|a-bad'-on (the destroyer, destruction)
RELATED: Apollyon, Sheol
Easton's Bible Dictionary
destruction, The Hebrew name (equivalent to the Greek
Apollyon, i.e., destroyer) of "the angel of the bottomless pit" ( Revelation 9:11
). It is rendered "destruction" in Job 28:22 ; 31:12 ; 26:6 ; Proverbs 15:11 ;
27:20 . In the last three of these passages the Revised Version retains the word
"Abaddon." We may regard this word as a personification of the idea of destruction,
or as sheol, the realm of the dead.
Hitchcock's Dictionary of Bible Names
Smith's Bible Dictionary
or, as it is literally in the margin of the Authorized Version of ( Revelation
9:11 ) "a destroyer," is the rendering of the Hebrew word ABADDON, "the angel
of the bottomless pit." From the occurrence of the word in ( Psalms 88:11 ) the
rabbins have made Abaddon the nethermost of the two regions into which they divide
the lower world; but that in ( Revelation 9:11 ) Abaddon is the angel and not
the abyss is perfectly evident in the Greek.
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
a-bad'-on ('abhaddon, "ruin," "perdition," "destruction"):
Though "destruction" is commonly used in translating 'abhaddon, the stem idea
is intransitive rather than passive--the idea of perishing, going to ruin, being
in a ruined state, rather than that of being ruined, being destroyed.
The word occurs six times in the Old Testament, always as a place name in the
sense in which Sheol is a place name. It denotes, in certain aspects, the world
of the dead as constructed in the Hebrew imagination. It is a common mistake to
understand such expressions in a too mechanical way. Like ourselves, the men of
the earlier ages had to use picture language when they spoke of the conditions
that existed after death, however their picturing of the matter may have differed
from ours. In three instances Abaddon is parallel with Sheol (Job 26:6 ; Proverbs
15:11 ; 27:20). In one instance it is parallel with death, in one with the grave
and in the remaining instance the parallel phrase is "root out all mine increase"
(Job 28:22 ; Psalms 88:11 ; Job 31:12). In this last passage the place idea comes
nearer to vanishing in an abstract conception than in the other passages.
Abaddon belongs to the realm of the mysterious. Only God understands it (Job 26:6
; Proverbs 15:11). It is the world of the dead in its utterly dismal, destructive,
dreadful aspect, not in those more cheerful aspects in which activities are conceived
of as in progress there. In Abaddon there are no declarations of God's lovingkindness
In a slight degree the Old Testament presentations personalize Abaddon. It is
a synonym for insatiableness (Proverbs 27:20). It has possibilities of information
mediate between those of "all living" and those of God (Job 28:22).
In the New Testament the word occurs once (Revelation 9:11), the personalization
becoming sharp. Abaddon is here not the world of the dead, but the angel who reigns
over it. The Greek equivalent of his name is given as Apollyon. Under this name
Bunyan presents him in the Pilgrim's Progress, and Christendom has doubtless been
more interested in this presentation of the matter than in any other.
In some treatments Abaddon is connected with the evil spirit Asmodeus of Tobit
(e.g. 3:8), and with the destroyer mentioned in The Wisdom of Solomon (18:25;
compare 22), and through these with a large body of rabbinical folklore; but these
efforts are simply groundless. See APOLLYON.
Willis J. Beecher
abaddon, angel of the bottomless pit, apollyon, bible commentary, bible history, bible reference, bible study, define, destroyer, destruction