Obadiah in Fausset's Bible Dictionary
("worshipper of Jehovah"; Arabic: Abdallah.)
1. One of Israhiah's "five" sons, of Issachar (1
Chronicles 7:3). But as four only are mentioned, Kennicott
with four manuscripts omits "and the sons of Israhiah," thus
making him brother not father of Obadiah, and both sons of
Uzzi. Syriac and Arabic have our text, but "four."
2. 1 Chronicles 8:38; 1 Chronicles 9:44.
3. 1 Chronicles 9:16; Nehemiah 12:24-25.
4. 1 Chronicles 3:21.
5. 1 Chronicles 12:8-9.
6. 2 Chronicles 17:7.
7. Ezra 8:9.
8. Nehemiah 10:5.
9. Over Ahab's house. A kind of lord high
chamberlain or mayor of the palace (1 Kings 18:3). As there
were saints in Nero's palace (Philemon 1:13; Philemon 4:22),
so they were in wicked Ahab's palace. Had not his value as a
servant made him necessary to Ahab, his piety would have
destroyed him. The pressure of the drought in the third year
was such that Ahab could trust none so well as Obadiah to
search throughout the land for water to preserve his
"beasts," his stud of "horses and mules." Ahab cared more
for these than for his perishing subjects! In a corrupt
court, in spite of the persecuting idolatrous queen Jezebel,
"Obadiah feared Jehovah," not merely a little but "greatly."
So much so that he dared to hide from her fury 100 prophets,
feeding them by fifty in a cave (compare on love to the
Lord's brethren, Matthew 25:40). Ahab went in one direction
in search of water, Obadiah another by himself. The latter
was startled by the sudden appearance of Elijah, who had
disappeared since his first announcement of the drought
coming at his word (1 Kings 17:1). Obadiah knew him and
reverently fell on his face saying, "art thou that my lord