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Fausset's Bible Dictionary

Nathan

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("given by God".)

1. The prophet who gave David God's assurance of the perpetuity of his seed and throne (notwithstanding temporary chastening for iniquity). God by Nathan commended David's desire to build the temple, but reserved the accomplishment for his son Solomon, the type of Him who should build the true temple (2 Samuel 7; 1 Chronicles 17). Nathan speaking first of himself had said, "do all that is in thine heart" (compare 1 Kings 8:18). God sometimes grants His children's requests in a form real, but not as they had proposed. His glory proves in the end to be their truest good, though their wishes for the time be crossed. Nathan convicted David of his sin in the case of Uriah by the beautiful parable of the poor man's lamb (2 Samuel 12:1-15; 2 Samuel 12:25; Psalm 51).

Nathan conveyed Jehovah's command to David, to name Solomon" Jedidiah," not as a mere appellation, but an assurance that Jehovah loved him. Nathan was younger than David, as he wrote with Ahijah the Shilonite and Iddo the seer" the acts of Solomon first and last" (2 Chronicles 9:29). To Nathan David refers as having forbidden his building the temple on account of his having had "great wars" (2 Chronicles 22:1-10; 2 Chronicles 28:2). Nathan secured the succession of Solomon by advising Bathsheba to remind David of his promise (1 Chronicles 22:9, etc.), and to inform him of Adonijah's plot, and by himself venturing into the king's presence to follow up Bathsheba's statement. Nathan by David's direction with Zadok the priest brought Solomon to Gihon on the king's own mule, and anointed him king (1 Kings 1:10-38).

"Azariah son of Nathan was over the officers, and Zabud son of Nathan was the king's friend" under Solomon (1 Kings 4:5; 1 Chronicles 27:33; 2 Samuel 15:37). A similarity between the apologue style of Solomon in Ecclesiastes 9:14-16 and Nathan's in 2 Samuel 12:1-4 may be due to Nathan's influence. Nathan along with Gad wrote "the acts of David first and last" (1 Chronicles 29:29). Nathan is designated by the later and higher title "the prophet," but" Gad and Samuel the seer" (compare 1 Samuel 9:9). His histories were doubtless among the materials from which the books of Samuel, Kings, and Chronicles were compiled. His grave is shown at Halhul near Hebron.

2. Son of David and Bathsheba (1 Chronicles 3:5; 1 Chronicles 14:4; 2 Samuel 5:14). Luke traces Christ's genealogy to David through Nathan (2 Samuel 3:31); as Matthew gives the succession to the throne, so Luke the parentage of Joseph, Jeconiah's line having failed as he died childless. (See GENEALOGY.) "The family of the house of David and the family of the house of Nathan" represent the highest and lowest of the royal order; as "the family of the house of Levi and the family of Shimei" represent the highest and lowest of the priestly order (Zechariah 12:12-13).

3. Father of Igal, one of David's heroes, of Zobah, 2 Samuel 23:36, but in 1 Chronicles 11:38 "Joel, brother of Nathan" Kennicott prefers "brother."

4. A head man who returned with Ezra on his second expedition, and whom Ezra despatched from his encampment at the river Ahava to the Jews at Casiphia, to get Levites and Nethinim for the temple (Ezra 8:16). Perhaps the same as the son of Bani who gave up his foreign wife (Ezra 10:39).

5. Son of Attai of Judah (1 Chronicles 2:36).


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Bibliography Information
Fausset, Andrew R. Entry for 'Nathan'. Fausset's Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/fbd/n/nathan.html. 1949.

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