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UZZA (ūz'a, Heb. ‘uzzâh, strength)

The eldest son of Ehud (1Chr.8.7).The caretaker of, owner of, or one in whose memory a garden was named in which Manasseh and his son, Amon, were buried (2Kgs.21.18, 2Kgs.21.26).One whose children returned under Zerubbabel (Ezra.2.49; Neh.7.51).

UZZAH (ŭz'a, Heb., ‘uzzâh, strength)

One of Abinadab’s sons from Kirjath Jearim. He was one of those who accompanied the ark of the Lord when it was being brought from Kirjath Jearim to Jerusalem. The ark was being drawn on a cart pulled by oxen. When something caused the ark to shake, Uzzah took hold of it, thus displeasing the Lord. As a result, he met instant death (2Sam.6.3-2Sam.6.8; 1Chr.13.6-1Chr.13.11, kjv “Uzza”).The son of Shimei who became the father of Shimea (1Chr.6.29; kjv “Uzza”).

UZZAH, UZZA uz’ ə (עֻזָּ֔ה). 1. A son of Abinadab (2 Sam 6:3). He was killed while driving the oxcart which carried the Ark of the covenant to Jerusalem. The Ark had been in the house of Abinadab for some time following the disaster it had occasioned in the Philistine cities and in Bethshemesh (1 Sam 6:19; 7:2). David, wishing to add to the prestige of the city of Jerusalem by making it a religious center, decided to bring to Jerusalem the Ark of the covenant, the sacred object of Israel’s early faith. Uzzah and his brother, Ahio, were driving the cart. In the festal ceremony that accompanied the caravan something happened. At the threshing-floor of Nacon, prob. one of the stopping places, either the oxen stumbled or the Ark began to slide. Uzzah reached out to steady the Ark and was fatally smitten. His death was attributed to the violation of the sacred character of the Ark (2 Sam 6:7; 1 Chron 13:10). David was greatly distressed at the incident, and immediately cancelled his plans to enshrine the Ark in Jerusalem. Instead, he deposited it in the home of Obed-edom. He named the place Perez-uzzah—“The breaking out against Uzzah.” The Ark remained in the home of Obed-edom for three months.

2. A son of Merari (1 Chron 6:29). He was one of the men David placed in charge of the service of song in the house of the Lord, after the Ark rested there (1 Chron 6:31).

3. The owner of a garden in which Manasseh and Amon, kings of Judah, were buried (2 Kings 21:18, 26).

4. One of the Temple servants who returned from the Exile (Ezra 2:49; Neh 7:51).

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (1915)

uz’-a, uz’-a (’uzzah (2Sa 6:6-8), otherwise `uzza’ meaning uncertain):

(1) One of those who accompanied the ark on its journey from Kiriath-jearim toward David’s citadel (2Sa 6:3-8, "Uzzah" = 1Ch 13:7-11, "Uzza"). From the text of 2Sa 6:3-8, as generally corrected with the help of Septuagint, it is supposed that Uzzah walked by the side of the ark while Ahio (or "his brother") went in front of it. The word which describes what happened to the oxen is variously translated; the Revised Version (British and American) has "stumbled"; others render it, "They let the oxen slip," "The oxen shook (the ark)." Uzzah, whatever it be that took place, caught hold of the ark; something else happened, and Uzzah died on the spot. If the word translated "rashness" (Revised Version margin) in 2Sa 6:7 (not "error" as English Versions of the Bible) is to be kept in the text, Uzzah would be considered guilty of too little reverence for the ark; but the words "for (his) rashness" are lacking in the Septuagint (Codex Vaticanus), while 1Ch 13:10 has "because he put forth his hand to the ark," and further no such Hebrew word as we find here is known to us. The older commentators regarded the death as provoked by non-observance of the provisions about the ark as given in the Pentateuch, but it is generally believed today that these were not known in David’s time.

What is clear is that Uzzah’s act led to an accident of some kind, and the event was regarded by David as inauspicious, so that the journey with the ark was discontinued. We know how the Old Testament writers represent events as due to divine intervention where we would perhaps discern natural causes.

(2) The garden of Uzza (2Ki 21:18,26). Manasseh the king is said (2Ki 21:18) to have been "buried in the garden of his own house, in the garden of Uzza"; and Amon (2Ki 21:26) "was buried in his sepulchre in the garden of Uzza." It has been suggested that "Uzza"--"Uzziah" (’uzziyah) = Azariah" (compare 2Ki 15:1-6). The garden of Manasseh would then be identical with that of Uzziah, by whom it was originally laid out. 2Ch 33:20 does not mention the garden.

(3) Son of Shimei, a Merarite (1Ch 6:29 (Hebrew 14)), the Revised Version (British and American) "Uzzah," the King James Version "Uzza."

(4) A descendant of Ehud, and head of a Benjamite family (1Ch 8:7, "Uzza"). Hogg, JQR, 102 ff (1893) (see Curtis, Chron., 156-59), finds a proper name "Iglaam" in 1Ch 8:6, and so reads "and Iglaam begot Uzza and Abishabar."

(5) Head of a Nethinim family that returned from Babylon (Ezr 2:49) = "Uzza" of Ne 7:51.