Encyclopedia - ISBE
ba'-ruk, bar'-uk (baruk; Barouch, "blessed"):
(1) Son of Neriah and brother of Seraiah, King Zedekiah's
chamberlain (Jer 51:59). He was the devoted friend (Jer
32:12), the amanuensis (36:4 ff,32) and faithful attendant
(36:10 ff; Josephus, Ant, X, vi, 2) of the prophet Jeremiah.
He seems to have been of noble family (see Ant, X, ix, 1;
compare Jer 51:59; Baruch 1:1). He was also according to
Josephus a man of unusual acquirements (Ant., X, ix, 1). He
might have risen to a high position and seemed conscious of
this, but under Jeremiah's influence (see Jer 45:5) he
repressed his ambition, being content to throw in his lot
with the great prophet whose secretary and companion he
became. Jeremiah dictated his prophecies to Baruch, who read
them to the people (Jer 36). The king (Jehoiakim) was
greatly angered at these prophecies and had Baruch arrested
and the roll burnt. Baruch however rewrote the prophet's
oracles. In the final siege of Jerusalem Baruch stood by his
master, witnessing the purchase by the latter of his
ancestral estate in Anathoth (Jer 32). According to Josephus
(Ant., X, ix, 1) he continued to reside with Jeremiah at
Mizpah after the fall of Jerusalem. Subsequent to the murder
of Gedaliah, he was accused of having unduly influenced
Jeremiah when the latter urged the people to remain in
Judah--a fact which shows how great was the influence which
Baruch was believed to have had over his master (Jer 43:3).
He was carried with Jeremiah to Egypt (Jer 43:6; Ant, X, ix,
6), and thereafter our knowledge of him is merely legendary.
According to a tradition preserved by Jerome (on Isa 30:6 f)
he died in Egypt soon after reaching that country. Two other
traditions say that he went, or by Nebuchadnezzar was
carried, to Babylon after this king conquered Egypt. The
high character of Baruch and the important part he played in
the life and work of Jeremiah induced later generations
still further to enhance his reputation, and a large number
of spurious writings passed under his name, among them the
following: (a) The APOCALYPSE OF BARUCH (which see); (b) the
Book of Baruch; (c) the Rest of the Words of Baruch; (d) the
Gnostic Book of Baruch; (e) the Latin Book of Baruch,
composed originally in Latin; (f) a Greek Apocalypse of
Baruch belonging to the 2nd century of our era; (g) another
Book of Baruch belonging to the 4th or 5th century.
(2) A son of Zabbai who aided Nehemiah in rebuilding the
walls of Jerusalem (Neh 3:20).
(3) One of the priests who signed the covenant with Nehemiah
(4) The son of Colhozeh, a descendant of Perez, the son of
Judah (Neh 11:5).
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