Also see definition of "Gad
" in Word Study
| Gad, The Tribe Of
| Gad, Valley Of
| Gadarenes, Girgesenes, Gerasenes
In Bible versions:
the tribe of Israel descended from Gad, the son of Jacob
the man; the son of Jacob and Zilpah
the tribe of Gad in Israel
a prophet and long time advisor to King David
the tribe of Gad as a whole
a band; a troop
Gad = "a troop"
1) the seventh son of the patriarch Jacob, by Zilpah, Leah's maid
1045 Gad gad
of Hebrew origin (1410); Gad, a tribe of Israelites:-Gad.
see HEBREW for 01410
Gadite = "an invader: a troop: fortune"
1) one of the tribe descended from Gad
1425 Gadiy gaw-dee'
patronymically from 1410; a Gadite (collectively) or
descendants of Gad:-Gadites, children of Gad.
see HEBREW for 01410
Gad = "troop"
1) seventh son of Jacob by Zilpah, Leah's handmaid, and full brother
2) the tribe descended from Gad
3) a prophet during the time of David; appears to have joined David
when in the hold; reappears in connection with the punishment for
taking a census; also assisted in the arrangements for the musical
service of the "house of God"
1410 Gad gawd
from 1464; Gad, a son of Jacob, including his tribe and its
territory; also a prophet:-Gad.
see HEBREW for 01464
fortune; luck. (1.) Jacob's seventh son, by Zilpah, Leah's handmaid, and the brother of Asher (Gen. 30:11-13; 46:16, 18). In the Authorized Version of 30:11 the words, "A troop cometh: and she called," etc., should rather be rendered, "In fortune [R.V., 'Fortunate']: and she called," etc., or "Fortune cometh," etc.
The tribe of Gad during the march through the wilderness had their place with Simeon and Reuben on the south side of the tabernacle (Num. 2:14). The tribes of Reuben and Gad continued all through their history to follow the pastoral pursuits of the patriarchs (Num. 32:1-5).
The portion allotted to the tribe of Gad was on the east of Jordan, and comprehended the half of Gilead, a region of great beauty and fertility (Deut. 3:12), bounded on the east by the Arabian desert, on the west by the Jordan (Josh. 13:27), and on the north by the river Jabbok. It thus included the whole of the Jordan valley as far north as to the Sea of Galilee, where it narrowed almost to a point.
This tribe was fierce and warlike; they were "strong men of might, men of war for the battle, that could handle shield and buckler, their faces the faces of lions, and like roes upon the mountains for swiftness" (1 Chr. 12:8; 5:19-22). Barzillai (2 Sam. 17:27) and Elijah (1 Kings 17:1) were of this tribe. It was carried into captivity at the same time as the other tribes of the northern kingdom by Tiglath-pileser (1 Chr. 5:26), and in the time of Jeremiah (49:1) their cities were inhabited by the Ammonites.
(2.) A prophet who joined David in the "hold," and at whose advice he quitted it for the forest of Hareth (1 Chr. 29:29; 2 Chr. 29:25; 1 Sam. 22:5). Many years after we find mention made of him in connection with the punishment inflicted for numbering the people (2 Sam. 24:11-19; 1 Chr. 21:9-19). He wrote a book called the "Acts of David" (1 Chr. 29:29), and assisted in the arrangements for the musical services of the "house of God" (2 Chr. 29:25). He bore the title of "the king's seer" (2 Sam. 24:11, 13; 1 Chr. 21:9).
1. Jacob's seventh son, Gen. 30:11
; Ex. 1:4
Children of, Gen. 46:16
; Num. 26:15-18
; 1 Chr. 5:11
Prophecy concerning, Gen. 49:19
2. A tribe of Israel. Blessed by Moses, Deut. 33:20
Enumeration of, at Sinai, Num. 1:14
; in the plains of Moab, Num. 26:15-18
; in the reign of Jotham, 1 Chr. 5:11-17
Place of, in camp and march, Num. 2:10
Wealth of, in cattle, and spoils, Josh. 22:8
; Num. 32:1
Petition for their portion of land E. of the Jordan, Num. 32:1-5
; Deut. 3:12
Boundaries of territory, Josh. 13:24-28
; 1 Chr. 5:11
Aid in the conquest of the region W. of the Jordan, Num. 32:16-32
; Josh. 4:12
Erect a monument to signify the unity of the tribes E. of the Jordan with the tribes W. of the river, Josh. 22:10-14
Defected from Saul as king, and joined the faction under David in the wilderness of Hebron, 1 Chr. 12:8-15
Join the Reubenites in the war against the Hagarites, 1 Chr. 5:10
Killed by the king of Syria, 2 Kin. 10:32
Carried into captivity to Assyria, 1 Chr. 5:26
Land of, occupied by the Ammonites, after the tribe is carried into captivity, Jer. 49:1
Reallotment of territory to, by Ezekiel, Ezek. 48:27
3. A prophet of David, 2 Sam. 24:11
Bids David leave Adullam, 1 Sam. 22:5
Bears the divine message to David offering choice between three evils, for his presumption in numbering Israel, 2 Sam. 24:11-14
; 1 Chr. 21:9-13
Bids David build an altar on threshing floor of Ornan, 2 Sam. 24:18
; 1 Chr. 21:18
Assists David in arranging temple service, 2 Chr. 29:25
Writings of, 1 Chr. 29:29
GAD (1) [ISBE]
- (gadh, "fortune"; Gad):
1. The Name:
The seventh son of Jacob, whose mother was Zilpah (Gen 30:11), and whose birth was welcomed by Leah with the cry, "Fortunate!" Some have sought to connect the name with that of the heathen deity Gad, of which traces are found in Baal-gad, Migdal-gad, etc. In the blessing of Jacob (Gen 49:19) there is a play upon the name, as if it meant "troop," or "marauding band." "Gad, a troop shall press upon him; but he shall press upon their heel" (Hebrew gadh, gedhudh, yeghudhennu, wehu yaghudh `aqebh). Here there is doubtless a reference to the high spirit and valor that characterized the descendants of Gad. The enemy who attacked them exposed himself to grave peril. In the blessing of Moses again (Dt 33:20 ff) it is said that Gad "dwelleth as lioness, and teareth the arm, yea, the crown of the head." Leonine qualities are ascribed to the Gadites, mighty men of valor, who joined David (1 Ch 12:8,14). Their "faces were like the faces of lions, and they were as swift as the roes upon the mountain." Among their captains "he that was least was equal to a hundred, and the greatest to a thousand."
2. The Tribe:
Of the patriarch Gad almost nothing is recorded. Seven sons went down with him into Egypt, when Jacob accepted Joseph s invitation (Gen 46:16). At the beginning of the desert march Gad numbered 45,650 "from twenty years old and upward, all that were able to go forth to war" (Nu 1:24). In the plains of Moab the number had fallen to 40,500 (Nu 26:18). The place of Gad was with the standard of the camp of Reuben on the South side of the tabernacle (Nu 2:14). The prince of the tribe was Eliasaph, son of Deuel (Nu 1:14), or Reuel (Nu 2:14). Among the spies Gad was represented by Geuel son of Machi (Nu 13:15).
3. The Tribal Territory:
From time immemorial the dwellers East of the Jordan have followed the pastoral life. When Moses had completed the conquest of these lands, the spacious uplands, with their wide pastures, attracted the great flock-masters of Reuben and Gad. In response to their appeal Moses assigned them their tribal portions here: only on condition, however, that their men of war should go over with their brethren, and take their share alike in the hardship and in the glory of the conquest of Western Palestine (Nu 32). When the victorious campaigns of Joshua were completed, the warriors of Reuben and Gad returned to their possessions in the East. They halted, however, in the Jordan valley to build the mighty altar of Ed. They feared lest the gorge of the Jordan should in time become all too effective a barrier between them and their brethren on the West. This altar should be for all time a "witness" to their unity in race and faith (Josh 22). The building of the altar was at first misunderstood by the western tribes, but the explanation given entirely satisfied them.
It is impossible to indicate with any certainty the boundaries of the territory of Gad. Reuben lay on the South, and the half-tribe of Manasseh on the North. These three occupied the whole of Eastern Palestine. The South border of Gad is given as the Arnon in Nu 32:34; but six cities to the North of the Arnon are assigned in 32:16 ff to Reuben. Again, Josh 13:26 makes Wady Chesban the southern boundary of Gad. Mesha, however (MS), says that the men of Gad dwelt in Ataroth from old time. This is far South of Wady Chesban. The writer of Nu 32 may have regarded the Jabbok as the northern frontier of Gad; but Josh 13:27 extends it to the Sea of Chinnereth, making the Jordan the western boundary. It included Rabbath-ammon in the East. We have not now the information necessary to explain this apparent confusion. There can be no doubt that, as a consequence of strifes with neighboring peoples, the boundaries were often changed (1 Ch 5:18 f). For the Biblical writers the center of interest was in Western Palestine, and the details given regarding the eastern tribes are very meager. We may take it, however, that, roughly, the land of Gilead fell to the tribe of Gad. In Jdg 5:17 Gilead appears where we should naturally expect Gad, for which it seems to stand. The city of refuge, Ramoth in Gilead, was in the territory of Gad (Josh 20:8). For description of the country see GILEAD.
Reuben and Gad were absent from the muster against Sisera (Jdg 5:15 ff); but they united with their brethren in taking vengeance on Benjamin, Jabesh-gilead, from which no contingent was sent, being destroyed (20 f). Jephthah is probably to be reckoned to this tribe, his house, Mizpah (Jdg 11:34), being apparently within its territory (Josh 13:26). Gad furnished a refuge for some of the Hebrews during the Philistine oppression (1 Sam 13:7). To David, while he avoided Saul at Ziklag, certain Gadites attached themselves (1 Ch 12:8 ff). A company of them also joined in making him king at Hebron (1 Ch 12:38). In Gad the adherents of the house of Saul gathered round Ish-bosheth (2 Sam 2:8 ff). Hither David came in his flight from Absalom (2 Sam 17:24). Gad fell to Jeroboam at the disruption of the kingdom, and Penuel, apparently within its borders, Jeroboam fortified at first (1 Ki 12:25). It appears from the Moabite Stone that part of the territory afterward passed into the hands of Moab. Under Omri this was recovered; but Moab again asserted its supremacy. Elijah probably belonged to this district; and the brook Cherith must be sought in one of its wild secluded glens.
Gad formed the main theater of the long struggle between Israel and the Syrians. At Ramoth-gilead Ahab received his death wound (1 Ki 22). Under Jeroboam II, this country was once more an integral part of the land of Israel. In 734 BC, however, Tiglath-pileser appeared, and conquered all Eastern Palestine, carrying its inhabitants captive (2 Ki 15:29; 1 Ch 5:26). This seems to have furnished occasion for the children of Ammon to occupy the country (Jer 49:1). In Ezekiel's ideal picture (Ezek 48:27,34), a place is found for the tribe of Gad. Obadiah seems to have forgotten the tribe, and their territory is assigned to Benjamin (1:19). Gad, however, has his place among the tribes of Israel in Rev 7.
GAD (2) [ISBE]
- (gadh, "fortunate"): David's seer (chozeh, 1 Ch 21:9
; 2 Ch 29:25
), or prophet (nabhi'; compare 1 Sam 22:5
; 2 Sam 24:11
). He appears (1) to advise David while an outlaw fleeing before Saul to return to the land of Judah (1 Sam 22:5
); (2) to rebuke David and give him his choice of punishments when, in spite of the advice of Joab and the traditional objections (compare Ex 30:11
ff), he had counted the children of Israel (2 Sam 24:11
; 1 Ch 21:9
ff); (3) to instruct David to erect an altar on the threshing-floor of Araunah when the plague that had descended on Israel ceased (2 Sam 24:18
; 1 Ch 21:18
); and (4) to assist in the arrangement of Levitical music with cymbals, psalteries and harps (compare 2 Ch 29:25
). Of his writings none are known, though he is said to have written a history of a part of David's reign (1 Ch 29:29
Ella Davis Isaacs
GAD (3) [ISBE]
- (gadh, "fortune"): A god of Good Luck, possibly the Hyades. The writer in Isa 65:11
(margin) pronounces a curse against such as are lured away to idolatry. The warning here, according to Cheyne, is specifically against the Samaritans, whom with their religion the Jews held in especial abhorrence. The charge would, however, apply just as well to superstitious and semi-pagan Jews. "But ye that forsake Yahweh, that forget my holy mountain, that prepare a table for Fortune, and that fill up mingled wine unto Destiny; I will destine you to the sword, and ye shall all bow down to the slaughter." There is a play upon words here: "Fill up mingled wine unto Destiny" (meni) and "I will destine manithi, i.e. portion out) you for the sword" (Isa 65:11,12
). Gad and Meni mentioned here are two Syrian-deities (Cheyne, Book of the Prophet Isaiah, 198). Schurer (Gesch. d. jud. Volkes, II, 34 note, and bibliography) disputes the reference of the Greek (Tuche) cult to the Semitic Gad, tracing it rather to the Syrian "Astarte" worship. The custom was quite common among heathen peoples of spreading before the gods tables laden with food (compare Herod. i. 181, 183; Smith, Rel. of Semites, Lect X).
Nothing is known of a Babylonian deity named Gad, but there are Aramean and Arabic equivalents. The origin may have been a personification of fortune and destiny, i.e. equivalent to the Fates. The Nabatean inscriptions give, in plural, form, the name of Meni. Achimenidean coins (Persian) are thought by some to bear the name of Meni. How widely spread these Syrian cults became, may be seen in a number of ways, e.g. an altar from Vaison in Southern France bearing an inscription:
"Belus Fortunae rector, Menisque Magister."
Belus, signifying the Syrian Bel of Apamaea (Driver). Canaanitish place-names also attest the prevalence of the cult, as Baal-gad, at the foot of Hermen (Josh 11:17; 12:7; 13:5); Migdal-gad, possibly Mejdel near Askalon (Josh 15:37); Gaddi and Gaddiel (Nu 13:10 f). In Talmudic literature the name of Gad is frequently invoked (compare McCurdy in Jewish Encyclopedia, V, 544). Indeed the words of Leah in Gen 30:11 may refer not to good fortune or luck but to the deity who was especially regarded as the patron god of Good Fortune (compare Kent, Student's Old Testament, I, 111). Similar beliefs were held among the Greeks and Romans, e.g. Hor. Sat. ii.8, 61:
".... Fortuna, quis est crudelior in nos te deus?"
Cic. N.D. iii.24, 61:
"Quo in genere vel maxime est Fortuna numeranda."
The question has also an astronomical interest. Arabic tradition styled the planet Jupiter the greater fortune, and Venus the lesser fortune. Jewish tradition identified Gad with the planet Jupiter, and it has been conjectured that Meni is to be identified with the planet Venus.
See, however, ASTROLOGY, 10.
W. N. Stearns
GAD (4) [ISBE]
- ('azal, "to go about"): Used once in Jer 2:36
, "Why gaddest thou about so much to change thy way?" of going after Egypt and Assyria.
Also see definition of "Gad
" in Word Study