Dictionary of Bible Names

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Bible Meaning: Grieve, sorrowful, sorrow
Strong's Concordance #H3258

The Bible records a pious man named Jabez making a simple prayer to God requesting he be blessed and protected. The Lord, upon hearing his words, graciously granted him what he desired. Scripture is, unfortunately, silent regarding further information about this person.

The city of Jabez, the location of which is not known, was famous for its many families of scribes (1Chronicles 2:55).

The 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia states the following in its discussion about the city and person of the same name.

"Jabez was prominent, particularly after the Exile, among those Kenite clans that embraced Judaism, becoming scribes and teachers of the Law. Rabbinical tradition identifies Jabez with Othniel the Kenezite, the head of the bet ha-midrash after the death of Moses . . .

"In the Syriac Apocalypse of Baruch (v. 5) Jabez is mentioned together with Jeremiah and Gedaliah among the saintly leaders of the people at the destruction of the Temple . . ."

Important Verses


1Chronicles 4:9 - 11
And Jabez was more honorable than his brethren: and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, Because I bare him with sorrow.

And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested.

And Chelub the brother of Shuah begat Mehir, which was the father of Eshton.


1Chronicles 2:54 - 55
The sons of Salma; Bethlehem, and the Netophathites, Ataroth, the house of Joab, and half of the Manahethites, the Zorites.

And the families of the scribes which dwelt at Jabez: the Tirathites, the Shimeathites, and Suchathites. These are the Kenites that came of Hemath, the father of the house of Rechab.

Additional Studies

Dictionary of Biblical Names
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Series Notes
References are based on the
King James Bible translation (KJV).