Beel'zebub (Βεελζεβούλ, BEELZEBUL) is the name assigned (Mt 10:25; Mt 12:24; Mr 3:24; Lu 11:15 sq.) to the prince of the daemons. It is remarkable that, amid all the daemonology of the Talmud and rabbinical writers, this name should be exclusively confined to the New Testament. There is no doubt that the reading Beelzebul is the one which has the support of almost every critical authority; and the Beelzebub of the Peshito (if indeed it is not a corruption, as Michaelis thinks, Suppl. p. 205), and of the Vulgate, and of some modern versions, has probably been accommodated to the name of the Philistine god BAAL-ZEBUB SEE BAAL-ZEBUB (q.v.). Some of those who consider the latter to have been a reverential title for that god believe that Beelzebul is a wilful corruption of it, in order to make it contemptible. It is a fact that the Jews are very fond of turning words into ridicule by such changes of letters as will convert them into words of contemptible signification (e.g. Sychar, Beth-aven). Of this usage Lightfoot gives many instances (Hor. Hebr. ad Mt 12:24). Beelzebul, then, is considered to mean בִּעִל זֶבֶל, i. q. dung-god. Some connect the term with זבוּל, habitation, thus making Beelzebul = οἰκοδεσπότης (Mt 10:25), the lord of the dwelling, whether as the "prince of the power of the air" (Eph 2:2), or as the prince of the lower world (Paulus quoted by Olshausen, Comment. in Mt 10:25), or as inhabiting human bodies (Schleusner, Lex. s.v.), or as occupying a mansion in the seventh heaven, like Saturn in Oriental mythology (Movers, Phoniz. 1, 260). Hug supposes that the fly, under which Baalzebub was represented, was the Scarabaeus pillularius, or

dunghill beetle, in which case Baalzebub and Beelzebul might be used indifferently. SEE BAALIM; SEE FLY.

Bible concordance for BEELZEBUB.

See also the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

Topical Outlines Nave's Bible Topics International Standard Bible Encyclopedia Online King James Bible King James Dictionary

Verse reference tagging and popups powered by VerseClick™.