Who was Obed-Edom in the Bible

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    Sulhazan
    Keymaster

    Obed-edom was the temporary Keeper of the Ark. The ark was said to have been in his possession for three months.
    The ark of the LORD remained in the house of Obed-Edom the Gittite for three months, and the LORD blessed him and his entire household. 2 SAMUEL 6:11
    There is some debate over the precise identity of the man named Obed-Edom. What implications can be drawn from his involvement with the ark of the covenant depend in large part on the true nature of his background.
    After David’s first attempt to bring the ark to Jerusalem had ended in disaster one of its escorts, Uzzah, died when he touched the ark – the king abandoned his plans, fearing a further outbreak of God’s wrath.
    Instead, David left the ark in the care of Obed-Edom, a Gittite. But why did David choose Obed-Edom? And why did God bless Obed-Edom’s entire household for the three months that the ark remained in his care?
    In the first possible scenario, Obed-Edom seems a perfectly logical choice for a temporary caretaker. Some scholars believe that he was a Levite, a member of the Jewish priestly class. This interpretation rests on the assumption that “Gittite” is a reference to the Levitical town of Gath Rimmon. The parallel account in 1 Chronicles may support this
    interpretation, mentioning Obed-Edom in connection with a number of Levite priests and identifying him as one of the “doorkeepers for the ark” (see 1 Chronicles 15:23–24). As a priest, Obed-Edom would have known exactly how to care for the ark, treating it with appropriate respect, in
    contrast to Uzzah.
    A more bizarre possibility is that Obed-Edom was a Philistine which is likely the case if “Gittite” refers not to a Levitical town but to the Philistine city of Gath, as it does in 2 Samuel 15:18. A Philistine seems like a strange choice for a caretaker, especially since the Philistines had once managed to seize the ark in battle with the Israelites. If Obed-Edom
    was a Philistine, then being entrusted with the ark then invited to be one of its doorkeepers was an extraordinary honor indeed. Some scholars see Obed-Edom as an example of the value God placed on
    foreigners, long before the gospel was taken to the Gentiles.
    Either way, Obed-Edom enjoyed a tremendous honor, and he received
    God’s blessing for his faithful service.
    Further adding to the mystery surrounding Obed-Edom is the significance of his name. It means “servant of Edom.” In this instance, however, the servant of Edom became the servant of the one true God instead.

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