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SermonIndex.net : Christian Books : Letter U

Smiths Bible Dictionary by Roswell D. Hitchcock

Letter U

Ucal
(I am strong). According to the received text of (Proverbs 30:1) Ithiel and Ucal must be regarded as proper names; and if so, they must be the names of disciples or sons of Agur the son of Jakeh, an unknown sage among the Hebrews. But there is great obscurity about the passage. Ewald considers both Ithiel and Ucal as symbolical names, employed by the poet to designate two classes of thinkers to whom he addresses himself.

Uel
(will of God), one of the family of Bani, who during the captivity had married a foreign wife. (Ezra 10:34) (B.C.458.)

Uknaz
In the margin of (1 Chronicles 4:16) the words |even Kenaz| in the text are rendered |Uknaz,| as the proper name.

Ulai
(pure water) is mentioned by Daniel, (Daniel 8:2,16) as a river near to Susa, where he saw his vision of the ram and the he-goat. It has been generally identified with the Eulaeus of the Greek and Roman geographers, a large stream in the immediate neighborhood of that city. The Eulseus has been by many identified with the Choaspes, which is undoubtedly the modern Kerkhah, an affluent of the Tigris, flowing into it a little below Kurnah . Recent surveys show that the Choarspes once divided into two streams about 20 miles above Susa. The eastern was the Ulai. This bifurcation explains (Daniel 8:16)

Ulam
(porch).

+ A descendant of Gilead, the grandson of Manasseh and father of Bedan. (1 Chronicles 7:17) (B.C.1450.)
+ The first-born of Eshek, a descendant of the house of Saul. (1 Chronicles 8:39,40) (B.C.588.)

Ulla
(yoke), an Asherite, head of a family in his tribe. (1 Chronicles 7:30) (B.C. about 1014.)

Ummah
(union), one of the cities of the allotment of Asher. (Joshua 10:30) only. Probably 'Alma, in the highlands of the coast, about five miles east-northeast of Ras en-Nakhura .

Unclean Meats
These were things strangled, or dead of themselves or through beasts or birds of prey; whatever beast did not both part the hoof and chew the cud; and certain other smaller animals rated as |creeping things;| certain classes of birds mentioned in Levi 11 and Deuteronomy 14 twenty or twenty-one in all; whatever in the waters had not both fins and scales whatever winged insect had not besides four legs the two hindlegs for leaping; Besides things offered in sacrifice to idols; and ail blood or whatever contained it (save perhaps the blood of fish, as would appear from that only of beast and bird being forbidden,) (Leviticus 7:26) and therefore flesh cut from the live animal; as also all fat, at any rate that disposed in masses among the intestines, and probably wherever discernible end separable among the flesh. (Leviticus 3:14-17; 7:23) The eating of blood was prohibited even to |the stranger that sojourneth among you.| (Leviticus 17:10; 12:14) As regards blood, the prohibition indeed dates from the declaration to Noah against |flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof| in (Genesis 9:4) which was perhaps by Moses as still binding upon all Noah's descendants. It is noteworthy that the practical effect of the rule laid down is to exclude all the carnivora among quadrupeds, and, so far as we can interpret the nomenclature the raptores among birds. They were probably excluded as being not averse to human carcasses, and in most eastern countries acting as the servitors of the battle-field and the gibbet. Among fish those which were allowed contain unquestionably the most wholesome varieties, save that they exclude the oyster. Practically the law left among the allowed Meats an ample variety. As Orientals have minds sensitive to teaching by types, there can be little doubt that such cere menial distinctions not only tended to keep Jew and Gentile apart (and so prevented the Jews from becoming contaminated with the idolatry of the Gentiles), but were a perpetual reminder to the former that he and the latter were not on one level before God. Hence, when that ceremony was changed we find that this was the very symbol selected to instruct St. Peter in the truth that God was not a |respecter of persons.| It remains to mention the sanitary aspect of the case. Swine are said to peculiarly liable to disease in their own bodies. This probably means that they are more easily led than other creatures to the foul feeding which produces it. As regards the animals allowed for food, comparing them with those forbidden, there can be no doubt on which side the balance of wholesomeness lies.

Uncleanness
The distinctive idea attached to ceremonial uncleanness among the Hebrews was that it cut a person off for the time from social privileges, and left his citizenship among God's people for the while in abeyance. There is an intense reality in the fact of the divine law taking hold of a man by the ordinary infirmities of flesh, and setting its stamp, as it were, in the lowest clay of which he is moulded. The sacredness attached to the human body is parallel to that which invested the ark of the covenant itself. It is as though Jehovah thereby would teach men that the |very hairs of their head were all numbered| before him and that |in his book were all their members written.| Thus was inculcated so to speak a bodily holiness. Nor were the Israelites to be only |separated from other people,| but they were to be |holy to God,| (Leviticus 20:24,26) |a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation.| The importance to physical well-being of the injunctions which required frequent ablution, under whatever special pretexts, can be but feebly appreciated in our cooler and damper climate. Uncleanness, as referred to men, may be arranged in three degrees:

+ That which defiled merely |until even.| and was removed by bathing and washing the clothes at the end of it; such were all contacts with dead animals.
+ That graver sort which defiled for seven days, and was removed by the use of the |water of separa Undergirding
(Acts 27:17) [[1252]Ship]

Unicorn
the rendering of the Authorized Version of the Hebrew reem, a word which occurs seven times in the Old Testament as the name of some large wild animal. The reem of the Hebrew Bible, however, has nothing at all to do with the one-horned animal of the Greek and Roman writers, as is evident from (33:17) where in the blessing of Joseph it is said; |his glory is like the firstling of his bullock, and his horns are like the horns of a unicorn ;| not, as the text of the Authorized Version renders it, |the horns of unicorns .| The two horns of the ram are |the ten thousands of Ephraim and the thousands of Manasseh.| This text puts a one-horned animal entirely out of the question. Considering that the reem is spoken of as a two-horned animal of great strength and ferocity, that it was evidently well known and often seen by the Jews, that it is mentioned as an animal fit for sacrificial purposes, and that it is frequently associated with bulls and oxen we think there can be no doubt that, some species of wild ox is intended. The allusion in (Psalms 92:10) |But thou shalt lift up, as a reeym, my horn,| seems to point to the mode in which the Bovidae use their horns, lowering the head and then tossing it up. But it is impossible to determine what particular species of wild ox is signified probably some gigantic urus is intended. (It is probable that it was the gigantic Bos primigeniua, or aurochs, now extinct, but of which Caesar says, |These uri are scarcely less than elephants in size, but in their nature, color and form are bulls. Great is their strength and great their speed; they spare neither man nor beast when once; they have caught sight of them| -- Bell. Gall. vi.20.-ED.)

Unni
(depressed).

+ One of the Levite doorkeepers in the time of David. (1 Chronicles 15:18,20) (B.C.1043.)
+ A second Levite (unless the family of the foregoing be intended) concerned in the sacred office after the return from Babylon. (Nehemiah 12:9) (B.C.535.)

Uphaz
(Jeremiah 10:9; Daniel 10:5) [[1253]Ophir]

Ur
was the land of Haran's nativity, (Genesis 11:28) the place from which Terah and Abraham started |to go into the land of Canaan.| (Genesis 11:31) It is called in Genesis |Ur of the Chaldaeans,| while in the Acts St. Stephen places it, by implication, in Mesopotamia. (Acts 7:2,4) These are all the indications which Scripture furnishes as to its locality. It has been identified by the most ancient traditions with the city of Orfah in the highlands of Mesopotamia, which unite the table-land of Armenia to the valley of the Euphrates. In later ages it was called Edessa, and was celebrated as the capital of Abgarus or Acbarus who was said to have received the letter and portrait of our Saviour. |Two, physical features must have secured Orfah, from the earliest times, as a nucleus for the civilization of those regions. One is a high-crested crag, the natural fortifications of the crested citadel....The other is an abundant spring, issuing in a pool of transparent clearness, and embosomed in a mass of luxuriant verdure, which, amidst the dull brown desert all around, makes and must always have made, this spot an oasis, a paradise, in the Chaldaean wilderness. Round this sacred pool,'the beautiful spring Callirrhoe,' as it was called by the Greek writers, gather the modern traditions of the
patriarch.| -- Stanley, Jewish Church, part i.p.7. A second tradition, which appears in the Talmud, finds Ur in Warka, 120 miles southeast from Babylon and four east of the Euphrates. It was the Orchoe of the Greeks, and probably the Ereck of Holy Scripture. This place bears the name of Huruk in the native inscriptions, and was in the countries known to the Jews as the land of the Chaldaeans. But in opposition to the most ancient traditions, many modern writers have fixed the site of Ur at a very different position, viz. in the extreme south of Chaldaea, at Mugheir, not very far above -- and probably in the time of Abraham actually upon -- the head of the Persian Gulf. Among the ruins which are now seen at the spot are the remains of one of the great temples, of a model similar to that of Babel, dedicated to the moon, to whom the city was sacred. (Porter and Rawlinson favor this last place.)

Urbane, Or Urbane
(of the city; polite), the Greek form of the Latin Urbanus, as it is given in the Revised Version. He was a Christian disciple who is in the long list of those whom St. Paul salutes in writing to Rome. (Romans 16:9) (A.D.55.)

Urbanus
the form given in the Revised Version for Urbane.

Uri
(fiery).

+ The father of Bezaleel, one of the architects of the tabernacle. (Exodus 31:2; 35:30; 38:22; 1 Chronicles 2:20; 2 Chronicles 1:5) He was of the tribe of Judah, and grandson of Caleb ben-Hezron. (B.C.1491.)
+ The father of Geber, Solomon's commissariat officer in Gilead. (1 Kings 4:19) (B.C. before 1010.)
+ One of the gatekeepers of the temple in the time of Ezra. (Ezra 10:24) (B.C.458.)

Uriah
(light of Jehovah).

+ One of the thirty commanders of the thirty bands into which the Israelite army of David was divided. (1 Chronicles 11:41; 2 Samuel 23:39) Like others of David's officers he was a foreigner -- a Hittite. His name, however and his manner of speech (2 Samuel 11:11) indicate that he had adopted the Jewish religion. He married Bath-sheba a woman of
extraordinary beauty, the daughter of Eliam -- possibly the same as the son of Ahithophel, and one of his brother officers, (2 Samuel 23:34) and hence, perhaps, Uriah's first acquaintance with Bath-sheba. It may be inferred from Nathan's parable, (2 Samuel 12:3) that he was passionately devoted to his wife, and that their union was celebrated in Jerusalem as one of peculiar tenderness. In the first war with Ammon, B.C.1035, he followed Joab to the siege, and with him remained encamped in the open field. (2 Samuel 12:11) He returned to Jerusalem, at an order from the king on the pretext of asking news of the war -- really in the hope that his return to his wife might cover the shame of his own crime. The king met with an unexpected obstacle in the austere, soldier-like spirit which guided all Uriah's conduct, and which gives us a high notion of the character and discipline of David's officers. On the morning of the third day David sent him back to the camp with a letter containing the command to Joab to cause his destruction in the battle. The device of Joab was to observe the part of the wall of Rabbath-ammon where the greatest force of the besieged was congregated, and thither, as a kind of forlorn hope to send Uriah. A sally took place. Uriah and the officers with him advanced as far as the gate of the city, and were there shot down by the archers on the wall. Just as Joab had forewarned the messenger, the king broke into a furious passion on hearing of the loss. The messenger, as instructed by Joab, calmly continued, and ended the story with the words, |Thy servant also Uriah the Hittite, is dead.| In a moment David's anger is appeased. It is one of the touching parts of the story that Uriah falls unconscious of his wife's dishonor. + High priest in the reign of Ahaz. (Isaiah 8:2; 2 Kings 16:10-16) He is probably the same as Urijah the priest, who built the altar for Ahaz. (2 Kings 16:10) (B.C. about 738.) + A priest of the family of Hakkoz, the head of the seventh course of priests. (Ezra 8:33; Nehemiah 3:4,21) (B.C.458.)

Urias

+ Uriah, the husband of Bath-sheba. (Matthew 1:6)
+ Urijah
+ 1 Esdr.9:43.

Uriel

+ A Kohathite Levite, son of Tahath. (1 Chronicles 6:24) + Chief of the Kohathites in the reign of David. (1 Chronicles 15:5,11) (B.C.1043.)
+ Uriel of Gibeah was the father of Maachah or Michaiah the favorite wife of Rehoboam and mother of Abijah. (2 Chronicles 13:2) (B.C. before 973.) In (2 Chronicles 11:20) she is called |Maachah the daughter of Absalom.| Probably her mother, Tamer, was the daughter of Absalom.

(the fire of God), an angel named only in 2 Esdr.4:1,36; 5:20; 10:28.

Urijah
(light of Jehovah).

+ Urijah the priest in the reign of Ahaz, (2 Kings 16:10) probably the same as Uriah,
+ A priest of the family of Koz or Hakkoz, the same as Uriah,
+ One of the priests who stood at Ezra's right hand when he read the law to the people. (Nehemiah 8:4) (B.C.458.)
+ The son of Shemaiah of Kirjathjearim. He prophesied in the days of Jehoiakim, B.C.600, and the king sought to put him to death; but he escaped, and fled into Egypt. His retreat was soon covered; Elnathan and his men brought him up out of Egypt, and Jehoiakim slew him with the sword and cast his body forth among the graves of the common people (Jeremiah 26:20-23)

Urim And Thummim
(light and perfection). When the Jewish exiles were met on their return from Babylon by a question which they had no data for answering, they agreed to postpone the settlement of the difficulty till there should rise up |a priest with Urim and Thummim.| (Ezra 2:63; Nehemiah 7:65) The inquiry what those Urim and Thummim themselves were seems likely to wait as long for a final and satisfying answer. On every side we meet with confessions of ignorance. Urim means |light,| and Thummim |perfection.| Scriptural statements. -- The mysterious words meet us for the first time, as if they needed no explanation, in the description of the high Priest's apparel. Over the ephod there is to be a |breastplate of judgment| of gold, scarlet, purple and fine linen, folded square and doubled, a |span| in length and width. In it are to be set four rows of precious stones, each stone with the name of a tribe of Israel engraved on it, that Aaron |may bear them on his heart.| Then comes a further order. In side the breastplate, as the tables of the covenant were placed inside the ark, (Exodus 25:16; 28:30) are to be placed |the Urim and the Thummim,| the light and the perfection; and they too are to be on Aaron's heart when he goes in before the Lord. (Exodus 28:15-30) Not a word describes them. They are mentioned as things-already familiar both to Moses and the people, connected naturally with the functions of the high priest as mediating between Jehovah and his people. The command is fulfilled. (Leviticus 8:8) They pass from Aaron to Eleazar with the sacred ephod and other pontificalia . (Numbers 20:28) When Joshua is solemnly appointed to succeed the great hero-law-giver he is bidden to stand before Eleazar, the priest, |who shall ask counsel for him after the judgment of Urim,| and this counsel is to determine the movements of the host of Israel. (Numbers 27:21) In the blessings of Moses they appear as the crowning glory of the tribe of Levi: |thy Thummim and thy Urim are with thy Holy One.| (33:8,9) In what way the Urim and Thummim were consulted is quite uncertain. Josephus and the rabbins supposed that the stones gave out the oracular answer by preternatural illumination; but it seems to be far simpler and more in agreement with the different accounts of inquiries made by Urim and Thummim, (1 Samuel 14:3,18,19; 23:2,4,9,11,12; 28:6; Judges 20:28; 2 Samuel 5:23) etc., to suppose that the answer was given simply by the word of the Lord to the high priest comp. (John 11:51) when, clothed with the ephod and the breastplate, he had inquired of the Lord. Such a view agrees with the true notion of the breastplate.

Usury
(The word usury has come in modern English to mean excessive interest upon money loaned, either formally illegal or at least oppressive. In the Scriptures, however the word did not bear this sense, but meant simply interest of any kind upon money. The Jews were forbidden by the law of Moses to take interest from their brethren, but were permitted to take it from foreigners. The prohibition grew out of the agricultural status of the people, in which ordinary business loans were not needed. and loans as were required should be made only as to friends and brothers in need. -- ED.) The practice of mortgaging land, sometimes at exorbitant interest, grew up among the Jews during the captivity, in direct violation of the law. (Leviticus 25:36,37; Ezekiel 18:8,13,17) We find the rate reaching 1 in 100 per month, corresponding to the Roman centisimae usurae, or 12 per cent. per annum.

Ut
(wooded).

+ A son of Aram, (Genesis 10:23; 1 Chronicles 1:17) end consequently a grand son of Shem. (B.C.2400-2300.) + A son of Nahor by Milcah. (Genesis 22:21) Authorized Version, Huz. (B.C. about 1900.)
+ A son of Dishan, and grandson of Seir. (Genesis 36:28) (B.C. after 1800.)
+ The country in which Job lived. (Job 1:1) As far as we can gather, |the land of Uz| lay either east or southeast of Palestine, (Job 1:3) adjacent to the Sabaeans and the Chaldaeans, (Job 1:15,17) consequently north of the southern Arabians and west of the Euphrates; and, lastly, adjacent to the Edomites of Mount Seir, who at one period occupied Uz, probably as conquerors, (Lamentations 4:21) and whose troglodyte habits are described in (Job 30:6,7) From the above data we infer that the land of Uz corresponds to the Arabia Deserta of classical geography, at all events to so much of it as lies north of the 30th parallel of latitude.

Uta
1 Esdr.5:30. It appears to be a corruption of Akkub. (Ezra 2:45)

Uthai
(helpful),

+ The son of Ammihud, of the children of Pharez the son of Judah. (1 Chronicles 9:4) (B.C.536.)
+ One of the sons of Bigvai, who returned in the second caravan with Ezra. (Ezra 8:14) (B.C.459.)

Uthii
1 Esdr.8:40. [[1258]Uthai,2]

Uzai
(strong), the father of Palal who assisted Nehemiah in rebuilding the city wail. (Nehemiah 3:25) (B.C. before 446.)

Uzal
(separate), the sixth son of Joktan, (Genesis 10:27; 1 Chronicles 1:21) whose settlements are clearly traced in the ancient name of San'a, the capital city of the Yemen (a district of Arabia), which was originally Awzal . From its position in the centre of the best portion of that kingdom it must always have been an important city. (San'a is situated about 150 miles from Aden and 100 miles from the coast of the Red Sea. It is one of the most imposing cities of Arabia -ED.)

Uzza
(strength).

+ A Benjamite of the sons of Ehud. (1 Chronicles 8:7) (B.C.1445.)
+ Elsewhere called Uzza, Or Uzzah. (1 Chronicles 13:7,9,10,11) [[1260]Uzza, Or Uzzah]
+ The children of Uzza were a family of Nethinim who returned with Zerubbabel. (Ezra 2:49; Nehemiah 7:51) (B.C. before 536.) + Properly Uzzah. As the text now stands, Uzzah is a descendant of Merari, (1 Chronicles 6:29) (14); but there appears to be a gap in the verse. Perhaps he is the same as Zina or Zizah the son of Shimei. (1 Chronicles 23:10,11) for these names evidently denote the same person, and, in Hebrew character, are not unlike Uzzah.

Uzza, Or Uzzah
(strength), one of the sons of Abinadab, in whose house at Kirjath-jearim the ark rested for twenty years. Uzzah probably was the second and Ahio the third. They both accompanied its removal when David first undertook to carry it to Jerusalem. (B.C.1043.) Ahio apparently went before the new cart, (1 Chronicles 13:7) on which it was placed, and Uzzah walked by the side. |At the threshing-floor of Nachon| (2 Samuel 6:6) or Chidon (1 Chronicles 13:9) perhaps slipping over the smooth rock oxen stumbled. Uzzah caught the ark to prevent its falling. The profanation was punished by his instant death to the great grief of David, who named the place Perez-uzzah (the breaking-forth on Uzzah). But Uzzah's fate was not merely the penalty of his own rashness. The improper mode of transporting the ark, which ought to have been borne on the shoulders of the Levites was the primary cause of his unholy deed; and David distinctly recognized it as a punishment on the people in general |because we sought him not after the due order.|

Uzza, The Garden Of
the spot in which Manasseh king of Judah and his son Amon were buried. (2 Kings 21:18,26) It was the garden attached to Manasseh's palace. ver.18. The fact of its mention shows that it was not where the usual sepulchres of the kings were. No clue, however, is afforded to its position.

Uzzensherah
(ear (or point) of Sherah) a town founded or rebuilt by Sherah, an Ephraimite woman the daughter either of Ephraim himself or of Beriah. It is named only in (1 Chronicles 7:24) in connection with the two Beth-horons.

Uzzi
(strong).

+ Son of Bukki and father of Zerahiah, in the line of the high priests. (1 Chronicles 6:5,61; Ezra 7:4) Though Uzzi was the lineal ancestor of Zadok, it does not appear that he was ever high priest. He must have been contemporary with, but rather earlier than, Eli. (B.C. before 1161.)
+ Son of Tola the son of Issachar. (1 Chronicles 7:2,3) (B.C.1706.)
+ Son of Bela, of the tribe of Benjamin. (1 Chronicles 7:7) (B.C.1706.)
+ Another, or the same, from whom descended some Benjamite houses, which were settled at Jerusalem after the return from captivity. (1 Chronicles 9:8)
+ A Levite, son of Bani and overseer of the Levites dwelling at Jerusalem, in the time of Nehemiah. (Nehemiah 11:22) + A priest, chief of the father's house of Jedaiah, in the time of Joiakim the high priest. (Nehemiah 12:19) (B.C. about 500.) + One of the priests who assisted Ezra in the dedication of the wall of Jerusalem. (Nehemiah 12:42) Perhaps the same as the preceding. (B.C.446.)

Uzzia
(strength of Jehovah), one of David's guard, and apparently a native of Ashtaroth beyond Jordan. (1 Chronicles 11:44) (B.C.1053.)

Uzziah
(strength of Jehovah).

+ King of Judah B.C.809-8 to 757-6. In some passages his name appears in the lengthened form Azariah: After the murder of Amaziah, his son Uzziah was chosen by the people, at the age of sixteen, to occupy the vacant throne; and for the greater part of his long reign of fifty-two years he lived in the fear of God, and showed himself a wise, active and pious ruler. He never deserted the worship of the true God, and was much influenced by Zechariah, a prophet who is mentioned only in connection with him. (2 Chronicles 26:5) So the southern kingdom was raised to a condition of prosperity which it had not known since the death of Solomon. The end of Uzziah was less prosperous than his beginning. Elated with his splendid career, he determined to burn incense on the altar of God, but was opposed by the high priest Azariah and eighty others. See (Exodus 30:7,8; Numbers 16:40; 18:7) The king was enraged at their resistance, and, as he pressed forward with his censer was suddenly smitten with leprosy. This lawless attempt to burn incense was the only exception to the excellence of his administration. (2 Chronicles 27:2) Uzziah was buried |with his fathers,| yet apparently not actually in the royal sepulchres. (2 Chronicles 26:23) During his reign a great earthquake occurred. (Amos 1:1; Zechariah 14:5)
+ A Kohathite Levite, and ancestor of Samuel. (1 Chronicles 6:24) (9).
+ A priest of the sons of Harim, who had taken a foreign wife in the days of Ezra. (Ezra 10:21) (B.C.458.)
+ Father of Athaiah or Uthai. (Nehemiah 11:4)
+ Father of Jehonathan, one of David's overseers. (1 Chronicles 27:25) (B.C. about 1053.)

Uzziel
(my strength is God).

+ Fourth son of Kohath, father of Mishael, Eizaphan or Elizaphan and Zithri, and uncle to Aaron. (Exodus 6:18,22; Leviticus 10:4) (B.C. before 1491.)
+ A Simeonite captain, son of Ishi, in the days of Hezekiah. (1 Chronicles 4:42)
+ Head of a Benjamite house, of the sons of Bela. (1 Chronicles 7:7) (B.C.1706.)
+ A musician, of the sons of Heman in David's reign. (1 Chronicles 25:4)
+ A Levite, of the sons of Jeduthun, in the days of Hezekiah. (2 Chronicles 29:14,18) (B.C.726.)
+ Son of Harhaiah, probably a priest in the days of Nehemiah, who took part in repairing the wall. (Nehemiah 3:8) (B.C.446.) He is described as |of the goldsmiths,| i.e. of those priests whose hereditary office it was to repair or make the sacred vessels.

Uzzielites, The
the descendants of Uzziel, and one of the four great families of the Kohathites. (Numbers 3:27; 1 Chronicles 26:23)

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